Top 10 Chinese Kung Fu Styles

Kung Fu is one of the most well-known traditional Chinese cultures. It was first introduced abroad by Chinese-American Kung Fu master Bruce Lee. His Kung Fu movies made Chinese Kung Fu sweep across the world. Kung Fu has many systems and styles such as Shaolin Temple and Tai Chi and below are top 10 famous Chinese Kung Fu styles.

1. Shaolin Kung Fu 少林功夫

shaolin kung fuShaolin Kung Fu is well known both at home and abroad. It originated from the Shaolin Temple on Mount Songshan, Dengfeng County, Henan Province. It integates the wisdom of Zen Buddhism into Chinese Kungfu and formed various kinds of sub-styles. The monks Its basic skills mainly include tumbling, jumping, rolling and others. In recent years westerners are becoming more and more interested in learning it.

2. Tai Chi Quan 太极拳

taijiquanTai Chi only has a history of several hundred years, yet it has been practiced widely by the public in many parts of China.
Tai Chi absorbs the advantages of different marital arts, integrates Yin-yang theory traditional Chinese medicine and other ideas, creating a set of marital art. Practicers  move their bodies slowly and gently to develop one’s internal power.

3. Wing Chun Quan 咏春拳

wing chun quanWing Chun is one of the strongest, most direct Kung fu styles. Wing Chun originated in the early 1700s at the Shaolin Temple and was then was widely spread by Bruce Lee’s Wing Chun teacher, Yip Man. The main principle of Wing Chun is “simplicity.” The less complex the techniques are, the more effective they will become.

4. Baguazhang 八卦掌

BaguazhangBaguazhang is a soft and internal style martial art. The creation of Baguazhang, as a formalized martial art, is credited to Dong Haichuan during the early 19th century. Baguazhang attaches importance to the interplay between mind and outside movements and is often characterized by slow and flowing movements.

5. Xing Yi Quan 形意拳

xing yi quan

Xingyiquan is one of the oldest Internal Martial Arts styles, the other two are Tai Chi and Baguangzhang. Xingyiquan pays more attention on internal power, with loose movements but clear intention. It features aggressive movements, eplosive power and unpredictable fighting skills.

6. Choy Lai Fut 蔡李佛

Choy Lai FutChoy Li Fut is a kind of Chinese martial art founded by Chen Heng from Guangdong province in the 1830s. The system compromises the merits of different martial arts techniques, forming his own Kung Fu style. Choy Li Fut stresses on relaxed, internal power instead of muscular force.

7. Bajiquan 八极拳

bajiquanBajiquan originated Hui Minority Kung Fu of the Cangzhou county, HeiBei province. Contrary to Tai Chi, Bajiquan features explosive, short-range power techniques, and is closely related with the military system. Many bodyguards who protect politicians practise Bajiquan.

8. Praying Mantis 北螳螂拳

Northern Praying MantisPraying Mantis was created by Wang Lang during the late Ming and early Qing periods. It mimics the actions of a mantis with two hands like hooks. It emphasizes hand play and footwork as well as speed and agility.

9. Nan Quan 南拳

NanquanNan Quan, also known as the Nanfang Quan, is the combination of Southern Shaolin boxing and other southern boxing techniques such as Hung Gar, Mok Gar, and Choy Li Fut. Nan Quan stresses on simple actions, changing and short-range hand plays and steady footwork.

10. Chang Quan 长拳

changquanChang Quan is a family of external martial arts styles which combines many Chinese martial art styles. It emphasizes fully extended kicks and striking techniques. Chang Quan was formed in recent years and is often displayed in various Martial Art Contests.

44 Responses

  1. Tupi says:

    I’m a martial arts master. I read the book seen the movie got the DVDs?!?!? Unless you train hard under a competent teacher for at least ten years then you are still a novice no matter what style. Namaste

  2. Crabby says:

    I believe Wing Chun is 1 of the best styles. Yip Man taught Bruce Lee and Bruce developed his Power to Weight Ratio to take care of far bigger opponents. That is the essence of Kung Fu I believe. Pick a very good style and develop your abilities in it (skills and Power to Weight) and you will be a good or Very good exponent of it. Spoken by A Non-Martial Artist looking in from the outside!! Thank you.

  3. Joshua says:

    Well actually this is wrong. I mean. I don’t wanna prove people wrong nothing like that. I’ve been,training in white crane even jeet-kun-o since I was 15 or 16. Well what I was getting at was, it’s been over 1000 years not hundreds since tai-chi came into place. The oldest records of it was 500 ad. Could go back farther. And white crane is shaolin white crane. As well as Tai chi. Kunfu. It’s one in the same.

  4. Chip K says:

    It is not the place of an enlightened practitioner to openly judge rights from wrongs… it states that individual has not yet grasped the spirituality that should always accompany training in any discipline. I will state it is the form of practice that exercises tactical and procedural advantages that may concur their opponent in the end. In general, learning a specific form to a great degree is beautiful art… learning and combining techniques and forms from several can give you advantage and become an additional exercise in flexabity, assessment, and constant alteration. In the end it depends on skill level, countering, and execution that may win the day. Peace.

  5. Dan says:

    “I’m a king fu master…”

    I imagine there are lots of people who have trained to a minimum of 5th black belt Who are trolling on the Internet. Thanks for the laugh !

  6. Jay M says:

    Which INCIDENTALLY, was the creator and innovator of Jeet Kune Do. He was defeated, ever. This speaks for itself. xi xi!

