Tantui Spring Leg

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Tantui, or Spring Legs, is a style of Kung Fu created by Muslims in China during the 1700s. It was and still is a very popular style in the Northern regions of China. Tantui was one of the first forms of Kung Fu agreed on by many teachers to be adaptable to almost any Kung Fu style.

Some of the famous styles of Kung Fu such as Northern Shaolin include Tantui in their training regimen. The basic Tantui forms teach important principles and skills. Practicing Tantui improves one’s martial skills, balance, strength, and focus.

Tantui concentrates on feet techniques with fist techniques as support. Its movements are not complicated but complete and are executed flawlessly. Symmetry is maintained by placing the feet one by one taking wide steps while keeping the body in a crouched position.

Fist forms of Tantui have been used for centuries as a basic training tool. The kicks are low and hard in the first sets, but get higher and more acrobatic in the later sets. Tantui has the appearance of an external style, where obvious lunges, dropping, and twisting of the waist generate the power.

Muslims in China Martial Arts Master

Tan Tui (Chinese: 彈腿; literally “springing legs”) is a martial arts routine based on kicks. Created in Northern China by Chinese Muslims, tan tui is composed of a series of forms, which emphasize blocking, stances, footwork, and most of all, kicks. Tan tui exists as a style on its own, but is commonly used as a basic form for styles like Chaquan.

Tan tui as a form is a famous northern wushu form and has several variations due to its incorporation into various styles and characteristics of the form also vary. These styles include Northern Praying Mantis, Chángquán, and Northern Shaolin as well as many other minor styles and systems.

The tan tui routines consist of “roads” or parts that divide the form and vary from variation to variation of the form. Originally tan tui consisted of 28 roads that were based on the 28 characters of the Arabic alphabet and was later summarised. Today the most common variations of tan tui are the 10 and 12 road tan tui.

Springing Leg forms have a long History in China. The 12 roads of this form are the basis for more advanced material in the Long Fist system. This form improves your fighting skills, balance, strength, and focus, thus, Tan Tui contains the basic skills and flexibility drills required in advanced forms. In some Schools, Tan Tui is taught as the first form to build the skills necessary to advance in the system.

A Muslim schoolgirl practises Chinese Tantui wushu martial arts.

It has been stated that if a new student doesn’t find the Tan Tui form challenging that he or she will not like the Long Fist style of Kung Fu. Tan Tui is deep rooted in China’s Hui Muslim community.

One such reference to the Islamic influence is the posture of holding one punch out in front of body as a punch is thrown to the rear with the other hand. The Body is turned sideways so that both the front and the rear punches reach maximum range.

Besides being a good exercise to train the fighter to get full shoulder and body trust behind each punch, like a good Boxer, it also is a giveaway that the form has a Muslim history. Kung fu forms that use this posture came from China’s Muslim community.