Fu Chen Sung - The Northern Tiger ∞
Fu Chen Sung was born in 1881 in Ma Po village in the Sun Yan County of Honan Province. Ma Po village was close to the village of Chen Gar Kow, where Taiji was originally developed.
Hired Teachers ∞
The people of Ma Po village established a martial arts academy and hired two well known masters to teach there. Chen Yuen Shee of Chen style Taiji was one of them and Ga Fung Ming who taught Pakua was the other. The young Fu Chen Sung trained hard under these two teachers. Later he had the opportunity to learn Pakua from the great master, Chen Ting-Hua. he was taught without reservation by these men and made rapid progress over the years. He then travelled across China seeking other teachers and eventually became a bodyguard cum security man; a common undertaking by Kung Fu men of the time.
Lee Brothers ∞
In 1916 Fu was hired by General Lee King Lin (Lee the "God Sword"). Lee was a master of the Wudang School. A martial arts contest was held in the army barracks and after many fierce contests Fu was declared champion and promoted to platoon commander. General lee's brother was a famous fighter named "Lee the God Spear"; he was said to be able to pin a fly to a pane of glass with his spear, without breaking it. Fu was challenged to a friendly bout by the Spearman Lee and after a fierce encounter a draw was declared. Afterwards both the Lee brothers and Fu became close friends, exchanging technical information.
Wushu Institute ∞
The central Wushu institute was founded in Nanking in 1928 and Fu was hired as head instructor. A National Wushu tournament was organised. Wong Tak Yuan represented the Sichuan Province; he had defeated over twenty opponents. Fu now aged fifty was asked to fight him. Wong's nickname was "Charging Fists" which was his speciality; he could smash rocks and mark iron with his hands. After ninety rounds Fu defeated Wong. Later Master Fu took part in an exhibition of martial arts at the National Academy of Peking.
Five Northern Tigers ∞
In the latter part of 1928 five renowned northern masters were invited south. They were popularly known as the Five Northern Tigers, Master Fu went to Canton and took up a post at the army Command Headquarters University Security Department. When the Japanese captured Canton in 1938 Master Fu left the area and travelled around teaching the Chinese troops. After the war he returned to Canton and taught at the YMCA.
The Legacy ∞
At this time Master Fu began to combine al his knowledge and developed the Fu style of Taiji, Fu style Taiji Sword, Leung-Yi (Harmonised opposites boxing), Pakua Dragon Palm, Weapons and many other forms.
On April 26th 1953 in the evening, the stadium of Canton Cultural Park was packed and all roads leading to it were filled with people, streaming to see the famous Master Fu Chen Sung demonstrate the Pakua Dragon Palm. Master Fu was called back for encore after encore by the cheering audience. Perhaps the strain of this experience and the prolonged efforts were to much for the old master, because five days later he passed away with inflammation of the brain.
The Legend ∞
Many amazing stories have been told about Master Fu's fighting prowess. I would like to recall a few of them. On returning to his village one time Master Fu found that a Kung fu master known as Tiger Yim was bullying the locals. After trying to sort out Master Fu, Tiger Yim was sent flying. He returned though with his four sons, armed with weapons. The first son attacked with a pole but Master Fu disarmed him and punished the other four attackers by injuring their feet.
On another occasion bandits surrounded the village. Master Fu charged out at them with his spear and killed dozens before the rest fled in terror. When more bandits took the village Master Fu asked the leader to bring out his best twenty men; if he could defeat them then the rest of the bandits should withdraw. The bandit leader agreed; Fu trounced the lot of them and the village was saved. Fu used his famous "Hurricane Palm" Technique.
The Successors ∞
Master Fu Chen Sung had four children; two sons Fu Wing Fay and Fu Wing Che, and two daughters Fu Qown Sou and Fu Mun Sau. His wife, Madam Ho, was also learned in Kung Fu. Master Fu Wing Fay became a worthy successor to his father. Beacause of his father's relationship with the Lee brothers he was able to inherit the Wudang system; he also mastered Yang style Taiji and many other styles. He divided the Fu style into three stages and the Wudang Sword techniques into five stages. He alsoimproved the Taiji and Paqua systems of his father. He has held many prestigious posts in China and has the unique distinction of owning his own gymnasium. His best known student in the west is Master (Madam) Bow Sim Mark, now residing in the U.S.A.