When introducing our Warrior’s Way Bootcamp to people, the first thing we often hear is “Oh, that’s not suitable for me. I’m too old/soft/out of shape/overweight!”
While it isn’t an easy program, our 10-day Warrior’s Way Bootcamp was designed with beginners in mind, so hearing those comments on a daily basis, we decided to write this post to let people know exactly who these programs are designed for, how people benefit by taking part, and why they really are suitable for everyone!
The Shaolin Temple – An equal opportunity institution
One commonly heard myth with regards to the Shaolin Temple is that only men can train there. While it’s true that all the warrior monks teaching at the temple are men, both men and women are equally welcome to come and study there. As a centre of Buddhist culture, and the birth place of Zen Buddhism, the Shaolin Temple is dedicated to being an open environment, welcoming all who wish to learn and experience what they have to offer.
In fact, over the past 4 years, about 40% of all our attendees have been women, and 25% have been over the age of 45. And every single one of them has been treated the same way. Never have any of our participants been told they couldn’t take part in any of the training, nor excluded from any of the other activities CK Martial Hearts have organised during our time at the temple. As a result, a large proportion our reviewers mention how inclusive their time at the temple was, and how happy they were to have never been made to feel left out at any point.
Shaolin kung fu – An equal opportunity martial art
Looking at Shaolin kung fu videos online, or live performances of the Shaolin Warrior Monks, it would be easy to believe that you have to be super strong, lightening-fast or made of elastic to train something as explosive and dynamic as Shaolin martial arts. But the fact is, it is through training Shaolin martial arts that you can become all of the above, and more. Shaolin martial arts, while considered an ‘external’ style, doesn’t rely on individual muscles for strength, but instead uses the entire body to generate the power seen in its explosive movements. In this way, with correct training, people of all builds and genders can learn how to overcome larger, more muscularly strong opponents.
Of course, attention to correct technique is also vitally important. Which is why we always make sure our groups are never larger than 10 people. This means the teacher and guide give plenty of attention to each person, ensuring everyone progresses at an equal speed. Furthermore, where possible for paired work, participants will be paired with partners of a similar level at the start, so that they get the chance to acclimatise themselves to training. Later in the week, however, those pairings may be changed in order to let everyone experience training with those at different ability levels, which is a great way to help and support each other, as well as being a better way to simulate real-world self-defence scenarios.
Certainly, there is a lot more to it, and it does take years of practice to master any martial art. But the teaching method at the Shaolin Temple means that everyone can at least get an idea of what it means to train traditional kung fu, and perhaps even open the doorway to future training, if people so wish.
CK Martial Hearts – An equal opportunity trainer
While the CK Martial Hearts guide who joins you during your time at the Shaolin Temple is there to make sure you are always safe and well, assist you with any problems you may be having, and to ensure your experience at the temple goes as well as possible, this does not mean they will allow you to give anything less than 100% just because you are aching or tired. If you show up to class, it means you are committing to giving 100% to that day’s training, and the guide will keep pushing you to to make sure that happens.
This will happen to every single participant on the program, to the exact same degree. Male, female, young, old, newbie or multi-black-belt martial artist. While a 50kg inexperienced attendee would not be expected to lift the same weight, or run at the same speed as a 100kg athlete who has spent the last 10 years in training, both participants would be expected to push themselves 100% for the entire time they are at the temple. People don’t join these programs because they want to take it easy and enjoy the sights all afternoon. And that’s good, because with the CK Martial Hearts guide, all you will have time to do is breathe, and focus on the next goal directly in front of you, no matter who you are.
Requirements – What it takes to train with CK Martial Hearts at the Shaolin Temple
While all of the above hopefully emphasise how training at the Shaolin Temple is open to everyone, there are still a few rules and requirements that individuals must follow, in order to be successful in their applications to join one of CK Martial Hearts’ programs.
