White Crane Kung Fu (aka Fujian White Crane Kung Fu)
White Crane Kung Fu is a rare Chinese martial art which combines foot techniques, hand techniques, chin na (seizing and controlling) and weapons training. White Crane kung fu classes are offered in our Laval, Montreal and Poughkeepsie (New York) academies. White Crane Kung Fu is a complete self-defense system that uses hands, feet, knees, elbows, shoulders and hips in its arsenal of striking techniques. The style is renowned, however, for its rapid hand techniques, its strikes executed in conjunction with grabs and its devastatingly effective pressure point attacks. This rare art is particularily effective as it is an ancient family kung system that has remained true to it’s original purpose.
White Crane Kung Fu combines defense and attack and uses both soft and hard power. It also emphasizes firm yet evasive footwork. It is a direct, linear and deceptive martial art. This particular system is called Fei He or Flying Crane. Flying Crane makes use of both high and low kicks yet has a marked preference for rapid hand techniques. It stresses empty-hand as well as weapons training, two-person sets, self-defense drills and free-sparring. The style's fierce pressure point attacks combined with rapid footwork and a no-nonsense approach make it a particularly effective, complete, and beautiful martial art.
Since many traditional family systems have remained largely unaffected by trends and fashions in the martial arts, the art remains unaltered. It should be emphasized however, that learning such system’s is more than simply learning how to fight. Rather, apprenticeship can become a means to develop amazing physical skills and internal power, greater self-confidence, a sense of camaraderie and to gain insight into a very ancient culture. In the end, it is ultimately about developing a kind and forgiving heart.
For practitioners of Fukien style White Crane Kung Fu, the life of Grand master Lee Kiang-Ke (1903-1992) represents both a link to the past and window toward the future. Grand Master Lee was a real old school kung fu master so when he chose to move to Malaysia in 1940, he brought with him a rare and precious art. He taught there for several decades and enjoyed much success. In 1978 he retired, leaving his son Lee Joo-Chian the helm of the art. The latter taught many people including Lorne Bernard who eventually became his most senior disciple and an official closed door inheritor of the art.
This martial art is geared to individuals interested in learning an effective and complete traditional kung fu system. Although White Crane is definitely a physical system, it has so many techniques, methods and routines as to make it accessible to people of all ages. This is compounded by the fact that as skill progresses, so too should one’s ability to nullify force with softness and skill.
Lorne Bernard started studying white crane kung fu in 1983. He regularly travels to the Orient to visit his master and has sponsored visits of the latter to Canada on several occasions. Master Bernard has also studied several other Chinese martial arts system including Wing chun, Cha style and Buk Sing Choy lay fut. He was president of the Eastern Canada Chinese martial arts federation between 1994 and 2014. He has authored 3 books on white crane kung fu and a dvd series. As such he is a world renowned expert on traditional kung fu and the white crane style in particular.
Shifu Bernard has certified a select few instructors as he keeps the standards high. Today the Flying Crane style is taught in 3 locations in The Montreal area, Poughkeepsie New York and Sibu, Malaysia.