Shaolin Monks a hit with Flaxmere children

By Aroha Treacher
  • North Island: East Coast

A few Shaolin fighting monks touring the world stopped into Flaxmere in Hawke's Bay to share their culture and skills with some of the locals.

Impressive gymnastic ability mixed with lethal fighting combinations is what makes the Shaolin monks legendary.

Shang Ketao says, “We train very hard day in and day out, for example we are in training for 12 hours a day, 7 days, always training.”

They are just a few Shaolin monks of hundreds like them, all ranging in age from two or three to about 20 and live a strict life of abstinence, no alcohol, no smoking and mainly a vegan diet.

Tang Zhongshan says, “The Shaolin Monk is an example of the balance between being a hardened warrior and devoted religious disciple, both mind, body and spirit.”

They stay at the Shaolin Temple in China learning the ancient Shaolin art of Kung Fu.

Ma Songshan says,”When I was a boy I watched lots of martial arts movies and Bruce Lee's inspiration is why I chose to do this.”

It wasn't just about the monks, the kids gave them a taste of Māori culture too.