External Sports Influence

The following typical threads that plague martial arts sites will get moved here if not just deleted: 1 - My style is better than Your style" - 2 - "Internal & External" - 3 - Personal attacks - 4 - Threads that start well, but degenerate into a spiral of nonsense.

Re: External Sports Influence

Postby willie on Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:55 am

Trick wrote:Find it a little curious why only one of Yang Luchan's students went to study some with the Chen family.

No he did not go to study with the Chen family. No one outside of the family was allowed to even learn Tai Chi . Tai Chi is a secret art that was invented by the Chen family . YLC was just a servant to that family and was caught stealing their family art. So the family had to make a decision whether or not to kill the crooked bastard. So the Chen family in their Infinite Wisdom decided to teach him formally instead. Later YLC aka blabbermouth went to Beijing and started teaching everyone a weakened version of their secret art to every Tom Dick and Harry on the face of the globe. They should have shot him. lol!
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby Trick on Tue Dec 05, 2017 7:16 am

willie wrote:
Trick wrote:Find it a little curious why only one of Yang Luchan's students went to study some with the Chen family.

No he did not go to study with the Chen family. No one outside of the family was allowed to even learn Tai Chi . Tai Chi is a secret art that was invented by the Chen family . YLC was just a servant to that family and was caught stealing their family art. So the family had to make a decision whether or not to kill the crooked bastard. So the Chen family in their Infinite Wisdom decided to teach him formally instead. Later YLC aka blabbermouth went to Beijing and started teaching everyone a weakened version of their secret art to every Tom Dick and Harry on the face of the globe. They should have shot him. lol!

It sure would have been interesting if could time travel back to see what kind of personalities these guys where ;D
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby Steve James on Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:45 am

Well, for whatever reason, YLC never called his art "Chen family boxing," though he might not have called it "TCC" either. What did Chen Changxing call his art?

If it was known as Chen family martial art, then it'd be expected that Yang would not call what he did that. He wasn't in the family. Afaik, there were no Chen style schools open to the public. Yang was an exception, no? At least that's how the story went. Whether he stole it or was just allowed to learn, once he left, it's doubtful the family would have sent him off to start Chen style schools.

There's an old story about how the Yang tradition focused on staff because of an accident that cost one of the early members an eye. It's an unimportant folk legend, though. Shaolin monks, iirc, were said not to use spears either. I don't think it matters much.
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby charles on Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:47 am

willie wrote:
Trick wrote:Find it a little curious why only one of Yang Luchan's students went to study some with the Chen family.

No he did not go to study with the Chen family. No one outside of the family was allowed to even learn Tai Chi . Tai Chi is a secret art that was invented by the Chen family . YLC was just a servant to that family and was caught stealing their family art. So the family had to make a decision whether or not to kill the crooked bastard. So the Chen family in their Infinite Wisdom decided to teach him formally instead. Later YLC aka blabbermouth went to Beijing and started teaching everyone a weakened version of their secret art to every Tom Dick and Harry on the face of the globe. They should have shot him. lol!


Interesting.

Were it not for the crooked bastard, and the willingness of the stupid Chen family to teach someone whom they felt was worthy, chances are near zero that a white guy like you or me, on the other side of the world, centuries later, would be practicing any kind of Taijiquan, let alone Chen family/style. So, yeah, let's denigrate the guys that made that possible - the stupid Chens for teaching him and the crooked bastard who wanted to learn something and put in the work to be good at something. And everyone between them and us, since we learned from those willing to teach us who learned from those willing to teach them who learned from those willing to teach them...
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby Steve James on Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:57 am

charles wrote:Interesting.

Were it not for the crooked bastard, and the willingness of the stupid Chen family to teach someone whom they felt was worthy, chances are near zero that a white guy like you or me, on the other side of the world, centuries later, would be practicing any kind of Taijiquan, let alone Chen family/style....


+1

Ya also gotta give him some credit. He managed to earn the nickname "invincible" while using a weakened, incomplete version of an art.

Anyway, the fact that YLC didn't call what he did Chen style, and wasn't the entire Chen curriculum, illustrates that he had no intention of stealing, only making a living with his own art. He even acknowledged where he had learned. None of this takes anything away from Chen style, either.
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby willie on Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:17 am

charles wrote:
Interesting.

chances are near zero that a white guy like you or me, on the other side of the world, centuries later, would be practicing any kind of Taijiquan, let alone Chen family/style. So, yeah, let's denigrate the guys that made that possible -
oh come on Charles I was only kidding. I honestly don't care. What these guys don't quite understand yet is that I used to say the exact same things.
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby windwalker on Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:15 pm

we knew people inside the palace got the real skill. As the famous saying goes “Of Luchan’s students, Wanchun (萬春) got his hard fajin, Lingshan (凌山) was adapt as throwing, and Quanyou (全佑) was skilled at neutralization.”


