Monks at China’s notorious Shaolin Temple, which is known for its extraordinary martial arts, have begun teaching their students how to play football (or what Americans call soccer) in the hope of saving Chinese football.
Chinese football has been in a steady decline for quite awhile, and it’s now to the point where “China’s national football team is a laughing-stock.” Nobody takes it seriously, and it’s greatly affecting China’s image. In fact, China wasn’t even able to quality for the 2010 World Cup.
The Monks at the Shaolin Temple hope to reverse this trend by producing a new wave of super radical, awesome football players.
“Chinese football is in the doldrums, and when some elements of Shaolin kungfu, particularly its spirit, are integrated into soccer, we hope it will help improve the training level of football,” head coach Shi Yanlu told Agence-France Presse (AFP) reporters.
By combining the tactics of Kung Fu with the game of football, the monks hope to essentially create winning football players.
Right now, however, all the trainees are around the age of 10, so they have a long way to go before they can even enter the sports industry. However, the folks at the temple sincerely hope that their teachings become more popular and therefore attract more people.
It’s an unusual methodology, but hopefully it’ll work, because there’s no shame quite like the shame of having the world’s worst football team.