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Journal of Asian Martial Arts - Articles
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Bagua & Xingyi: An Intersection of the Straight and Curved

By Hong Dzehan, with Christopher Bates and Robert Yu, Dietmar Stubenbaum and Marcus Brinkman, Shannon Phelps, M.A., M.Div., Allen Pittman, Stanley E. Henning, M.A., Kevin Craig, M.A., Robert Lin-yi Yu, M.A., James Smith, Ph.D.; Matt Bild, Trans., Tim Cartmell, B.A., Travis Joern, B.A.

Bagua & Xingyi: An Intersection of the Straight and Curved
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Bagua & Xingyi: An Intersection of the Straight and Curved

Baguaquan and xingyiquan are two styles that complement each other as yin does yang. Bagua is known for its circular movements and its practice of “circle walking.” Xingyi embodies characteristic linear movements said to be derived from the logical strategies for using spear and staff.   

How fortunate we are to include writings in this anthology by leading authorities on these styles. Separated into three sections, the first features bagua. Allen Pittmanpresents five variations of the “single palm change”, followed by an overview of the Yin Fu bagua linage and an interview with He Jinbao focusing on training, fighting skills, teaching and learning. Travis Joern examines how a martial artist can apply the theoretical aspects of the Book of Changes to bagua training. Hong Dzehan—son of Hong Yixiang, stellar master of the three internal systems—then shares some of his personal experiences and favorite bagua techniques.

Section two contains chapters on xingyi. The interview with Luo Dexiu questions the proper way to study xingyi from the beginning to the advanced levels. Robert Yucompares American boxing with xingyi’s pragmatic fighting techniques and in the following chapter he recounts in detail how it was to study under Hong Yixiang in Taiwan nearly forty years ago. Stanley Henning gives a travelogue of a trip to Shanxi Province—the home of xingyiquan—and then discusses Che Style xingyi training methods as taught by Dr. Wu Chaoxiang, including the five element theory, twelve animal forms, two-person routines, and spear training. 

The third section presents some commonalities in what many refer to as the “internal arts”: bagua, xingyi, and taiji. The chapter on Fu family style beautifully details how they incorporated the essential elements of taiji, xingyi, and bagua into their majestic sixiangquan (four image boxing). Marcus Brinkman relates many of the unique insights and experiences he had during his extensive study with Luo Dexiu and Hong Yixiang, including internal development and fighting applications. Tim Cartmellprovides the final chapter which explains the key concepts of “sticking and following” as they apply to the throwing methods of the Chinese internal martial arts.

The rich content in this anthology comes from the rare academic and  hands-on experience of those presented in chapters here. Readers will no doubt benefit from the practical practice tips as well as the other cultural details these wonderful authors share.

Author Bio:
  • Single Palm Change: Bagua’s Core Movement, by Allen Pittman
  • Yin Style Baguazhang: Hidden Treasure of Chinese Martial Arts, by James Smith, Ph.D.; Matt Bild, Trans. 
  • How Baguazhang Incorporates Theory from the Book of Changes, by Travis Joern, B.A.
  • Baguazhang in the Hong Yixiang Tradition, by Hong Dzehan, with Christopher Bates and Robert Lin-i Yu
  • Some Insights into Xingyiquan: Interview with Lo Dexiu, by Dietmar Stubenbaum and Marcus Brinkman
  • American Boxing and Chinese Xingyi: A Comparison, by Robert Lin-yi Yu, M.A.
  • Hong Yixiang and Five Fists Xingyi Boxing in Old Taipei, by Robert Lin-yi Yu, M.A.
  • Insights From the Home of Xingyiquan, by Stanley E. Henning, M.A.
  • Che Style Xingyiquan in Taiwan as Taught by Dr. Wu Chaoxiang, by Stanley E. Henning, M.A.
  • One Source, Four Images: Fu Yonghui’s Sixiang Boxing, by Shannon Phelps, M.A., M.Div.
  • Internal Martial Arts of Taiwan: An Interview with Marcus Brinkman by Kevin Craig, M.A. 
  • Throwing Techniques in the Internal Martial Arts: An Elucidation of the Guiding Principle of Sticking and Following, by Tim Cartmell, B.A

Product Specifications:

Format: 6" x 9" paperback, 174 pages, illustrated.

Books are "print-on-demand". We send orders to an company to print and mail to customers. They usually ship within one to three weeks.