- Be genuinely interested in experiencing life, kung fu and culture at the Shaolin Temple
- Be respectful of Chinese martial arts, Buddhist teachings, and Chinese life and culture in general
- Be willing to commit 100% of your effort during your time training at the Temple
- Be willing to follow the instructions given by the Shaolin Warrior Monks and the CK Martial Hearts guide during your time training
If you are willing and able to meet those 4 requirements, then you will most definitely be welcome to train with CK Martial Hearts at the Shaolin Temple. The challenges you’ll face are part of the Shaolin kung fu training experience, and definitely something we believe everyone should push themselves to try at least once, no matter if it’s for the martial arts, the environment, the cultural experience, or simply to see how far they can push themselves. To find out more about the Warrior’s Way Kung Fu Bootcamp, please visit the program page here.
To see what previous participants have said about learning traditional Chinese martial arts with us, please visit our TripAdvisor page!
CK Martial Hearts is where it's at!
You get to learn the history of what and where you're practicing along with other sights you venture to; and you control how much you do, but expect to be pushed to your limits physically, mentally, and even emotionally. I definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a different kind of challenge and experience.
CK Martial Hearts delivers and surpasses all its promises
Living and training on location was akin to stepping into a movie. The kindness and openness of the locals was heartwarming, their constant training a marvel, and access to the knowledge, spirituality, and discipline of the Warrior Monks in the Shaolin Temple, an inspiration.
It really teaches you to push yourself beyond your limits
Absolutely fantastic programme! Suitable for everyone; you can experience it at your own level of fitness and ability. I came to the programme with zero Martial Arts experience and had a wonderful though very challenging week. I can't recommend this enough!
If you're looking for a physical and mental challenge, this is the place to go, regardless if you have previous experience with martial arts. I can honestly say that through the training, I know I am capable of much more than I allowed myself to believe previously.
“Challenging, confronting, fun and amazing experience”
This not your normal day to day martial arts class. This is a once in a lifetime experience that will take you out of your comfort zone and push you to the limit while offering you a very rewarding challenge that’ll make you realize the limit is yourself.
Thank you for creating this experience
Studying at the Shaolin Temple was to do each day what had only yesterday been impossible. To experience the achievement lying beyond fear and pain was life-changing. For those contemplating studying Kung Fu at Shaolin Temple with CK Martial Hearts: you can do this.
Looking for a challenge, this is the place
The atmosphere of the monastery is very special, even if I could not appreciate so that at the beginning of the training. I can say it was a great experience. I have learned a lot for me physically and mentally and can recommend it to anyone who wants to experience something special.
Shaolin Temple Martial Arts Training
Most of the trainings was inside the Shaolin Temple. The Kung-fu classes were teach by a monk of the Shaolin Temple. If you want to improve or start in Kung-Fu, or you want to experience how is living in a real Kung-Fu Chinese school, this is the right place.
An excellent life time experience!
I don't think you can find any company who can let you learn traditional Kung fu from the real monk and even training inside the temple itself. If you want to see how much you can push yourself and try something different, this is something you cannot miss when you visit china.
An Amazing Experience
I knew nothing about Kung Fu and I spent an amazing morning doing Taichi with them. It felt amazing. Being trained out there is like being part of something bigger than you are. And I cannot thank enough AJ and Nic to make me discover this. This day determined that I want to pursue this quest.
Hard to find, traditional Chinese Culture
Wow. Not only did the program give me access to an amazing and incredibly valuable experience studying the fundamentals of Chinese Gong Fu, but also to a rich cultural Chinese experience that is increasingly hard to find, especially at this place!
10 Day Martial Arts "BOOT CAMP"
This course has been the single best thing that has ever happened to me. I have no past Kung Fu experience however in the 10 day course I learned so much not just about Kung Fu, I learned my body, my strengths and weaknesses, that my mind can definitely overcome my body.
A truly transformative Experience
In any skills, one has to continue practicing for a long time in order to be capable at them, however this course gave us a really solid introduction and focus on how to keep developing our abilities. I will definitely come back to Shaolin with this program, and would recommend it to anyone.
And of course, if you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch. We are very happy to help in any way we can!
In the meantime, thanks for reading. We look forward to training with you soon!