|Myself at Dong Hai Chuan Tomb the founder of BaGuaZhang
"move like a dragon; Swing about like a monkey; and Change postures like an eagle.
Make steps as if you are wading mud; Twist both hands as if you are twisting a rope; and Turn about as if you are turning
a stone mill."
This is Baguazhang, according to the masters of this great art.
the mystic Eight Diagrams (Ba Gua), an ancient system of divination, Baguazhang is a martial art that employs subtle movement,
explosive power and a unique form of manoeuvring. Unlike many other martial art systems, Baguazhang uses the palms rather
than the fists. Its attacks and defences are based on remarkable circular stepping method called Tangnibu or "mud wading
steps" in which the performer uses few kicks but rather, twists, turns and changes directions, constantly seeking a strategic
But Baguazhang is more than just a martial art. Its elegant and balletic yet powerful forms build strength,
coordination and flexibility, while its traditional postures and exercises enhance Nei Gong (inner strength)
(Quote taken from Mr Liu Jing Ru & Mr C.S. Tang's
book - dragon stretches its claws)
The main essence and practice of Cheng Baguazhang is walking the circumference
of an imaginary circle, whilst performing Ding Shi Zhang 'eight basic palms' this is an exercise to develop internal strength
'Nei Gong', Ba Da Zhang '8 main palms' the basic routines and forms of Bagua, these forms use all the basic
skills for opening and closing all of the joints as well as the skills for combat. After studying the basic forms and exercises
we move onto more complicated forms such as Lian Huan Zhang 'swimming body palm'.
Bagua has many external and internal benefits.
The constant practice of circle walking, spiraling,
twisting, turning, bending, moving the waist etc, results in an effective exercise
joints, tendons, sinews & muscles,
it helps regulate blood pressure,
massages acupressure points,
the lymphatic glands,
opens the meridian lines/channels sending vital Qi to all
areas of the body,
improves general health and vitality,
the mind (i.e. moving meditation) .
Bagua is not only a healing art,
it is also a very practical martial art for self-defence.
It is interesting that most of the
old Bagua practitioners lived to very old ages, those who weren't killed in the 'boxer rebellion' that is!
Baguazhang is also known for practicing with many different weapons such as the deer horn blades, judge pens, ring
daggers, single pointed spear, double ended pointed spear, poles, horse whip, it is more famous for the use of extremely
large weapons, such as the BaGuaDao or 'Bagua Broadsword', Bagua Jian 'straight sword'
Bagua is suitable for all ages and abilities.
Liu Jing Ru is one of the top authorities and lineage master of Cheng Style Ba Gua Zhang in the World.
My Shifu (master) Mr Xiang Zheng is the
Vice Secretary General of the National BaGuaZhang Committee and disciple of Mr Liu.
I am a lineage teacher of Cheng
Style BaGuaZhang, member of the Beijing Wushu Association Bagua Zhang Research Institute, licensed by the China Gymnastic
Association and the first UK and foreign disciple of Mr Xiang Zheng.
Founders of BaGuaZhang and Cheng style.
Ba Gua Zhang - The youngest of the 3 main Chinese
internal Martial arts, was created by Grandmaster Dong Hai Chuan (1799-1882), born in Zhu Jia Wu of Wen'an County in He
Baguazhang was popularised in Beijing whilst Dong Hai Chuan was working in Prince Su mansion during the late Qing
dynasty. It became very popular with royalty at this time! It spread throughout Beijing and into Tianjin, He Bei province
and eventually across the whole country. It greatly influenced the whole field of martial arts and was very popular amongst
the practitioners. Dong Hai Chuan had travelled all over China and was believed to have studied
Taoist concepts and theories from the I-Qing (Taoist book of changes) he used these concepts and training methods and created
Dong was said to have accepted over 50 disciples,
all of which were already accomplished masters in their own martial arts, some even challenged Dong Hai Chuan to fight to
prove their skills but none could beat him.
The three main disciples from which the
most popular styles of baguazhang were created are called Cheng Ting Hua, Yin Fu and Liang Zhen Pu. Each of the masters had
different styles and forms but they all used the same theories and concepts as taught by Dong Hai Chuan.
