Zimenquan

 

Rare footage of traditional old style Zimenquan.
Taiping Wuguan

The rare art of Zimenquan is known as an internal martial and is practiced in the little known Jiangxi province which is tucked away in the south central plains of China. Founded around 300 years ago by Master Yu Kerang, who was a native of Qingjiang (nowadays known as Zhangshu City) in Jiangxi province. Since a young age he practised the local martial arts (likely an early variant of Yingmen or Yuejiaquan) and excelled in his combat skills. It is said that after defeating all locals in combat he came across a old master that easily overcame his techniques, with shame after losing he set out on a quest to learn from masters in Fujian, who were regarded as experts after various bouts with pirates on their coastlines.

In Minnan (South Fujian province) he was said to have studied Hequan and Houquan for many years. He also travelled northward to Zhejiang province where he also studied from Wudang masters Wang Zhengnan. He gained the essence of both fujian shaolin and Wudang martial arts.

Upon his return to Jiangxi, he sought out the old master that defeated him but unfortunately he had disappeared (or passed away) many years earlier. He did come across one of his students but Yu Kerang was again defeated by the seemingly unstoppable touches (Wu Bai Qian) of the young master. After a few years of pondering and mutual learning Yu Kerang developed Zimenquan (some suggest that Famequan was the art passed on by the other master), which he was said to have summarised by the observation of the spirit of the Eagle and snake. He also put together the classic 8 character outline of the system and thereafter became known as Zimenquan (or Yu Jiaquan).

Zimenquan and Famenquan became famous throughout Jiangxi province, for generations the number of practitioners kept expanding so much so that up until 1947, annual competitions/gatherings were held in Nanchang, where many interchanges and developments took place. This also commenced some substyles or classifications such as Lao Zimen, Xin Zimen, Fazimen and others. There were many masters but some outstanding practitioners such as Zhu Zilong, Deng Jinlong, Mao Lin and others were acknowledged as keepers of the art.
Zimenquan is a martial art that emphasises strategy and direct combat applicability, as a result when Yu Kerang formulated the 8 characters, he essentially had a summary of all the key strategies into 8 Zi (Characters), each Zi is also a Taolu (Routine) and each Zi contains an essential approach/strategy.
For more information visit:
Taiping Wuguan
[Taiping Traditional Chinese Martial Arts Institute]
http://www.satirio.com/ma/home.html

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