Kung Fu Tai Chi

Kung Fu Tai Chi

Spring 2020

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1 min
qing feng ruo dao 清風若刀

Qing (清 1st tone) can mean ‘clear’, ‘pure’ or ‘peaceful’. Feng (風 1st tone) means ‘wind’ or ‘atmosphere’. It’s the same Feng as in Feng Shui (literally ‘wind water’ 風水). When combined, Qing feng means ‘gentle breeze’. Ruo (若 4th tone) means ‘like’ or ‘similar’. And Dao (刀 1st tone) means ‘knife’ but in Chinese martial arts, it refers to a single-edged curved saber. This could be translated as ‘gentle breeze like a Dao’ but for the calligrapher, Master Ma Wenguo (see cover story on page 60 馬文 國), it has deeper meaning. “Qing feng describes the character and style of the warrior. All are righteous and interacted with the world like a flowing gentle breeze. The Dao is the sword of a warrior. It’s a warrior’s weapon like fortitude, justice…

2 min
qi family dao qijiadao

Length: 31” Weight: 1 lb. 2 oz. Late Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) In modern Chinese martial arts, only two types of Dao are mass-produced for practice, the Niuweidao (牛尾刀) and the Nandao (南刀). The Niuweidao, or Oxtail Dao, is the archetypal Dao, with a flaring forte that makes it a bit top heavy, good for chopping and training. It emerged in the 19th century and wasn’t a military-issued sword but more of a people’s weapon. The Nandao, or Southern Dao, is a new creation designed for the sport of Wushu. While there are a few historic examples of similar swords, the invention of the Nandao by a team of Wushu architects, including Professor Wang Peikun (Cover Master March+April 2013 王培锟), is well documented. When it comes to actual historic Chinese swords, there…

2 min
malee khow celebrates over two decades of promoting wushu with competition in connecticut

Malee Khow, owner of Malee’s School of Tai Chi & Kung Fu of Connecticut and well-known organizer and promoter of Chinese martial arts events, celebrated twenty years of organizing tournaments last November, 2019, with the 9th New England International Chinese Martial Arts Championships. Since 1999, these championships have been one of the largest in the northeastern U.S. and have continued to grow since Khow began hosting them annually in 2016. At this event one will find one of the most diverse collections of competitors on the East Coast, with practitioners of traditional Kung Fu, Contemporary Wushu, and internal styles of all ages in attendance. This year featured the largest turnout since the 4th New England Championships in 2012. Khow’s event always has an exciting line-up of performances and special guests.…

12 min
using chen style taijiquan in the combat sports arena

CHEN style Taijiquan (陈氏太极拳) was developed around the end of the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644) and the beginning of the Qing Dynasty (1644–1912) primarily as a fighting method, with techniques designed for survival under life-threatening situations. Further generations and societal changes over a long period of time influenced and added different aspects and approaches to the art, to the point where today it is practiced by millions of people around the world as a form of physical exercise, to promote balance and flexibility, relieve stress, as well as other benefits. Chen style Taijiquan is also the quintessence of traditional Chinese culture, being preserved and pushed forward by masters and practitioners worldwide. In view of these precedents, and particularly with the advent of modern Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) competitions since the 1990s, similar…

10 min
unravelling the 8 section brocade

IT is one of the oldest and most widely practiced forms of qigong in the world today. The 8 Section Brocade, or Baduanjin (八段錦), first appears in the literature during the Song Dynasty (960–1279). It is a general form of health cultivation, not necessarily a martial practice, and yet often propounded by martial artists, particularly the Shaolin monks. "It’s simple," says Master Shi Decheng (释德 成) in Mandarin. Decheng is a Shaolin monk who has taught Baduanjin all over the world for decades. The Baduanjin is one of his most popular workshops. “It’s easy to learn.” When it comes to qigong, Shaolin is most famous for Yijinjing (muscle-tendon change classic 易筋 经). According to legend, the first patriarch of Zen Buddhism, Bodhidharma (5th–6th century), created Yijinjing at Shaolin and it served…

4 min
the u.s. challenge xi & 2nd wellness & energy exchange

The U.S. Challenge XI and 2nd Wellness & Energy Exchange was held on October 12 and 13, 2019, in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The U.S. Challenge is hosted by Coaches Christopher Pei and Zhang Guifeng and organized through their school, the United States Wushu Academy (USWA). This year, the Center for Cultural Exchange was also a primary organizer, and among the co-organizers were the American Health Qigong Society, the World Swordsmen Federation and Kung Fu Tai Chi magazine. With a guiding mission to promote health and longevity practices, this was expanded to a two-day event last year. Saturday’s Wellness & Energy Exchange was a charity event with all donations going to the American Health Qigong Association, a non-profit organization that promotes health to the public. There were three back-to-back programs presented on Saturday.…