According to legend, Hung Ga was named after Hung Hei-Gun, who learned
martial arts from Jee Sin, a Chan (Zen) master at the Southern Shaolin
Temple. Jee Sin (ak Gee Sum Sim See) was also the master of four other
students, namely Choy Gau Lee, Mok Da Si, Lau Sam-Ngan and Li Yao San. These
five martial artists later became the founders of the five major family
styles of Southern Chinese martial arts: (Hung Ga, Choy Gar, Mok Gar, Li Gar
and Lau Gar).
The Hung Gar system incorporates the five elements of
Chinese Medicine – fire, earth,metal, water and wood. Each element has a
particular characteristic of defense and attack,which has been included
within the Hung Gar system. Many other Chinese martial arts styles
incorporate these into their systems in a very similar way.
In order to appreciate and understand the elements
specifically within the Hung Gar system, it is important first to broadly
consider a basic observation and description of them in the context of their
characteristics, and how this observation may help condition or prepare the
martial artist in developing fighting skills.