Yang-style t'ai chi ch'uan

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Yang-style t'ai chi ch'uan
Yang cheng fu single whip application 2 75.jpg
Yang Chengfu utilizing the Single Whip technique.
Also known as Yang-style taijiquan
Yang family t'ai chi ch'uan
Yang school of t'ai chi ch'uan
Yang shi taijiquan
Date founded 1st half of 19th century
Country of origin China
Founder Yang Luchan
(aka Yang Fukui)
Current head Yang Zhenduo
Arts taught T'ai chi ch'uan
Ancestor arts Chen-style taijiquan
Descendant arts Guang Ping Yang taijiquan
Yangjia Michuan taijiquan
Wu (Hao)-style taijiquan
Wu-style taijiquan
Practitioners Yang Banhou
Yang Jianhou
Yang Chengfu
Zheng Manqing
Dong Yingjie
Zhang Qinlin
Yang Jun
Official website YangFamilyTaichi.com

Yang family-style (Chinese: 楊氏; pinyin: Yángshì) t'ai chi ch'uan (taijiquan) in its many variations is the most popular and widely practised style in the world today and the second in terms of seniority among the primary five family styles of t'ai chi ch'uan.[1]

History[edit]

The Yang family first became involved in the study of t'ai chi ch'uan (taijiquan) in the early 19th century. The founder of the Yang-style was Yang Lu-ch'an (楊露禪), aka Yang Fu-k'ui (楊福魁, 1799–1872), who studied under Ch'en Chang-hsing starting in 1820. Yang became a teacher in his own right, and his subsequent expression of t'ai chi ch'uan became known as the Yang-style, and directly led to the development of other three major styles of t'ai chi ch'uan (see below). Yang Lu-ch'an (and some would say the art of t'ai chi ch'uan, in general) came to prominence as a result of his being hired by the Chinese Imperial family to teach t'ai chi ch'uan to the elite Palace Battalion of the Imperial Guards in 1850, a position he held until his death.[2]

Yang Lu-ch'an passed on his art to:

  • his second son, the oldest son to live to maturity, Yang Pan-hou (楊班侯, 1837–1890), who was also retained as a martial arts instructor by the Chinese Imperial family. Yang Pan-hou became the formal teacher of Wu Ch'uan-yu (Wu Quanyou), a Manchu Banner cavalry officer of the Palace Battalion, even though Yang Lu-ch'an was Wu Ch'uan-yu's first t'ai chi ch'uan teacher. Wu Ch'uan-yu became Yang Pan-hou's first disciple. Wu Ch'uan-yu's son, Wu Chien-ch'üan (Wu Jianquan), also a Banner officer, became known as the co-founder (along with his father) of the Wu-style.
  • his third son Yang Chien-hou (Jianhou) (1839–1917), who passed it to his sons, Yang Shao-hou (楊少侯, 1862–1930) and Yang Chengfu (楊澄甫, 1883–1936).
  • Wu Yu-hsiang (Wu Yuxiang, 武禹襄, 1813–1880), who also developed his own Wu/Hao-style, which eventually, after three generations, led to the development of Sun-style t'ai chi ch'uan.

Yang Chengfu removed the vigorous fā jìn (發勁 release of power) from the Hand (solo) Form, as well as the energetic jumping, stamping, and other abrupt movements in order to emphasise the Da jia (大架 large frame style), but retained them in the Weapons (sword, saber, staff and spear) forms.[3] The Hand Form has slow, steady, expansive and soft movements suitable for general practitioners. Thus, Yang Chengfu is largely responsible for standardizing and popularizing the Yang-style t'ai chi ch'uan widely practised today.[Note 1]

Short forms[edit]

The Cheng Man-ch'ing and Chinese Sports Commission short forms are said to be derived from Yang family forms, but neither is recognized as Yang family t'ai chi ch'uan by current Yang family teachers. The Chen, Yang and Wu families are now promoting their own shortened demonstration forms for competitive purposes.

Yang Chengfu also developed his own shortened version of the Yang Long Form in order to have it easier to teach to modern students who are busy with modern life. Despite being shortened, Yang Chengfu managed to keep the essentials of the Yang Long form. Correctly taught and practiced, the 108 movement form still retains much of its health and self-defense benefits (the original comprises over 300 movements).

