About Kung Fu Tea

Welcome to Kung Fu Tea, where we discuss all aspects of Chinese Martial Studies.   Many of the posts here focus on the academic study of the Chinese martial arts, but occasionally we delve into lighter topics like current events, movies or martial arts in the news.  From time to time I will also offer posts looking at other areas of interest to students of martial studies.

Special thanks are also due to our many guest authors and the website’s Editor, Tara Judkins.

Check back often as I pour another cup of Kung Fu Tea multiple times a week!








28 thoughts on “About Kung Fu Tea

  1. Thank you. Nice work and will check back often.

    Posted by Rik Zak | May 30, 2013, 3:22 am
    • Thank you for the articles, fascinating stuff especially about Bruce Lee’s influence on the Western impression of Chinese martial arts. By the way, do you accept submissions?

      Posted by Rob | August 8, 2013, 5:42 pm
  2. Hi Rob,

    Yeah, there are occasionally guest posts here at Kung Fu Tea. We will actually have a few of them coming up in September. Email me if you would like to discuss.

    Posted by benjudkins | August 8, 2013, 5:45 pm
  3. Hi Ben

    Thanks for that, I’ve sent you some article ideas.

    Posted by Rob | August 10, 2013, 4:08 pm
  4. Thank You! It is hard to find good information (not selling information) about Gong Fu. I have a school, but teach my student to have critical and constructive thinking about the practice they do.

    Posted by Philippe Lavoie | October 23, 2013, 1:58 pm
  5. I knew Dr. Henry Leung when he first began teaching. Your Wing Chun linked page left out a lot, the town of Fa-Shan and the Leung family, which Yim Wing Chun married into. Also, her father was observed by Mr. Leung to stand in the Wing Chun stance when gringing the bean curd, and them perform the “praying Buddha” exercise while in that same same stance. Knowing Mr.Yim had no sons, and vainly prevailing upon him to teach this arcane art, he wisely maried Yim Wing Chun and their children carried on the art. What she learned form the nun, Ng Mui, was probably some form of crane. Wing Chun incorporates both snake and crane.

    Posted by Bob Brown | January 20, 2014, 10:32 pm
  6. Hi Ben, intersting blog – keep the articles coming!

    Posted by Mr. Keith Wong | March 21, 2014, 11:33 pm
  7. Great stuff! Was just in SLC + missed you.

    Posted by Adam Luedtke | June 13, 2014, 9:51 pm
  8. Thanks for the interesting website! I just started my Wing Chun journey and look forward to reading your articles.

    Posted by Robert Ontiveros | January 9, 2015, 7:00 am
  9. Excellent blog, exactly what I’ve been looking for for many years. I do hope you keep it up.

    Posted by Tom | January 17, 2015, 9:14 pm
  10. I’m a Mesoamericanist in the museum world and also a martial artist. I’m so happy to have discovered your blog. It’s outstanding work. It brings a familiar taste of the academic world into my Kung Fu practice. Thank you

    Posted by Eduardo Sanchez | April 3, 2015, 5:17 pm
  11. I read yr message board post in the link above. I recently purchased a budhome with 3 english numbers. (sans handle). Have you learned anything further about these in the past few years?

    Posted by Savage Dennis Lively | June 20, 2015, 11:03 pm
  12. Hi Ben,

    Absolutely amazing blog! Thank you! I’ve just begun to read the posts and it entirely absorbed me. As soon as my research takes shape, I would be happy to share it and post in your blog. Meanwhile, is it permitted (I mean, copyrights issues) to post relevant academic articles downloaded from scientific magazines?

    Posted by eric | June 27, 2015, 7:33 am
  13. I’m not terribly sure where to look for this, but you seem to be a good resource. I’m looking into a way to study kung fu full time, somewhere. I have 2 questions. 1) is there a good resource for learning if any of the various schools are good 2) are there any sources of funding for someone interested in this but can’t easily come up with say, $10,000 very easily?

