“Art of the Iron Head” (Tit Tau Gung) is one of the special hard skills (Ying Ging) of Siu Lam martial arts. The training methodology consists of various methods of strengthening the neck, as well as conditioning the head and hitting various hard surfaces. But as we see in this story, it was no match for Hung Ga Kyun’s “No Shadow Kick” (Mou Ying Geuk).
One of the most famous monasteries in Canton, with extensive martial arts history, is called Hoi Tung Ji. It is said that Ji Sin Sim Si was hiding in Hoi Tung monastery and secretly taught Luk A Choi. Tit Kiu Saam has spend some time in Hoi Tung monastery as well, exchanging various fighting skills with the martial monks. Even in Wong Fei Hung’s times, martial arts were still practiced within the walls of the monastery.
One of the strongest and most proficient fighting monks of the monastery was called “Iron Head” (Tit Tau Wo Seung). He has diligently trained his head by hitting a stone mortar and was one the very few, who have mastered the skill of Art of Iron Head” to the highest levels. Because of the skills, he was often bullying other monks, as well as damaging the monastery’s property.
One day, Wong Fei Hung and his disciple Lam Sai Wing have visited the Hoi Tung Monastery. The “Iron Head Monk” served them a tea and they started to discuss martial arts and its techniques. “Iron Head Monk” was boasting with his skill, and gave Wong Fei Hung and his disciple an impromptu demonstration, hitting his head with an iron rod and bending it. Lam Sai Wing just laughed, which made the monk angry – he was eager to try out Lam Sai Wing’s skill for a long time, so the discussion finally led to a challenge and “comparison of combat skills” (Bei Mou).
The fight took place in front of the gates of the monastery. Because it was just a friendly match, Wong Fei Hung told Lam Sai Wing not to maim or kill the monk, and Lam promised to his Sifu that he will defeat the “Iron Head Monk” without unnecessary lethal injury.
“Iron Head” Monk has avoided Lam Sai Wing’s initial attack, and countered with his a head butting technique of his “Iron Head”. Lam Sai Wing used the “Moon Shadow Hand & Kick” (Yut Ying Sau Geek) combination from the last section of “Tiger and Crane Double Form Set” (Fu Hok Seung Ying), one of the “Ten Unique Techniques” (Sap Duk Sau) of Wong Fei Hung’s Gung Fu, and has knocked down the monk on the ground.
Lam Sai Wing helped the monk to stand up. “Iron Head Monk” respectfully greeted Master Lam with palms together and bow, praised Lam Sai Wing’s skill and admitted his defeat.
(You can read this and other stories in Lam Sai Wing’s Memorial Book, as well as rare articles collection Real Hung Kyun).
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