The Chinese government has also commissioned short 16 Forms from each of the five major families recently. Although the 16 Forms have now been taught for some time, the families all presented them as a set to attendees of the First International Tai Chi Chuan Symposium in Nashville, TN in July 2009.[4]

T'ai chi ch'uan lineage tree with Yang-style focus[edit]

Note:

  • This lineage tree is not comprehensive, but depicts those considered the 'gate-keepers' & most recognised individuals in each generation of Yang-style.
  • Although many styles were passed down to respective descendants of the same family, the lineage focused on is that of the Yang style & not necessarily that of the family.


Key: NEIJIA
Solid lines Direct teacher-student.
Dot lines Partial influence
/taught informally
/limited time.
TAIJIQUAN
Dash lines Individual(s) omitted.
Dash cross Branch continues. CHEN-STYLE Zhaobao-style
(陈长兴)
Chen Changxing
1771–1853
6th gen. Chen
Chen Old Frame
(杨露禅)
Yang Luchan
1799–1872
YANG-STYLE
Guang Ping Yang
Yangjia Michuan
(王蘭亭)
Wang Lanting
1840–?
2nd gen. Yang
(杨健侯)
Yang Jianhou
1839–1917
2nd gen. Yang
2nd gen. Yangjia Michuan
(杨班侯)
Yang Banhou
1837–1892
2nd gen. Yang
2nd gen.
Guang Ping Yang
Yang Small Frame
(武禹襄)
Wu Yuxiang
1812–1880
WU (HAO)-STYLE
Zhaobao He-style
(李瑞东)
Li Ruidong
1851–1917
Li-style
(杨少侯)
Yang Shaohou
1862–1930
3rd gen. Yang
Yang Small Frame
(吴全佑)
Wu Quanyou
1834–1902
1st gen. Wu
(王矯宇)
Wang Jaioyu
1836–1939
3rd gen.
Guang Ping Yang
(杨澄甫)
Yang Chengfu
1883–1936
3rd gen. Yang
Yang Big Frame
(田兆麟)
Tian Zhaolin
1891–1960
3rd gen. Yang
Qi Gechen (吴鉴泉)
Wu Jianquan
1870–1942
2nd gen. Wu
WU-STYLE
108 Form
Kuo Lien Ying
1895–1984
4th gen.
Guang Ping Yang
(孙禄堂)
Sun Lutang
1861–1932
SUN-STYLE
(褚桂亭)
Chu Guiting
1892–1977
4th gen. Yang
Beijing form
(傅仲文)
Fu Zhongwen
1903–1994
4th gen. Yang
Beijing form
(董英杰)
Dong Yingjie
1891–1960
4th gen. Yang
(郑曼青)
Zheng Manqing
1902–1975
4th gen. Yang
Short (37) Form
(陈微明)
Chen Weiming
1881–1958
(杨振铎)
Yang Zhenduo
b.1926
4th gen. Yang
(杨振铭)
Yang Shouzhong
1910–1985
4th gen. Yang
(張欽霖)
Zhang Qinlin
1888–1967
3rd gen. Yangjia Michuan
(田英嘉)
Tian Yingjia
1931–2008
4th gen. Yang
Wudang-style (吴公儀)
Wu Gongyi
1900–1970
3rd gen. Wu
(吴公藻)
Wu Gongzao
1903–1983
3rd gen. Wu
Taiwan U.S.A
Robert W. Smith
1926–2011
(黃性賢)
Huang Xingxian
1910–1992
Benjamin Pang Jeng Lo
b.1927
William C. C. Chen
b.1935
Big Six
Tam Gibbs
Lou Kleinsmith
Ed Young
Mort Raphael
Maggie Newman
Stanley Israel
Little Seven
Victor Chin
Y. Y. Chin
Jon Gaines
Natasha Gorky
Fred Lehrman
Wolfe Lowenthal
Ken VanSickle
(杨军)
Yang Jun
b.1968
5th gen. Yang
Ip Tai Tak
1929–2004
5th gen. Yang
(王延年)
Wang Yennien
1914–2008
4th gen. Yangjia Michuan
(田邴原)
Tian Bingyuan
b.?
5th gen. Yang
Yao Guoqing
b.?
5th gen. Yang
CHEN-STYLE YANG-STYLE WU-STYLE WU (HAO)-STYLE SUN-STYLE

Modern forms[edit]

The Cheng Man-ch'ing (Zheng Manqing) and Chinese Sports Commission short forms are derived from Yang family forms, but neither is recognized as Yang family t'ai chi ch'uan by standard-bearing Yang family teachers. The Chen, Yang, and Wu families are now promoting their own shortened demonstration forms for competitive purposes.


