There are more than 400 individual styles of Kung Fu currently practices across the world. Almost all of these are rooted in self-defense disciplines, although some are more effective in real-world scenarios than others. Below, we explore three of the most effective Kung Fu styles for self-defense.
What is the Best Kung Style for Self DefenSe?
Choy Li Fut
This popular style of Kung Fu originated in the early 1800s. Developed by Chan Heung, this Kung Fu system brings together distinct techniques from across China. Some of the most effective techniques utilised by this style are influenced from Shaolin Kung Fu, with many of the key animal forms present. Unlike less aggressive styles of Kung Fu, Choy Li Fut is particularly useful for those who want to access techniques that can be put to use against multiple assailants. This style brings together an incredibly rich array of approaches, including sweeps and kicks, as well as locks and grappling techniques. It also focuses on a variety of punches and offensive techniques that can be used in both close quarters and at longer range. Because of its diverse selection of techniques, Choy Li Fut can be hard to defend against.
Hung Gar is another popular choice of kung style if you’re looking for solid self-defence techniques. Although Hung Gar is often dismissed as a purely external form of kung fu, this is not strictly true. Admittedly, this style puts a keen emphasis on striking techniques and physical strength, although it also encourages internal focus. This kung fu style is synonymous with strong, deep-set stances. It also teaches a range of striking techniques that be can utilised at both long and short ranges, making it useful for self-defence applications. Hung Gar also encourages practitioners to develop proficiency with a range of movements, including straight lines and more circular techniques. Not only does this foster improved coordination, it also allows the practitioner to deploy effective evasion techniques.
Wing Chun is often considered the premier form of kung fu for self-defense. This style is more free in form than other varieties, with a focus on swift footwork and fast arm and hand movements. Trapping and grappling techniques are also hallmarks of this style, negating the need for brute force when defending yourself from an assailant. One of the main reasons why Wing Chun is so effective for self-defense is that it encourages the practitioner to remain relaxed and flexible, reserving strength for when it is needed to deploy strikes and counter-attacks.