So these were his three best students (besides his sons of course). Wangchun, Lingshan, and Quanyou were Manchurian guards working at Prince Duan’s palace. Wangchun and Lingshan had no desciples, Quanyou today is respected as founder of Wu Style Taijiquan. According to family lore within Taiji circles, there were actually two other Manchurian students who obtained Taijiquan skill before these three, but they both perished during the invasion of Eight-Nation Alliance.

We can tell whatever Yang Luchan taught, he taught everyone the same. Banhou’s skill and training is no different from what is taught in Quan You’s lineage, or different from those of Yongnian students Yang Luchan taught before coming to Beijing. In fact, of the six big styles of Taijiquan today, all five that shared common ancestor in Yang Luchan look more or less the same, with only Chen Style looking very different.
https://internalmartialart.wordpress.co ... continued/


Interesting reading the different post.

Chen Changxing (1771-1853), the 14th generation Chen patriarch, was the first to teach Chen Taijiquan to an outsider, Yang Luchan (1799-1872). Vowing to his master to never teach Taijiquan to the public or use its name,

http://chenfamilytaiji.com/taiji_history.html

The history is interesting and different according to different writers

I was under the impression that Yang was taught the style because
he had and showed true ability and:

1, in order to provide a motive for the chens to practice and improve their art
2. it was shown that a mere servant could beat them using their own art.

However how or why he came by the skill the real difference between then and now was that they actually used the art competing with it
in local contest.

The OP title seems to me to be a little misleading since

Chen Fake answered, If the revered master Wu thinks it is external, then it is external! We did not have this distinction at home. (Later on, in a remarkable reversal of logic, this statement was actually quoted by some as proof that Chen Style Taijiquan is not the original source of Taijiquan, since family member Chen Fake did not even acknowledge it as an internal style.)
http://practicalmethod.com/2012/02/from ... in-a-name/


So where does taijiquan really fit in with modern times and in a modern world?


All the taiji stylist of the time did compete in local sporting events of the day...one of the many ways of validating a style and their own work.
I would imagine as they met others as people do to today, and either adapt what they did or changed it as needed insuring that it kept with the main tenets of their style or work...

This tradition has not been carried forward into the modern world why might be for a another thread.
However nothing prevents oneself from competing using the art now, just as they did back then.

I do feel that by creating another specialized format for competition using what essentially is a type of training practice "push hands"
has crippled the art in development and usage.
Last edited by windwalker on Tue Dec 05, 2017 4:14 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby willie on Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:00 pm

windwalker wrote:
The OP title seems to me to be a little misleading since

Chen Fake answered, If the revered master Wu thinks it is external, then it is external! We did not have this distinction at home. (Later on, in a remarkable reversal of logic, this statement was actually quoted by some as proof that Chen Style Taijiquan is not the original source of Taijiquan, since family member Chen Fake did not even acknowledge it as an internal art
David it seems that you are desperately reaching for straws on this one. So what you are claiming is that the original post was misleading because Chen style isn't even a internal art and not even Tai Chi to begin with?
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby windwalker on Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:25 pm

willie wrote: David it seems that you are desperately reaching for straws on this one. So what you are claiming is that the original post was misleading because Chen style isn't even a internal art and not even Tai Chi to begin with?


No, not really.

Only pointing out that they did not think of things in the same way as many do now.
The founders of Chen according to what was written didn't care what others thought of it or called it.

The name "taiji" was something that was applied to it during the meeting, they never called it that or thought of it in that way.
according to what the chen family has said about it.

Some have commented on how, and why ylc learned the art from the Chens and why he didn't call it Chen style....It should also be noted
that he didn't call it taiji either this was something that was applied to it at a later time just as the Chen style would be included with it,, under the umbrella of this name..

