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List of the 72 Shaolin martial arts

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This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it. The following is a list of martial arts practised in Shaolin Kung Fu. Although they are commonly called "72 Shaolin martial arts", they are four different versions of these 72 skills, hence there are actually more than 72 in total.

1 Diamond Finger 2 Double Locks 3 Foot Striking Skill 4 Nail-Pulling Skill 5 Tree-Uprooting Skill 6 Four Part Exercise 7 One Finger of Zen Meditation 8 Iron shirt 9 Iron Head Skill 10 A Series of Blows 11 Iron Broom Sweeping Skill 12 Bronze Gravel Palm 13 Snake Form Movement 14 Lifting a Thousand Jin 15 Deity's Palm 16 Hard and Soft Skill 17 Cinnabar Palm 18 Crouching Tiger Skill 19 Swimming and Diving Skill 20 Sluice Shutter Weighing 1000 Jin 21 Gold Bell Shield 22 Others 23 Jin conversion 24 References

25 External links



The Diamond Finger ( Y zh jngng f; literally: One Finger Vajra Skill) allows the practitioner to cause damage to an opponent's internal organs by knocking at the opponent's chest. The practitioner trains by striking hard objects with his finger repeatedly over time to increase striking power. The skill usually requires three years to master.[1]



The Double Locks (, Shung su gng) allows the practitioner to block attacks from blunt weapons with his bare arms. During training, the practitioner knocks his forearms at each other and then hits his shins and feet with his forearms repeatedly.[1]


Striking Skill

The Foot Striking Skill (, Z sh gng, literally: Foot Shooting Skill) allows the practitioner to inflict damage on an opponent using his toes. During training, the practitioner uses stones to strike his toes. The weight of the stones used increases as his training progresses.[1]



The Nail-Pulling Skill (, B dng gng) allows the practitioner to attack his opponent's acupuncture points by using locks with the thumb, forefinger and middle finger. Training involves pulling out regular nails from a board of unabi or jujube wood. Rustier nails are used as the training progresses. It is common to get blisters during training.[1]



The Tree-Uprooting Skill (, Bo sh gng; literally: Tree-Hugging Skill) allows the practitioner to lift a weight of 250350 kg with both arms. During training, the practitioner attempts to uproot a tree several times a day. Mastery of the skill is achieved when he succeeds in uprooting the tree.[1]


Part Exercise

The Four Part Exercise (, S dun gng) is one of the foundation skills of Shaolin martial arts. The exercise consists of a set of four basic movements that helps the practitioner to focusQi.[1]


Finger of Zen Meditation

The One Finger of Zen Meditation (, Y zh chn gng) allows the practitioner to cause a vascular spasm to an opponent with only a weak blow. The injuries sustained by the opponent

cannot be cured without special medicine. The training process involves many stages. Firstly, a weight is hung and the practitioner pokes at it with little force using his finger. He repeats the exercise until the weight moves without his finger touching it. After this, lamps are lit at a distance of six to seven meters away from the practitioner and he has to extinguish the flames with his finger. In the next stage, the lamps are covered with paper shades and glass shades in the subsequent stage. The practitioner is deemed to have mastered the skill once the flames in glass lamps can be extinguished simply by poking at them with his finger.[1]



(, Ti shn) is a form of hard style martial arts exercise for protecting the body from damage. The training involves a series of exercises with stances, herbs, Qigong and body movements to use the body's natural energy (Qi) to reinforce its structural strength. Practitioners believe that directing energy to parts of the body can reinforce these parts in absorbing the impact of blows. A Shaolin practitioner lies on a stump or support tablets of granite on his chest during training to toughen his body.


Head Skill

The Iron Head Skill (, Ti tu gng) is designed to allow the practitioner to resist attacks on his head. During training, the practitioner wraps layers of fabric around his head and rams his head into a hard surface repeatedly. Incrementally, layers of fabric are removed as he progresses. A famous practitioner named Hong Chan could easily break a stone tablet and he could walk quickly with a stone weighing 170 kg on his head when he was 80 years old.[2]


Series of Blows

A Series of Blows (, Pi d gng) is similar to Iron shirt except that it is purely external and contains none of the internal elements of the latter. During training, a practitioner hits his body with a block of wood, then a brick, and subsequently a block of iron as he progresses. His body will become invulnerable to bare-hand strikes after mastering the skills but the practitioner is not protected from weapon-based attacks.[1]


