Fighters mix kung fu and bullfighting in China
BEIJING/JIAXING, China (Reuters) - Several times a week, kung fu teacher Ren Ruzhi enters a ring to spar with a bovine opponent around five times his weight and capable of killing him.
Ren’s mixing of martial arts and bullfighting worries his mother, but the 24-year-old has never been hurt. Besides, he says, grappling with a snorting bull is exciting.
“It symbolizes the bravery of a man,” Ren told Reuters in Jiaxing in China’s eastern province of Zhejiang.
Unlike Spain’s more famous sport, the Chinese variant of bullfighting involves no swords or gore but instead fuses the moves of wrestling with the skill and speed of kung fu to bring down beasts weighing up to 400 kg (882 lb).
Typically, a fighter approaches the bull head on, grabs its horns and twists, turning its head until the bull topples over.
If the first fighter gets tired, another one can step into the ring, but they have just three minutes in which to wrestle the bull to the ground or lose the bout.
The bulls, too, are trained before entering the ring, Han said, and learn themselves how to spread their legs or find a corner to brace against being taken down.
Although he says his bulls get better treatment than the animals involved in the Spanish sport, animal rights activists believe Chinese bullfighting is still painful for the animals and cruel as a form of entertainment.
Kung fu teacher Ren Ruzhi enters a ring to spar with a bovine opponent around five times his weight and capable of killing him.