First international Yiquan tournament
YIQUAN.COmpetitions is organized by YIQUAN ACADEMY INTERNATIONAL NETWORK
First international tournament will be organized on May 5th in Warsaw, Poland
There will be:
- easy tui shou (fixed position tui shou),
- tui shou (free step tui shou),
- tui duan shou (free step tui shou with hitting allowed),
- easy san shou (limited contact free fighting).
This year tournament has status of trial, with the main goal being testing the competitions rules.
Shortly about the main ideas of those tournaments:
Yiquan training in our line is related mainly to free barehand fighting and self-defense with use of all parts of body, in chaotic, suddenly changing situations, with some objects outside, keeping stand up position, so you can maintain mobility.
But advanced practioners can explore other areas of combat too - like ground fighting, weapons etc. The standard training program is just a starting point, and one of the main ideas of Yiquan is constant research and development of various areas related to martial arts theory and practice.
Competitive testing is one of the parts of the training process, especially liked by young practitioners. Testing helps to evaluate training progress and to improve training.
Full contact san shou is the formula most close to real fighting, which is designed for advanced competitors. Mma style gloves and headgear with face protection are used. Hitting with any part of body is allowed. Points are given for hits, throwing opponnent down (while staying on feet yourself) and throwing opponent out of the fighting area - which represents throwing opponent onto external object in real fight. Small fighting area and short time help to simulate the situation of fierce fight.
For efficient winning in the situation of short fierce bout, important is skill of attack and defense being one, where hitting, dodging, controlling opponents hands and affecting his balance happens simultanously. Our training system focuses on developing this core ability.
For beginners, people less fit and veterans more appriopriate will be easier competition formulas, in which some part of skills important in free fighting can be tested:
Easy tui shou - pushing hands without steps, helps to promote basics of maintaining position and balance, while affecting position and balance of an opponent. Grabbing and longer breaking contact are forbidden.
Tui shou - pushing hands with steps, helps to promote the ability of controlling your own balance and affecting opponent's balance, while making steps. You want to unbalance opponent in order to throw him down or throw out from the fight area. Longer breaking contact is forbidden. Short time grabbing and embracing is allowed.
Tui duan shou - tui shou with hitting allowed. Promotes the ability of controlling opponent, destroying his balance, opening his defence and using it to make hitting easier. Just like in tui shou longer breaking contact is forbidden, except situations of opponent losing so called control, when you open his defense or break his balance. Short time grabbing and embracing is allowed. You can hit with any part of body, except kicks. Hitting power must be limited, except front of torso, where you can hit with full power.
Easy san shou - simplified free fighting formula. You can hit with any part of body. Kicking is allowed only above waist. Hitting power must be limited, except front of torso, where you can hit with full power. Unlike in tui shou and tui duan shou, the rule of maintaining contact is not valid. You get points for hitting, throwing opponent down and throwing him out from the fight area.
In simplified formulas actions which would be absurd in full contact san shou are discouraged and penalized.
Outline of history of relation between yiquan and tournaments:
Yiquan is a chinese martial art which developed from traditional internal art of xingyiquan, being also influenced by taijiquan, baguazhang, liuhebafa, baihequan and western boxing. The new system was started in 1920s, when master Wang Xiangzhai (1885-1963) was teaching in Shanghai. He and his students became famous as good fighters, and not only because of some stories about some challenges, which were not witnessed by too many people, but also because of participating in tournaments.
Zhao Daoxin took part in one of the first guoshu tournaments. Zhang Changxin won some boxing tournaments. Bu Enfu, who also practiced shuai-jiao wrestling, successfully competed in both shuai-jiao and boxing. In 1930s there appeared idea of creating a team of yiquan fighters, who would travel all over world challenging wrestlers and boxers in many countries. One of Shanghai banquers offered to sponsor this project. Unfortunately after Japanese invasion in China, they had to give up this plan.
Wang Xiangzhai settled then in Beijing and continued teaching, waiting for better times. Yao Zongxun, who became Wang's assistant, was putting most effort into training and helping fellow students in training, so after the war they could continue with the plans of popularizing yiquan. But capitulation of Japan and end of the world war was not the end of war in China. The nationalists and communists fought each other. After establishing new chinese state, teaching and popularizing actual fighting arts became impossible. Even western boxing was forbidden for some 20 years.
From 1950s only some basic methods, as kind of health cultivation practice were propagated. And even this was not possible in the beginning period of so called cultural revolution (1966-1976), when hongweibings (red guards) tried to destroy the existing culture and build a new one on the ruins.