 
 
 
 
(杨澄甫)
Yang Chengfu
1883–1936
3rd gen. Yang
Yang Big Frame
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
(郑曼青)
Zheng Manqing
1902–1975
4th gen. Yang
Short (37) Form
 
Chinese Sports Commission
1956
Beijing (24) Form
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
1989
42 Competition Form
(Wushu competition form
combined from
Chen, Yang, Wu & Sun styles)

Some notable descendants of Yang Lu-ch'an[edit]

Yang Shou-chung[edit]

Main article: Yang Shou-chung

Yang Shou-chung (aka Yeung Sau Chung, Yang Zhen-Ming, 1910–1985) is from the fourth generation of the Yang family. He was the oldest son of Yang Chengfu by his first marriage, and started learning his family-style when he was eight years old under the strict supervision of his father.

In 1949, he escaped from the Chinese communists to Hong Kong. There he taught many students privately at his home until his death in 1985.

He had three daughters—Tai Yee, Ma Lee, and Yee Li—and all continue to teach in Hong Kong. Over the years he had taught many people, but he accepted only three people as his disciples. These Yang family t'ai chi ch'uan practitioners are:

  • Master Ip Tai Tak (Yip Tai Tak, 1929–2004) in Hong Kong, who died during the spring of 2004.
  • Master Chu Gin Soon, in Boston, US.
  • Master Chu King Hung (born 1945) in the United Kingdom. Master Chu is head of the International Tai Chi Chuan Association (ITCCA).

Yang Zhen Duo[edit]

Main article: Yang Zhen Duo

Grandmaster Yang Zhen Duo is from the fourth generation of the Yang family and is officially the Fourth Lineage Holder of the Traditional Yang-style T'ai chi ch'uan. He was born in Beijing in 1926 and is the third son of Yang Chengfu. He started studying with his father when very young and continued studying with his older brothers after his father died. In 1960, Yang Zhen Duo moved to Taiyuan, Shanxi Province. Since then, Yang-style t'ai chi ch'uan has gradually spread within Taiyuan and to other cities, provinces, and countries.

Since 1980, he has served as Vice-President of the Shanxi Wushu Association. In 1982 Yang Zhen Duo founded the Shanxi Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan Association, and has served as President since. The Association has now grown to over 30,000 members throughout the Province and is the largest martial arts organization of its kind in China. In October 1998, Yang Zhen Duo founded the International Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan Association, serving as Chairman of the Board. Under his leadership, the International Association has grown to 28 centers in 12 countries with over 2,000 members. The Chinese Wushu Academy recognized Master Yang Zhen Duo in 1996 as one of the top 100 Wushu Masters in China. He has also been honored by proclamations from the Mayors of San Antonio, Texas and Troy, Michigan.

In July 2009, at the First International Tai Chi Chuan Symposium,[4] held at Vanderbilt University, in Nashville, TN, Grandmaster Yang Zhen Duo officially named his grandson Yang Jun as the Fifth Lineage Holder of the Traditional Yang-style T'ai chi ch'uan.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Yang Ch'eng-fu moved to Shanghai in the 1920s, teaching there until the end of his life. His descendants are still teaching in schools associated with their family internationally. Tung Ying-chieh (Dong Yingjie, 董英杰, 1898–1961), Chen Weiming (Ch'en Wei-ming), Fu Zhongwen (Fu Chung-wen, 1903–1994), Li Yaxuan (李雅轩, 1894–1976), and Cheng Man-ch'ing were famous students of Yang Chengfu. Each of them taught extensively, founding groups teaching T'ai Chi to this day. Cheng Man-ch'ing, perhaps the most famous outside of China, significantly shortened and simplified the traditional forms Yang taught him.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Horwood, Graham (September 2008). Tai Chi Chuan And The Code Of Life: Revealing The Deeper Mysteries Of China's Ancient Art For Health And Harmony (Paperback). Singing Dragon. p. 192. ISBN 978-1-84819-001-6. 
  2. ^ "Yang Family Tai Chi Chuan Association". Retrieved December 24, 2009. 
  3. ^ Rodell, Scott M. (1991). Taiji Notebook for Martial Artists. Seven Stars Books and Video. ISBN 0-9743999-3-0. 
  4. ^ a b "International Tai Chi Chuan Symposium". Nashville, TN. July 5–10, 2009. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]