Ting Hua (1848 - 1900) was from Cheng village, Hebei Province. He was an eyeglass maker by trade, He moved
to Beijing to open a spectacles shop hence he was commonly known as 'Spectacles Cheng'. He studied under various schools
of Chinese Boxing and was particularly skilled at Chinese Shuai Jiao (wrestling), for a Hobby he studied Chin Na (joint locks
and holds) Cheng Ting Hua is the founder of the "Cheng" style Baguazhang.
It is said that many famous
fighters challenged Cheng but as with Dong Hai Chuan no one could defeat him. Cheng had an impulsive nature. He was short
but strong. In all his fights, he was known to use the 'Single Pounding Palm' and was always successful in throwing
his opponents in a single movement. He was also known for his fluid 'Dragon Claw'.
In July 1900 foreign troops
entered Beijing looting, raping, and other acts of barbarism. Master Cheng was so angry that he resolved to take vengeance
on the foreign devils. At the sight of a dozen or so foreign soldiers, he set forth to meet them with only two daggers. His
pupils tried to stop him, but couldn't. It was later found that Cheng single-handedly killed ten or more soldiers, but
died of multiple bullet wounds during the struggle.
Cheng had two sons. The elder, Cheng Yulung (1875-1928) was also
a master of Baguazhang, and was responsible for spreading the art in Beijing and Tianjin.
The Development of Ba Gua Zhang in
In September 1980, the first national Chinese Martial Arts Club organized by the Beijing Municipal
Bureau of Sport was founded in Dong Cheng district. A secondary group member of the Chinese Wushu Association, the Ba Gua
Zhang Research Institute was founded in 1982.
The foundation has over 900 members nationwide.
In 2002 the Institute was chosen as one of the "Outstanding
Organizations" of the Beijing Wushu Association.
They have regularly held annual baguazhang competitions since 2001.
My shifu Mr Xiang Zheng is the Vice secretary general of
the Ba Gua Zhang Research Institute and this year (Jan 2009) I have been invited to join as a member.
Ba Gua Zhang is now growing in popularity due to its health giving properties
and has spread into many foreign countries such as England, United States, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Norway, Finland, Switzerland,
Austria, Sweden, Japan, South Korea, Australia, etc.
Mr Liu Jing Ru is the number one
authoritive figure for Cheng Baguzhang
This was given to me by my shifu Mr Xiang Zheng
when i first started training with him back in November 2005
|Mr Xiang Zheng (pronounced she-ang Jung)
Wushu is the Chinese cultural heritage. It
has the strong folk characters, and very abundant content. The eight diagram boxing and imitation boxing are one of the most
famous fists in the martial arts circles. Since generation, it was very favourable and extends spreads among the public. Practising
the eight diagram boxing and imitation boxing can improve the people's health, self-protection, promoting longevity and
also can perform as the sports item as a kind of competition. Its advantage is simply fantastic.
At present, it
is well known by the overseas friends and many of them are studying it enthusiastically. Some domestic outstanding coaches
teach the eight diagram boxing and imitation boxing abroad. A lot of overseas friends participate in the international Wushu
match and make excellent achievements in this sports item.
I began to study the eight diagram boxing and imitation
boxing at 13 years old followed Mr Li Yong, the old teacher of martial arts circles. And then learn from Mr Liu Jing Ru, national
famous Wushu teacher, after Mr Li passed away. With more than ten years' study and diligently training, I was appreciated
by Mr Liu and he taught me all that he knew. I got thoroughly familiar about these skills, and grasped the overall technological
characteristics and practice method.
I began to teach students in 1982. In 1986, I was invited as the coach of
the Eight Diagrams Boxing by the Physical Culture and Sports Commission.
Over 800 students was taught by me during
the past 20 years. Among them, 35 people took me as their master formally.