  7. Jay M says:

    You students are all wrong, as a great master once said, “Don’t think. FEEEEEEEEL! It is like a finger pointing away to the moon. Do not concentrate on the finger or you will miss all of that heavenly glory!” -Master Bruce Lee

    • Geo says:

      Actually it was Lao Tzu that said that known also as Laozi he authored a book called Tao Te Ching. In it you will find a great many Bruce Lee quotes but Laozi lived 2000years ago so not actually Bruce quotes but everyone in China knew who spoke them so no need for Bruce to explain

  8. None of your buisness says:

    There is no better Kung Fu it just depends on how you do it as long as you give it your best.(just as IP man quoted) personally i am going to learn Wing Chun,Jeet Kune Do ,MuayThai, Brazilian Jujustu, and am currently learning Tae Kwon Do, just so you know tae kwon do is very reccomended

  9. Happy Vu Phung says:

    love wing chun

  10. Jeff says:

    Drunkken iss beestt stylle in me opinion

  11. Idiris says:

    Iam somali boy and i interest this type of martial art so any one can help me

  12. Adam says:

    Which one is the strongest

    • samurai says:

      bence shaolin kungfu

    • k says:

      It is hard to say ,their styles are different,and i have learned Xingyi for seven years ,but i know i am still sick compared to my master.

    • Geo says:

      According to Bruce Lee jeet kun do but really depends on you Xingyi is an amalgam if southern boxing styles good if you desire to be a brute but if a brute is what you want to defeat then wing Chun as that is what it was created for find quotes from a styles great masters and that will give you an idea of what they may offer if you want to look like you have flair go for taeKwon do Quickest to master is jeet kun do. Always be kind and to injure is not your goal but a failure You train because it is better to be a warrior in the Garden than a Gardener in a fight

  13. Sanchez says:

    I have master ALL OF THESE style of Kung Fu. In my opinion The Strongest Kung Fu style is the drunken style. 2 years for me to learn it

  14. Travis Economy says:

    Actually your all wrong. There is no better style, only better opponent, one with higher level of skill, cultavated spirit of ying & yang. Well thats my opinion anyway.i could be wrong. I don’t think so

  15. Chinese Kung Fu (Martial Arts or Gongfu or Wushu) is a series of fighting styles which has developed over the centuries in China. Although being fighting styles, Kung Fu advocates virtue and peace, not aggression or violence. This has been the common value upheld by martial artists from generation to generation. With a number of movement sets, boxing styles, weapon skills and some fighting stunts, Kung Fu keeps its original function of self-defense. Now its value in body-building and fitness is also highly appreciated.

    Shaolin Traditional Kung Fu, Wing Chun, Sanda (Chinese kick boxing), Qin Na, Tai Ji,Chi Kung,Ba Ji Quan, Xing Yi Quan, Bagua

    • Silky says:

      So wat. Anout mma

      • Tung Nguyen says:

        Kung fu is technically MMA there’s to believe over 900 different styles of king fu. One of the being Trampling and Grapling . MMA was what Bruce Lee calls No Way Is Way. Meaning no one technique is dominate. In the movie Enter The Dragon people forget when Bruce Lee out his opponent in an arm bar to defeat him. Wasn’t action packed enough to remember

  16. Adeesha Dulanjana says:

    Kung fu is the best martial art in the world

  17. If you are searching for a good place to learn Kung fu in China, Taizu Shaolin Kung Fu Academy is the best choice. Improve your tai chi techniques. Learn Tai Chi And Martial Arts in China!
    Taizu Shaolin Kungfu School, located in Handan City.
    Taizu shaolin kungfu school China is unique Shaolin Temple campus, by the International Liaison Department of the former international students studying in Northern Shaolin Kung Fu Shaolin Temple in China, Shaolin Kung Fu Shaolin authorized training facilities. We welcome foreign students to learn Shaolin Traditional Kung Fu, Wing Chun, Sanda (Chinese kick boxing), Qin Na, Tai Ji,Chi Kung,Ba Ji Quan, Xing Yi Quan, Bagua, better understand the Chinese Buddhist cultural understanding.Personally study under Shaolin masters of authentic lineage.
    An institute for the teaching and promotion of traditional Shaolin Kung Fu and Chinese Martial Arts in China. Chinese Taizu Shaolin Kung Fu International School

  18. Matthew says:

    Hi I am looking to further my skills in kung fu is there any suggestions on what type of kung fu I should look for? I currently go to a school that teachers a small variety of kung fu

  19. Motheo Bruno Mogwera says:

    I greatly love all the kung fu styles China has to offer and I would appreciate the privilege and honour to study the one thing most I adore with all of my soul, spirit and mind along with all it has to offer such as its culture along with its spiritual and mental wisdom

  20. Asmar says:

    Hello i want to learn kung fu so plz any one can help me

  21. abhishek says:

    hey i m a kung fu master i have 5 kung fu training schools , u have missed a most strongest style in the world that is drunkun boxing ,if u learn this by heart then u can defeat any one in the world

    • Four Owls says:

      Bullshido!!! That claim is totally subjective and false. Real Kung Fu masters don’t call themselves “Master” either! There is no strongest style in the world and no superior way!

  22. sumanth says:

    Tiger style should also be included.

  23. Aviad says:

    Wing chun is my most desired to learn kung fu style. I am a huge fan of up man movies and how Donnie yen demonstrates wing chun

  24. Badsha laskar says:

    Hang ga kuan is also a kungfu style that is missing

  25. Badsha laskar says:

    I m a kungfu master. And i think there was many power style that u miss in the list such as ng ga kuan, zi quan ect

  26. Carlos says:

    Hung Gar deserves a spot on this list.

  27. Master Dragon says:

    ….I wish I could learn wingchun (kung fu) some day,,,,,,…… Still tryin to move like bruve lee, jet li .ETC…. …….

  28. seth says:

    wing chun wasnt invented by ip man. it was brought together by a called wing chun

  29. YzK says:

    Okay, but 南拳 is a modern style developed purely for modern performance art, not use. It is not in the same category as the rest of these styles.

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