The Wudang Straight Sword, Jian
The Lord of All weapons

Shaolin Academy Wudang Straight Sword, information, techniques and training curriculum

Synopsis

This page is dedicated to the 'Lord of All Chinese Weapons' the Jian, more specifically the Wudang Style of Jian. Included are also the Key Techniques and a Curriculum for training and grading with subsequent accreditation in Shaolin Academy Wudang Straight Sword!

Prologue

The first pointed stick may have been the first ancestor to the Straight Sword. It would be futile to try and guess how old the art of a medium sized pointed item for war and fighting would be. And let's be clear about it, the Jian or Straight Sword, unlike the Curved Swords, can not really effectively be used for hunting, skinning and other survival techniques. It is a weapon of War and Art!

Introduction to the Elegance and Power of the Wudang Jian Elegance

Accuracy, Patience, Focus, Agility and Timing are possibly the key Abilities that you need to develop with this weapon as the amount of techniques are very limited. The straight sword is much more dependant on how you move around the sword rather than the other way around. The Lord of all Weapons, the Wudang Straight Sword is about style, honor, class, elegance, distinction and serenity. More than any other weapon (except possibly the Spear) it needs to move and flow with tranquillity in the heart, peace in the mind and purity of spirit. It is not a weapon of emotion but serenity, the ultimate weapon of meditation. Possibly the reason why Tai Chi has made it it's no.1 implement of use.

The power of the Wudang Straight Sword attack feels like a sudden snake bite. Stinging, deceptive, flexible and often deadly, straight sword technique is the stuff of legend honed to effectiveness through combat. Throughout China's ancient military history, this clever blade stood out as the weapon of choice for many warriors. With such a history, the straight sword became a classic foundation weapon that continues to refine the overall skill of today's practitioners. Best of all, straight sword training offers a glimpse of the refined warrior spirit that typifies Chinese martial arts.

While not fully understood, the straight sword's combat use is comprehensive and subtle. Often considered a Yin weapon because of its flexibility and use of focused power, straight sword practice tempers the Yang forces that usually dominate the energy exhibited by martial artists. The weapon is best suited for quick strikes based on speed, timing and accuracy. Uncommonly strong twists with body, wrists and hands; a true straight sword usage requires precise footwork and wrist control, not raw strength.

The weapon is used to adhere to the limbs or weapon of an opponent to neutralize attacks. Developing the subtle skill of "stickiness" is taught with partner training similar to the open-hand sensitivity exercises utilized by many Chinese boxing schools.

Perspective on Weaponry Training in the 21st Century.

It would almost seem ludicrous to train with Weaponry now-days where so many are forbidden. Yet on the other hand there are many, many reasons for training with such items. And if you have a closer look, we actually promote the use of some weaponry for sport like the Javelin, Hammer and Discus. And this is also the key to Shaolin Weaponry training!

The Shaolin Temple (where Shaolin Academy Kung Fu and Weaponry originated and is based on) Kung Fu teachers used to teach and use weaponry to prepare the student for the Real World. To complete their training most Shaolin students after many years of teaching in the 6 Arts (Scripting, Math's, Poetry, History, Kung Fu and Buddhism), would be encouraged to go on their journey years. As part of their Bare Hand training, they would learn weaponry to help them understand how the weapon is used and then how to defend against a weaponed attack bare handed. This would have them learning many, many weapons and at the same time get a through workout; both learning to use the weapon and then defending against the weapon bare handed. They became so good at it that Chinese Emperors called up-on Shaolin Warrior Monks many times to help them out when the Imperial Army was not good enough or too corrupt.

So, what about Weaponry Training today! Well there are still a few nuts walking around with concealed weapons and anyone can pick up a stick, knife, broom or anything else for that matter and use it to attack you. That is why we train Weaponry still today; for appreciation how to defend against it; for a through and good workout and for the recreational aspect of Weaponry training; and yes, it is also enjoyable! Just below we have put some ideas together and then we will continue with information on the Shaolin Tiger Broad Sword!