Broom Sweeping Skill

The Iron Broom Sweeping Skill (, Ti sozhu gng) allows the practitioner to break an opponent's bones and tear his muscles with a kick. In the first stage of training, the practitioner attempts to remain in a half-squatting, half-standing position (called "Horse stance") for two hours. He will kick poles that increase in size as his training progresses and finally a tree. He is deemed to have mastered the skill once he can kick a tree down.[1]


Gravel Palm

The Bronze Gravel Palm (, Tng sh zhng), a.k.a. Bamboo Leaf Hand (, Zh y shu), allows the practitioner to break objects and cause injury to an opponent. Training methods include hitting a bag filled with iron filings with a palm heel strike. A 15 kg bag is used initially, and its weight increases until 60 kg as the training progresses. The practitioner is deemed to have mastered the skill once he can hit the 60 kg bag at full force continuously without showing signs of weariness.[1]


Form Movement

The Snake Form Movement (, Shxng sh), a.k.a. Centipede Leap (, Wgng tio), helps the practitioner increase the power of his fingers and toes and the speed of his jumps. During training, the practitioner does regular push-ups on the palms of his hands, before progressing to do on his fists and three fingers. Mastery of skill is when the practitioner is able to do one-finger push-ups.


a Thousand Jin

Lifting a Thousand Jin (, T qinjn) allows the practitioner to injure an opponent simply by grasping the opponent. During training, the practitioner holds weights weighing 10 Jin and the weights become heavier as he progresses. The practitioner is deemed to have mastered the skill once he can grasp a weight of 50 to 60 Jin for about an hour with his fingers.



The Deity's Palm (, Xinrnzhng) training process involves the practitioner striking a wooden object repeatedly using four fingers initially, followed by striking a hard stone repeatedly. The practitioner is deemed to have mastered the skill once he can strike the stone hard enough to create a dent in it.[1]


and Soft Skill

The Hard and Soft Skill (, Gng ru f) training process involves the practitioner performing blows at a bundle of spoiled paper repeatedly. Initially, a bundle of paper about 66 cm long is placed above a large wooden table with fixed outer boards and removable inner boards. The practitioner strikes the bundle of paper with his right hand while holding a cord with his left. He switches hands later. The bundle weighs about 10 kg initially and lead weights are added subsequently as he progresses, until the entire bundle weights about 50 kg. The inner boards are also removed in progressive stages until only the fixed outer boards remain. The practitioner is deemed to have mastered the skill once he can hit the bundle of paper over the large gap in the boards and return it with his other hand.[1]



The Cinnabar Palm (, Zhsh zhng) is said to yield great benefits to the practitioner but such claims are not supported by modern science.[citation needed] During training, the practitioner fills a vessel with sand and continuously rubs his hands in the sand until he is worn out. As he progresses, he moves his hands further away from the sand until he can move the sand even when they are about 30 cm away. After this, the sand is replaced with an iron weight and subsequently, heavier iron balls. Mastery is achieved when the practitioner can move the iron balls without touching them. This skill is said to take 15 years to master. Upon mastery, the practitioner can cause his opponent to die within 1015 days after striking them with his palm, even when he is at a distance away from his opponent.[1]


Tiger Skill

The Crouching Tiger Skill (, W h gng) helps to increase the power of the practitioner's hands, feet, fingers and toes. The exercise is similar to standard push-ups with the exception that you must raise your body 30 cm above the ground, shift yourself backward and then downward to 10 cm then move forward and upward again to 30 cm and continue.[3] Initially, the exercise is performed on the palms of the hands and subsequently on the fists before progressing to perform on fingers and toes for balance. In the final stage, the practitioner does push-ups using only three fingers of each hand and one toe. At this stage, heavy weights are also added to the practitioner's back. Mastery of the skill is attained once the practitioner can perform the push-up with a weight of about 50 kg on his back for a period of time.[1]


and Diving Skill

The Swimming and Diving Skill (, Qi shu sh) helps to improve the practitioner's swimming skills. The training methods for this skill are similar to those used by modern competitive swimmers. The only difference between them is that, Shaolin practitioners focus their Qi to increase their swimming power. Some movements adopted include dog-paddling, backstroke style, diving and some underwater combat techniques.[1]


Shutter Weighing 1000 Jin

The Sluice Shutter Weighing 1000 Jin (, Qinjn zh) helps to improve the practitioner's physical strength. The practitioner begins training by remaining in the "horse stance" for a period of time while raising his hands upwards. He will balance progressively heavier weights on his head subsequently. The weights are replaced with a heavy sluice shutter attached to two wooden poles in the final stage. Mastery of the skill is attained when the practitioner can balance a 500 kg sluice shutter on his head.[1]


