Wudangquan

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Wudangquán, is a classification of Chinese martial arts known more generally as nèijia. The name Wudang refers to the Wudang Mountains of Hubei Province. Chinese legends/myths say that Zhang Sanfeng created tai chi chuan there. The word “quan” translates to English as “boxing” or “fist.” The pinyin standard spells it “quan;” the Wade-Giles standard spells it “ch’uan,” as in T’ai Chi Ch’uan.

Internal or “soft” styles of Chinese martial art are sometimes referred to as Wudang styles regardless of whether they originated in or were developed in the temples of the Wudang Mountains, just as external or “hard” styles are sometimes called Shaolin regardless of whether the individual style traces its origins to the Shaolin tradition or not.

Wudangquan incorporates yin-yang theory from the I Ching as well as the Five Elements of Taoist cosmology: water, earth, fire, wood, and metal. Animal imagery is evident in some of their practices. These motions are trained to be combined and coordinated with the neigong breathing to develop nei jin, internal power, for both offensive and defensive purposes.

In 1669, Huang Zongxi was the first to describe Chinese martial arts in terms of a Wudang or “internal” school versus a Shaolin or “external” school.[1] However, this classification did not become prevalent until 1928 when Generals Li Jing Lin, Zhang Zi Jiang, and Fung Zu Ziang organized a national martial arts tournament in China; they did so to screen the best martial artists in order to begin building the Central Martial Arts Academy.

The generals separated the participants of the tournament into Shaolin and Wudang. Wudang participants were recognized as having “internal” skills. These participants were generally practitioners of T’ai Chi Ch’uan, Xíngyìquán and Baguàzhang. All other participants competed under the classification of Shaolin. The famous BaGua master, Fu Chen Sung, was one of about 12 winners in the tournament.

At that time, Sung Wei-I was the apparent grandmaster of the Wudang Sword. He taught Wudang Sword to General Li (who was nicknamed “God Sword Li”) and to Fu Chen Sung. General Li also taught Wudang sword to Fu Chen Sung, and would later employ Fu to train the Chinese army.

The two major lineages of Wudang Chuan were passed down from General Li Jing Lin. These lineages went to Fu Chen Sung and Li Tian-Ji.

Fu Chen Sung worked the rest of his life to develop Fu Style Wudang Fist. The basis of the system was to train the mind and body for optimal performance, gradually working the martial aspects into the training. The system included exercises, empty hand and weapons sets in Tai Chi, BaGua, Hsing-Yi– and Fu Chen Sung’s signature form, Liang-Yi Chuan. In his lifetime, Fu had many notable students, including General Sun Pao Gung and Lin Chao Zhen. In 2008, there still remain two living students: Liang Qian-Ya in San Francisco and an unknown man in Hong Kong.

Fu’s oldest son, Fu Wing Fay (Fu Yong Hui), became Fu’s prodigal son. Wing Fay grew up among many of the greatest martial artists in the Golden Era of Martial Arts in China. Wing Fay learned well from his father and the other great masters. Wing Fay practiced hard, and began developing Fu Style Wudang Fist even more. Wing Fay had two top students: his son, (Victor) Fu Sheng Long and Bow Sim Mark.

Sourced from the Pa Kwa Chang Journal (volume 1, # 3; volume 2 # 6; volume 5, # 2; and volume 6 # 6) Fu Style Dragon Form Eight Trigrams Palms by Fu Wing Fay and Lai Zonghong (translated by Joseph Crandall); Copyright, 1998, Smiling Tiger Martial Arts websites: http://www.itswa.co.uk/wudang.htm http://www.fustyle.org (Victor Fu’s website, 3rd generation Fu Style Wudang Fist) http://www.wudangboxing.com (website of Qiang-Ya Liang’s, aliving disciple of Fu Chen Sung) http://web.syr.edu/~jbegovic/Articles/myHistory.htm

Fu style schools worldwide: http://fu.style.wushu.googlepages.com/fustyleschools