Real World Competitions Health & Well-being Profession-Acting Profession-Security Lifestyle & Life Fitness
Learning to defend against a blade or knife seems to be ever more important; understanding the expertise of the attacker is key Winning competitions is a way of Coming to terms with one self and developing; also to improving self esteem Life long exercise needs to be interesting and work on multiple levels and have the ability to change with our changing needs Many, most stunt persons have some form of martial arts training and weaponry; this can be often seem in movies Being comfortable in confronting situations is much more likely when you have learned to stand up to a weaponed attack in training. Some just train because it os fun but some of us are really interested in Weapons history,not just the written word Working out in a Gym is fun (not) but working out with a variety of instruments both the Weapon and the defend against that weapons IS fun (yes)

Straight Sword History

When does a Dagger become a Straight Sword, at which length. Arsnic copper and tin-bronze swords are believed to date back to 3300 BCE. These swords had to be short stout almost clubbing like weapons as Bronze was not really good enough for anything beyond 60 to 70 cm.

First Swords may have been made of wood with Animal Teeth set at the edge. Later, for a short period copper swords took over but were not very usable, not until they added tin to the copper and made Bronze that Swords came of age.

Chinese Bronze swords are believed to have started during the Shang Dynasty around 1200 BCE. These Stout Bronze Age Swords were often referred to as 'Willow Leaf Swords' due to the similarity to the Willow Leaf (right). The shape came from the battle field, a compromise between weight/length and sturdiness. Any longer and it would need to be even wider and thicker or it would break and bend much easier.

Later in the Qin Dynasty (221 BCE – 207 BCE) some unique (in the world) technologies were used, such as casting high tin edges over softer, lower tin cores which gave a Sharper Edge and a more flexible, less likely to break Weapon. Experimentation with ultra high tin content gave even harder weapons that would shatter when stressed to much whereby the softer, lesser tin weapons would bend and thus still be usable for defence. Yet, in some places Sword makers war far ahead of the rest.

In 1965 a damp tomb was unearthed in China. Believed to be 2,000 years old it yelded a number of artifacts oncluding a Straight Sword. There wasn’t a spot of rust on the blade despite the damp conditions of the tumbe. The blade was so well preserved that one of the archeologist drew his own blood whilst handling the edge of the Sword.Study of the etchings, form and style of the blade concluded that it was a sword belonging to the Yue king, Goujian, and is believed to be the legendary blade mentioned in The Lost History of Yue.

There are other such great swords recorded in history including that were far exceeded the craftman skills of the time; Tomoyuki Yamashita’s Sword from sword maker Fujiwara Kanenaga crafted 1640~1680 CE (CS), Curved Saber (CS) of San Martin, Seven-Branched Sword (SS) 4 Century Korea, William Wallace Sword (SS) from the 13 Century (made famous by the Mel Gibson movie), Colada (SS) and Tizona (SS) owned by El Cid 11th Century CE, Napoleon’s Sword (CS), Sword of Mercy of Edward the Confessor 11th Century (SS), Zulfiqar Scimitar (CS) of the Islamic leader Ali 7th Century CE, Honjo Masamune Swords from 1288CE – 1328CE (CS), Joyeuse Sword (SS) of Emperor Charlemagne 8th Century CE.

As can be seen from the list above (SS = Straight Sword, CS = Curved Sword), most of the 'famous' Swords that are know and have survived were straight edged; but not all!

A parable

Through his study of the martial way, a teacher spent years growing toward enlightenment. One day he felt very close to achieving his goal. He watched the moonrise over the nearby mountain. The beauty he be-held struck him. He was overwhelmed by the clarity of everything he saw: the mountain, the stars, the indigo night sky, the golden circle of the moon. Every sound seemed richer; every sensation enhanced. He was so touched by what he was experiencing that he gathered up his students and brought them to the mountain. When he had his students all around him, he raised his arm and pointed at the night sky: to the wonders of nature. He was overwhelmed and gratified as he looked into his students' faces and assumed that they understood what was being offered. He saw how intently they watched his every move.

The next day, he went to the practice field to further discuss with his students the wonder that they had all experienced. He found them intently practicing how to "point." Each one trying to outdo the other in developing the most powerful "pointing technique."

