Noida-based Shifu Kanishka Sharma, the appointed head of Shaolin Temple in India, has been popularising the Shaolin culture in the country with his master classes.
Ever felt captivated by Shah Rukh Khan’s daring stunts in the movie Don 2 and wondered if you could do them too? Head to Noida to train under the man who choreographed these fight sequences. Meet Shifu Kanishka Sharma, the appointed India head of Shaolin Temple by The Ven. Abbot Shi Yongxin (the current head of Shaolin Temple in China), who has been popularising the Shaolin culture in the country with his master classes. Sharma happened to watch the movie The 36th Chamber of Shaolin at the age of six and went on to watch it over 300 times. He had no idea then that this would be the first source of inspiration for what would turn into his life’s passion. Shifu Kanishka, as he is known today, travelled to the esteemed Shaolin Temple Secular Discipline Union in China in 2001, thus becoming the first Indian to train there. “The extensive training went on for six years before I earned the title Shifu, which means master in Mandarin,” says the 39-year-old. With a background in martial arts for over 25 years, Sharma specialises in Commando Close Quarter Combat, which teaches a practitioner to knock out their opponent in three seconds. Discussing his self-defense module, which he has specifically designed for women, he says that empowering women is the need of the hour. “My woman empowerment programme has no age limit. It intends to convert whatever is available into weapons. With ball pens, credit cards, pen drives and hair pins as improvised weapons, the techniques are applicable even when somebody is empty handed,” says Sharma.
The master had trained Anil Kapoor for the popular television series 24 and Priyanka Chopra for Don 2. He says, “My connection with Bollywood has helped spread the Shaolin culture in the country. Children blindly follow their favourite celebrities and often come to me with queries,” he adds. As for Kung-Fu not being at Olympic sport, a heartened Sharma says, “I am glad that it is not a sport. It is more of a personality development programme that makes you fearless and confident besides polishing your observation skills.”
FACT FILE Where to go G-12, Sector 27, Noida What to Learn Shaolin Kung Fu forms, Shaolin Kung Fu weapons, Shaolin Chin Na (joint locking system) Details shaolinindia.com