Wushu is the collective term for the martial art practices that originated and developed in China. Over its long history, wushu has developed into numerous distinct styles and systems, each incorporating their own techniques, tactics, principles and methods, as well as the use of a wide variety of traditional weaponry. Competitive wushu is categorized into two main categories, namely Taolu (Routines Competition) and Sanda (Free-fighting Competition).
The World Games 2022 will feature Talou, which refers to the set routine (form) practice component of wushu. Taolu routines comprise of a continuously connected set of pre-determined techniques, choreographed according to certain principles and philosophies which incorporate techniques and stylistic principles of attack and defense. These include hand techniques, leg techniques, jumps, sweeps, stances & footwork, seizing, throwing & wrestling, balances etc. The main talou events are:
Comprising of styles that originated and are popular in the northern geographic areas of China, this style is defined by open and long-range strikes, and a wide variety of leg techniques and circular motions. Changquan utilizes open and expanded postures, high-speed techniques as well as many aerial and acrobatic techniques. It is a fast, dynamic and exciting style, incorporating many breathtaking movements.
Comprising of styles that originated and are popular in the southern geographic areas of China, Nanquan is defined by low stances with fewer leg techniques and a focus on short, powerful arm strikes often accompanied by vocal articulation. Focusing on a solid stance and stability, Nanquan has relatively fewer acrobatic techniques but rather concentrates on generating extremely powerful techniques with intricate and highly developed hand techniques. It is a fierce and powerful style whose practitioners exude a strong spirit.
The most widely practiced and popular martial art in the world today, Taiji Quan is characterized by its slow and graceful motions and its combination of both hard and soft techniques. Taiji Quan is defined by slow motions, coupled at times with explosive bursts of force, which require total harmony of motion and breath, concentration and coordination of the entire body and spirit in continuous practice.
Taiji Jian features the double-edged straight sword employed with Taiji Quan principles and characteristics. Taiji Jian is defined by slow motions, coupled at times with explosive bursts of force, which require total harmony of motion and breath, concentration and coordination of the entire body and spirit in a continuous practice.
As one of the prominent short-bladed weapons in Chinese history, the broadsword was widely practiced throughout China. It is a single-edged curved blade and its practice is characterized by vigorous attack and defensive techniques. Its fierce and powerful movements primarily utilize wrapping and entwining techniques with relentless hacking, upper-cutting, slashing, blocking, thrusting and circling. Its performance requires great strength and coordination between the practitioner’s body and the weapon.
The straight sword is one of the most widely practiced short-bladed weapons in Chinese history. It is a double-edged straight-bladed sword and its practice is characterized by graceful, elegant, brisk, agile and naturally flowing motions. It focuses on a harmonious balance between hard and soft techniques with variable and flexible changes in speed. Its primary techniques include thrusting, pointing, tilting, shearing and sweeping combined with intricate footwork, and flexible body work.
Considered the “father” of all weapons, the long cudgel is fast-paced which focuses on far-reaching sweeping techniques. Combining offensive and defensive techniques, it is characterized by quick and heavy movements, with fast and numerous changes. The most commonly used techniques include chopping, butting, sweeping, smashing and rotating.
The spear is considered the “king” of all weapons, and is the major long-shafted weapon practiced widely throughout China. Its practice is characterized by agile footwork, flexible body work, smooth transitions, fast and precise techniques, with both short and long-range techniques. While its core technique is thrusting, it also includes coiling, circling, circular blocking as well as slamming movements. The spear requires unity between the body and the weapon and relies on force generated from the entire body. This creates a breathtaking and mesmerizing display.
“Nangun” is the collective term given for all the different types of cudgel styles that have originated in and are practiced in the southern parts of China. With a rich and practical content which includes varied techniques, a fast-paced rhythm nangun fully embodies and displays the characteristics and spirit of southern cudgel styles by utilizing double handed techniques, with natural extension and withdrawal methods and devastating applications. Its techniques are clear, accurate and exact accompanied by vocal articulation.