Wudang Sword Techniques

Whereby the Broad Sword, in essence is fairly simple, although in the advanced stages it becomes more complex, the Wudang Straight Sword can be very complex. yet, in it's complexity, it can also be very simple. First the Complex!

Action Variation Description

Thrusting
Jab is a very short thrust from a semi extended hand, a short movement a bit like a Rabbit Punch in Boxing. It is more of a twitch than a full blown thrust.
Stab is a longer movement where the Sword Hand moves from in front of the body to almost full extension.
Thrust is the technique where the Sword Hand is either next to your body or even a bit behind.
Lunging is a thrust but with a hyper extension to achieve the point
Rev Thrust is inverting the Sword in your hand and thrusting behind you or to the side.
Nicking
Stab is just barely penetrating the skin to draw blood using a strait poking motion; this is a as a Warning or Dueling technique
Cut is Cutting the opponent barely nicking the skin and drawing blood; this is meant as a as a Warning or Dueling technique
Whip is a reverse Cutting motion after a Trust (or the like) again barely nicking the skin and drawing blood; this is also used as a Warning or Dueling technique
Slap Slap is another Warning or Dueling technique where you Chop using the Straight Sword but turn the blade to his flatly rather than with the edge; usu
Punch Punch is a Punch is a Punch just that you are holding a Sword in your Hand
Pommel Pommel is Hitting the attacker with the reverse side of the Sword the bottom bit.
Cut Sweep is dropping down low and Cutting at the attackers legs with your sword as if a Broad Sword
Blocking
Accelerate Is getting behind the force of the attack and helping it along thus also inhibiting the opponent from stopping/controlling their weapon the way they wanted.
Brush is like brushing the tip of the attacking weapon to either one side or the other;
Press is the same as Brush except you press it down
Lift is the same as Brush except you lift the weapon up (exposing the attacker)
Deflect is much the same as with the Broad Sword where you use the bottom part of the Sword to Stop a chopping or Cutting attack; usually though, not often used with the Wudang Straight Sword
Coil Wrap or Wind your Weapon around the opponent's Weapon with circles getting bigger thus accelerating the opponents weapon and possibly making the opponent lose the sword
Wrap Is the opposite of Coiling as the circle gets smaller and you can follow up with a Thrust once you make a small side-step
Interfering
Pointing is where you keep your sword pointed at the mid section of the opponent and minimal sword movement you parry all attacks occasionally following this with a Jab or Stab
Stirring is similar to pointing except you interferer with the opponents Sword Tip; as the name say stirring it, moving it, preventing the attacker from attacking
Obstruct is when you use an object to obstruct the opponents ability to attack you. This is usually done in some way with an object of some kind, dagger in the other hand, surrounding features like furniture or trees, or just simply getting close to the person not allowing a good attack to be developed.
Stroke is keeping in constant contact with the attackers weapon and stroking it off the centerline

Yes, there seem to be a lot of techniques to learn but fortunately our Weaponry comes in 3 levels and the 1st level, this page only requires you to learn the Key and Major techniques. As mentioned, the Wudang Sword is the Lord of all weapons and gives you a lot of opportunity to play.

The Shaolin Way

Although the Shaolin Warrior Monks are called Warriors, they are not Soldiers or even Mercenaries but Buddhists with speciality skills. Although we are not Warrior Monks we are also not Killers, Murderous or Mercenaries! As most people would not qualify themselves as the afore mentioned, we feel it is better to set down some Shaolin Kung Fu Academy principles and practices or 'The Way we do Things'.