I was elected as the vice-president
of the 2nd, 3rd, and 5th Wushu association, and the member of the Eight Diagram Boxing Associations committee.
got the certificate of the 2nd class national referee in 1994, and got the certification of national senior Wushu coach in
1998. In year 2002, I got level 6 certification of national Wushu class, and this year I will apply for level 7.
With over 20 years teaching experience, I lead my students to join all kinds of competition of Beijing and whole country
since 1992 and with honours back every time. Every year we got up to 7 to 8 silver and gold medals, at most it could reach
to 13 items. The great achievement excited the students' training enthusiasm and I received the commendation and attention
of the leader.
I received the invitations to teach Wushu from USA, Indonesia, Singapore, and Bangladesh since
In 1999, I participated in writing and publishing;the Eight Diagrams boxing; with Mr.Liu. And with the direction
and help of Mr.Liu, we wrote and published;Mr Cheng's Eight Diagram Boxing; in 2003.
My wish in heart is to
inherit, popularize out, and develop this Chinese martial rarity, The Eight Diagram Boxing and Imitation Boxing. Let more
people at home and abroad know them, study them, practice them, and erect the gold bridge of friendship with every friend
with my skills.
In December 2008 Mr Xiang Zheng was appointed as Vice Secretary
General of National BaGuaZhang Committee.
Myself Andrew Coles-
of Liu Jing Ru's Cheng BaGuaZhang and Founder of Earth Ocean Martial arts.
I started studying martial arts in 1986 at the age
Since starting my journey in the martial arts I have studied various different styles, some for just a few lessons
others for several months or years, these include Karate (Shoto-ryu, Shotokan, Wado-ryu, Kenpo), Tai Chi, Tae kwon do (TAGB,
freestyle), Tang Soo Do, Muay Thai kick boxing, Ba gua zhang (pronounced baa gwa jang), Sanda Chinese kick boxing, Wing Chun,
Bu Di Zhen kung fu and Xing Yi Quan (pronounced shing ee chew'ann).
The following are the main styles
studied in order of practice, grades achieved or time practised continuously if no grades were given and where the classes
Bideford, North Devon- Yang style Tai Chi 6 years,
Bideford, North Devon- Shoto-ryu karate kai, 1st
degree Black belt,
Torquay, South Devon- Muay Thai kick boxing over a 2 year span,
Torquay, South Devon- Tang
Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan, Yellow belt (8th Kup)
Bideford, North Devon- TAGB Tae kwon do Red stripe (3rd Kup)
North Devon- Free style Tae kwon do 2nd Dan, Kick fit Tae Kwon do 2nd Dan,
San Francisco, USA- certificate for teaching
Tae geri kick boxing
November 2005 to Present day
Beijing, China- Cheng Ba Gua Zhang, licensed by the people's
republic of china gymnastic & athletics association (the governing body for all sports and recreational activities which
includes Wushu- Kung Fu). Being awarded 2nd level instructorship 22nd January 2007
Beijing 2006 march- Accepted by my Shifu as his first foreign disciple
of Mr Liu Jing Ru's Cheng Ba Gua Zhang.
January 2007- began teaching Cheng Ba Gua Zhang in Northam &
January 2007- began teaching Earth & Ocean Martial Arts (My own creation and style) in Northam
& Barnstaple, UK
May 2009 becoming a member
of the Beijing Wushu Association, Baguazhang Research Institute.
2011 return to Beijing to learn Shanxi style Xing Yi Quan & develop a deeper understanding of BaGuaZhang
|Member of the Beijing wushu association BaGuaZhang research institute
In March 2006
i attended a bai shi shi, (a formal ceremony to be accepted as Mr Xiang Zheng's first foreign disciple). This means that
i am the 1st official UK teacher of Cheng style BaGuaZhang
My Ba Gua Zhang Lineage
My commitment to my
Shifu (Master) and Mr Liu Jing Ru, is to teach, raise awareness & spread the benefits of BaGuaZhang.
I return every year to Beijing China to develop my knowledge and skills
in BaGua with the help of my Shifu!
The below picture is my family tree which goes back
to the founder of Baguazhang.
Click on picture to enlarge
|Cheng BaGuaZhang lineage
Also I have created my own style called Earth Ocean
Martial Arts, which encompasses skills taken from the martial arts that I have studied.
Click here for earth ocean martial arts details