Chuan Zhang 1Chuan Zhang

Movements are basic to all others and the jing, or trained strength, associated with these movements form the fundamental power expressed in almost all Ba Gua techniques. Execution of this exercise is as follows 1) Stand in a naturally erect posture with the knees bent and the legs comfortably placed slightly wider than shoulder width. The left hand is held out along the center-line of the body with the palm facing up as shown in photograph 1 above and on the previous page. The right hand is...

Liu Feng Cais grandnephew Liu Shu Hang

The martial arts magazines in Japan published articles about Wang and his skill was praised highly. While in Japan, it was requested that Wang demonstrate Ba Gua Zhang applications. Wang gladly demonstrated, however, to prevent anyone from getting hurt, he used light contact when applying his technique. The magazine photographers, wanting to capture a dramatic shot, were not satisfied. They told Wang that they wanted to see actual effects of the applications. They found a 4th...

Connection Among Gao Style Descendants

In June of 1993, Liu Shu Hang traveled to Hong Kong to visit with Gao Yi Sheng's last remaining disciple, He Ko Cai and his student Deng Chang Cheng Liu compared his Ba Gua with some of He Ko Cai's students. He said that although the application of power was different in some cases, the movements were basically the same. Since publishing their book, Liu Shu Hang and Wang Shu Sheng have received visits and letters from many Gao style practitioners around the world. Some of Zhang Jun Feng's...

The Black Dragon Waves its Tail creates a whirlwind

Same location while the change is executed (as shown in the illustrations on the previous page). This level of practice is executed by beginners in order to practice proper alignments and full body, coordinated movements. Once the practitioner can execute the change correctly in the fixed step manner, they can graduate to you shen or swimming body practice. This means that as soon as the change of direction is executed with the kou bu bai bu ) footwork (illustrations 3 and 4 on the previous...

Liu Feng Cai bottom right poses with some of his students Wang Shu Sheng is first row left Liu Shu Hang is back row

While Gao Yi Sheng was living in Tianjin, Liu Feng Cai helped him teach classes to beginning students. After Gao moved back to his home village, Liu started teaching on his own. When Liu Feng Cai began teaching Ba Gua Zhang on his own, his first student was a Tong Bei ilf practitioner named Liu Shao Chen 'J When he taught students, he started the younger beginning students studying San Huang Pao Chui as a Ba Gua Zhang primer. Students who were in their...

Kai Guo Jing Wrapping In and Opening

The second basic hand movement is kai guo jing . or wrapping in and opening out. This exercise trains the power in the wrapping and opening components of Ba Gua Zhang. These components are utilized in the application of many of Ba Gua Zhang's characteristic techniques. The exercise is practiced as follows 1 Stand with the hands held in front of the body as in the first photograph below. Turn the body to the left. Keep the left arm in place and allow the right arm to wrap to the inside of the...

Two of Fred Wus students practice the postheaven Ba Gua twoperson exercise

Cheng Gong Wus

FuXiBa Gua v'ilj, whereby the practitioner holds static postures while walking the circle. Wu explains that the Fu Xi Ba Gua practice is mainly for Qi A development. Wu also refers to the circular Ba Gua method as Ba Da Fan Shen ifl t , or Eight Big Body Turning Ba Gua. Wu says that when teaching beginning students the circular Ba Gua, the first stage is to perform the movements soft and slow so that the mind can learn to dictate what the body is doing and the body will learn to be soft. He...

Liu Feng Cai demonstrates a posture from the third section of the preheaven form Hui Shen Da Hu Zhang

Liu Feng Cai Gua Photos

The tenth palm change in Gao Yi Sheng's system is called Black Dragon Waves its Tail Palm or Wu Long Bai Wei Zhang amp gt n'iMM. . This palm change is a bit more complicated than the others and forms the link between the pre-heaven and post-heaven sets. When Gao Yi Sheng taught the circular changes, he first taught simplified versions of the changes so that the student could grasp the essential principle of body motion that each of the palm changes were designed to train. The names he used to...

