Justin Hu excels in Kung Fu

Ellie Renshaw, Online Editor-in-Chief

He is constantly on; he has school, clubs, music, church, student government and sports. But Justin Hu (’20) makes time for all his activities, and excels in each. This fall he was honored by the John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth for primarily academic achievement; however, he is still working harder than ever in his chosen physical activity: wushu, or Kung Fu.

After moving here from California in third grade, Hu looked for a indoor sport to try, landing on the Chinese martial art wushu.

“From then, I guess I really fell in love with it and continued,” Hu said.

Hu is beyond just ‘continuing’ the martial art, he excels in it, and is on the American National Traditional Wushu Team. He and his teammates will represent the United States in Russia this year at the International Championships.

Though preparing for competitions can require more than 30 hours of practice a week, Justin continues to enjoy the art.

“My favorite part of it is going to competitions, as it really gives me an opportunity to not only compete and work with my team, but also make the martial art wushu more known and recognized by the world,” Hu said, adding that the Olympic committee may soon recognize it as a sport.

Part of showing the world his art is fighting the preconceived notions many have of the martial arts, believing they are all about “zen” or “chi”. Instead, Hu said, wushu has a unique philosophy.

“The philosophical aspect that I observe is the ability to balance the body mentally,” Hu said. “This means being able to undergo more stress, and to be more tolerant in unfavorable situations … the training in Kung Fu helps reinforce my resilient and ‘hardy’ aspect as a person. [It teaches me] to not give up so easily and only finish when you are done.”