There are a lot of things that this could be about, given that I see that the blog and the art that it’s centered upon is more important than the person behind it, but people will want to know about both. I’ll try to give both a little space here.
About the blog
This blog, as I mentioned in the first introductory post I made on it, is about my renewed attempts to put some of my thoughts about training martial arts, particularly Yin Style Baguazhang. Mostly, I want to talk about martial arts, training martial arts, and how I think Yin Style gets it right. I also want to talk about my thoughts about how to train better and how to take care of yourself while you do it. Additionally, I’ll probably seek to set the record straight sometimes on what some people try to pass off as “real” internal martial arts, by which I mean fantasy martial arts and other mystical poppycock posing as fighting arts.
I have the privilege of running a Yin Style Baguazhang study group, the one in Knoxville, TN, and that gives me a lot of ideas for things to share where it comes to what is important about getting right with your training if you want to succeed in an art like Yin Style Bagua, and I have enough experience with martial arts now (almost twenty years, in fact) to say that YSB is demanding enough so that if you can get your YSB training right, you can get any training right. In other words, this blog should be useful, at least by analogy, to anyone who trains anything, especially any martial art. That’s the idea, anyway.
I am a student of a martial art called Yin Style Baguazhang, and I train it with a man who lives in Beijing who is named He Jinbao. For those who are concerned with such things, He Jinbao is the direct inheritor of the YSB system from his teacher Dr. Xie Peiqi, who in turn received it from Men Baozhen, who received it from Yin Fu after whom it is named, who received it from the progenitor of baguazhang, Dong Haichuan. I train in a way that I hope best lets me live up to that lineage, given the difficult constraints of a busy modern life. I also write, as in sometimes professionally.
My real job, however, is as a bodyworker. I therefore have a pretty good working knowledge of the body, and especially am pretty knowledgeable about keeping it in optimal working order given the demands of a demanding training regimen. Hopefully I’ll have time to share that here or there.
Though I’m not a huge fan of talking about my YSB or martial arts bona fides, I started martial arts in the fall of 1995, studying karate, took up some Brazilian jiu-jitsu for a while, dabbled in MMA during its infancy, poked around at a handful of other “traditional” arts, and then met He Jinbao in 2006 and pretty much gave up on all that other stuff in a big hurry. I’ve been training Yin Style Bagua nearly exclusively since then.
About Yin Style Baguazhang
Instead of going on at length about the martial art called Yin Style Baguazhang here, I’ll direct you first to the Yin Style Baguazhang, International, homepage. In short, YSB is one of the most formidable and least-known martial arts on the planet, and it lends a lot of credit to traditional martial arts, or it would were it better known. It’s an art characterized by a few points: moving while continuously striking, putting intention of action as the primary focus, developing the body in concert with refining fighting skills, moving and striking in unorthodox ways from unexpected angles, and, more than anything else, changing with the situation that is at hand. It is in this last point that Yin Style is brilliant not only as a martial art but also as a kind of infrastructure to build a successful approach to living life.