Notable Chen fighters

Discussion on the three big Chinese internals, Yiquan, Bajiquan, Piguazhang and other similar styles.

Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby MaartenSFS on Tue Feb 05, 2019 9:44 am

Where were the Chen stylists? In the village. Even nowadays it is very tough for villagers in China to get out and even more so to engage in fights where they may lose their livelihoods with an injury, not to speak of the geographical challenges. The Yangs had the advantage of living in the big city. Furthermore, it wasn't long before that when it was skill with a weapon that earned martial artists their reputations, not unarmed fighting.
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby Steve James on Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:06 am

There were Chens in Beijing.
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby Trick on Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:36 am

Did the Chens sneak in to Beijing after the Yangs and Wu’s had left, or Did Yangs and Wu’s leave because the Chen’s came marching in ?
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby Bao on Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:15 am

Trick wrote:Did the Chens sneak in to Beijing after the Yangs and Wu’s had left, or Did Yangs and Wu’s leave because the Chen’s came marching in ?


Chen Fake went to Beijing and established himself in 1928, the very same year as Yang Chengfu left for Hangzhou and Shanghai.
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby everything on Tue Feb 05, 2019 1:51 pm

How about Sun? Dong Haichuan? Wang Xiangzhai? There are a lot of stories of "comparing skill" but it's never clear to me what that might have meant. Push hands? Arm wrestling? Wang specifically said he went traveling around for this.
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby Steve James on Tue Feb 05, 2019 2:28 pm

Bao wrote:
Trick wrote:Did the Chens sneak in to Beijing after the Yangs and Wu’s had left, or Did Yangs and Wu’s leave because the Chen’s came marching in ?


In 1928 several people left Beijing for the south toward Nanjing (and the academy). Iinm, YCF and WCC left Nanjing to go to Shanghai, not Beijing. According to the Chen stories, Chen Zhao Pi invited Chen Fake to Beijing to take over because Zhao Pi had been invited south as well. The interesting thing is that Chen doesn't seem to have gotten to the academy at all.

Anyway, there were competing styles of tcc in Bejing, and there continued to be.

Last edited by Steve James on Tue Feb 05, 2019 2:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby Trick on Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:57 pm

When I moved to Beijing in 2005 I studied some Wu-Taiji with Li Bingci’s group. He said that Wu-Taiji in Beijing(maybe he ment the whole north China or even all China?) is almost vanishing. I got the same feeling about the “traditional”Yang Taiji in Beijing. Maybe already there in the late 1920’s Yang and Wu families saw their decline in the north and headed south to the prosperous Shanghai area. However during my stay in the capital I saw a lot of Chen Taijiquan . I don’t believe Chen Taiji got that popular because of any actually proven fight qualities, but just because of its (“fighty looking”)cannon form, and so attracted a broader audience from younger generations. But now I sense also Chen Taijiquan will be in a somewhat decline, The now younger generation has got their eyes on even more fighty looking spectacles, andto them no way any Taiji fit into that, Chen, Yang, Wu and so. Taijiquan will now continue to be an exercise for gentle harted “older” folks
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby HotSoup on Wed Feb 06, 2019 3:07 am

Trick wrote:I don’t believe Chen Taiji got that popular because of any actually proven fight qualities, but just because of its (“fighty looking”)cannon form, and so attracted a broader audience from younger generations.


I think the government politics played the major role in it, not Paochui. After the official history of TJQ originating in Chenjiagou had been established, it was a reliable foundation for unifying everything down to a single style. Chen style was the one chosen for that promotion and it is most likely becoming the most popular nowadays. But what is widely practiced is as removed from the original gongfu practice as was/is that of Yang. So, generally speaking, the choreography has somewhat changed, while the results have not :(
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby Ron Panunto on Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:58 am

GrahamB wrote:1930s San Da training.

This would have been the Koushou movement, I guess.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MdQE9cXMSAM


Looks more like western boxing practice since they are not training kicks or takedowns.
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby GrahamB on Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:29 am

They were certainly aware of Western Boxing in the 1930s China. 'street boxing' was popular in the 1920s apparently.

The first Western Boxing gym opened in Japan in 1896.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boxing_in_Japan
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby Steve James on Wed Feb 06, 2019 11:14 am

Re: 1928. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_Guoshu_Institute

Hopefully, Graham may have a discussion of that year, or the "Nanjing Decade," on his podcast. I think the nationalist politics had a lot to do with what was promoted and what was not. I tend to agree that the three "internal arts" were not considered a family because of body method, shape, training routine, or anything that could not be found in some other cma --that wasn't labeled "internal." Yang tcc, and its mythological beginnings, and philosophical ideals, served a political purpose.

I'll dare to be heretical and say that it still does; the political controls over culture has changed. I knew nothing about Chen style tcc until the PRC sent the "Peking Wu Shu" troupe on tour. I was at their first performance in NYC (at MSG). The announcer made it clear that what we were seeing was the original and "real" tcc. Only after that did the "Four tigers" from Chen village appear on the pages of Inside Kung Fu, etc.

This was right after the "Cultural Revolution." And, what followed was a flurry of "official" manuals for the various tcc styles published by the PRC. However, Chen style --as it was presented in the performances-- was more like "Wu shu." I.e., the emphasis was on high kicks and low stances. Of course, at the time, ... well, you've seen the Shaw movies. Ever seen two people really fighting like that outside a movie? ...Um, actually, I did see a guy try to do a flying kick on someone outside the Sun Sing theater. Dude fell flat on his butt.

Anyway, my point is that the way and the reasons Chen style has been promoted since 1980 are similar to the reasons Yang style was promoted in 1928. It had little, if anything, to do with martial ability. Yep, people were "fighting" using weapons and adopting the methods needed to fight. At the same time, martial arts clearly survived. The same is true today.
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Re: Notable Chen fighters

Postby everything on Wed Feb 06, 2019 1:22 pm

another (obvious) observation. wrestling is super ancient. and probably has very little evolution. people are great at it today. people were great at it at the beginning of time. people will always be great at it.

it's only if you mix in something else like punches, kicks, or weapons, that there is this bullshit. why is that. mostly due to inability to have safe training?
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