I think the concept called “Jing” is very important in Chinese Wu Shu/martial arts.You can see how using Jing may look like if you watch Jet Li’s martial arts movie “Fearless”. It tries to demonstrate Wu De (Martial Arts virtue) and also shows how Jing can be used in a fight.

When master Huo Yuanjia (Jet Li) challenges the Russian strong man Obiyin he starts by lightly touching a finger to Obiyin’s chest then uses his palm to hit him with enough power to throw his huge, heavy opponent back several feet; this is “short jing”.

At the end of the movie, Master Huo Yuanjia fights a Japanese samurai called Taihchoaye. This fight ends with Huo Yuanjia stopping himself from delivering a full power one handed “drill fist” into Taihchoaye’s chest, demonstrating another kind of Jing usage.

In Wu Shu, “Jing” and “Strength” are two different concepts. If a person know how to attack using their entire body’s power focused into just one part of their body, then we say this person know how to “Fa Jing”, meaning “Use Jing”.

In a fight most people can only use part of their limb’s power; i.e. they punch by moving just their arm against their opponent. In Wu Shu we call this kind of partial power/strength “Jruo Li” or “Dull Strength/Power”. Everyone has the ability to use Jruo Li when fighting. It is only through special training that someone learns how to Fa Jing in a fight, making Jing is a unique offspring of Chinese Wu Shu.

Most of Fa Jing’s power is generated in the lower limbs. There is one saying in T’ai Chi Chu’an that goes like this; “Li Fa Yuu Goon, Ju Jai Yuu Yao, Xing Yuu Sou”, or “The power from the root/feet, controlled from the waist, used by the hand”. This explains how to Fa Jing in Tai Chi Chu’an.

So how can we Fa Jing in Wu Shu training? There are several points that must be followed:1. Your whole body, starting from the feet through the ankle, knee, groin, shoulder, elbow and wrist must string or thread together. In Chinese we called it “Jei Jei Gwn Chuan” (parts follow connected).

2. Alternate loose with tense. When you are not Fa Jing your muscle must be loose; when you want to Fa Jing your muscle can be tense. In a fight, if you hold your fist tight all the time it will cause muscular fatigue, then you will have difficulty with Fa Jing. There is one Wu Shu saying that goes like this: “Chu Sou Ran Ru Mien, Jan Shen Ying Se Tieh” translated as “When attacking be supple as cotton, when touching become hard like iron.”

3. Your movement must be fast. To hit the target when fighting, any kind of attacking movement with Fa Jing must be a fast explosive force.

4. Movements and body must coordinate together. When your body is doing any kind of attacking movements your whole body must move as one; then you can Fa Jing.Jing is one kind of explosive force that can be produced from our bodies. It is powerful and can be used to conserve energy during fighting. Jing is also nimble; when you Fa Jing to attack an opponent but your attack is repulsed, you can still change to another Jing, making it hard for your opponent to defend themselves effectively. In this way knowing how to Fa Jing in fighting is very important in Chinese Wu Shu training. If you don’t know how to Fa Jing then it means your Wu Shu training isn’t efficient and is lacking potency.