The Qwan Ki Do disciplines :

  • Meditation
  • Traditional Weapons
  • Breaking Techniques
  • Lion Dance
Tam The: Gymnastics for the Mind and Body
Tam or Tam Linh : mental state or psychological
The : the body and its energy
Dai Su CHÂU QUAN KY
All Asiatic physical techniques refer to energy, to a life force available in oneself and to be exploited in various ways, but few know its secrets.
The western mind is puzzled and cannot understand this concept when it is offered without explanation.
Is there a form of training which can make us aware of this force?
The awareness and discovery of this energy, plus the ability to call upon it and utilize it are components of the collectivity of Asiatic physical disciplines.
From the time of birth, everything is learned through concrete experiences, lived and felt. These experiences can then be transposed to thought in an abstract way. For example, one burns one's finger, which makes one learn the word "burn" and which allows one to then explain an abstract feeling, such as "burning with love".
There is a similar training technique for understanding, perceiving and summoning this force. This method, at the beginning, is concrete, very physical, and based on previous experience. It also relies on mechanical (muscular) energy, which leads to more abstract concepts, more subtle forms of energy, such as mental energy and spiritual healing energy.
Tam The training proposes to guide the learner with this approach.

Cong Pha: Breaking Techniques in Qwan Ki Do

One of the most spectacular manifestations of the expropriation of the physical force “Ngoai Luc” and its energetic power “Nôi Luc”, is the Break or Cong Pha (in Vietnamese).
The Ngoai Luc used in martial arts is no more than the result of the physical and mechanical work of practicing movements, but also depends on the work of the internal energy “Nôi Luc”.
This Ngoai Luc requires very specific training:
On a physical level (particularly muscles specific to each method).
On a mechanical level (the various forms of training where each method places emphasis either on the upper limbs or lower limbs, or on both levels, or on the whole body).
On the level of internal energy, the Noi Luc increases its power by localizing the body's energy “Thành Công Luc”, thanks to concentration techniques “Nhâp Dinh” and internal energy training, which make it possible to focus extraordinary power on a specific target.

The Ngoai Luc and Nôi Luc contribute in a concrete manner to the training of the CONG PHA or the Breaking, it may be said that physical and energetic preparation are the first elements before moving on to the specific method of the CONG PHA.
The CONG PHA presents several aspects:
A) The Ngoai Luc consists in breaking various materials using natural elements of the body (Head, Hands, Elbows, Feet, Shins, etc…) but also on a certain level in resisting breakage of a material on a part of the body…
B) The training of Nôi Luc internal energy will direct the student to various applications, for example: tolerating equally well extreme cold or heat, or lightening the body in order to walk without making any noise (Dê Khi), but also in order to jump with the feet together over a wall that is higher than 1.8 meters (Phi Thân), or to travel at an excessive speed, to slide across water using a large bamboo without sinking (Dô Giang), or to climb a smooth wall (Bich Hô Du Tuong), or else to increase one’s body weight dramatically (Thiên Cân Truy)…
C) At an advanced level breaking an object from a distance (Da Chuong), or practicing the “Diêm Huyêt”: a traditional medical science which consists in striking specific parts of the body, in order to disturb or destroy certain meridians on the adversary and to condemn him to a slow death! (not to be confused with strikes to vital points on the body). Pascal FAULIOT has related in his book entitled “Tales of the Martial Arts, Editions Albin Michel publishing house”, a story about this wonderful medical science, of which today unfortunately very few Great Masters possess knowledge.

All these breaking techniques CONG PHA (Ngoai Luc) require long preparation; they also require a great deal of courage and willpower in order to withstand training aimed at hardening parts of the hands or feet or other parts, a process which often causes pain and bruising.
This training must be supervised by a qualified instructor; it must be progressive, and it must be performed on adequate apparatus designed for this purpose, for example: Bag of Corn, rice, or sand, or a wooden “Môc Nhân” dummy, a special ”Tru Công Pha” striking pole, and for a specific time for each type of training. This precaution prevents the student from sustaining sometimes serious injury… or even after-effects during old age.
The reason why traditional methods from Viet Nam have carefully preserved these techniques of CONG PHA (Ngoai Luc) training sustained by regular care based on plants is to prevent health problems due to negligence or reckless behavior.
Apart from considerations involving efficiency or show, the objective of most martial arts, such as QWAN KI DO, is to offer something to the student who has reached a relatively high level, and who cannot test the real power of his attack with a partner during training. The CONG PHA (Ngoai Luc) then becomes an effective method to test one’s power of attack, which is the reason why the CONG PHA is part of the exam for the Black Belt and higher levels in QWAN KI DO.
However, in no way does the breaking CONG PHA (Tiles, Wooden boards, Bricks, Ice blocks, etc…) constitute an end in itself. It must be considered as an implacable means of evaluating the student’s actual power.