30 Shaoling kung fu masters become soldiers

2012-12-20 08:10:43 GMT2012-12-20 16:10:43(Beijing Time)  SINA.com

Thirty Shaoling martial artists put on Chinese Marine uniforms yesterday, including a world champion in free combat. They gathered at the Zhengzhou Railway Station in the capital of Henan Province for journey to their military base in southern Guangdong Province.

They were the best students from Songshan Shaoling Martial Arts Academy next to the famed Shaolin Temple, long revered as the cradle of Chinese kung fu.

They joined the armed forces voluntarily, said Yan Shuwei, an army recruitment officer in Dengfeng City where the academy is located.

Yan Knagli, 20, entered the academy four years ago and has defeated free-combat masters from 16 countries to win 60kg category championship at the Hong Kong International Wushu Festival in March 2011.

He Mingjun, 24, a coach at the academy, began to practice martial arts since he was five. He has claimed numerous top awards in boxing, sword, free combat competitions and went on a performance tour to Italy, Sweden, France, Thailand, Australia, Japan and Russia.

Both Yan and He are among the new recruits, Eastday.com.cn reported today.

(Agencies)

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