  1. Safety 1st and Always - This is such a misunderstood aspect that we will give a bit more of an explanation; short version Life/Situational Risk Management (LSRM). Your Safety, your Family's Safety is Paramount. Even the Law (in most countries) has provisions for you doing harm, hurt and kill to someone to protect yourself and your family. Yet, this will scare you for life. One can not hurt or kill someone without this changing your life substantially unless your are sick or a Psychopath. So, the Shaolin way is to avoid causing any form of harm to anyone unless there is absolutely no other way. But once you have put yourself into that decision tree, there will be a cost one way or another.
  2. A Peaceful Mind - and Safety are the reason for Shaolin Martial Arts. Shaolin is not about War; a Style that seeks to kill and destroy but a style that seeks order and collaboration, win-win-win. The level of skill needed to manage rather than destroy is such that requires a high skill and moral superiority; Shaolin martial art is used for Peace not War. Even if you are in a Combat Situations, a Shaolin Mind is not about winning but about attaining a state of Peace, Situational and Spiritual. This does not mean that you can not go into competitions and even full contact events and go for the win; just don't compete with hate, anger, fear or any other strong emotion controlling you rather than you it. This is another aspect of LS Risk Management and Safety!
  3. Situations Management - not Control is a greater way of dealing with most any situations. It is the Greater Being that seeks to create a situation whereby each participant walks away with the feeling of being better off than before. This is the true skill of a Shaolin Warrior not the depictions in Movies.
  1. Thought before Action - Having received a bit of e-mail about this; let me explain what this really means! The way you train your martial art skill is the way you will react in a conflict situation. If your trained skill is to hit, that is what you will do when you are under stress and feel attacked (even if maybe there is no attack). So; Think and Consider before you Act and this includes your Martial Art Training. The Shaolin Way is to 1st Avoid Conflict and Conflict Situations; if this was not successful 2nd Evade Attacks and the Possibility of Attacks; and then, and only then, if you have failed on the initial steps do you initiate appropriate action!
  2. Appropriateness - is a far reaching concept. Do you really want to spend year learning to bash someone or does your training have considerable other benefits? Is the style right for you; your physical, mental and spiritual aspects. If you are a non-violent person how can a martial art help you or if you are a violent character, how can it support you in finding human and intelligent outcomes.
An efforgy of Buddah
Use the wisdom of Buddha for Success not just to Win.
Patience - Is the Warriors Creed and the Soldiers death. Sijo Robert Z, NMAL Sparring Seminar 1988

Keys for being Successful in the Shaolin Academy Weaponry & Kung Fu

Keys and Principles, one unlocks doors (metaphorically possibilities) the other Centers (metaphorically grounds). We should be using a word that combines both these into one for this segment. Where it is easy to imagine a Key opening a Door it is not easy to see how a Principle can be understood. Let's try the following;

Holding a Kit's Sting seems to limit it's freedom but if you let it go, it quickly falls to the ground

In much the same way correctly applied principles (as correctly applied techniques to flying a kite) will allow you the greatest freedom. With out these Keys or Principles you may be living, working or training without direction or meaning. So, the following are such Principles that, if you use them in your thinking and training of the Shaolin Tiger Broad Sword will serve you well and help to understand the unique style of Shaolin rather than a butchers Broad Sword.

