Top 10 Ancient Chinese Martial Artists

Nowadays real Kungfu masters, or Martial Artists, are difficult to find in China. Finding a genuine master is more difficult than finding a gem in a hay stack. However, actually in ancient China there were many good Kungfu masters. Here is a list of  the 10 best ancient Chinese martial artists.

1. Hua Tuo 华佗

Hua TuoHua Tuo in the Han Dynasty was more famous as a physician. However he was also known for the early Qi Gong exercise named Five – Animal Exercises, in which the practicer imitates the actions of tigers, deer, bears, apes, and birds. These practices later developed into many kinds of martial arts such as Tai Chi.

2. Yue Fei 岳飞

Yue Fei was a well-known patriotic general in Southern Song Dynasty (1127–1279). Besides he is widely credited for creating Xingyiquan, a kind of Chinese martial arts featuring aggressive, seemingly linear movements and explosive power. Several more martial arts were also attributed to Yue Fei such as Eagle Claw, Fanziquan, and Chuojiao.

3. Zhang Sanfeng 张三丰

Zhang Sanfeng was usually regarded as the founder of Tai Chi. The legend goes that he created Tai Chi by observing a fight between a snake and a crane in Wu-dang Mountains.

4. Wang Lang 王朗

Wang Lang is said to create the Praying Mantis Boxing during the Northern Song Dynasty (969-1126). He was inspired to develop this special Kung Fu by observing the mantis insect.

5. Chen Wangting 陈王廷

Chen Wangting (1580–1660), a Ming Dynasty general, founded Chen-style Tai Chi at Chenjiagou, Wenxian county, Henan province. Chen is also said to create the Push Hands exercises.

6. Zhang Songxi 张松溪

Zhang Song Xi (Ming Dynasty) was  the disciple of martial artist Zhang Sanfeng, he combined the fundamental Wudang practices and created the unique Wudang Songxi Internal Style.

7. Qi Jiguang 戚继光

Qi Jiguang was well-known as a patriotic military general in the Ming Dynasty. He made great contribution in sorting out and researching folk Kung Fu, leaving behind a famous book JiXiao Xinshu, a book dedicated to the practice of Wushu.

8. Gan Fengchi 甘凤池

Gan Fengchi (Qing Dyansty) was a master of Hua Quan which originated from Shaolin Kungfu. He wrote a book called “The Essence of Hua Fist,” which give detailed introduction of this martial arts. Hua Quan has the speed & power of Long Fist and softness of Taiji.

9. Dong Haichuan 董海川

Dong Haichuan is widely regarded to be the founder of Bagua Zhang, which features very effective fighting system. He integrated ideas from the The Book of Changes into marital arts and created the famous Bagua Zhang. 

10. Yang Luchan 杨露蝉

Yang Luchan was an influential Tai Chi master and teacher in the second half of the 19th century. He founded his own style Tai Chi –  Yang Style Tai Chi, which features agreeable movements and actions combining hardness, softness and naturalness.

6 Responses

  1. augustine says:

    i love kung fu very much ……an i am lookin for someone who train me kung fu

  2. Terrence says:

    I have always followed martial arts since a child but never fully trained. I learned a few simple forms, but eager in my adult life to train. I enjoy many of the ancient styles and stories, Don’t care for the modern Hollywood versions. I especially like all of the run run Shaw movies, a lot of the same actors but very skilled martial artist. please advise on where to begin i am soon to be turning 50 but ever willing to learn

  3. charis says:


  4. charis says:

    I love martial artssss. But i never try to do it !

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