Gao Yi Sheng with two of his students left Wu Meng Xia right Wu Zhao Feng

Kouzhang Qing Tai

Or six years with Zhou, Gao then started teaching Ba Gua Zhang in Wu Qing County. When Gao Yi Sheng was 45 years old around 1911 , he returned to his original home village in Shandong Province. Shandong Province was famous for its martial arts and almost every village in Da Shan Township had a martial arts training hall. At the time, most martial artists in the area practiced one of the Shaolin arts. When Gao first returned to Shandong with the intent to teach Ba Gua Zhang, he had to follow the...

Single Palm Change

While the Single Palm Change movement is not one of the eight main changes which make up Gao's pre-heaven Ba Gua, its movements form the template from which all eight pre-heaven changes are derived. In most of the Gao style schools the beginning student will first learn the basic circle walk practice and then spend a great deal of time studying and practicing the movements of the single palm change prior to learning any of the other eight changes. Gao style practitioner Luo De Xiu, of Taipei,...

Gao Yi Shengs Ba Gua Zhang Book

Gyokko Ryu Circle Chart

In 1927, with the help of his student Liu Bo Yong , Gao Yi Sheng completed the first draft of his six volume book which he simply called Ba Gua Zhang. Gao wrote this book as a guideline for future generations and he allowed his senior students to copy what was written in the book. One of Gao's students, Du Shao Tang Lj amp g Gao Yi Sheng's complete book consists of six volumes as shown above left . The bottom page far left discusses the fourth change of the pre-heaven Ba Gua Yan Fan Gai Shou...

Fred Wu stands in the Ba Gua Zhan Zhuang stance keeping posture which he learned from Sun Xi

The straight line techniques taught by both men were similar, however, there were some small differences. When the war with Japan was coming to an end, President Chiang Kai Shek began to make plans to rebuild the country and established a program to send young college graduates to study abroad and receive practical training. Eight thousand people from all over China worked in the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and many applied to take the examination in order to be selected for the...

Luo De Xiu Teaches the Principles of Gao Style Ba Gua Zhang Fighting

Post Heaven Bagua

During the months of October and November 1993, close to 150 Ba Gua Zhang practitioners in the United States had their concepts of Ba Gua Zhang's use as a fighting art redefined by Ba Gua expert Luo De Xiu UHi - of Taipei, Taiwan. Luo and one of his top students, Tim Cartmell, conducted a nationwide series of eight two day seminars which were co-sponsored by the Pa Kua Chang Journal and the North American Tang Shou Tao Association. The first seminar was in Pacific Grove, CA on 16-17 October and...

Luo De Xiu explains circle walking basics at the seminar in Gaithersburg MD

Practical Chuan Techniques

Directions front, back, left, and right. This gave the students an indication of where they were not stable in their stance. After Luo taught students how to have stability in their basic stance, he taught the movements of the single palm change executed on a straight line in its simplest form. After students practiced the single change on a straight line, Luo taught the fundamentals of Ba Gua Zhang circle walking. Luo explained that in the Gao style there are three primary stepping methods...

Gao Yi Shengs Ba Gua Zhang

Xing Zhang

All systems of Ba Gua Zhang include basic training skills. In the Gao Yi Sheng system, the basic training includes eight sets of basic hand exercises Ji Ben Shou Fa - Js- -f gt amp j, body strengthening exercises, stance keeping or standing exercises, and basic circle walking holding static upper body postures. The eight sets of hand exercises are repetitive hand and arm gestures that the student first practices while standing in one spot, then later practices in conjunction with various...

Dr Fred Wus Ba Gua Zhang

Gua Zhang Images

Fred Wu's Ba Gua Zhang, like both the Han and Gao styles of Ba Gua that he studied from Li Zhuang Fei, is divided into the pre-heaven and post-heaven sets. The pre-heaven set consists of the eight traditional circle changes plus the single palm change, double palm change, and another changed called Black Dragon Whips it Tail. Wu explains that the single and double palm changes form the foundation of the practice and the Black Dragon Whips its Tail change is the link between the pre-heaven and...

Two Person Chuan Zhang Exercises

Students may also practice the piercing palm technique in a variety of partner exercises as Luo and his student Tim Cartmell demonstrate on the following page. The first exercise is a basic drill to help students work the mechanics of applying the piercing palm. In this exercise, the dumby partner stands with his arm held out in front as if defending himself. The partner practicing the piercing palm will pierce forward with the hand opposite the hand his partner is holding forward. As the hand...