Immediate KeysExplanation
Centerline Management is a foundation principle of all Shaolin Kung Fu and Shaolin Weaponry training and usage. It is possibly the most important Key or Principle for most any Martial Art. Managing that direct line from your attacker to you and managing your Center Line are probably the most overlooked Principle in modern Martial Art training; although one sees it more and more.
Focus on Defence not Offense; that is what Shaolin Practitioners do; in a conflict situation we try 1st to Avoid then Evade and when this is not possible, Defend. We do not seek to start a fight nor do we seek to prolong an encounter beyond a point of safety. What can not be caught, what can not be touched and what can not be seen can not be attacked or hurt. Focus on Safety and Defence!
Foundation & Center; like the Kite analogy above, you need a solid basis to work from be it the physical ground or the metal principles or the spiritual mind set. To use a solid tool, weapon like the Tiger Broad Sword you need a good Center and Foundation. This means your Metal state of mind and your physical ability for strong stances and balanced movement. When you are swing, guide and manage a heavy object you need to b able to find your center and have the foundation of a boulder. Although, compared to the Kwan Dao (which can be 2 meters and 70lb) the broad Sword may not seem so heavy, remember to think about Combat Steel. Even if you are training with a training weapon, establish a habit of reality.
Bare Hand Skills; a weapon can break, not be there or even be taken away from you. As long as you manage a weapon well it is a tool but should it be taken from you, do not be a helpless child! The one thing that an not be taken away are your skills and abilities and if they ever are you are no longer you. As you progress through your Weaponry maintain and improve you bare Hand Skills. Just because you have a bike does not mean you will never walk again!
Back-door Exit; be it for yourself or your attacker, always allow a way out, a back door, a point of exit or escape. There is nothing as dangerous as a person with nothing left to loose so pushing your attacker into such a position may not be the wisest move. And the same for you; be aware of your options and choices. Fighting is rarely the best first choice. Not to say that running is the best first choice; just have options and manage the situation rather than controlling it or being a victim of it.
Long Term Behaviors
Always consider => 'Who is in charge?' If you are hot and bothered and emotional will it be you or your bad habits that are directing your actions. Is it possible even that you attacker is the one riling you up so that you think less and be the aggressor or patsy/stooge. If you are focused on Defence (Key 3) you will not attack and this gives you time to settle and center. Remember Centerline Management (Key1) is not only physical.
No Emotions; avoid the insult, avoid the goading, avoid the attack, avoid the conflict if you can; because you can NOT AVOID the responsibility for the resulting consequences. Ultimately, if you are not there, you can not be to blame or be attacked.
Daily usage both the form and as the tool. With the less usual items such as the Monks Spade, a day without it being used is a day wasted. Constant Practice; but only Perfect Practice Makes Perfect; so, first learn what there is to learn well and then practice, practice and more practice. This will keep you fit, healthy and is your path to Mastery (with some help)
Meditation; another form of centering, reflection and understanding. 30 minutes a day is the way; no matter if you wish to be a Wudang Sword Master or just lead a balanced life, 30 minutes a day is the only way!
Sheng, Jing Chi balance; Body, Mind and Spirit are linked through Chi and when this is all balanced health and well-being will ensue. Seek to balance you life and your being. What does this mean, well we do have a 'Life Balance Page' which you can consult but if you meditate 30 minutes a day, it will soon become clear to you what this means; the journey is just as important as the destination.

Safety Notices before continuing any further

Kung Fu means "Perfection though Effort"; and it would be difficult to achieve perfection through effort if you constantly injured yourself in the process; it is also difficult to achieve excellence if you do not push the limits. The very spirit of Kung Fu is Safety and Growth. What use is any exercise if it causes you constant pain and injury; and does not allow you to grow and develop. Achieving a balance between these two opposites (Yin and Yang) lies in the skill of Instructors and Students alike! We err on the side of Safety and are excellent Risk Managers! We are aware that....

The human body has in-built redundancy to allow us many choices which in times of threat allow us to push it way beyond its normal usage. Yet when we do this, we damage our body in some way. This is what top sports people do constantly and why we hear about knee reconstructions, shoulder injuries, ankle problems and damaged backs. We do not want this in Shaolin 5 Animal Kung Fu Academy (Australia). We choose to slowly, consistently and sustainable develop and build our bodies and minds, and gently push ourselves, with focus, care, and patience in a safe way, rather than burning our body and mind!

Sharps Warning
It is not about Risk Elimination but about Risk Management!


"The good warriors first put themselves beyond the possibility of defeat,
and then waited for an opportunity of defeating the enemy"

Shaolin Academy dose not use or supply weapons of any type or sort for any reasons. The materials and equipment we use are Recreational meaning both for health, Sports & Fitness as well as a Recreation of Historical Skills and Styles.

Disclaimer and Agreement

Training from this materials will not make an expert out of you, or a Champion or a Warrior; but it will give you a good grounding upon which you can choose to build, if you wish. Some have chose to enter competitions and have done well using the 72 Fists and principles; especially the movement groups. Some have had opportunity to defend themselves using 72 Fists and this has also been successful. We at the Shaolin Academy have even used our Kung Fu as action stand-ins in theater, movies, music videos and shows and when we visited China we put on a demonstration at the Shaolin Temple in Henan China, Xian Wushu School and the Beijing Wushu Institute. But mostly, we use our Kung Fu for Fun, health and Fitness!

