• Zhang Hexian

Zhang Hexian (Photo : CGTN/YouTube)

A growing number of elderly Chinese are showing to the public that being old does not mean being frail and weak. A 61-year-old grandfather from Chengdu showed his killer abs, while a 94-year-old Dongyuan woman demonstrated her martial arts skills.

9 Decades

Because of her swift moves, the Chinese kung fu grandma, Zhang Hexian, is described by her martial arts students as “wing-footed.” Since Zhang Hexian began to learn kung fu when she was four years only, it only means she has been a martial arts practitioner the past 90 years, The Telegraph notes.

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At 94, Zhang Hexian attributes her fighting fit form to her martial arts skills which she maintains by keeping a regular routine as well as teaching her martial arts skills to younger people. Among her students are her son and great-granddaughter.

The Chinese kung fu grandma shared that because of her martial arts skills, she could challenge the local bully and placed the rogues in their place. Zhang Hexian recalled seeing a man beat his wife which led her to rush and hit the man on the chest. But she insisted that her martial arts skills are not for violence.

Benefits of Kung Fu

“Our ancestors instructed that we learn kung fu for defence and to help others, not to bully others,” she explained. Besides being a tool of self-defense, health experts say that learning and practicing martial arts keeps the body physically active and instills a sense of achievement and ethics as they work their way up in earning a belt.

Health Fitness Revolution lists the following as the top 10 health benefits of practicing martial arts as an adult: total body workout, healthy lifestyle, self-confidence, improved cardiovascular health, weight loss, improved reflexes, focus and stillness, teaches great morals and values, muscle tone and better mood.