Excerpts from our Favorites


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One of our most popular books is the Xing Yi studies of Sun Lu Tang translated by Albert Liu and edited by Dan Miller. Sun knowledge and skill were supposed to be extra-ordinary even if his daughter reminds us that they grew exaggerated with time. Here’s a bit about a challenge Sun faced of international import

Sun became very well know for his Taiji Quan methods and his ability to apply it. He was so well known that word of his skill had reached Japan. A famous Japanese martial artist was so determined to test Sun’s skill that he convinced the Emperor of Japan to send him to China to fight Sun. In 1921, the Japanese martial artist came to visit Sun  and, speaking through an interpreter, said, “I heard that you practice a Chinese martial art method which uses soft to overcome hard. Well, I am hard! How do you want to fight me? I will fight with any rules or any weapons.” Sun turned to the interpreter and said, “Since he is a guest in our country, I will let him decide.” The Japanese challenger said, “I am going to use hard strength to take your arm in a lock and break it. Let’s see if you can use your soft energy to overcome that!” Sun, who at 5’7″ barely came to the Japanese man’s shoulder, was willing to give it a try. Concerned that Sun could simply move his feet and get away from the lock, or wiggle his arm out of the lock, the challenger said, “I want you to overcome this technique without running around.” Sun said, “I can accommodate you.”

Sun had the spectators move all of the furniture aside and cleared a space on the floor. He said, “I will lie here on the floor, your students can hold my feet, and you can apply your technique. I’ll even put my other arm behind my back.”  Sun laid on the floor and the Japanese martial artist took hold of his arm. The interpreter counted, “One, two, three!” At the count of three Sun quickly pulled his free arm out from behind his back and applied a point strike to his opponent’s stomach. This point strike caused the Japanese challenger to loose his grip on Sun’s other arm and Sun hopped up. Sun struck a few other points on his opponent’s body and threw him into a bookcase. The bookcase fell on top of the challenger. The interpreter shouted, “You’ve hurt him!” Sun said, “He’ll be all right. Tell him when he gets up and catches his breath we can try it again.” His opponent, admitting defeat, refused to try again.

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2 Responses to “Excerpts from our Favorites”

  1. Charlie Thompson says:

    I love these old stories, they give me much inspiration
    to keep on trainin, A little comical in a way, but true story, I’m sure of it. Wang Shu Jin Taught a few lessons to the Japanese in his days as well. This is great stuff, Thanks.

  2. Jeff says:

    He used the Wuxi Finger Hold.

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