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Wudangquan is a family of Chinese martial arts known more generally as nèijiā. The name refers to the Wudang Mountains of Hubei Province, which are known for their many Taoist temples. In 1669, Huang Zongxi was the first to describe Chinese martial arts in terms of a Wudang or “internal” school versus a Shaolin or “external” school.

Internal or “soft” styles of Chinese martial art are sometimes referred to as Wudang styles regardless of whether they originated in or were developed in the temples of the Wudang Mountains, just as external or “hard” styles are sometimes called Shaolin regardless of whether the individual style traces its origins to the Shaolin tradition or not.

Wudangquan incorporates yin-yang theory from the I Ching as well as the Five Elements of Taoist cosmology: water, earth, fire, wood, and metal. Animal imagery is evident in some of their practices. These motions are trained to be combined and coordinated with the neigong breathing to develop nei jin, internal power, for both offensive and defensive purposes.

Wudangquan is known for its weapons training and is famous for its jian (Chinese straight sword) techniques.

Several Wudang styles are:

  • Kongmenquan – fist of the gate of emptiness
  • Yumenquan – fish fist
  • Taiyi wuxing qinpu – (grappling of five elements and Great One)
  • Jiugong shibatui – (18 legs of nine palaces)