Choose wisely the reason for your training and if you are not wise; consider the following words;

The Universe will conspire to make you thoughts come true; both what you want and what you don't'; be careful on what you focus your mind.

Beyond this Point

Reading beyond this paragraph you agree to follow the instructions given on these WEB pages, in a safe and responsible way including the following rules;

  1. Do not cause harm through action or inaction if anyway possible and/or reasonable
  2. Do not break the law unless your safety is compromised or the safety of the persons in your charge
  3. Do not misuse your skills;
  4. Do not bully or intimidate
  5. Do not initiate violent, threatening or intimidating action

Only use Shaolin Cannon (Ball) Fist Kung Fu for fitness, competition, fun, development and when needed self defence. never initiate the course of violence. If you agree to this, please read the following also and only continue if you are in agreement with both this and the below.

MARTIAL ARTS IS DANGEROUS!

The Shaolin Academy only makes this material available, beyond this point, under the provision that you, the user (reader, potential student, interested person, etc.), indemnify the Shaolin Academy, it's Master & Instructors; and any person or persons from any liability arising from you following, learning, using or anything else derived from any Word, Picture, Video on the Shaolin Academy WEB pages! If you can not agree to this please click here NOW.

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The 5 Tests of the Wudang Straight Sword practitioner

Prerequisite

Below is a list of the Bare Hand Skills required to safely and correctly learn the use of the Shaolin Tiger Broad Sword. The first test is a fairly standard test mostly equal to the 1st Level of Shaolin Kung Fu training sans the Punches. Ideally though you would want to be 2nd Level or even a 3rd Level Martial Artist to commence the Trident-Axe training. That said, check you skills against the requirements in the 1st Test just below. To be Shaolin Accredited you need to complete all 9 tests. These need not be done all at the same time but each test needs to be done at the one time without interruptions to the test or the recording.

Overview & Info Always First Required Bare Hand Curriculum Emei Shan Breathing Set
L1 Lervel Overview Shaolin Posture & breathing Principle L1 Essntial Warm-up L1 Foundation of Power, Stances Shaolin Academy 5 Kung Fu Stepping Methods L1 Battering Ram Kicks L1 Short & Sudden Power, Elbow & Knees L1 Form Breathing Set Emei Shan
L1 Prologue by Master Robert Z The Shaolin Method of Kung Fu and Life Shaolin Kung Fu System of Stances L1 13 Directional Kicking System

2nd Test - The 5 Greater Tiger Broad Sword Strikes

It is more in the spirit of the Shaolin Style to start with the defensive techniques but; they are easier to understand and learn if you know the way you can be attacked with the broad Sword. Also, Shaolin training and Assessment's require you mainly to be able to defend against a sword both with another sword but also with you bare hand Kung Fu. So, we start with the 10 Major Tiger Broad Sword Strikes, the 5 greater and the 5 Lesser.

Broad Sword 1st technique, The Chop
Broad Sword 2nd technique, The Cut Broad Sword 3rd technique, The Scrape Broad Sword 1st technique, The Slap Broad Sword 1st technique, The Stab


Test 3 - The 5 Major Blocks

Now we come to the most important for us, for Shaolin practitioners, defending with the Sword against a Sword attack. Although there are 5 Blocks listed there are actually 5 blocks and Avoidance. Why this double deutsche? Well the 4th block has a sub-block.

The Brushing Block is a very elegant way of maneuvering and attacking blade but it also requires you to do a little but of avoiding. The Parting Block is a specific type of Brushing Block which is used against rapid stabbing against you with a Sword or Spear. The principles are the same although they look different. So you have 4 Blocks and the art of Avoidance as the 5th Skill of Blocking; Don't be there!

Broad Sword Defence Intercepting Block Broad Sword Deflecting Broad Sword Accelerating Block Broad Sword Brushing Block Broad Sword Avoiding & Evading Attack

Test 3 - Record yourself demonstrating the 5 ways of Attack Management (4 blocks and the avoidance) against an imaginary attacker if you do not have someone to work with. Do each technique 10 times recording it from the front (front side if you are working with someone) and 10 times from the side.

