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History of Ving Tsun Kung Fu

The common legend as told by Ip Man involves the young woman Yim Wing Chun (Wing Chun literally means forever springtime or praising spring) at the time after the destruction of the Southern Shaolin and its associated temples by the Qing government. After Wing Chun rebuffs the local warlord's marriage offer, he says he'll rescind his proposal if she can beat him in a martial art match. She asks a Buddhist nun- Ng Mui, who was one of the Shaolin Sect survivors, to teach her boxing; this still nameless style enables Yim Wing Chun to defeat the warlord. She thereafter marries Leung Bac-Chou and teaches him the style, which he names after her.

Since the system was developed during the Shaolin and Ming resistance to the Qing Dynasty many legends about the creator of Wing Chun were spread to confuse the enemy, including the story of Yim Wing Chun. This perhaps explains why no one has been able to accurately determine the creator or creators of Wing Chun.

Yip Man was well respected by other martial arts instructors in Foshan and Hong Kong. He was the first person to teach Wing Chun to a wider public. The style he taught was renamed Ving Tsun based on the sound in Chinese. After his death, many of his students formed separate schools.

Yip Man was well-known for having a very quick wit and an acid tongue. His teaching style, along with the very direct nature of the art and its despising of superfluous talk, infuses the art with a certain edginess. This is probably why Ving Tsun is well-known for being split into many factions.

A notable student of Yip Man was Leung Ting. Leung Ting formed the IWTA or International Wing Tsun Association and taught an American student named Jeff Webb. Sifu Jeff Webb earned the rank of 5th degree level Master under Leung Ting and was the Head Instructor for IWTA North America for many years. Master Sifu Jeff Webb left the IWTA to formulate his own theories and innovations on the style and started the NVTO National Ving Tsun Organization which has had great success. This is our branch of Ving Tsun Kung Fu. We are the NVTO Amesbury Ving Tsun branch.



History of Yang Style Taijiquan

From a modern historical perspective, when tracing tai chi's formative influences to Taoist and Buddhist monasteries, there seems little more to go on than legendary tales. Nevertheless, some traditional schools claim that tai chi has a practical connection to and dependence upon the theories of Song dynasty Neo-Confucianism (a conscious synthesis of Taoist, Buddhist, and Confucian traditions, especially the teachings of Mencius).  These schools believe that tai chi's theories and practice were formulated by the Taoist monk Zhang Sanfeng in the 12th century, at about the same time that the principles of the Neo-Confucian school were making themselves felt in Chinese intellectual life.  However, modern research casts serious doubts on the validity of those claims, pointing out that a 17th-century piece called "Epitaph for Wang Zhengnan" (1669), composed by Huang Zongxi (1610–1695), is the earliest reference indicating any connection between Zhang Sanfeng and martial arts whatsoever, and must not be taken literally but must be understood as a political metaphor instead. Claims of connections between tai chi and Zhang Sanfeng appeared no earlier than the 19th century.

History records that Yang Luchan trained with the Chen family for 18 years before he started to teach the art in Beijing, which strongly suggests that his art was based on, or heavily influenced by, the Chen family art. The Chen family are able to trace the development of their art back to Chen Wangting in the 17th century. Martial arts historian Xu Zhen believed that the tai chi of Chen Village had been influenced by the Taizu changquan style practiced at the nearby Shaolin Monastery, while Tang Hao thought it was derived from a treatise by the Ming dynasty general Qi Jiguang, Jixiao Xinshu ("New Treatise on Military Efficiency"), which discussed several martial arts styles including Taizu changquan.

The Yang family first became involved in the study of t'ai chi ch'uan (taijiquan) in the early 19th century. The founder of the Yang-style was Yang Luchan (楊露禪), aka Yang Fu-k'ui (楊福魁, 1799–1872), who studied under Ch'en Chang-hsing starting in 1820. Yang became a teacher in his own right, and his subsequent expression of t'ai chi ch'uan became known as the Yang-style, and directly led to the development of other three major styles of t'ai chi ch'uan (see below). Yang Luchan (and some would say the art of t'ai chi ch'uan, in general) came to prominence as a result of his being hired by the Chinese Imperial family to teach t'ai chi ch'uan to the elite Palace Battalion of the Imperial Guards in 1850, a position he held until his death.

Yang Luchan passed on his art to:

  • his third son Yang Chien-hou (Jianhou) (1839–1917), who passed it to his sons, Yang Shao-hou (楊少侯, 1862–1930) and Yang Chengfu (楊澄甫, 1883–1936) and Niu Chunming (1881–1961).

Yang Jianhou the third son Yang Chien-hou (Jianhou) (1839–1917) passed on the middle frame long form, sometimes called the 2nd generation Yang form or the Yang Jian hou form to his disciples who still pass on this more martial form that is when seen more reminiscent of Chen style for which it is closer to in time as well as form than the Yang Cheng fu form or 3rd generation styles. Yang Chengfu removed the vigorous fā jìn (發勁 release of power) from the Hand (solo) Form, as well as the energetic jumping, stamping, and other abrupt movements in order to emphasise the Da jia (大架 large frame style), but retained them in the Weapons (sword, saber, staff, and spear) forms. The Hand Form has slow, steady, expansive and soft movements suitable for general practitioners. Thus, Yang Chengfu is largely responsible for standardizing and popularizing the Yang-style t'ai chi ch'uan widely practised today.



