Tongbei Quan

The term “tongbei” is a very old one and there are many different styles which use the name. The name basically means “through the back” and refers to using the back to generate power. Although each of these styles is very different in both content and way of moving, they all refer to a man named Han Tong as their founder. Han Tong was nicknamed The White Ape due to his stocky build and powerful arms and was the main projenitor in many early stage plays expounding the adventures of the first emperor of the Song Dynasty, Song Taizu (aka Zhao Kuangyin). The Tongbei series practiced in the Shaolin area is a classical Long Fist style. If you want to learn Shaolin Tongbei, check out Josh’s tutorial here.