"A scholar in the Imperial Court by the name of Ong Tong He witnessed a demonstration by Yang Luchan at a time before Yang had established his reputation as a teacher. Afterwards Ong wrote: "Hands holding Taiji shakes the whole world, a chest containing ultimate skill defeats a gathering of heroes." Before this time the art may have had a number of different names, and appears to have been generically described by outsiders as zhan quan (沾拳, "touch boxing"), Mian Quan ("soft boxing") or shisan shi (十三式, "the thirteen techniques")

Not even ylc called what he did taiji, it was applied to his art at a later date.

Just some thoughts prompted by some of the posts concerning the history.
.
Not reaching for anything do find the history interesting...only noting that thinking in terms of internal / external
was not always the way things were thought of during that time...

Good thread BTW ;) interesting read
Last edited by windwalker on Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby willie on Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:39 pm

Windwalker don't worry about any of those things. You are filling your mind with unnecessary thoughts that will eventually limit your progress.
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby Trick on Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:08 pm

windwalker wrote:All the taiji stylist of the time did compete in local sporting events of the day...
.

I know next to nothing about Chinese martial art history. Is the above quote an as a matter of factly fact, I mean are such "sporting" events recorded(written about) by actually eyewitness or contest organizers or has it been recorded much later based on hearsay? If I remember right the early famous competitions held in Nanjing(I think it was) old no Taji players at least among the finalists? While among the judges are some of the more famous Taiji peoples of that era?
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby windwalker on Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:14 pm

Trick wrote:I know next to nothing about Chinese martial art history. Is the above quote an as a matter of factly fact, I mean are such "sporting" events recorded(written about) by actually eyewitness or contest organizers or has it been recorded much later based on hearsay? If I remember right the early famous competitions held in Nanjing(I think it was) old no Taji players at least among the finalists? While among the judges are some of the more famous Taiji peoples of that era?


Its "willies" thread don't want to side track it, to much ;)

One might ask themselves how taiji became so famous and why.

a little history with a link

"The Manchu emperor has his own wrestling team of around 438 people, divided into two camps. Throughout the year the camps competed with each other, had frequent exhibitions, traveled with emperor during hunts, and most importantly, faced off against the Mongolian king’s wrestlers in annual contest. Membership and promotion in the team depended entirely on one’s performance in all these events.

The 438 of professional wrestlers at Shan Pu Ying (善扑营) belong to but one of the three capitol city garrisons. The one where Yang Luchan, Liu Zhijun, and Song Mailun taught at – Shen Ji Ying, had over 2,000 instructors/weapons experts who led the training of 30,000 strong palace guards.

That plus the battle-hardened agents of Big Ten security companies (Biaoju), members of Big Six martial arts of the north, and all the people who flock to the city to make a name for themselves, Beijing during Qing Dynasty represented the peak of development and growth of traditional martial art." https://internalmartialart.wordpress.co ... d-legends/

There were lots of contest and hand to hand duals of the day.

It was one way to become famous for example

"One of Wong's most popular tales is his return to Guangdong. In front of Hai Tung Monastery, Wong set up an elevated stage known as a leitai to accept challenges from any and all comers. Over the course of eighteen days, he defeated over one hundred and fifty challengers. "Either the challenger was maimed or killed," noted Chin. "He never let one challenger leave his school without injury. He was a master of using the technique of cruelty." There are four principles for Hop Gar: cruelty, evasion, penetration and interception." http://www.kungfumagazine.com/magazine/ ... rticle=661

Most of the styles of today all can trace their history back to a time were the practitioners used what they trained in. They could not train one thing and then use something else claiming that what they where teaching or using was the same..What ever they trained in was expected to work, if it didn't not a good thing to have happen. It meant getting injured, loss of a job, or even getting killed in some cases.

Some of them in losing would go on to invent their own styles and become famous for it, Wong Long n-mantis comes to mind.

might be better to address some of the legends and stories on another thread.

What is different in the modern day I feel are the training methods and focus.
Last edited by windwalker on Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby Trick on Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:36 am

windwalker wrote:
Trick wrote:I know next to nothing about Chinese martial art history. Is the above quote an as a matter of factly fact, I mean are such "sporting" events recorded(written about) by actually eyewitness or contest organizers or has it been recorded much later based on hearsay? If I remember right the early famous competitions held in Nanjing(I think it was) old no Taji players at least among the finalists? While among the judges are some of the more famous Taiji peoples of that era?


Its "willies" thread don't want to side track it, to much ;)

One might ask themselves how taiji became so famous and why.

a little history with a link

"The Manchu emperor has his own wrestling team of around 438 people, divided into two camps. Throughout the year the camps competed with each other, had frequent exhibitions, traveled with emperor during hunts, and most importantly, faced off against the Mongolian king’s wrestlers in annual contest. Membership and promotion in the team depended entirely on one’s performance in all these events.

