SIN, or the Iron Thread, is one of the Fighting
Arts1 inherited from Tie Qiao San2.
It is a perfect training system aiming at setting into
motion body’s extremities and the whole body and thanks to it
to improve blood circulation and the circulation of the internal
energy Qi. Bones, muscles and sinews
are subjects of outer strengthened, the internal organs
and the spirit Shen are subjects of internal
strengthened. Therefore, the Spirit and Health are
improved. A physically weak man becomes a strong one. Besides,
those who practice this method of Qi Gong can prevent
from falling ill with many diseases and live a long life.
That’s why this method is unsurpassed one among all the
methods of Qi Gong.
founder of the Iron Thread Qi Gong school is Tie
Qiao San. In his time he was called one of "Guangdong
Ten Tigers". He is a well-known and esteemed master
among Kung Fu followers. Tie
Qiao San, a favorite disciple of Shaolin
monk Jue Yin, was famous for his mastery, he had no
rivals equal to him. He was on friendly terms with Chen Yi
and Xiu Yi Ji, monks from the Haichuang Temple3.
Tie Qiao San taught his disciples Cai Zan, Qu
Zhu, Wu Xiguan, Ma Zhi Tien, Ling Fu Chen,
Shi Yu Liang and some others. Some time later Ling Fu
Chen taught Wong Fei Hung his skills and the latter Wong
Fei Hung taught Lam Sai Wing. Lam had about 10
disciples4, but only a few inherited this secret method of Qi
Gong – Hu Li Feng, Pang Ji Yi, Wei Shao
Bo, Su Jian Shen, Wong Ji Wen, Zhang Zhu
Xiang and my tutor Zhu Yu Zhai, all in all seven men.
By now5 my tutor Zhu Yu Zhai passed his
skill in the Iron Thread to his son Zhu Jia Yui
and his disciples – Hu Zhen Yan (died), Lo Ji Yi,
Tan Xing, Cheng Yun Sin (missed during the war), Zhung
Wei Ming, me and some others.
Iron Thread is based on twelve secret methods for "arms-bridges"6,
each of them corresponds to a certain principle. Those are GAN
– hardness, steadfastness; ROU – suppleness,
softness; BI – constraint; ZHI –
straightening; FEN –separation; DING – steadiness;
CUN – quickness, brevity; TIE – lifting; LIU –
restraining; YIUN – movement, motion; ZHI –
suppression; DIN – change. Besides, it is necessary to
keep in mind several factors. Using Qi, or vital strength
of Spirit, one should be able to increase his physical
strength, pay special attention to strengthening his waist and
kidneys7. Exhalation is done with shouts, it
is the external manifestation of such emotions as joy, anger,
sorrow and gaiety.
are the essentials that make this method of Qi Gong
different from other kinds of Fisticuff Arts. I think
that the most difficult thing in acquiring TIET SIN is to
control your breath and to regulate Qi, to utter
sounds and to use the internal strength. At the same
time the above mentioned points are key factors for successful
training. A wrong practice can be useless or even harmful. Each
kind of Qi Gong has
its own method of training and its own secrets. This book just
gives the most complete and visual guidance for correct training
in TIET SIN. It is indispensable for all who like Qi
Gong and Kung Fu.
my own experience I know that the most impressing thing in TIET
SIN Qi Gong is that the physical strength of those who train
themselves can be increased by nine times. It is hard to
believe for those who did not practice this method. Of course,
the benefit of TIET SIN lies not only in bigger physical
strength. The most important thing is robust health and longer
Kong, the summer of Din You Year (1957)
to the modern classification the method TIET SIN belongs
to a branch of "hard", or fighting Qi Gong.
However, the division of the Fighting Arts into Qi
Gong and Kung Fu (or WUSHU) is rather
conventional in character, it appeared only in the XX
century as the result of the Western approach to the study of
specific oriental phenomenon. Traditionally, Qi
Gong, or work with the internal energy, was studied
in China in the mainstream of general fighting practice, it did
not form a separate branch. Therefore, the author of this
article uses Chinese terms Quan Shu (literally
"fist art") and Quan
Fa (literally "fist technique") in relation
to TIET SIN in their original wide meaning. In our
translation we substituted them for "Qi Gong",
a more narrow term that can be understood by a modern reader.
Qiao San is translated as "Iron Bridge III", it
is a nickname of the great master whose real name was lost in
history. He lived at the end of XVIIIth - the beginning of
XIXth century and had superhuman strength, hence his nickname.
He could supposedly to raise up six big men with one hand and
carry them more than a hundred steps without changing his
countenance ( Zhu Yu Zhai "Short Biography of Master Tie
Haichuang Monastery is situated not far from Guangzhou
the administrative center of Guangdong province. As a
wide-spread legend says, after the famous monastery of Southern
Shaolin was burnt to ashes (supposedly in 30-th of the
century) monks who escaped spread in China “like stars in the
sky”. Few of them found refuge at the Haichuang Monastery
where they started to teach monks, and later on laymen, the Fighting
Arts. This monastery is the cradle of the most famous Kung
Fu styles of the Southern China – Hung Gar Kuen, Fo
Kuen, Li Gar and some others.
4At the beginning of the
XX century Lam Sai Wing founded WU BEN TANG
("The Hall of Fundamental Study") in Guangzhou
(Canton) where he taught the Fighting Art. In the
of the XX century
Master Lam together with his closest disciples (Zhu Yu Zhai,
Zhang Shi Biao, Li Shi Hui, and others) moved to
Hong Kong where he taught fighting styles of Kung Fu -
Hung Gar Kuen and Fo Kuen. In his life he had more than
10 000 disciples, but he taught Tiet Sin Qi Gong, the most secret part of training, only to a narrow circle of the closest disciples. In his declining years, being anxious about the preservation of this invaluable treasure for posterity, he wrote the book that is offered to your attention.
article was written in 1957.
term QIAO ("bridge") in the Hung
Gar style means a forearm. There are 12 techniques where QIAO
"bridges" are used. Those techniques were inherited
from the Kung Fu school of the Southern Shaolin.
They are also called "Hung's 12 bridges".
accordance with postulates of the Chinese traditional medicine
the kidneys are a receptacle of inherent vital energy YUAN Qi
and a strong and flexible waist is a prerequisite for successful
practice in the Fighting Arts.
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