Tai chi = Wushu?

SwishSwish

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Would tai chi ranks go under wushu, since wushu is collective term on chinese martial arts?

Cause I wish to start wushu, but the closest in my town is tai chi.
 
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SwishSwish

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so the nine ranks in taichi would mean nothing in wushu?
 

Xue Sheng

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Yes, that's what I'm wondering about.

The term Wushu us a rather all encompassing one for all Chinese martial arts. However as already stated there is a sport Wushu that is generally referred to as contemporary or modern Wushu, or at least that is what I call it.

As to the ranks; if you are talking taiji they are, IMO, basically meaningless and come from the modern Wushu and the International Wushu Federation's Duan system and are not traditional.

I believe some Chen schools have adopted this (approved by the family I believe - Heck Chen Zhenglei is ranked in the duan system but he does not appear to much care about it), but not all. As for the Yang's system, frankly I think it is rather silly. However I do not believe it follows the Duan system but all you need to know for sure is to compare it to the link I provided.

If Wushu is your goal and you got ranked in the duan system in say taijiquan by an organization that was recognized or associated with the International Wushu Federation then yes it is a Wushu rank in Taiji. However that does not mean you hold the same rank in Changquan.

However being ranked say at a Chen taijiquan school in the duan system does not necessarily mean you will be in a Wushu competition doing a traditional Chen form. It can happen but generally it will be a competition form of Chen that is not all that similar, or as useful, as traditional Chen. Yang style 108 is not in Wushu competitions but Yang style (or Beijing style) 24 is. However the 24 form was not developed by the Yang family. I do however believe they have since developed a shorter form for competition purposes but I am not sure since my Yang style comes from Tung Ying Chieh and there is little concern for competition or a ranking system. Much like Tung Ying Chieh's teacher Yang Chengfu who also did not appear to care about forms competition or rank. At least not as much as his son Yang Zhen Duo or his great grandson Yang Jun.. oooh that is going to get me in trouble :EG:

What is it you are looking for in Wushu?

EDIT
Wushu = Taiji is yes if you are talking the traditional definition of Wushu
Wushu = Taiji is no if you are talking contemporary Wushu the contemporary Wushu version is way to external
 

Andrew Green

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so the nine ranks in taichi would mean nothing in wushu?

No.

There is no universal ranking system, everyone does it there own way. Many schools don't have any ranks at all, and whatever rank you earn in one style does not carry over to any other.

The things you learn do, body mechanics, movement, balance, posture, etc. Those things carry over and help, but rank is really not that meaningful
 
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SwishSwish

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Hmm.. the instructor in my town teaches a yang style.

http://www.taichi.no/images/ASIdiplomWTBA.jpg

he offers:

Yang Chen-fu 108 form
Yang Lu-chan 128 form
Pauchui form
Tai Chi San-Sau
Tai Chi Qigong
18 Medical Qigong

would any of that be recognized within contemporary wushu?
 

Xue Sheng

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Hmm.. the instructor in my town teaches a yang style.

http://www.taichi.no/images/ASIdiplomWTBA.jpg

he offers:

Yang Chen-fu 108 form
Yang Lu-chan 128 form
Pauchui form
Tai Chi San-Sau
Tai Chi Qigong
18 Medical Qigong

would any of that be recognized within contemporary wushu?

Frankly I couldn't tell you, I am much more interested in who his teacher was or who his teacher's teacher was and how long he trained than rank.

I can only speculate if he is associated with the International Wushu Federation then yes. if he is not then no.

Again I ask; what is it you are looking for from Wushu?
 
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SwishSwish

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Frankly I couldn't tell you, I am much more interested in who his teacher was or who his teacher's teacher was and how long he trained than rank.

I can only speculate if he is associated with the International Wushu Federation then yes. if he is not then no.

Again I ask; what is it you are looking for from Wushu?

how do I find out if it's associated with IWUF?

I don't quite know what I'm looking for in Wushu, just appeals the most to me.
 

JadecloudAlchemist

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It is signed by Eric Montaique so that should help answer some questions.

