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Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan

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   Yang style tai chi chuan in its many variations is the most popular and widely practiced style in the world today and the second in terms of seniority among the primary five family styles of tai chi chuan.


  The Yang family first became involved in the study of tai chi chan in the early 1800s. The founder of the Yang style was Yang Lu-ch'an, aka Yang Fu-k'ui, who studied under Ch'en Chang-hsing starting in 1820. Yang's subsequent expression of tai chi chuan as a teacher in his own right became known as the Yang style, and directly led to the development of the other three major styles of tai chi chuan. Yang Lu-ch'an came to prominence as a result of his being hired by the to teach tai chi chuan to the elite Palace Battalion of the Imperial Guards in 1850, a position he held until his death.
  Yang Lu-ch'an passed his art to: his second son but oldest son to live to maturity, Yang Pan-hou, who was also retained as a martial arts instructor by the Chinese Imperial family. Yang Pan-hou became the formal teacher of Wu Ch'uan-y, a Manchu cavalry officer of the Palace Battalion, even though Yang Lu-ch'an was Wu Ch'uan-y's first tai chi chuan teacher. Wu Ch'uan-y became Yang Pan-hou's first disciple. Wu Ch'uan-y's son, Wu Chien-ch'an , also a Banner officer, became known as the co-founder. His third son Yang Chien-hou passed it to his sons, Yang Shao-hou and Yang Ch'eng-fu. Wu Yu-hsiang who also developed his own, which eventually, after three generations, led to the development of Sun style tai chi chuan.
  Yang Ch'eng-fu removed the vigorous ''Fa-jing'', energetic jumping, stamping, and other abrupt movements to emphasise ''Ta Chia''. This style has slow, steady, expansive and soft movements suitable for general practitioners. Thus, Yang Ch'eng-fu is largely responsible for standardizing and popularizing the Yang style tai chi chan widely practiced today. Yang Ch'eng-fu moved to Shanghai in the 1920s, teaching there until the end of his life. His descendants are still teaching in schools associated with their family internationally.
  Tung Ying-chieh, Ch'en Wei-ming Fu Zhongwen, Li Yaxuan and Cheng Man-ch'ing were famous students of Yang Ch'eng-fu. Each of them taught extensively, founding groups teaching T'ai Chi to this day. Cheng Man-ch'ing, perhaps the most famous outside of China, significantly shortened and simplified the traditional forms Yang taught him.

From the Elektrikrevue Tai Chi Chuan Blog Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan.

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