In the 6th century an Indian monk named Dharma (Bodidharma), travelled from Asia to China, with the aim to establish the first Zen school of Buddhism.

He finally settled in a Shaolin monestery in the mountains, where he began teaching the monks who lived there. They were very weak and found any type of physical exercise too exhausting. So Dharma devised a teaching method which trained both their minds and bodies. This became known as Shorinji Kempo or Shaolin Fighting (Type of boxing).