At Wukong, we aim to help as much people who wish to improve their Wushu game as possible.
Even if you are lucky enough to have a great instructor in your country / city, since only a very few countries consider Wushu as a professional sport, chances are you have to work / study alongside your training.
Living in a country where Wushu is not professional also means you most certainly not have any professional structure to practice. Not to mention that even if you don’t need a Taolu carpet / Sanda platform to improve your Wushu, these are so expensive, only a very few clubs have the chance to own one.
A lot of changes in the way you train can already help you improve, but one of the best way remains going to China.
When it comes to training in China, most people have a lot of common preconceptions. China has kept on evolving at the fastest pace in the world. Each time I go there every 3 or 6 months, I don’t recognize things, people’s acts, or prices.
People believe training and living in China is very cheap. Truth is, it was, but not anymore. Back in 2005 when I first trained in China, I was spending only 3 USD per training to train with professional coaches on a green carpet. Then Olympic Games happened and many other things. Changing the price range forever.
Of course you can still find an amateur class in a small town for little money. When I was working in Huizhou I have trained there for 3 years in a Wushu school for 6 USD per day (getting a discount for paying 6 months in a row). But training was very amateur and not suitable for athletes in the beginning or middle of their career.
If you are crossing half the globe to improve, I am pretty sure your goal is not to train like that, but to experience teaching from a professional coach in a structure you wouldn’t dare to dream of back in your hometown.
Let’s get to the point : Money.
Common preconception #1 : Training in China is Cheap
First, you need to know that the place and teacher you will chose depending on your level and goals will impact the price range and opportunities.
If you are a starting athlete, you will want to train your basics and learn new forms. Chances to find that type of classes are more likely, and usually a cheaper option. You can aim for a professional children school for example, since they will have a level way better than yours anyway. In China basics are mostly taught when athletes are still children, up to their graduation from high school.
If you are a confirmed athlete already competing at an international level, you will be looking for more detailed trainings.
Let’s say you are VERY lucky : you can find training opportunities with a good coach and infrastructure for around 500 RMB (71 USD) per day with 2 trainings a day. Sometimes including accommodation and food ! I told you prices are quite high now.
If you are not lucky and wish to train with a professional adult team coach, as a single person (1 to 1 class), you have to expect prices ranging from 800 to 1200 RMB per day with 2 trainings a day (100~172 USD). Price might decrease to 400~500 RMB per person per day if you come as a team (usually over 10 persons at least).
Common preconception #2 : All training places include accommodation and food
Both true and not true.
If you are a professional Chinese athlete, yes it is included. If you are not, then it depends on many factors, especially on your acquaintance with the management people of the school.
Management will not want to spend time and money, and go through all the government required processes, just for 1 foreigner. But for 20 ? Jackpot (Maybe). They did before, but again, lots of things have changed.
You increase your chances if you are coming as a group (over 10 students) = more money for the school.
Just to illustrate below example, that is not virtual but do happens, let’s say that most professional schools will not provide these for 1 or few more foreigners.
So if you are really unlucky, you can expect to pay 172 USD per day just for training.
You still have to find a place to stay and to eat. Good news, these are still cheaper than in the West for now, but it also depends on your personal standards, especially regarding accommodation.
From my point of view, sleeping in a very cheap place with different people together is not a problem since you will be too tired to notice the difference with a fancy place anyway.
Depending on the city you are, you can expect cheap places ranging from 120 to 300 RMB (17~43 USD) per night.
Regarding food, China is still pretty cheap. If you go to a typical small Chinese restaurant, and again, depending on where you are, count 30 to 100 RMB (4~15 USD) per meal, rarely above, except if you’re a big eater.
Below is a quick comparative chart with different scenarios, based on an average of above prices for good semi-pro or pro structures and teachers.
Prices are per person and per day.
Far from your expectations right ? Again, this is a general overview of the actual costs as for year 2020. You might (and I hope you will !) find cheaper opportunities.
Training in China is great, and definitely a must do if you really want to reach a certain level. Work hard when you’re in your country and save as much money as you can while keeping training hard but intelligently. Then each time you got holidays, go to China. Once a year is good, twice a year is better. 2 weeks is OK, 3 weeks is a minimum to feel real improvement. And don’t forget to try to go as a team if you can. You will have more opportunities than alone to find cheaper options.
These prices really can vary depending again on your acquaintance with an athlete, or even better, the management of a school / team. It also vary depending on the time you expect to spend there. However, when you go to China, ALWAYS make friends and contacts, that’s how things work there. Once people get to trust you, you will have more training opportunities and usually lower prices.