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History of Modern Arnis

Remy Presas studied his family's system from an early age. He went on to study the Japanese systems of Shotokan Karate and Judo, achieving high rank in each; but he simultaneously studied a variety of other Filipino systems, most notably Venancio Bacon's Balintawak . Beginning with a small gymnasium in Bacolod in the 1950s, he attempted to spread the art to the local youth as both a cultural legacy and a form of physical development or sport. He taught the art at the University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos. His desire to reinvigorate interest in his country's traditional martial art grew over time, and he began making modifications and improvements to what he had learned. In 1969 he moved to Manila at the request of a government official, and formed the Modern Arnis Federation of the Philippines. He was assisted by individuals such as those who now are on the Modern Arnis Senior Masters Council: Rodel Dagooc, Jerry dela Cruz, Roland Dantes, Vicente Sanchez, Rene Tongson and Cristino Vasquez. He continued to develop and spread his art, including via books, until political considerations forced him to relocate to North America.

There he met Wally Jay, George Dillman, and other artists who influenced his development of the art of Modern Arnis. In particular, many locks from Small Circle Jujitsu were added to Modern Arnis. The art continued to grow and change, in technique and in emphasis, though it always retained a focus on the single stick and on general self-defense. Those who trained with Remy Presas in the United States in the 1970s and early 1980s experienced the art differently from those who began training in the late 1990s. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s he traveled extensively for seminars – the principal form of instruction in the system was through weekend training camps held around the world but especially in the U.S. – and produced books and videos. During the 1990s Wally Jay, Remy Presas (Modern Arnis), and Jack Hogan (Kyusho Jitsu) traveled together throughout the United States and worldwide promulgating small-circle jujitsu. At that time many elements of Small Circle JuJitsu were well integrated into Modern Arnis.




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History of BJJ / Submission Wrestling 

BJJ / Submission Wrestling came to international prominence in the martial arts community in the early 1990s, when Brazilian jiu-jitsu expert Royce Gracie won the first, second and fourth Ultimate Fighting Championships, which at the time were single elimination martial arts tournaments. Royce fought against often much larger opponents who were practicing other styles, including boxing, shoot-fighting, muay thai, karate, wrestling, judo and tae kwon do. It has since become a staple art for many MMA fighters and is largely credited for bringing widespread attention to the importance of ground fighting. Sport Grappling tournaments continue to grow in popularity worldwide and have given rise to no-gi submission grappling tournaments, such as the ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship.

Submission wrestling (also known as submission fighting, submission grappling, sport grappling, or simply as no-gi is a general term for martial arts and combat sports that focus on clinch and ground fighting with the aim of obtaining a submission through the use of submission holds. The term "submission wrestling" usually refers only to the form of competition and training that does not use a gi, or "combat kimono", of the sort often worn with belts that establish rank by color, though some may use the loose trousers of such a uniform, without the jacket.

The sport of submission wrestling brings together techniques from folk wrestling (Catch wrestling a.k.a. catch-as-catch-can), Judo, Greco-Roman wrestling, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, jujutsu (of the traditional form),Shuai Jiao, and Sambo.

Submission fighting as an element of a larger sport setting is very common in mixed martial arts, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, catch wrestling, and others. They are also known for using submission techniques normally banned in other arts or competitions such as heel hooks, toe holds, wrist and finger locks.

Submission Wrestling promotes the concept that a smaller, weaker person can successfully defend against a bigger, stronger assailant by using leverage and proper technique, taking the fight to the ground – most notably by applying joint-locks and chokeholds to defeat the other person.



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History of Sanshou (Sanda) Kickboxing

Sanda is translated to English as ‘freestyle fighting’. It was created by the Chinese military in the time of the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (around the 1920’s) rule in Mainland China prior to the Communist takeover.

The Chinese Nationalist Party or Guomindang aka Kuomintang used Sada for the training of its military for unarmed combat.  The Sanda system of combat is based in traditional Kung fu as well Shuai Jiao (similar to Judo) and China Na (grappling and joint manipulation) as well as modern combat fighting systems and martial arts, to create a realistic and effective form of unarmed fighting for the military and Elite Forces. 

Following the Communist takeover of China in 1949, Sanda was not widely practiced or taught for many years. This was until the 1970s when the wushu or martial arts associations of China began creating sporting competition and tournaments for the traditional Chinese martial arts.

Wushu associations of China established rules and point systems for scoring Sanda matches as well as increasing competitor safety through protective gear and removing the more lethal and deadly techniques such as strikes to the throat.

The sport of Sanda began to really rise in popularity when competitive fighters and coaches began receiving consistent salaries from the State Government. 

In the 1990’s with Sanda competition appearing more regularly on national television the sport virtually exploded in popularity.

Today in China the most prestigious and important martial arts even is the National Wushu and Sanda Championships. Competitors are well looked after in terms of salaries, medical bills, food and travel for fights. Winners of the national championship enjoy generous cash rewards and sponsorship as well as national recognition for their Sanda accomplishments.



Image result for history of chin naHistory of Qinna (Chin Na)

All martial arts contain qinna techniques in some degree. The southern Chinese martial arts have more developed qinna techniques than northern Chinese martial systems. The southern martial arts have much more prevalent reliance on hand techniques which causes the practitioner to be in closer range to their opponent. There are over 700 qinna traditional techniques found in all martial arts. In the Non-Temple White Crane style there are 150-200 qinna techniques alone. Along with Fujian White Crane, styles such as Northern Eagle Claw (Ying Jow Pai) and Tiger Claw (Fu Jow Pai) have qinna as their martial focus and tend to rely on these advanced techniques.

While techniques of qinna are trained to some degree by most martial arts worldwide, many Chinese martial arts are famous for their specialization in such applications. Styles such as Eagle Claw (Ying zhua quán), which includes 108 qinna techniques, Praying Mantis (Tánglángquán), the Tiger Claw techniques of Hung Gar, and Shuai Jiao are well known examples.

There is quite a bit of overlap between qinna theory and technique with the branches of Traditional Chinese Medicine known as tui na as well as the use of offensive and defensive qigong as an adjunct of qinna training in some styles.