There has been so much written about the history of Hung Kuen and many issues can be argued by the various lineages about who taught what and how it was persevered throughout the generations. Many of the Hung Kuen masters that influenced the style have passed away and during that time in China (1800 A.D.) information was not documented and categorized like you see it in today¡¦s world. We have no accurate basis to give a complete history of the system, but we can offer a precise history of the Hung Kuen style from the origins of the legendary master Wong Fei Hung (1847-1923).
The reason we can offer a precise explanation of the history up to this point is because of the living Hung Kuen grandmaster named Lam Cho (1910- present) who now is in his 96th year and still enjoys a healthy body and mind. Lam Cho can recall all the information that was taught to him during his early childhood by his teacher and adopted father Lam Tsai Wing. Lam Tsai Wing (1860-1943) was intern the most respected and celebrated student of the well-known Hung Kuen master Wong Fei Hung.
Lam Cho passed the knowledge that he attained from his adopted father to his eldest son Lam Chun Fai (Anthony) (1940 – present). Anthony Lam is currently the grandmaster of Lam Family Hung Kuen style. He is president of several martial arts organizations within China and Hong Kong that promote traditional kung fu. Anthony Lam has taken his family¡¦s style to a whole new level by preserving and perpetuating Hung Kuen around the world. He has done countless teaching tours and has students that represent his organization from almost all continents in the world. So we can see how the information was passed from one generation to the next through teacher and student. In this way the direct line of information has had no room for corruption or distortion. If we travel further back than Wong Fei Hung origins to gather information on the style then we are possibly looking at information that cannot be supported with proper validity or evidence.
We have information on how the style was started and who were the major influences, but the details in this time period are not as accurate or as comprehensive as the information from Wong Fei Hung to the Lam family (present day). Listed below is a lineage chart so you can see how the flow of information was passed down. Throughout this introduction you can follow along the linage chart and see which individuals contributed to the style¡¦s development and how Hung Kuen is known today. Countless stories, movies, publications and books have been written about the various Hung Kuen masters. The scope of this book is not intended to explore the stories of those famous Hung Kuen master but to give an account of how the style has been preserved and how the teachings of Hung Kuen has reached the general public in today’s world.
Submitted by Sifu Jesse Gooding
Hung Kuen sets
1) The empty hand forms of Hung Kuen.
There are two types of Hung Kuen: Northern and Southern.
Despite its relatively straightforward lineage, there are now many different versions of Hung Kuen being practiced around the world. According to Lam Jo, the reason for this is that instructors have incorporated their own ideas into the system.
Gung Gee Fok Fu Kuen (Taming The Tiger Fist)
This is one of the oldest forms of the system, and is said to have been created by Shaolin disciple Hung Hay-gwoon. This form contains much of the essential syllabus of the Hung Kuen system, including deep stances, powerful forearm blocks and high impact hand techniques.
Fu Hok Seung Ying Kuen (Tiger Crane Two Animals Fist)
This is regarded as the ‘classic’ form of the Hung Kuen system, featuring the style’s unique Tiger and Crane fighting techniques. It features a combination of ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ techniques. The form is said to have been devised by Hung Kuen legend Wong Fei-hung, based on the techniques taught him by Luk Ah-choy and Wong Kay-ying.
Sup Ying Kuen (Ten Animals Fist)
This is another form said to have been created by legendary kung fu master Wong Fei-hung. This form serves as an encyclopedia of the major attributes of the Hung Kuen style. It features techniques based on the movements of five animals, dragon, snake, tiger, leopard and crane, and the five classical Chinese elements, gold, wood, water, fire and earth. It also features the kind of breathing exercises found in the Tid Sin Kuen set.
Tit Sin Kuen (Iron Wire Set)
Tit sin kuen, iron wire fist, is a key form in the Hung Kuen style. It was taught by a legendary figure named Tit Kiu ‘Iron Bridge’ Sam. The form allowed Tit Kiu Sam to develop great physical power, despite the fact that he weighed only 120lbs. The form is supposed to teach the practitioner to be “hard as iron and soft as thread.”
Chin Cheung (War Palm)
Chin Cheung was a form choreographed by Lam Sai-wing.
Ng Ying Kuen (Five Animals Fist)
Lau Gar Kuen (Lau Family Fist)
Bum Bo Kuen (Grasshopper form)
Fu Hok 2 Men Set
Kung Gee 2 Men Set
2) Hung Kuen Weapons
Pek Kwa Dan Do (single Sword)
Dan Chi Fai Do
Sung Moon Gim (Long Sword)
Kuan Lan Gim
Seung Long Do (Double Swords)
Koi Chung Do / Dai Hang Seung Do (Butterfly Swords)
Lau Gar Gwan (Lau Family Pole)
Hang Che Pang
Ng Lung Ba Gwa Gwan (Fifth Brother Eight Diagram Pole)
Moi Fa Ying Cheong
Dai Kwan Do
Yiu Gar Dai Paa
Moi Fa Siu Tiu
Dan Bien (Single Chain)
Seung Bien (Double Chains)
Sword versus Spear (2 Men Set)
Sword versus Staff (2 Men Set)
Daggers versus Spear (2 Men Set)
3 Men Set (a lost set)
The information was obtained from various Lam Family Hung Kuen websites, and particularly from the Grand Master Lam Chun Fai’s website.