A recent Beijing Interview with He Jinbao discussing Yin Style Baguazhang and his perspective on training. In short, He Jinbao mentioned there is fitness reform kungfu and there is real kungfu. If one prefers kungfu solely for performance, then it is better to remain a performer. If practicality and martial function are preferred, surely the performance will lack in aesthetics. He Jinbao recommends for unarmed combat- the importance of precision and power in feudal drilling methods, with intelligent and adaptive technique.
“Shaolin Broken Wall”, also known as “the practical scatter of three hundred and sixty hands.” by Yan Dehua (printed in the Tianjin Commercial Daily in 1936) is connected with high-ranking members of Cheng Tinghua’s relatives. Cheng Youlong, the eldest son of Cheng Tinghua, retired and worked in Tianjin during the early 20th century. Sun Xikun (in the pic) is a senior student of Cheng Youlong- transitions of the single and double palm change are rooted in Ming Era polearms ranging from cudgel, pudao, to tigerfork. The “Shaolin Broken Wall” is likely to symbolize the strong defense line for Beijing with context to the Great Wall [Four Towns and Three Guanzhi/ military combatives book of the Ming Dynasty]
Baguazhang is renowned for the Circle Walk strategy- however, it is of great irony very few Baguazhang schools today instruct or preserves the feudal application of the circle, in the correct context. Flanking is important in fighting… everyone knows. Circling prowess around an opponent, a tree, for meditation, for equilibrium, are common reasons the circle is instructed in modern schools. In the feudal era, the circle walk is designed specifically for melee combat- a special precaution for a soldier’s defense against multiple armed opponents. A classic example is illustrated in Costantino Calarone, Italian Fencing Treatise of 1714. The treatise dictates a single fighter against multiple armed opponents- should circle walk, so the body’s movements are more agile. The sole fighter should not deliver thrusts, unless in the reach of just one opponent. The fighter should not stay planted, nor withdraw with backward steps. The optimal strategy is to wheel to the right of the first opponent, away from the multiple opponents at his side- aka Melee Stacking [as in the pic].
In ancient Chinese sculptures and paintings, most of the Generals were portrayed with a thicker muscular belly- characterized as the waist of a tiger, or ancient military commander’s waist. In modern times, though rare… raw lineages maintain a distinct core muscle control which descends from the Armor dynasties. Under the ancient umbilical is the Dantian, which is regarded as a crucial muscle group for medieval Chinese Knights. A dynamic and thicker waist can provide additional protection of the spine, and auxiliary force to the core muscles. Ancient treatise favors the commander’s waist for generating short-range power and maintaining stability on foot while wearing heavy armor. Armor prevents damage from sabers and polearms, requiring more emphasis on wrestling, balance, and core control for weapons precision. Many conflicts ended with knocking the opponent to the ground and disrupting their Qi with either a blunt weapon (mace), or a short weapon- to penetrate a suit of armor at the seams, or through the visor of the helmet.
[He Jinbao, Frank K. and the crew] A nutrient fortified Baguafighter’s diet is essential for the energy demands in training. Baguazhang athletes need a medium to high protein diet to build and maintain their lean muscle mass. The nutrients, minerals, and antioxidants found in fresh fruits and vegetables boost recovery and provides essential fiber needed for hours upon hours of circle-walking and military drills around the tree!!
The fight scene in the first “IP MAN” film between Ip Man and the Northerner, Jin Shan Zhao- is based on Cheng Ting Hua’s patriotic journeys in 1883. The movie pays homage to the teahouse skirmish between Cheng Ting Hua and a Southern Chinese militiaman (who challenged Cheng Ting Hua as he was pouring tea).
The first edition of “The Story of Kang Mi Mi,” the “M-Tattoo Cat”: the Canadian comic book author Sam was inspired by the story of old Shanghai in the 1920s and 1930s. The officer cat, Kang Mi Mi, and the Hungry Ghost character’s fighting technique are based on William E. Fairbairn’s “Defendu” System. Defendu is later combined/ adapted with feudal Shaolin (Yin Style Baguazhang)- evolving into the Fairbairn Method.
The 1928 Internal Martial Arts fitness reform in China standardized Internal/ External kungfu styles into the modern philosophical interpretation. The benefits of the reform in the mind-body practice- brings destruction to Baguazhang’s feudal context and nuances.
Eight arrays (Bagua Symbol) are important famous formations of the past generations: Eight formation changes or the eight combat formations. In feudal times, the generals will adapt the army to various formations according to the different characteristics of the military, the terrain and the number of enemy forces. The eight arrays are divided into square arrays, circular arrays, squad arrays, rushing arrays, rounds, floating arrays, and geese arrays.
The commander’s eight-figure method divides the army into nine points in the shape of a well, and the outer eight in one, and the coach is in the middle. Eight represents eight orientations or eight positions.
“Array” can be a unit in the military’s establishment, which are soldiers, squads, ministries, generals, and armies, consisting of eight teams. Eight teams work as a unit, there are twenty-eight thousand and sixty-six people… Eight arrays are variable in context during battle, with sixty-four strategies. “The Eight Diagrams Change” in ancient warfare.
“SUPPORT THE FIGHT AGAINST 1928 KUNGFU REFORM FALLACIES”!!