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Thread: Training at Wudang

  1. #1

    Traveling to Wudang?

    Hello!

    I have a question about the e-magazine article about qi as a metaphor. (I just posted a related question about it up in the main forum, so I hope this doesn't count as double-posting.)

    As well as kind of getting into the idea of metaphors in martial arts, I was also curious about traveling to Wudang Shan. I was kind of dimly aware that what the writer calls "kung fu tourists" existed, but I didn't know Westerners could actually study at Wudang. It fills me with questions.

    How? How does that happen? Is it brutally expensive? How experienced should one be before trying to go? How much planning does it take?

    Has anyone here done it before?

  2. #2

    Sure...

    Check out Eternal Springs Tours. It is a Wudang tourist guy from the US. Search it on google. He handles everything and if your low on cash you can train at a school in the town below Wudang called Wudang. Regards!
    We're not gods. Not only are our powers limited, we are sometimes forced to become the devil himself.

  3. #3
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    I've been to Wudang...

    ...with RZA of the Wu-Tang no less. Check out my e-zine story on that trip.
    Here's a related thread on the training forum.

    Westerners can study just about anywhere. There are tour groups that are organized here in the states in cooperation with schools in China, but like any China travel, it's all about guanxi or connection. Some of those tours suck (and this comes from someone who formerly co-lead Shaolin Temple tours). The Chinese schools don't really care what your level is - they're more interested how much you'll pay . When I first went to Shaolin, I planned for months, but some people just go - that's more a question of what kind of traveller you are in China.

    You might check out the Shaolin travel diaries of Antonio Graceffo and John Greenhow on our e-zine. They both address travel in China to study martial arts.
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
    Support our forum by getting your gear at MartialArtSmart

  4. #4
    You can come to wudang on your own, without a travel agent.

    Here's some basic information (getting a visa, train schedule, maps) on the web:

    http://www.wudanggongfu.com/Webpages/Visit.htm

    Hope it helps.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant
    As well as kind of getting into the idea of metaphors in martial arts, I was also curious about traveling to Wudang Shan. I was kind of dimly aware that what the writer calls "kung fu tourists" existed, but I didn't know Westerners could actually study at Wudang. It fills me with questions.

    How? How does that happen? Is it brutally expensive? How experienced should one be before trying to go? How much planning does it take?

    Has anyone here done it before?
    If you have the money you can travel almost anywhere in China. There are very few restricted zones left in the country. No amount of preparation will prepare you for China. Simply put it is too big, too varied, and there are too few foreigners actually here to really capture the experience of living here.

    A hint: if you can afford the trip than go to a website where expats tend to hang out. Listen to them ***** and moan and if you still want to go than you will probably do just fine.

    Just remember:

    You will stand out like a sore thumb.
    You will get dihareah.
    You will eat things that don't look edible.
    You will be over-charged for things.
    You will still think you got a bargain.
    You will be frustrated that nobody seems to speak English.
    Simon McNeil
    ___________________________________________

    Be on the lookout for the Black Trillium, a post-apocalyptic wuxia novel released by Brain Lag Publishing available in all major online booksellers now.
    Visit me at Simon McNeil - the Blog for thoughts on books and stuff.

  6. #6
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    You're forgeting one thing, SimonM

    If you endure take SimonM's things to remember:
    You will have the trip of a lifetime.
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
    Support our forum by getting your gear at MartialArtSmart

  7. #7
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    Hey! I really enjoy living in China. I have been here eight months and have had fewer than eight days where I wished really strongly that I was back in Canada. I just know how many people who would find the disclaimers I mentioned above intolerable and they just end up griping about how much they hate China on expat boards so I figure it's best to give advanced warning.

    And remember that if someone offers you something to eat that is light brown, soft and looks a bit like liver but without the smell and tells you that it is refrigerated, congealed sheeps blood they probably are telling the truth and you have to try it... once.
    Simon McNeil
    ___________________________________________

    Be on the lookout for the Black Trillium, a post-apocalyptic wuxia novel released by Brain Lag Publishing available in all major online booksellers now.
    Visit me at Simon McNeil - the Blog for thoughts on books and stuff.

