about Kung Fu and Wushu
Kung fu and wushu are loanwords from Cantonese and Mandarin respectively that, in English, are used to refer to Chinese martial arts. However, the Chinese terms kung fu and wushu have distinct meanings. The Chinese equivalent of the term “Chinese martial arts” would be Zhongguo wushu (Chinese: 中國武術; pinyin: zhōngguó wǔshù) (Mandarin).
In Chinese, the term kung fu (功夫) refers to any skill that is acquired through learning or practice. It is a compound word composed of the words 功 (gōng) meaning “work”, “achievement”, or “merit”, and 夫 (fū) which is a particle or nominal suffix with diverse meanings.
Wǔshù literally means “martial art”. It is formed from the two words 武術: 武 (wǔ), meaning “martial” or “military” and 術 or 术 (shù), which translates into “art” , “discipline”, “skill” or “method”. The term wushu has also become the name for the modern sport of wushu, an exhibition and full-contact sport of bare-handed and weapons forms (Chinese: 套路), adapted and judged to a set of aesthetic criteria for points developed since 1949 in the People’s Republic of China.
Quan fa (拳法) is another Chinese term for Chinese martial arts. It means “fist method” or “the law of the fist” (quan means “boxing” or “fist” [literally, curled hand], and fa means “law”, “way” or “method”), although as a compound term it usually translates as “boxing” or “fighting technique.” The name of the Japanese martial art Kempō is represented by the same hanzi characters.