Praying Mantis Kung Fu is a system of kung fu originating from Laiyang county, a rural
area of Yantai city, Shandong province. It was created around the late Ming – early Qing dynasty (17th century) by a man named Wang Lang who was said to have witnessed a praying mantis catching a cicada and then combined his observations with 17 other styles. Praying Mantis is known for its close range combat skills and for its complex body mechanics and footwork.
There are three main branches: Taiji & Plum Blossom (basically the same, just personal preference as to which name is used), Seven Star and Six Harmony (this branch is the most different from the others). Most of the early history of Praying Mantis is difficult to verify, until in the 19th century a master named Liang Xue Xiang began to document the style. Read more in depth in my article at Studymartialarts.org
Wanna learn the Kung Fu I’ve trained during my time in China? Now you can with my new collaboration project Jiang Hu on Vimeo.