my first brick

Karol Takijeden

Karol Takijeden
Shaolin Wahnam Norway
10th January 2017

If I remember correctly, after about 6 months of training I tried to break a brick. I failed, many times, and my palm was in pain. I thought that there must be a secret.

I tried to find the right method, and found out that the trick was in a small detail - you have to lift the brick just a little bit by pressing on one side just before hitting it. It's easy to find tutorials on the internet,

For instance here -

After that I forgot about it and did not try it any more. At the same time, my chi was building up every day, but I did not notice it.

Then, after some time, I found the old videos showing Sigungs senior students breaking bricks in a "normal" way, without cheating. I was a bit confused.

But after seeing the Cosmos Palm Test Video I was quite surprised.

My Sifu mentioned many times that with big amount of internal force breaking a brick was a piece of cake (and nice party trick). Sifu told me many times to avoid fighting and to be careful with people, even with hand-shakes. I trust my Sifu, but I thought that He was trying to be kind to me. I was sure that I needed at least a couple of more years of practice to reach that level.

We do not focus on testing the force in our school, and to ask Sifu for demonstration will be rude and disrespectful. I just learned to trust my Sifu and did what He told me, even if I did not believe in myself and my strength.

Last Christmas I visited my girlfriend's parents. We were chatting and suddenly they asked me about my practice. It's a big, important part of my life and my gf mentioned before that I trained every day. They were interested in Chi Kung, Chi in general and what one could do with it. I told them about great benefits, but they were not convinced. I guess it's typical in the West - people just don't believe in chi. So I showed them Cosmos Palm Test video. They were more impressed, but still sceptical. Suddenly, my gf's father said, "Well, there are many bricks laying at the back of the house, maybe you can show me how to break one!"

I was surprised and confused. I did not believe in myself and was afraid to fail. It will be such a shame. If I fail, they will never again want to listen to me talking about Chi Kung or Kung Fu, at least without smiling ironically.

We went outside and he picked up a thick, old brick. We supported it with two other bricks and he tried to break it with his palm. He tried a couple of times, but his palm was just bounced off. Then it was my turn. I relaxed as much as I could and let my chi flow. Then I did a couple of One-Finger Zen (just sending chi to the finger), focused, aimed at the middle of the brick and executed a fast slap.

I broke it in my first try!. It was really easy and with totally no pain. I was really surprised, actually more than my gf's father!

I did a couple of Lifting The Sky just to be safe and we went back home.

That experience opened my eyes. If I had any doubts before, they just disappeared. Maybe somewhere inside I was sceptical, just a bit. Not any more...

Then I understood how lucky I was -- to have an opportunity to learn in such an amazing school. To find my Sifu in the same city, and to learn from a great Shaolin Grandmaster.

Now i know why one has first to trust to learn, to keep the practice every day without doubts. Just empty the mind and open the heart. The mind is sneaky and needs a proof. I am sure both my Sifu and Sigung (and many other Sipaks and students of Shaolin Wahnam) can do amazing things. But they never show off. They are humble and kind. This realization was a great lesson for me.

Thank You Sigung, Sifu and all my Sisters and Brothers. Thank You from the bottom of my heart. For kindness, wisdom and patience in teaching that amazing art!

Sigung was kind to share with me wise words. (Please see Grandmaster Wong's message below)

With Shaolin Salute

breaking the bottom brick

Sifu Matt Fenton breaking a bootom brick. You can see a video here

This article is reproduced from the post, My First Brick at the Shaolin Wahnam Discussion Forum.

Grandmaster Wong's Message to Karol

Congratulations for breaking a brick. It is a remarkable achievement.

As I have sometimes mentioned, bricks in Europe and North America are very hard. Most martial artists, including well-known masters, cannot break them. Breaking a European or an American brick is like breaking two Malaysia bricks, and three China bricks.

But compared to the wonderful; benefits of good health, vitality, longevity and finding every day a joy, breaking a brick is really nothing. You may have noticed that we do not pay much attention to brick-breaking. Many of our senior students and instructors who broke bricks the first time were actually surprised they could do it. They broke bricks without hand conditioning, like hitting a sandbag or a wooden pole, and without special prior training.

How could they have the force to break bricks without special training? They develop internal force from their regular training. Besides enabling them to break bricks, more significantly their internal force gives them good health, vitality, longevity, peak performance and spiritual joys.

Right now I already look forward to the Essence of Shaolin course. It will be a very special course. I also look forward to seeing your videos on our Forum. By the way, it will be inspiring to many students if you also describe your experience of brick-breaking in our Forum.

Best regards,



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