    Posted by Eric Aspengren | May 17, 2016, 3:55 pm
    • Those are some pretty huge questions that you have. For what it is worth I would start by sorting out #1 before even thinking about #2. There are tons of great sources out there, but what you need to start with is a clear set of goals of what you want to accomplish. There is no single best martial arts system, and as you become more involved in a style your goals often change or start to evolve. So if it was me I would begin by selecting a group of local schools with reputations for good instruction, visit them, and see what speaks to me personally. And I would always put in a lot of time working on a system locally before trying for the epic Kung Fu pilgrimage. Chances are good this is how you will make your contacts so you have someone reliable to study with when you are actually ready to travel abroad.

      Posted by benjudkins | May 17, 2016, 11:02 pm
      • Thank you for your quick response. I’ve been studying Tai Chi for a year, with a little long fist and a tiny bit of hsing-i, actually. I’m not terribly attached to a style at the moment. I have looked at YMAA and it certainly looks good. I enjoy Tai Chi.

        The issue is that having studied for a year, I’ve found that there’s not much else I’d rather do. I’ve hit a crossroads in my life and it’s time for a commitment like this and a change from the path I’m on.

        Posted by Eric Aspengren | May 18, 2016, 8:49 am
  14. Interesting

    Posted by Rohit | July 8, 2016, 10:52 pm
  15. H’lo again Ben,
    Looking again at Wakeman’s Strangers at the Gate, he describes on pp. 40-41 “secret societies” that boxed and drilled with swords as joining the ranks of local Chinese who fought against the British at San-yuan-li in 1841. Specifically, he mentions Cantonese silk-brocade workers called chi-fang-tsai who, he believed, were like modern day kung-fu societies in Taipei, called fu-le-she. I am wondering if you have ever written about the kung-fu societies that joined the struggle against the British in the First Opium War and, if not, whether this group was sufficiently prominent to be worth a look?
    Best regards,

    Posted by James Lande, Old China Books | October 3, 2016, 1:02 pm
  16. Thank you for running this. It’s an excellent site. Although my own interests in Chinese martial arts are very much north Chinese, your posts are always interesting and the sociological approach offers some really thought-provoking insights. It also helps that you’re fair-minded and sensible!

    Although not directly related to the martial arts at all, I thought you might find the attached site of interest. http://hpc.vcea.net/
    It’s a free online archive of early photographs of China, mostly late nineteenth- and early-twentieth century. Since you’re an academic you may know it already.

    Thanks for all your work – I really enjoy your analyses.
    Best wishes,

    Posted by Geoff | January 9, 2017, 5:48 pm
  17. Hi I am new to “kunfu tea” I am looking for guidance.

    what information I have discovered is of great importance so I believe a historian might guide me on a direction of understanding.

    Let me give some context without going into too much detail, I have created a martial art from simple understanding of the structural lines of the body, and found the only movements that allow the whole body to work as one.

    My focus now is to use this structure I have found to uncover the origins the true pioneer’s of this power where might it have all started,
    And how close were thay to the perfect art as I am today.

    So thankyou, hopefully someone can help me on my journey for greater knowledge and understanding this would be of much appreciation. Thankyou again

    Posted by Kyuss Brooker | March 13, 2017, 10:05 am
  18. Hello,
    I’m french. I practice a kung fu style called Mansuria kung fu or Manchu kung fu. My Master is french , his Master is Indian and the grand Master was from Honk kong. It is very difficult to find any written document about Mansuria kung fu. The sorry I’m being told : during their invasion of China, manchu stole à lot of Masters techniques to make this very complete kung fu (12 styles and more than 35 weapons). Would you have info? Or know somebody who might? My Master’s site: federationmansuriakungfu.com. Thank you very much

    Posted by Cécile Martinez | April 10, 2017, 4:50 pm
  19. Hey ben, I’m super glad I stumbled upon your blog. I personally agree with a lot with what you write, I am a wing chun instructor myself.

    Greetings from orange county 🙂

    Posted by wong long wing chun | April 15, 2017, 1:53 am

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