Ba Gua Zhang Weapons

Bagua Swords

After students had studied both the pre-heaven and post-heaven Ba Gua, including the two-person sets, for a considerable amount of time, Liu Feng Cai allowed them to study weapons. Liu felt that unless the student had developed a great deal of internal power through fundamental bare-hand form practice, they would not be able to handle weapons properly, especially the large Ba Gua broad sword and straight sword. The large straight sword and broadsword were training weapons specific to Ba Gua...

Fred Wu Wu Min An left poses with his Ba Gua Zhang teacher Li Zhuang Fei center and classmate Jiang Wen Yu in 1946 in

Wen Wen Han Legs

Li Zhuang Fei, also known as Li Qiu Lei 4- , was born in Tianjin, China. His father's sister was the first Chinese woman to study western medicine in America she studied at Smith College . When he was young, Li liked to fight and he practiced Shaolin , Shuai Chiao , Tie Sha Zhang M t , PaiDa Daoist exercises, herbal medicine, and massage. His Aunt wanted Li to get a good education and make something of himself so she enrolled him in the Yen Ching University's College of Divinity, a famous...

Dr Fred Wufs Guang Hua Ba Gua Zhang

Yin Yang Straight Sword

The information in this article was obtained during an interview with Dr. Fred Wu at his home in Worthington OH on 15 November 1992. When the Japanese invaded China in the 1930's, Tianjin became a dangerous place to live and many of Tianjin's residents fled their homes and moved south. The Japanese were confiscating all weapons and arresting or killing those who owned them, therefore, the martial artists in Tianjin were leaving the city in large numbers in order to avoid persecution. Although...

Wang Shu Sheng i

Wang Shu Sheng was born in 1918 in An Xing County, Hebei Province. In his youth Wang became skilled in Ba Ji Quan In 1943 Wang moved to Tianjin. He had heard of Ba Gua Zhang and the power of the so-called internal martial arts, however, being a practical fighter he was more interested in Ba Gua's use of circular movement and evasion than internal power. His curiosity about Ba Gua's employment in fighting led him to seek out a Ba Gua Zhang teacher when he arrived in Tianjin. Wang Shu Sheng met...

Liu Shu Hang J ft

Liu Fengcai

Liu Shu Hang is Liu Feng Cai's grand-nephew and the family inheritor of Liu Feng Cai's Ba Gua Zhang. Liu Feng Cai was the brother of Liu Shu Hang's grandfather. Since Liu Shu Hang's father and grandfather did not study Ba Gua, Liu Shu Hang was called upon to inherent the family style. Liu Shu Hang began studying Ba Gua Zhang with Liu Feng Cai when he was sixteen years old. Liu states that when he began his study of Ba Gua, he did not like the circular forms. After learning only two sections of...

Liu Feng Cai executes a posture from the Horse Form Ning Shen Tan Ma Zhang

Liu Feng Cai met Wang Mao Lin in his hometown and defeated Wang in an open-hands contest utilizing his Ba Gua Zhang. After the friendly match was over, Wang said that he had one skill which Liu did not possess. So saying, Wang grabbed a long tobacco pipe several feet long , which was the nearest object shaped like a sword. He asked Liu to grab a chicken feather duster that lay nearby and try to poke him with it. Every time Liu tried to poke Wang, he was hit...

Gao Yi Shengs Ba Gua Zhang in Tianjin

Gao Style Bagua Liu Fen Cai

The Gao Yi Sheng style of Cheng Ting Hua's Ba Gua Zhang has been addressed in the Pa Kua Chang Journal numerous times. Since the Gao style is one of the most popular styles being taught outside of mainland China today, it is natural that it would be a recurring topic in the Pa Kua Chang Journal. However, in the half dozen articles which have discussed Gao's Ba Gua we have yet to address this system as it is still taught in the place where it originated. In previous issues we have discussed...

Xing Yi Quan Journal

Ever since we began publishing the Pa Kua Chang Journal I have received phone calls and letters from individuals who request that I either include Xing Yi material in the Pa Kua Chang Journal or that I also publish a Xing Yi Quan Journal. I have resisted both because I want to keep the Pa Kua Chang Journal focused on the topic of Ba Gua and my hands are too full to start another Journal. However, during my many trips to mainland China and Taiwan I have collected quite a lot of Xing Yi material...