Bell Shield

This is a hard type of martial arts exercise that is considered to be complicated and difficult, but important. A practitioner begins training by repeatedly striking himself in the body with a mallet

covered with soft things. Later, he progresses to striking himself with a wooden mallet, and finally, an iron mallet. Tinctures are used after every session to heal from damage. If a practitioner trains in this method for two to three years, punches, kicks, and even sword blows will have little to no effect on him.[1]

Gold Bell Shield (, Jn zhng zho) Finger Locking Skill (, Su zh gng) Arhat Skill (, Luhn gng) The Lizard Scaling the Wall (, Bh yu qing sh) Whip Power Skill (, Bin jn gng) Pipa Skill (, Pp gng) Falling Star Pole (, Lixng zhung) Plum Blossom Pole (, Mihu zhung) Stone Padlock Skill (, Shsu gng)

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

10. Iron Arm Skill (, Ti b gng) 11. Projectile Skill (, Dnz gng) 12. Soft Bones Skill (, Ru g gng) 13. Toad Skill (, Hma gng) 14. Curtain-Piercing Skill (, Chun lin gng) 15. Eagle Claw Skill (, Yng zho gng) 16. Iron Bull Skill (, Ti ni gng) 17. Eagle Wings Skill (, Yng y gng) 18. Sun Rays Hand (, Ynggung shu) 19. Groin-Protection Skill (, Mn dng gng) 20. Iron Bag Skill (, Ti di gng) 21. Truth-Revealing Skill (, Ji d gng) 22. Tortoise Back Skill (, Gu bi gng) 23. Deft Jumps Skill (, Cun zng sh) 24. Light Body Skill (, Qng shn sh) 25. Iron Knee Skill (, Ti x gng) 26. Jumping Technique (, Tioyu f) 27. Iron Gravel Palm (, Tish zhng) 28. String Pulling (, Yxin chun) 29. Yin-Absorbing Skill (, X yngng) 30. 'Golden Gravel Palm (, Jnsh zhng), a.k.a. Rubbing Skill (, Mc sh)

31. Stone Pillar Skill (, Shzh gng) 32. Impenetrable by Spears and Broadswords Skill (, Qing do b r f) 33. Flight Skill (, Fixng gng) 34. Five Poisons, Gravel-Chasing Palm (, W d zhu sh zhng]]]), a.k.a. Five Poisons Hand (, W dshu) 35. Water Separation Skill (, Fn shu gng) 36. Flying Up a Roof and Walking on the Wall Skill (, Fiynzub f) 37. Somersaulting Skill (, Fntng sh) 38. The Conqueror's Elbow (, Bwng zhu) 39. Flower-Pinching Skill (, Nin hu gng) 40. Mountain-Pushing Palm (, Tu shn zhng) 41. Horse Saddle Skill (, M'n gng) 42. Nephrite Belt Skill (, Ydi gng) 43. Yin Fist Skill (, Yn qun gng) 44. Sandbag Skill (, Shbo gng) 45. Stone Piercing Skill (, Din sh gng) 46. Mountain Moving Skill (, B shn gng) 47. Praying Mantis Claw (, Tnglng zho) 48. Cloth Bag Skill (, Bdi gng) 49. Guanyin's Palm (, Gunyn zhng) 50. Pot-Lifting Skill (, Shng gun gng) 51. Iron Beads Bag (, Ti zh di) 52. Whirlwind Palm (, Xunfng zhng) 53. Demon Slaying Sword (, Zhn m jin) 54. Empty Fist (, Xun kngqun) 55. Golden Shovel Finger (, Jn chn zh) 56. Running on Plank Skill (, Po bn gng) 57. Dodging Skill (, Shn zhn f) 58. Golden Broadsword, Palm Exchanging Skill (, Jn do hun zhng gng) 59. Flying on Land Skill (, Ld fixng sh) 60. Thousand Layers of Paper Skill (, Qin cng zh gng) 61. Wind-Chasing Palm (, Zhufng zhng) 62. Soft Skill (, Run xun gng)



A jin is a Chinese unit of measure equal to 500g, or approximately 1.1 lb.

a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q


Zhong, Jin Jing (1934). Training Methods of 72 Arts of Shaolin.

Tianjin. 2. 3. ^ http://kaleidoscope.cultural-china.com/en/9Kaleidoscope3565.html ^ Authentic Shaolin Heritage: Training Methods of 72 Arts of Shaolin



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