Grandmaster Yang Lu Chan

Grandmaster Yang Lu Chan, the Founder of Yang Style Taijiquan. This photograph is reproduced from

The following discussion is reproduced from the thread What is Genuine, Traditional Taijiquan? started in the Shaolin Wahnam Discussion Forum on 5th June 2006.

"I am not sure whether the generations of past Taijiquan masters who were famous for the legendary fighting ability would find your assessment funny or insulting! Probably funny."

-- Sifu Robin Gamble

10th June 2006

"don't think Wahnam Taijichuan is better than what masters taught in the past."

I meant that it is better for us as students than what was taught in the past. What you can get for 6 hours of training with Sifu is impressive. Who knows what you would get from Lu Chaun after 6 hours? The time of day maybe? It's too late to find out!

But Lu Chaun was best known for his fighting ability. He is not known for his chi kung, whereas Sifu Wong seems to be known for chi kung especially. I don't know if Lu Chaun knew all the chi kung arts that Sifu Wong does, or if he could use them to benefit others to such an extent. If the Yangs were chi kung masters at a level like Sifu's, it doesn't seem to be obviously reflected in their lineage holders. Most of the old Yang inheritors tend to emphasize combat training and fine tuned control more than building internal force through the various types of chi kung.

Would Lu Chaun have been able to defeat moderns like the Gracies or Machado? Not a clue. And that discussion would bring is into the realm of bad kung-fu as listed above.

Anthony Korahais Sifu Anthony Korahais
Instructor, Shaolin Wahnam USA
10th June 2006

"Would Lu Chaun have been able to defeat moderns like the Gracies or Machado?"

Are you on a first-name basis with Yang Lu Chan?

Yes, he absolutely would have been able to defeat modern fighters. How can I know this if Yang Lu Chan is long deceased, and I never met him? Because I can do the maths.

Sifu Wong thinks that he would be like a child compared to Yang Lu Chan. I know how powerful my sifu is, so I can do the math and figure out roughly how powerful Yang Lu Chan was. If Sifu can kill with one gentle strike (which he can), then imagine what Yang Lu Chan could do.

Once you really get into internal force training, you start to view a whole new paradigm. In that paradigm, single and double-leg takedowns are just suicide. It's like offering your head on a platter.

Anthony Korahais Shaolin Wahnam, Florida

"Do not believe in something simply because you have heard it repeated, nor in traditions just because they've been handed down for many generations, nor in rumors, nor in scriptures, nor in something based on conjecture, nor in an axiom, nor in specious logic, nor in a previous bias, nor in another's seeming ability. Instead, after careful observation and analysis, when you yourself know that something is wise, that it will lead to benefit and happiness for one and all, then accept it and live up to it." -- The Buddha, from The Kalama Sutta

10th June 2006

"Yang" isn't all that descriptive. I'm just fond of short forms. TCC and SKF are MAs... classified as TCMAs as opposed MMAs, and definately IMAs.

Sifu's word on it is good enough for me. He said in one of the Q&As that he has a large collection of Taoist classics and can read the old Chinese. I on the other hand don't know much about Yang Lu Chan other than what's in Sifu Wong's books and a few others. I find it odd though that people who claim an old Yang lineage do not seem to be able to perform or teach the feats attributed to Yang Lu Chan. Did he just not teach anyone?

Killing an internationally recognized jujitsu master with the touch of a finger is quite a feat. I don't think too many in the Yang lineage would claim that capability. I bear in mind that we all thought the Macau fight was a battle of masters until we actually saw the video.

And despite his accomplishments, Sifu is after all very modest...

Cross-Hand Thrust Kick

Sifu Robin Gamble demonstrating a counter against an attack from Greg, using a pattern as "Cross-Hand Thrust Kick" in Yang Style Taijiquan

Robin Gamble Sifu Robin Gamble
Instructor, Shaolin Wahnam England
10th June 2006

Interesting Debate

Hello all,

I am very happy to see such a lively debate concerning 'genuine Taijiquan' and some very interesting comments.

Originally posted by Yeniseri:
"It is an impossibility to see skill in statics postures or even execution. Tai chi fighting has never existed and never will. As long as I can see expression like peng, lu, ji an, etc in application I can be sure it is genuine."

Yeniseri, that is quite an amusing and sweeping comment. I am not sure whether the generations of past Taijiquan masters who were famous for the legendary fighting ability would find your assessment funny or insulting! Probably funny.

Onwards with the debate!

You may like to find out here what a Taijiquan master like Yang Lu Chan would do if a Muai Thai fighter grabs his neck or head and throws continuous knees into his ribs.

In that webpage, Grandmaster Wong says:

"So if a modern fighter were so foolish as to grab Yang Lu Chan's neck or head and threw continuous knees into his ribs, the Taijiquan patriarch might not even bother to apply those counter techniques illustrated by Goh and me above, he would just give the attacker a powerful palm strike. Yang Lu Chan would not kill him, although he could, but he would send the attacker falling many feet away."

What is Genuine, Traditional Taijiquan?


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