(Sorry this is the only pic I have got! However it does show that the guy is hanging only by his feet. My Canon with the zoom packed in, and it was taken on my pocket Ricoh.)
This peak is a major religious site for Daoists and has several temples situated on its flanks. At the summit of the mountain are three eighty metre high conglomerate pinnacles, on top of each of which, is a small temple. The monks used to get from one of these to the other by sliding along cables.
The guy in the picture is a martial artist and he does many such feats to raise money for local good causes, persuading pilgrims to donate money for the upkeep of the temples or to educate local children.
The north of Sichuan has many martial art temples; the most famous of which is the Hai Dang Gong Fu (Kung Fu) Si in nearby Jiangyu City. Hai Deng was a Buddhist monk, and well known for his amazing physical feats. He could hand stand on a single finger, and when he was eighty repeated this feat, but on that occasion he had to use two fingers! He died in 1989.
I believe that any climber, who wishes to gain an edge, should look into the martial arts of China. In March this year I spent some time at the Hai Deng Temple, and the feats that the Masters are capable of are truly impressive. There are two styles of Gong Fu (meaning skill), internal (neijia) and external (waijia). The internal schools were mainly developed by Daoist monks, and the external by Buddhist. The latter rely on strength and power, whilst the internal styles use the power of Qi and include Tai Ji Quan (Tai Chi) which is practised by millions of Chinese every day.
Qi Gong is another kind of training which has been developed in China over the millennia. I spent ten days last year at a Qi Gong Centre on Hainan Island and it is a discipline using exercise and meditation skills, which harness the power of Qi - both one's own and that of a Master. It is used very much now to combat serious disease and I personally met two invalids who had been cured by following Qi Gong. In the climbing context though, what might interest is that Qi Gong, has been evaluated by the Chinese Olympic Association and has been recommended to be used in the preparation training for their athletes.
Note that Qi is seen as the vital life force of living things, circulating in the body through a network of channels or meridians. Both acupressure and acupuncture rely on this concept.
And the Kung Fu artists in the movies have no standing in centres such as the Hai Deng Si. They are seen as stunt men/women!
Read more about Taoism (or Daoism) at wiki/Taoism
I was born in Leeds and began to climb at Ilkley in the Autumn of 1947 as an eleven year old. Subsequently I have climbed in many locations and countries, including eight trips to the Himalaya. I was the first ever professional officer of the BMC, the first National Officer and General Secretary. My climbing companions over the years have included; Dolphin, Greenwood, Brown, Whillans, Scott, Boysen, Crew, Clough, Haston, Boardman and many others.
I took early retirement from the BMC to travel, write and climb. Unfortunately an accident soloing on the Grit in 2000 led on to me needing an operation last year, including a hip replacement. I am slowly recovering and have started doing some easy climbing again.
I have written six books in all, including two autobiographies (Rope Boy,Mountain Lover), two books of anecdotes (Tightrope and Slack) a volume of poetry and a novel (Todhra). Another enthusiasm is music and last year I issued a CD of climbing songs- The Legend of Joe Brown- which has sold out! I am now working on a book of travel stories set in China (I have been there over 30 times) and another CD, The Bar Room Mountaineer.