Only by the end of 1970s some bigger changes happened. While the official stream of sports wushu so far was limited to forms - taolu, now they started developing sports fighting formula - sanda. Wang Xiangzhai's successor - Yao Zongxun (1917-1985) created a team of young yiquan practitioners who spent several years on special intensive fighting training. In this group were Yao Zongxun's sons - Yao Chengguang and Yao Chengrong, and also Cui Ruibin, Liu Pulei, Peng Zhendi, Wu Xiaonan and some others.
In 1982 Yao Chengguang took part in Beijing eliminations for the first all-China sanda tournament. He was admitted a winner, after he knocked his opponnent out in the first round. But then, he was disqualified and forbidden from participating in sanda tournaments. This happened although he didn't do anything against the rules. Maybe the organizers and sanda promoters were afraid, that this situation could be used as a pretext to stop development of sanda. So Yao became scapegoat, blamed for illegal hitting opponent's head with a series of punches. But in fact that rule was introduced after this situation.
But in next years other yiquan people participated in sanda, with success. Peng Zhendi was one of the champions. Some medals were won by Yang Shaogeng's students - while preparing for competitions they regularly sparring with Yao Chengguang. In first China championship in traditional wushu, Cui Ruibin's student's got several medals in leitai - fight on a platform surrounded by water.
In recent years yiquan practitioners appeared also in MMA tournaments in China. The earliest were people from one of Beijing security guards company, in which the guards training is partly based on yiquan. Wu Haotian, who is a purple belt in brazilian jiu-jitsu also practices yiquan. Tang Jin, who is Liu Pulei's disciple, became first women in China with professional MMA contract.
Yiquan circles have also been trying to create their own competition formats. Unfortunately the natural development has been disturbed already from 1930s, as described above. Only in 1985 Beijing Yiquan Study Association was created as a body inside Beijing Wushu Association. In years 1993-1994 Yao Chengguang and Yao Chengrong brothers and also Cui Ruibin were able to open official yiquan schools. In 1996 first yiquan conference was organized by Beijing Yiquan Study Associations, with participants from mainland China, Hong Kong and Japan. So far experimental yiquan competitions were organized with wushu association consent only 3 times: in san shou in 1998, in tui shou in 2000 and 2002. At following conferences there were only demonstration fights.
But yiquan is gradually developing in many countries worldwide. Although there are many groups which focus only on so called health variant, limited to basic methods, but there are also more and more people interested in yiquan as a complete martial art. Yiquan Academy International Network is developing. With growing number of practioners, naturally there appears a need of creating international competitions.
YIQUAN.COmpetitions international tournaments will be organized by Yiquan Academy International Network annually, with several competitions formats: easy tui shou, tui shou, tui duan shou, easy san shou, full contact san shou. Presently the main goal is testing and stimulating development of actual skill of practitioners of member schools of Yiquan Academy International Network. But also other schools, and even practitioners of other martial arts can participate.
Toward professional yiquan tournaments
Author: Xie Yongguang (master Yao Chengguang's disciple)
Translation from Chinese: Andrzej Kalisz (also master Yao Chengguang's disciple)
For almost 100 years yiquan have been developing the training methods. Wang Xiangzhai said: „You should know, that studying science is not about following the rules written down, and you should avoid stictking to protecting some shortcomings and continuing wrong ways, but the stress should be put on experience and creativity”. So when he encountered western boxing, he noticed its practical and scientific aspects and bravely adopted part of it into yiquan.
Then Yao Zongxun was brave, creatively researching and developing yiquan training methods. He stressed that while learning yiquan, you should have contact with other martial arts, absorbing and using their valuable parts. You should not „look at the sky from a well” or „invent a car sitting in your house”. So Yao made a real connection between specific power and technical training of yiquan with training methods of modern sports. Training physical attributes and training methods of modern sports were included into yiquan training system. In 1980s a lot of experience was gathered during intensive training of the group of best practitioners. Apart of zhan zhuang and shi li type of training, also running, rope skipping, boxing bag and pads traning and fighting combinations training were necessary part of everyday practice.
From practical experience we already know that Yao's method was right. Training physical attributes increases stamina, giving basis for using a technique in repeated way. Pads and bag training helps to improve the right hitting technique. Using gloves and protectors makes possible hard hitting without causing injuries, this way enabling testing the actual fighting skill. All of this enriched yiquan training system and enhanced results of training. In the history of Chinese martial arts it was another revolutionary change. At that time Yao Zongxun's idea was to prove yiquan's power in free fighting tournaments.
Today, apart from cultivating health and achieving satisfaction from learning and understanding, it is important to cause yiquan move into the scene of fighting tournaments. Although Beijing Yiquan Study Association has made some steps and already organized some trials, so far proper competition and appriopriate system of training was not created. Actual development is depending on making right steps in right time. So now, in the time of market economy, the right way is professionalization of yiquan, and what is important is actual proving power in competing. We should not be afraid of being defeated. When you are defeated, you should get conclusions, learn and make next try, only this way you can become an seasoned professionallist. If you only exchange experience in small group ot people who also practice yiquan, and you are satisfied with such - not really confrontational meetings, this will be only kind of self deceiving. This way yiquan will change into a tiger in the zoo, and in fact it will be only a grandson of the real tiger.
