Kung Fu at Five Claw Martial Arts
ShiZong Dan Sandelin is the founder of Five Claw. He has been studying and teaching Kung Fu for over 27 years. His teaching style encourages students to achieve levels of technical skill and power that far surpass their expectations. Meet ShiZong Sandelin at our original Sonora School.
Meet our other Instructors.
Five Claw — Wǔ Zhuǎ
According to Chinese mythology, dragons originated in China with Five Claws. The further they traveled from the source of their origin, the fewer their claws. At Five Claw, the Five Claw Dragon is our way of symbolizing a commitment to maintaining the core principals of animal style fighting arts. The origins of martial arts are ancient, but throughout the centuries, some martial arts have lost touch with their original purpose as a method of hand to hand combat.
Some arts have become acrobatic dances, while others have developed into carefully structured sports.
We are not such an art.
We teach instead a fiercely effective fighting art drawn from the core principals of different animal systems. We combine the use of pressure point and joint lock applications (Chin Na) with powerful kicking, punching and take-down techniques in order to create an efficient fighting art and a very effective form of self-defense.
At Five Claw we teach seven different animal styles: bear, tiger, mongoose, cobra, crane, mantis, and the dragon from which Five Claw takes its name.
Each animal of Wǔ Zhuǎ (Five Claw) has a unique motion, and a unique fighting style. A Five Claw student is given an increasing exposure to all 7 animals almost as soon as he starts his/her training. Students are taught to blend and transition from one animal to another, constantly utilizing the different strengths of each beast. Once a student achieves Black Belt, he or she will begin focusing on each animal in detail, starting with Bear and moving through the animals one by one.
The art itself is rich and complex, but we use teaching and training methods that make it accessible to all our students. We do this by presenting core principles such as the development of center, alignment, timing, and flow.
Our goal at Five Claw Martial Arts is to provide exemplary training and instruction for all levels of students. Our kung fu students cover a wide range of ages and abilities and we seek to individualize the instruction given to all each student to meet his or her unique goal—whether it be to learn a combat art, practice self defense, increase physical fitness, or train as an MMA fighter.
ShiZong Sandelin began his training in Shòu Shù in the early 1980’s and the foundation of our art is based on this Shòu Shù lineage.
There are many schools that claim to the be only ones teaching the “true” Shòu Shù.
That is not our claim.
We think that all living arts evolve under the direction of their current leadership.
We honor our roots and have used this strong Shòu Shù foundation to allow us to integrate motions and methods from other arts and combat systems into our school. This is what creates the distinct motion of Five Claw, and what makes us the strong school that we are today.
Our claim? We claim to teach kung fu that is true to the origins and the purpose of a fighting art based on animal styles. We emphasize the development and understanding of core principles.