Bow-sim Mark

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Mark, Bow-sim
BornGuangzhou, China
ResidenceNewton, Massachusetts, US
Northern Shaolin
Fu Style Baguazhang
Notable relativesDonnie Yen
Bow-sim Mark
Traditional Chinese

Bow-sim Mark is a martial arts master (or sifu) who lives in Newton, Massachusetts, US.[1] She is the mother of martial arts film star, Donnie Yen.


Mark was born in Guangzhou, China. She began studying martial arts at elementary school, training seriously in high school and then at Wushu training schools, specialising in t'ai chi ch'uan and Northern Shaolin. Mark learned Fu Style Wudangquan by training under Fu Wing Fay for 10 years; Wing Fay was the eldest son and top student of Grandmaster Fu Chen Sung. She was an instructor at Wing Fay's school from 1968 to 1974.[2]


After living for years in Hong Kong, Mark emigrated to Brighton, Massachusetts in 1975, and founded the Chinese Wushu Research Institute in July 1976.[3][4] She still teaches and performs in the Boston area. She was one of the first to provide Chinese wushu instruction in the West[5] and is credited with popularizing the term Wushu outside of China. She gave the first demonstration of Combined Tai Chi Chuan in the United States, and published the first description of the technique in 1975.[2] Mark won a gold medal at the first International Tournament of T'ai chi ch'uan in Wuhan City in 1984.[6] She was named Black Belt magazine's Kung-Fu artist of the year for 1995.[7]

One of her specialities is her Wudang sword dance.[2] She played the part of a 'kung fu diva' in a play, Mum and Shah at the Lyric Stage theater in Boston in 1995.[8]

Black Belt Magazine named her one of the most influential martial artists of the 20th Century.[9]

Personal life[edit]

Mark is married to Klyster Yen[2] and has two children,[3] including her son, martial arts movie star Donnie Yen,[10] and a daughter, Chris Chi-ching Yen, who placed All-round Third division in the First International Wushu tournament in 1986 as the youngest competitor,[11] and who has also joined the film industry.[12][13]


  1. ^ Cobb, Nathan (13 March 2001). "Grande Dame of Wu Dang". Boston Globe. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d Kwan, Paul W.L. (April 1978). "The New Wu Shu". Black Belt. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  3. ^ a b Wong, Sandy (December 1975). "Tai Chi Chaun's Little China Doll Comes To America". Black Belt. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  4. ^ "M.I.T. students study combined Tai Chi Chuan". Black Belt. February 1976. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  5. ^ Carrabis, Joseph-David (April 1984). "Combined Tai Chi in the U.S. Stepping out of China's shadow". Black Belt. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  6. ^ "Tai Chi Tourney a Hit in Mainland China". Black Belt. October 1984. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  7. ^ "Awards so far". Black Belt. October 1996. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  8. ^ MacMillan, Valerie J. (7 July 1995). "Mum and Shah Blends Motion, Fancy". Harvard Crimson. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  9. ^ "The way of the ribbon and the sword". Boston Globe. June 2011. Archived from the original on 7 July 2014.
  10. ^ Lukitsh, Jean (February 1994). "Yen Yearns for Stardom in Hong Kong Films". Black Belt. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  11. ^ "Youngster wins Wushu award". Black Belt. February 1986. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  12. ^ "Chris (Chi Ching) Yen". Bow Sim Mark Tai Chi Arts Association. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
  13. ^ Rosenbaum, S.I. (8 March 2009). "Kung Fu daughter". Boston Globe. Retrieved 22 January 2010.

External links[edit]