This is true, that presently yiquan is in a very critical situation. We need to develop and we need to take into account many real problems. The Japanese already included zhan zhuang into kyokushin karate training. Muslim Salikhov from Russian defeated the best of Chinese sanda fighters. We cannot deny those facts. We need to know that others also make progress! And progress doesn't mean that you only move forward, but that you are absorbing what is useful - „the sea is great because it absorbs water of hundreds of rivers”.
As for establishing yiquan training system, creating proper competition system, so yiquan can still be yiquan, but all the time developing and becoming richer, following the development of the scene of combative sports, I think than all yiquan exponents need to think about it. Think about it and express your opinion. Maybe your „finger pointing to the Moon” will help us to see the actual „glow of the Moon”.
Results of 2012 YIQUAN.COmpetitions, 5th May:
Easy tui shou
1. Michał Kukuła - Yiquan Academy
2. Rafał Jaczyński - Yiquan Academy
3. Mariusz Kwaśnik - Yiquan Academy
1. Mariusz Kwaśnik - Yiquan Academy
2. Michał Kukuła - Yiquan Academy
3. Gustaw Pytlakowski - Yiquan Academy
Tui duan shou
1. Michał Kukuła - Yiquan Academy
2. Mariusz Kwaśnik - Yiquan Academy
3. Artur Lach - Yiquan Academy
Easy san shou
1. Konrad Operacz - Chuojiao Fanzi Association
2. Mariusz Kwaśnik - Yiquan Academy
3. Michał Sobociński - Hu Lung Pai and Wu Tai Chi Chuan Association
Final classification (tournament is in open category, but fighters from lighter categories get additional points):
1. Mariusz Kwaśnik - 17 points
2. Michał Kukuła - 8 points
3. Artur Lach - 7 points
Unfortunatelly Robert Kucza, who is one of our promissing fighters couldn't participate this time due to foot injury.
Winners' League - a group for people older or with health problems, who couldn't compete normally:
There were 3 women, which fought each of them with all the other, using easy tui shou rules:
Wanda Chwalczuk - Yiquan Academy
Henryka Garbarczyk - Yiquan Academy
Halina Kozioł - Qigong and Tai Chi Association
Then each of them had a chance to fight with the winner of normal easy tui shou.
Great info on a style I wasn't familiar with. Do you have any vid from the tournament?
Originally Posted by dacheng
First videos from today tournament might be ready in 2-3 days.
Before the main highlights clip from YIQUAN.COmpetitions 2012 will be ready, here is a clip from Winners' League fights.
We have created Winners' League on request of a person practicing Wu Taijiquan, who after a stroke is not able to participate in typical combative competitions. So we agreed to prepare some format for such people, using YIQUAN.COmpetitions Easy Tui Shou rules. Unfortunately that person couldn't come to our tournament, due to injury which happened to him a few days before the competition date. However we were able to conduct this project with 2 elder ladies (70+ and 60+) who are training with us basics of yiquan and some taijiquan and another, younger lady (50+) who is a taijiquan and qigong practitioner. They were fighting against each other, and finally each of them had opportunity to try fighting against the winner of the normal Easy Tui Shou.
So we have proved, that people not only can start practicing martial arts at older age, after retirement, but that they even starting late, they still can become competitors in quasi-combative tournaments!
I like the tournament rules for tui duan shou. I dunno if I would lead with the video of grandmas pushing though. I think it's great that they're getting out there and having fun, but it's easy enough to find older people playing push hands, really.
Last edited by Rivington; 5/07/2012 12:59pm at .
Of course you can find a lot of elder people playing tui shou, but..... how many of them started doing this while being around 70 y.o. and without training any MA before? Mostly you have people who already practiced tai chi for dozens of years, and still continue it when they get older, or people who practiced something harder, and switch to something like tai chi, when they get older. While in this case you have old ladies, who never did something like this before being in their 60s or 70s.
Originally Posted by Rivington
And the Winners' League was not organized primiarily for those ladies. As I wrote above, this was initiated by a man with limited movement functions after having a stroke, so he asked us to organize something, that he could try to participate. It was quite difficult to find other people in similiar situation, who would decide to participate. Fortunately those ladies agreed. Unfortunately the man couldn't come, due to injury. But we still conducted this 'Winners' League', and made the clip to show, that everybody could try and compete. Also those ladies show that there is no excuse for those who say: "I never did this before, so it's to late for me".