'Wushu' woos Bangladeshi schoolgirls with mental, physical boosts
Published: Nov 06, 2022 07:34 PM
An athlete prepares at the Vilnius Open <em>Wushu</em> Cup in Vilnius, Lithuania, on May 7, 2022. The Vilnius Open <em>Wushu</em> Cup opened on Saturday, drawing more than 50 students from local wushu clubs. (Xinhua)

An athlete practices wushu  (Xinhua)

Wushu, Chinese martial arts, has become a popular sport in Bangladesh, particularly among schoolgirls who find this Chinese tradition has a special appeal. It is a graceful kind of dance, keeping them in shape and teaching them self-defense.

Bangladeshi schoolgirls are showing interest in Sanda and Taolu, two categories of competitive wushu. Sanda is a fighting system developed by the Chinese military and based on traditional kung fu and modern combat techniques. Taolu refers to choreographed set routines of movements.

"What do we girls really need? We need Sanda to protect ourselves when we walk on the streets," Nusrat Jahan Mim, a Class 10 student, told the Xinhua News Agency.

Mim, who is studying at Shajahanpur Railway Colony Government High School in Dhaka, intends to participate in the Sanda competition at 2022 National Games. 

"Here the instructors guide us very well," said Mim on the sidelines of a training session conducted by the Bangladesh Wushu Federation (BWUF) in the capital Dhaka. 

Another student, Labiba Akhtar Momo, said she has been practicing wushu for four years. 

"Wushu is very good for our physical and mental development," said Momo, a student of the Khilgaon Girls School and College in Dhaka. 

"I'm learning techniques of Taichi and I hope I will win gold medals in the future."

Farzana Roman Rifat is the mother of two wushu kids. "Wushu is very effective for physical and mental development. That is why I chose it," said Farzana Roman Rifat, the mother of two kids taking wushu classes.

Founded in 2007, the BWF receives support from the International Wushu Federation, the governing body for wushu in all its forms worldwide.  

"We're implementing various programs to promote popular Chinese martial arts all over Bangladesh. We want to produce international stars," said Dulal Hossain, general secretary of BWF. 

The federation regularly organizes wushu competitions in cooperation with the Chinese Embassy in Dhaka, including the Ambassador's Cup.

"We are very grateful to the Chinese government, for providing us with wushu equipment through the embassy," said Hossain.