Wushu is very misunderstood

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Wushu is very misunderstood

Post  Matt_Stampe on Tue Nov 15, 2011 9:11 am

Wushu is a term used loosely in China, even traditional chinese Taijiquan masters called their art Wushu. it means "war art" but is the general term in Mainland china for Kung fu or martial arts. Here in the west I cringe when I hear Traditional masters say bad about Wushu. Some put it down. Wushu in China is interwoven with Traditional chinese martial arts and sports science.

The bad reputation it gets is the silk pajama acrobatic forms and taijiquan that have come out, but those athletes train very very hard.

Why i left so many other forum is disrespect to Wushu. People are really ignorant. One guy who talked so bad about wushu in Thailand really pissed me off. I go to Thailand often since my wife is Thai. I asked this guy I want go to his Taijiquan school in Thailand and he was scared to meet me and dodged my request to visit him. I guess he was scared of a Wushu guy.


Last edited by Matt_Stampe on Tue Nov 15, 2011 9:13 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : spelling)

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Re: Wushu is very misunderstood

Post  Hermann Bohn on Sat Nov 26, 2011 3:58 am

Well, Matt, I hear you, but then let me tell you my side.
Here in Taiwan, we have a triple Asian Games Gold medalist, section Taijiquan, and when I pushed with him, he had no root what so ever and I could manipulate him at will, fixed or moving step. He is doing the silky stuff, for show and price money, no real trad. Taijiquan, we call it Wushu Taiji.
Then, when we had the World Games in southern Taiwan/Gaoxiong, I watched a few comps, also southern fists and a few weapons, and it was really terrible. I thought I only saw a kind of western sports gymnastics, no real Jin, lots of flowery moves, jumping onto a single leg and foil weapons which have no real usage at all. I believe those guys could not wield my real bladed sword or sabre, wouldn't know how to cut a bamboo or tatami mat.
So, we differenciate between wushu and wuyi 武藝.
Of course Wushu people train hard as well, but what I have seen, they train in a total different direction. You are nottalking on Sanda, a different animal again, are you?
Can you see my point?

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Re: Wushu is very misunderstood

Post  Fongliu on Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:06 pm

a few corrections for you.

武術 does NOT mean "war art." It means MARTIAL art.
the character 武 is composed of two components: 止 (zhi3)which means stop, and 戈 (ge1) which is a polearm used specifically for war. The character means to STOP war. A War Art would be 戰術 (zhan4 shu4)

Next, in china/taiwan when you refer to 新武術 (xin wushu), that is Modern Wushu. That is what we typically called wushu in the english speaking world. Modern Wushu is only for performance, even though yes, they train hard, they do not train application and fighting enough. Traditional Wushu is what us fighters practice, and that is 傳統武術 (chuan2 tong3 wu3 shu4). Modern Wushu explicitly claims that they are only for performance.

Modern wushu's version of xingyi and bagua are absolutely disgusting. They have stripped out all the key attributes and removed the very soul from the art. Modern Wushu's taiji is also bad, but not as bad outwardly.

That said, Modern wushu does build some solid basic external foundations, as well as a few internal ones. Which need to be corrected for traditional or any other useful martial art. Modern Wushu is basically like gymnastics, ballet, or acrobatics in that it creates strong flexible athletes, who are specialized in dancing that looks like martial arts.


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Re: Wushu is very misunderstood

Post  omar-belove on Tue Dec 06, 2011 10:20 pm

Meh.

It's just a language problem. It's true that, on the mainland anyways, people regularly refer to traditional kung fu as "wushu". "Xin Wushu" is a rare term over here and only used when one specifically needs to make the clarification. So I can see where someone who trained in China and got used to real MA being called wushu might take the habit with him and then cringe when folks outside of China only use the term to refer to the new stuff. Fact is, even calling martial arts "kung fu" is kind of a southern habit made popular by Bruce Lee. Before Bruce, gongfu was, in the north anyways, only used to refer to the broader meaning of "deep skill".

So I feel your pain dude but I don't think it's a misunderstanding of "wushu". It's just a different linguistic habit. So many cool terms that come in and out of fasion.

武艺
武功
武术
功夫
拳术
拳法

。。。and probably a half dozen others that I can't even think of right now.

A rose by any other name. . . . I love you

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Re: Wushu is very misunderstood

Post  Hermann Bohn on Wed Dec 07, 2011 1:15 am

Well, yes, new Wushu, I never heared over here in Taiwan. We might say chuantong wushu 傳統武術 , refering to the old ways of ma, in contrast to the new brand of gymnastics ala China.
But as Omar pointed out, there are alternatives. And as modern Wushu brings price money from the Taiwanese government, much bigger then a 1st place at a traditional phs competition, I just don't want to end up in that category.
Mostly I just say "I train martial", wo shi lian wu de 我是練武的.

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Re: Wushu is very misunderstood

Post  Fongliu on Wed Dec 07, 2011 1:36 am

Hermann, you should push hands with my first taichi teacher. He's at the sun yat sen memorial park, just northeast of the hall itself, by the gate on chung-hsiao north rd., every saturday around 2 pm. His name is Chen Han Bing. He's from the cultural university. he used to compete in the asian games every year, representing taiwan, in taiji fist, spear, sword forms. His push hands is great, and his internal foundation is very solid.

-Fong

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Re: Wushu is very misunderstood

Post  Hermann Bohn on Wed Dec 07, 2011 1:58 am

Hi Fong, many thanks, but no thanks!
First, I live down south in Gaoxiong and don't get to Taibei too often.
2nd, I have enough traditional teachers of high calibre down here, so no real need.
3rd, I had studied ma in Taibei for 6 yrs., meeting good and so so teachers, also met some of the older wenhua tiyuxi guard (Wang Shijie?), and I was not so impressed, really.
Maybe Mr. Chen Hanbing is the real deal, I hope so for you.
BTW, what style is he teaching/are you practicing?
I do 37/64/108/111 Yang styles and some more tongue .
Best from sunny skies down south!

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Re: Wushu is very misunderstood

Post  Fongliu on Wed Dec 07, 2011 2:16 am

he does yang, chen, and zheng man qing style, to my knowledge. He might do other taiji styles now, but I'm not sure. He taught me Yang style when I was young. I do Ch'ang style now (chang dong sheng), under Daniel Weng--who used to teach Chen Han Bing at the cultural university.

his school is near taoyuan if I remember right. but he goes to taipei every saturday to teach some students there.

His core is very solid, and he can push hands really well. He's in his 40's now, and very open minded, so he's relatively young. since I actually do more shuaijiao than pushing hands, for me he says I can grab him however I want when we push hands. of course he trusts me too, that I won't try to hurt him. any case since you live in kaohsiung it's kinda hard for you, but if you are ever in taipei on a saturday afternoon... you should stop by and check him out. he's definitely the real deal. he told me that practicing the zheng style taiji really improved his pushing hands skills.

-Fong


Last edited by Fongliu on Fri Dec 09, 2011 9:43 pm; edited 1 time in total

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wushu

Post  natsuchato on Fri Dec 09, 2011 8:26 pm

wushu as it is now, is gymnastics on steroids. the biggest problem is there is no teaching of applications when it comes to modern day wushu. the applications are there, but it is more of a sport now than an art

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