4rd Test - Control & Accuracy

The better the Weapon the more dangerous it is, to both the user and the used up-on! The US has averaged around 10 gun deaths per 100,000 people or around 32,000 per year and around 1500 knife and Sharp objects related deaths (2011). The Shaolin Tiger Broad Sword is nowhere as dangerous as a Gun but it is dangerous when not used and handled correctly. So, this test is to show that you have learned the 5 Strikes and trained them sufficiently well to show a modicum f control and not be Dangerous to Yourself and others. It is a fairly simple test.

Test 4 - Record yourself on executing each of the 5 attacking techniques on a round'ish object or some such (Melon, Pumpkin, Ball, Balloon) 3 times from the front and 3 times from the side stopping your blade before any contact is made with the object. Ensure that the recording show you but are close enough to see the targeting, distancing and non contact! Make it one continuous recording and leave the camera running when you reposition for the side recording. Should you touch the object or stop too far away, you need to restart the whole Test.

Test 5 - Sword on Sword Defence

You have 5 Strikes and 5 Blocks/Evasions; now you need t put them together as best you can into a 5 Shadow Response Routines. What are Shadow actions? Like Shadow Boxing where you respond to attacks as if they were being made but you do this without a partner. So, below are 5 Attacks and you need to come up with 5 responses; defend/evade and counter attack. Here we will see how well you understand you broad Sword. You are in Guard Stance with your Sword Side foot back.

The recording to the right give you some guides and options. You can take it or leave it as far as what you do but just to get you started Sijo explains a few principles including the difference between what a Block is and what Self Defence needs to be usable. Now, no matter if you already have some Sword training and have your routines worked out, have a look at this and see if it adds to your repertoire. You choice but give us 5 functional defence's.

Attack 1Attack 2Attack 3Attack 4Attack 5
Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Chop Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Cut Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Scrape Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Slap Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Stab
A Chop with a Broad Sword to your left side neck at 45 degrees A Cut with a Broad Sword Horizontally, as if to separate you head from your neck This time the attack comes to your Sword Side and this can be very easy or awkward (we always like seeing this solution) A Slap on the head may not kill you but if it lands it may as well be the same. Finally, work out a defence and counter for a Stabbing Attack at your Solar Plexus

Test 5 - Record yourself defending a each of the 5 attacks in one recording. Record 4 times each routine, recording twice from the side and twice from the front!

Test 6 - Sword on Bare Hand Defence

To successfully complete these tests you need to have a good level of Martial Art skills, no matter which discipline. Now is the time where you martial art proficiency will be tested, your Bare Hand Skill against a person attacking with a Curved or Broad Sword.

Sijo explains some fundament principles how to deal with attacks using 5 Animal Principles. It is worthwhile looking at this even if you have experience in another style or form of weaponry defence.

As above, it is your choice to use your own style, something we teach or blend the two. What is important is that you defence is viable and feasible. That means that it works and that the attacker will not get a 2nd Chance.

Attack 6Attack 7Attack 8Attack 9Attack 10
Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Chop Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Cut Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Scrape Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Slap Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Tiger Broad Sword Stab
A Chop with a Broad Sword to your left side neck at 45 degrees A Cut with a Broad Sword Horizontally, as if to separate you head from your neck This time the attack comes to your Sword Side and this can be very easy or awkward (we always like seeing this solution) A Slap on the head may not kill you but if it lands it may as well be the same. Finally, work out a defence and counter for a Stabbing Attack at your Solar Plexus

Test 6 - Record yourself defending a each of the 5 attacks in one recording. Record 4 times each routine, recording twice from the side and twice from the front!

Test 7 - The Shaolin Tiger Broad Sword Form

To the right is Sihing Sam Smith performing the Shaolin Tiger Broad Sword Form at a speed which would result in a very good mark. You do not need to do this form at this speed and we have a 2nd recording below with a step by step explanation of each of the moves.

