I went to Kung Fu on Tuesday night. It was just a couple of guys and the instructor, Kot. Kot has recently come back to Rockhampton after a few years in Brisbane, and is only just restarting the club. Only a few dedicated students from before have currently rejoined, but they're in the process of trying to build it back up.
The rain, which had arrived suddenly earlier that day, held off for the couple of hours that we were in Kot's back yard, but it left the ground muddy causing kicks to be particularly messy. It was different training outdoors through the fading sunlight into the darkness held at bay by a single floodlight. Apparently they also train at a local park; that would be fun.
I didn't actually do much during the 1.5 hours Kot could be there. I got a quick overview of the art and what Kot taught. I stood in a horse stance (thus named because it's like you're riding a horse, not because you look like a horse... I think) until my quadriceps couldn't stop shaking. I did a bit of body hardening - strikes against bone, muscle, solar plexus, and abdomen - while at the same time learning some basic arm and foot movements. I was quite content to just stand back and watch when the knives and sticks came out though.
All in all I found it very interesting. I'll go back, but I don't know exactly how I'm going to fit it in. It seems to be a very real, effective martial art. I had a lot of fun doing Tae Kwon Do as a kid, but as a practical martial art I don't think it compares. One piece of advice I was given about sums it up - "What do you do if you're in a headlock? The easiest thing is to go straight for the balls." (Thankfully, testicle toughening is no longer part of most kung fu curriculums, Kot informed me with a straight face.)