Yin Fu and Bagua Zhang

Yin Fu (1841-1910)

Typically, Yin Fu had a number of Chinese names including Yin De’An and Yin ShouPeng. He also had a number of nick names such as Shou Yin (thin Yin) commenting on his figure and MaHua Yin (fried dough twist Yin) referring to his job. Born in ZhangTan village, located in Ji County: Hebai province. When he was young he studied LoHan (disciple of Buddha) Kung Fu and Tan Tui (Spring Leg) Kung Fu. He was known for his light body skills and high jumps along with his manipulation of the short weapon known as the Judge’s Pens. He moved to Beijing and stayed in the JiShiKou area beyond the ChaoYang Gate. When he was not selling dough twists he studied Bagua Zhang under the creator of the style: Dong Hai Chuan. He spent ten years in intense study and caught the essence of the art. Eventually his method was gived a name, Yin Branch of Bagua Zhang. It’s emphasis was on the Ox Tongue Palm—a fingers-taut and together shape—and sharp, cold, quick, hard and fierce energy. He used springy and shaky strength with a special skill in straight energy.

Yin Fu first taught at the ShanPu Barracks and then was asked to teach in the palace of Prince Su. After the death of his teacher, he inherited the teaching position of the Inner Palace. He was the teacher of Emperor GuangZhe. He also instructed bodyguards, eunuchs and other house personnel. Because he was working with distracted, lazy students he altered the teaching to fit the audience by toning it down to a soft, small, light and subtle style with the real content still hidden inside.

Since Yin Fu also continued teaching at the area near his home, ChaoYang Gate, his style became known as North City Bagua. Later he became a civil servant a customs offier and a tax collector. He also operated a home protection service.

Yin Fu’s skills with his fingers were supposed to be unmatched. He practiced on a signboard dotting it with his finger strikes and earning the name of Iron Ring Thin Yin.

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