When we look at a Weaponry Form we first look at the Technique, Angle, Direction, Flow and Posture. If you have these 5 items correct, even at a Tai Chi style pace you will be passed. As a matter of fact, we would prefer you do it at this speed showing us your Understanding, Control and Ability rather than Speed Strength and Attitude. If you have the form right then you can start to increase the speed, add more strength and add a bit of personalization to you Weapons Play. But first get it right.

When you apply for a grading Review, we ask that you do the form slowly and correctly. We then give you two further Form Reviews for free so that you can train the form to a Martial Art standard. use this!

Test 7 - Record yourself performing the form twice, once from the front and once from the side! Ensure that the recording is uninterrupted, in a well lit area and no back light making the movements difficult to see. If you are unsure, send us a 5 second recording and we will confirm that all is OK! E-mail us

8th Test - Theory/Knowledge

There are a number ot topics you can choose for your Broad Sword Theory and they do not need to be about Oriental Swords only. Following are some specific examples of items that would be of interest to add to the Broad Sword WEB Page; (if they are good enough and original!)

Famous (Real) Curved SwordsSwords Persons/Army'sSword Styles/Types
  • Tomoyuki Yamashita Sword
  • Curved Saber of San Martin
  • Napoleon's Sword
  • Zulfigar
  • Honjo Masamune
  • The Kusanagi
  • The Cursed Muramasas
  • Harpe
  • al-Mikhdham
  • al-Qadib
  • Saladin
  • Miyamoto Musashi
  • Mongol Horseman
  • Aztec Warrior
  • Samurai
  • Yedo
  • Hwando
  • Tribal Belly Dancing Sword
  • Vagabond
  • Ninjitsu
  • Horse Sabre
  • Le Sabre
  • Cutlass
  • Makhaira
  • Tuwar (Damascus)
  • Canaanite Sickle Sword
  • Pirate Cutlass

As we also have a Straight Sword page, choose a non-Straight Sword, Sickle Sword, Bastard Sword anything of that nature. Also, choose something original unless you just want to do the theory for Theory's sake. Make it good, please.

Test 8 - Write about a Famous Curved Sword, Curved Sword Warrior, Curved Sword Information, Curved Sword History, Event , etc. But Not Fantasy or Game Sword please!

9th Test - Choice

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Final Words

This will not make an expert out of you, or a Champion or a Warrior; but it gives you are good grounding that will enable you to specialize, if you wish, in a direction you care to take. Some have chose to enter competitions and have done well in All Styles and Kung Fu Competitions, Internationally and Nationally. Shaolin Academy Members have even been used as action stand-in's in theater, movies, music videos and shows. We even put on a show at the Shaolin Temple in Henan China.

You may choose to want to use the style for Acting, Stage Work, Shows, Street Theater and such but it also applies for everyday life. Recognizing when you are confronted with a Tiger Style personality, you will know what you are up against, be it in the office, at a party, in the street or elsewhere. And the more you immerse yourself in the understanding of your Tiger, you will find that you are able to manage it within yourself better, both to restrain it when it will harm and to use it when appropriate. You will also learn the weaknesses of the each animal and relies that, for example, a Tiger can only be defeated by a Greater Tiger or by a mouse (and you need to work this out).

Level Review Application (and Certification)

Before you attempt the next level, ensure that everything you have learned in this level is correct. As you progress, many, many of the techniques that follow are based around, founded or along very similar principles as the ones from the 1st levels. Fix any problems and details now before you learn new techniques and carry through the errors thus doubling and tripling the effort to fix them later. And as an old and new wisdom stated "It is 5 times more difficult to fix a habit then it is to establish it!

Apply for an Official Review by the Shaolin Academy and Confirm your Skill!



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More Question, Thoughts, Ideas Proposals and/or Suggestions (QTIPS)?

In Australia call us on 0458 742 654 or e-mail sijo@shaolin.com.au!

Some links that might interest you....

Shaolin Kung Fu Home training/Online Training Program Some information about Shaolin Academy training & membership Shaolin Kung Fu Academy Kwoon, Training Locations in Mordialloc and Camberwell Shaolin Kung Fu levels to Red Sash which then lead to Kung F Black Sash Traditional Chinese Weaponry for Fun, Fitness and Recreations
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