Also it says 3rd dan I did not know Chinese systems used Dan grading.
 

Xue Sheng

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It is signed by Eric Montaique so that should help answer some questions.

Also it says 3rd dan I did not know Chinese systems used Dan grading.


I didn't notice the sig I missed that before and I think it is Erle Montaigue :lol:

Then no it is not the duan system this is

Elementary Duan: 1st Duan, 2nd Duan, 3rd Duan
Intermediate Duan: 4th Duan, 5th Duan, 6th Duan
Advanced Duan: 7th Duan, 8th Duan, 9th Duan

If it is 3rd Duan then the person is only a beginner anyway
 
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SwishSwish

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Then I have no idea what martial art to start.

a wushu club is two hours away.
taiji club here doesn't seem too great.
 

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I'll try and give you a more complete summary here, and maybe this will help you understand the bigger picture.

The proper term for Chinese "fighting arts" or "warring/combat arts" is "WUSHU". The term "Kungfu" as used to describe the Chinese fighting arts is a misapplication of the term that actually means something like "to develop a high level of skill thru diligent practice and training". So, someone could have good kungfu in their wushu, or in cooking, or baking, or carpentry, or mathematics, or whatever. Here in the West, the term kungfu was misunderstood and misapplied to the Chinese martial arts.

Thru simple use the term has stuck however, and most people understand that you mean fighting arts, when you say kungfu. In the general public, fewer people understand the term Wushu, so we still often tend to say "kungfu" instead.

OK, now in the 1950s, the Communist govt. in China decided to create a National Sport and Art. They based this on the traditional fighting arts of China, or Wushu. They took elements of the fighting arts and sort of came up with their own methods, which were designed for optimal visual impact as a performance art and competition venue. In short, they emasculated the traditional fighting arts, and traded them for a beautiful, stunning, amazing, demanding and challenging visual display that has little value as an effective or useful fighting method. This is what is known as "Modern Wushu". It is a government-sanctioned performance and competition art and sport, that is based on traditional fighting methods, and has a superficial resemblance to traditional fighting methods, but has lost most or all usefulness as such. Modern Wushu is an impressive art in its own way. It is very demanding on a physical level, and the top competitors are tremendous athletes. However, they are not true martial artists, if all they have ever trained is Modern Wushu.

I'll deviate a bit here and state that in the earlier days of Modern Wushu, there was probably more useful fighting material that remained in the art, but over the decades it has drifted further and further from the orginal fighting arts, and closer and closer to a gymnastics floor routine. So some people who trained Modern Wushu in the early days may still have an understanding of combat. That is more unlikely in those who studied Modern Wushu more recently.

Taiji also has been included in Modern Wushu. Modern Wushu has its own version of the traditional taiji methods, and these also are done with an eye for performance and competition, at the expense of being a viable fighting tradition in the way that original/traditional taiji methods can still be. My sifu commented to me that he was at a competition where the competitors were performing their Modern Wushu taiji, and he was standing next to Madame Sun, the daughter of Sun Lu-Tang, founder of Sun Style taiji. Madame Sun turned to my sifu and said very cynically, "after years of training and teaching, and now we are reduced to this..."

So at any rate, nowadays when someone simply says "wushu", most people assume they are referring to Modern Wushu. However, the term can properly be used to describe the traditional fighting arts as well. My sifu likes to say "Traditional Wushu" to differentiate from "Modern Wushu".

So when Xue asks, what do you want from wushu? I think he means, are you interested in a performance/competition art, or are you interested in a traditional fighting method, or are you simply interested in exercise and health?

Taiji can be any of these, even all of these simultaneously, depending on how it is being taught, and depending on the background and knowledge of the teacher.

Hope this helps.
 

Flying Crane

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Then I have no idea what martial art to start.

a wushu club is two hours away.
taiji club here doesn't seem too great.