  8. #8
    Just my 2 cents but...
    If you want to learn real traditional Chinese internal martial arts, don't go to Wudang. Why? Well, none of the "big 3" - Xingyiquan, Taijiquan, Baguazhang, have any real historical connection to Wudangshan. If you really want to study these arts, find a teacher with a real lineage. Modern-day Wudang is basically a tourist trap ala modern-day Shaolin: they'll take your money and teach you lots of purty forms. In China, real traditional martial arts are not found in temples or large schools, they are found among the people. Unfortunately, the more accessible something is to foreigners, the less likely it is legit.
    If you want to find an internal teacher in China, check out the emptyflower forums. The people here at KF magazine have a vested interest in making you believe that all these famous "masters", kungfu tours and video series that they advertise and sell are legit.
    Last edited by beiquan; 03-08-2006 at 09:03 PM.

  9. #9
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    vested interest?

    I'd say that we might run stories about some of the major tourist sites because they are more accessible, more forthcoming, but we don't get any kickback from them, if that's what you're suggesting. I confess that we do sell videos, but only a few from Wudang and Shaolin, and those are all by private individuals, not formal dispatchs from either temple. But if we were all about selling videos, we'd do more where the money is - ninjas & nunchuks. Everyone wants to find their secret little authentic Mr. Miyagi, but even in Karate Kid, he didn't get into magazines. And I'd also say that the percentage of charlatans amongst folk masters is just as high as the ones in tourist locales. There's just more masters surrounding tourist areas, so there's a higher number of charlatans, but there are also more 'real' masters - you just got to get past those charaltans.

    I wouldn't put down the large schools. If you think that any school in China goes unchallenged, you're sorely mistaken. It's much more difficult to set up a school in China than it is here in the US, not only because it's all government regulated, but also because challengers come all the time.
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
    Support our forum by getting your gear at MartialArtSmart

  10. #10
    So, I'm an American with limited (by American standards) resources, a fractured, fractional grasp of Mandarin and not too much time on my hands.

    I'm alone in a Chinese city. I can't read the language.

    How do I find a teacher I can trust? How do I evaluate? I know how I'd do it here in the States, but a lot depends on talking and listening to classes/students.

  11. #11
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    Just do good research beforehand

    Know where you're going and who might be skilled there. Know which ones might be open to foreigners. That's one reason why Shaolin and Wudang are interesting because they they are not only accessible, they are downright welcoming. Some are too welcoming in fact, and that's where tourists get in trouble.

    beiquan: I want to qualify something I said in response to your comment above. I totally hear you about "the more accessible something is to foreigners, the less likely it is legit." We strive to access those hard-to-find folk masters too, but they are, well, hard-to-find. Many of them avoid the spotlight and who are we to disregard such wishes? Such is the nature of martial arts publishing.
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
    Support our forum by getting your gear at MartialArtSmart

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant
    So, I'm an American with limited (by American standards) resources, a fractured, fractional grasp of Mandarin and not too much time on my hands.

    I'm alone in a Chinese city. I can't read the language.

    How do I find a teacher I can trust? How do I evaluate? I know how I'd do it here in the States, but a lot depends on talking and listening to classes/students.
    Make friends.

    Chinese people are generally really easy to make friends with.
    Simon McNeil
    ___________________________________________

    Be on the lookout for the Black Trillium, a post-apocalyptic wuxia novel released by Brain Lag Publishing available in all major online booksellers now.
    Visit me at Simon McNeil - the Blog for thoughts on books and stuff.

  13. #13

    Going to wudang

    Hi I am going to wudang to train on May 10 to June 1 with my girlfriend.I know people talked about going to train and never post their experience on the forum.Can anybody give me more information about the school in wudang .I am training for 34 days at wudang and touring the rest of china going to emishan ,sanya ,beijing, gulin,and shanghi.So any other info on these places regurding martial arts .I will give a report on my return to Canada about my training.We are hardcore martial artists and will be in shape to train.Thank you
    awaiting responses.

    Pops

  14. #14
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    you are the man

    have fun
    Last edited by jethro; 04-18-2006 at 03:45 PM. Reason: stupidnessanes
    "For someone who's a Shaolin monk, your kung fu's really lousy!"
    "What, you're dead? You die easy!"
    "Hold on now. I said I would forget your doings, but I didn't promise to spare your life. Take his head."
    I dont usually smoke this brand, but Ill do it for you.
    "When all this is over, Tan Hai Chi, I will kick your head off and put it on my brother's grave!
    "I regard hardships as part of my training. I don't need to relax."

  15. #15
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    Check out some archive threads

    Here's on on the Internal forum.
    Here's another on the training forum.
    There are probably more, but you'd have to really dig through the archives to find them.

    Have a great trip.
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
    Support our forum by getting your gear at MartialArtSmart

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