Monkey-Style Kung Fu, or Monkey Fist (猴拳; pinyin: Hóu quán), is a Chinese martial art which utilizes ape or monkey-like movements as part of its technique. In Virtua Fighter 5 listed Kou-ken as the Japanese translation.
There are a number of independently developed systems of monkey kung fu. Examples include Xingzhemen (行者門) named after the protagonist Sun Wukong of the popular Ming dynasty novel Journey to the West, Nanhouquan (南猴拳) or Southern Monkey Fist originating from the Southern Shaolin Temple as well as the better-known Da Sheng Pi Gua Men 大聖劈掛門 style of Hong Kong.
Traditional Hóu quán as taught in Mainland China includes running on all fours (i.e. the hands and feet), various difficult acrobatic movements such as flipping sideways in the air, front flips, back flips, back handsprings, hand stands, walking on the hands, forward lunges/dives, backward lunges, spinning on the butt, spinning on the back and many kicks and strikes. Most of the attacks are aimed at the knees, groin area, throat or eyes of the opponent and hand strikes are normally either open handed slaps or clawing with a semi-closed fist called the monkey claw.
A wide array of facial monkey expressions are also practiced, inclusive of happiness, anger, fear, fright, confusion and bewilderment etc. Except for very brief periods, most movements inclusive of running are executed from either a squatting or semi-squatting position and are normally accompanied by very swift and 'jerky' head movements as the practitioner nervously looks around. The monkey staff, or Hóu gùn (猴棍), is one of this style's specialty weapons. Monkey boxing is an imitative technique and so execution of the movements and facial expressions must be so convincing that it looks exactly like a monkey and not simply like a human imitating a monkey hence the very high degree of difficulty associated with this technique.
- Monkey-Style Kung Fu at Wikipedia.