The 438 of professional wrestlers at Shan Pu Ying (善扑营) belong to but one of the three capitol city garrisons. The one where Yang Luchan, Liu Zhijun, and Song Mailun taught at – Shen Ji Ying, had over 2,000 instructors/weapons experts who led the training of 30,000 strong palace guards.

That plus the battle-hardened agents of Big Ten security companies (Biaoju), members of Big Six martial arts of the north, and all the people who flock to the city to make a name for themselves, Beijing during Qing Dynasty represented the peak of development and growth of traditional martial art." https://internalmartialart.wordpress.co ... d-legends/

There were lots of contest and hand to hand duals of the day.

It was one way to become famous for example

"One of Wong's most popular tales is his return to Guangdong. In front of Hai Tung Monastery, Wong set up an elevated stage known as a leitai to accept challenges from any and all comers. Over the course of eighteen days, he defeated over one hundred and fifty challengers. "Either the challenger was maimed or killed," noted Chin. "He never let one challenger leave his school without injury. He was a master of using the technique of cruelty." There are four principles for Hop Gar: cruelty, evasion, penetration and interception." http://www.kungfumagazine.com/magazine/ ... rticle=661

Most of the styles of today all can trace their history back to a time were the practitioners used what they trained in. They could not train one thing and then use something else claiming that what they where teaching or using was the same..What ever they trained in was expected to work, if it didn't not a good thing to have happen. It meant getting injured, loss of a job, or even getting killed in some cases.

Some of them in losing would go on to invent their own styles and become famous for it, Wong Long n-mantis comes to mind.

might be better to address some of the legends and stories on another thread.

What is different in the modern day I feel are the training methods and focus.

David, thanks for the info and the links. Willie, sorry for the side tracking of your tread, I will stay on topic from now :)
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby cloudz on Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:20 am

windwalker wrote:
All the taiji stylist of the time did compete in local sporting events of the day...one of the many ways of validating a style and their own work.
I would imagine as they met others as people do to today, and either adapt what they did or changed it as needed insuring that it kept with the main tenets of their style or work...


What information do you actually have about this, if there is research available I'd love to read it. I get the feeling that this is just speculation and story telling. I mean that's fine if you like, but it can't be thought of as a sure thing. I have heard of one guy that competed in one of the big tournaments organized in the early twentieth century and that's it.

This tradition has not been carried forward into the modern world why might be for a another thread.
However nothing prevents oneself from competing using the art now, just as they did back then.


Well sure, but what actual evidence is there of this tradition you are talking about. How can you be confident that it existed. When, who etc ?
Isolated one off events are just that.

I do feel that by creating another specialized format for competition using what essentially is a type of training practice "push hands"
has crippled the art in development and usage.


Wrestling formats are common all over the world and are a fairly accepted and standard way to compare a certain skill set and establish dominance.. I think there's good reason that similar trials and tests were used in and around taiji going back in time. A circle, a raised platform etc. Striking to establish who wins a fight is in reality a genuinely violent act and there's no evidence that these kind of real matches existed in any regular organized form that I know of. If you find anything, anything at all I would genuinely love to read about it. As you have quoted above when YLC was teaching around the garrison(s) the common way to test skill was some form of wrestling/ grappling game.

The Leitai was mostly probably some form of entetainment, perhaps mostly theatrical in nature. I'm sure there were challenge fights had - like the one from the kungfu magazine link, fights happened and people being hurt (KO's etc) but these wouldn't be some common or regular organized occurance in the way we have organised fighting today. Genuine grudges etc existed I'm sure. But I would think they would also likely involve cold weapons if there was genuine motive to duel/ fight.. much like in the West. And weapons would also have been the real factor in security work assignments.
Last edited by cloudz on Wed Dec 06, 2017 8:35 am, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: External Sports Influence

Postby cloudz on Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:27 am

Trick wrote:Find it a little curious why only one of Yang Luchan's students went to study some with the Chen family, Wu Yuxiang seem to have been able to study with them through YLC's introduction.



I think what's more interesting and perhaps 'curious' is that Wu Yuxiang ended up learning small frame Chen, so it would have been another branch of Chen style than the one YLC is said to have learnt. Although it seems the Yang tradition encompasses "small frame" too.
Last edited by cloudz on Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
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