You need to find out what kind of wushu and taiji is being taught. Is it Modern Wushu, or Traditional Wushu? And as I was stating above, taiji, as a fighting art of China, is included as "wushu". And yes, it has both a Traditional method which can still be a viable fighting art, or a Modern method, which is performance and competition focused.

Contact these clubs and ask them point-blank: is it Modern or Traditional? Are you teaching these methods as a fighting art, or as a competition/performance art?

that will give you the information to decide what you want to do.
 

Xue Sheng

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Very nice post Crane

So when Xue asks, what do you want from wushu? I think he means, are you interested in a performance/competition art, or are you interested in a traditional fighting method, or are you simply interested in exercise and health?

A yup that is about it and what is more important getting rank or learning a style of CMA.
 
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SwishSwish

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ok, I feel like going towards more focus on taiji.

But is is the styles in World Taiji Boxing Association a good one as martial art? like the one the instructor in my city offers?
 

Xue Sheng

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ok, I feel like going towards more focus on taiji.

But is is the styles in World Taiji Boxing Association a good one as martial art? like the one the instructor in my city offers?
There are 6 families recognized by the Peoples Republic of China as Taiji Families Chen, Zhaobao, Yang, Wu, Hao, and Sun. But there are other styles.

As for the World Taiji Boxing Association that is from Erle Montaigue and it is Yang Style (not Yang family) or more to the point Erle's flavor of yang style. I have my issues with Erle and his claims but I am told he is a nice guy and dedicated to teaching.

The WTBA is far from a major Association it is simply those schools associated with Erle, or at least that is my understanding of it. The Chen Family, Tung/Dong Family, the inheritors of Zhaobao and as far as I know the Yang Family, Wu (southern) family, the head of the Northern Wu group in Beijing, The inheritors of Hao style, and the Sun Family have absolutely nothing to do with it.

But here is what you need to do, if you like the look of this school go check it out and if you still like the look and get along with the Sifu you need to take a few classes. I cannot tell you anything about it really other than what I have already said.

Are you looking for rank, sparing or to learn a style of taijiquan?
 
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SwishSwish

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There are 6 families recognized by the Peoples Republic of China as Taiji Families Chen, Zhaobao, Yang, Wu, Hao, and Sun. But there are other styles.

As for the World Taiji Boxing Association that is from Erle Montaigue and it is Yang Style (not Yang family) or more to the point Erle's flavor of yang style. I have my issues with Erle and his claims but I am told he is a nice guy and dedicated to teaching.

The WTBA is far from a major Association it is simply those schools associated with Erle, or at least that is my understanding of it. The Chen Family, Tung/Dong Family, the inheritors of Zhaobao and as far as I know the Yang Family, Wu (southern) family, the head of the Northern Wu group in Beijing, The inheritors of Hao style, and the Sun Family have absolutely nothing to do with it.

But here is what you need to do, if you like the look of this school go check it out and if you still like the look and get along with the Sifu you need to take a few classes. I cannot tell you anything about it really other than what I have already said.

Are you looking for rank, sparing or to learn a style of taijiquan?

Well the instructor, Steve Bloom. He instructs in the Yang family's form after the system of the WTBA. Says the main weight is on health, relaxing and meditation.

"the self defense and martial art interpretation of the "forms" movements is instructed to more advanced students if wanted, and it arranges own courses for interested"

i dunno what to think, i'm really inexperienced with martial arts.
 

Xue Sheng

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Well the instructor, Steve Bloom. He instructs in the Yang family's form after the system of the WTBA. Says the main weight is on health, relaxing and meditation.

"the self defense and martial art interpretation of the "forms" movements is instructed to more advanced students if wanted, and it arranges own courses for interested"

i dunno what to think, i'm really inexperienced with martial arts.

What are you looking to get out of Martial Arts?

What other schools are in your area?

Why the focus on Wushu ranking?

Also any good Yang Taiji sifu will not get you into martial arts before you finish the long form and likely not even then. After that you might start push hands, but that depends on the sifu and whether or not they think you are ready. Traditional Yang style for martial arts, if your goal is to use it as it is meant to be used, takes years.
 
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