Book Reviews

/Book Reviews
16 04, 2015
  • Wisdom of Taiji Masters

Wisdom of Taiji Masters

Wisdom of Taiji Masters, by Nigel Sutton, a martial artist with more than 40 years’ experience, describes the teachings, principles, and body-mind-spirit development of Tài Jí Quán (太極拳) as taught by Cheng Man Ching, based on the recollections and writings of two generations of masters in Malaysia. The wide-ranging discussions with the eight masters cover the popular fighting applications of Tài Jí Quán in Southeast Asia as well as Nèi Gōng (內功) (internal) training, offering the reader a balanced look at all aspects of the art.

17 03, 2015
  • The Hong Kong Martial Arts Community

The Hong Kong Martial Arts Community

The Hong Kong Martial Arts Community - Chinese-language edition, 2014 – by Bernard Kwan. This compilation of articles by Hing Chao and the International Guoshu Association, is reprinted from 2013-2014 issues of Ming Pao Weekly magazine. It details the history of the martial arts community in Hong Kong and provides a genealogy of styles; a study of sociological, economic and demographic forces in the 18th and 19th centuries that led to new styles of Kung Fu imported to Hong Kong; and the 20th century transmission and dissemination of styles through migration and other political factors. The work will be of interest to all who value Hong Kong’s intangible cultural heritage.

10 03, 2015
  • Chinese Martial Arts: From Antiquity to the Twenty-First Century

Chinese Martial Arts: From Antiquity to the Twenty-First Century

Chinese Martial Arts: From Antiquity to the Twenty-First Century, by Peter Lorge. This fascinating survey of martial arts in Chinese society describes how CMA derived primarily from military skills associated with armed and unarmed combat. Lorge, a founder of the Chinese Military History Society, traces developments from the Shang and Zhou periods to the present. In different time periods the focus of martial arts has included convoy security, wrestling, performance art and entertainment, and, in modern times, a marketable commodity influenced by legends and popular films.

5 02, 2015
  • Chinese Martial Arts Training Manuals: A Historical Survey

Chinese Martial Arts Training Manuals: A Historical Survey

Chinese Martial Arts Training Manuals: A Historical Survey, by Brian Kennedy and Elizabeth Guo. This collection of historic martial arts training manuals introduces Western readers to diverse writings on principles, techniques, and forms of various systems, offering insights and placing them in the wider cultural context of Chinese martial arts during the Ming and Qing dynasties and the Republican period. Illustrations include rare photographs and original drawings. Among the topics covered are lives of the masters, the Imperial military examinations, Chinese boxing and wrestling, military strategy, and the significance of the Shaolin Temple.

27 01, 2015

Finding You in a World of It

Finding You in a World of It, by Rick Barrett. A long-time martial artist and practitioner of energy healing medicine, Barrett has written a clear, powerful, and easy to follow guide to living, to finding our authentic place in today’s busy and over-stimulated world. His prescriptions for meditation, for freeing ourselves from the assumptions that bind us, for centering our consciousness and for relating more fully to other people, offer a way to calm the body, focus the mind, and cope with stress, as we move toward the goal of becoming more truly alive.

22 01, 2015

Taijiquan: The Art of Nurturing, The Science of Power

Taijiquan: The Art of Nurturing, the Science of Power, by Yang Yang. The book addresses issues such as mindful meditation, goals of forms practice, and Push Hands as a Qigong exercise. Drawing on a traditional martial arts background as well as a doctoral degree in kinesiology, Yang presents Taiji as both art and science, using examples from both Eastern and Western traditions. He gives guidelines for choosing a teacher, demystifies the Wuji state, and advocates efficiency in practice in order to maximize the benefits of Taiji practice.

8 01, 2015

The Cheng School Gao Style Baguazhang Manual

The Cheng School Gao Style Baguazhang Manual: Gao Yisheng’s Bagua Twisting-Body Connected Palm, by Gao Yisheng (edited by Liu Fengcai). This illustrated Bagua manual covers lineage, history, and techniques of Gao Yisheng’s system, discusses the connection of Bagua to the I Ching (Yijing), The Book of Changes, and offers guidelines for practice of the Pre- and Post-Heaven 64 Palm sequences.

15 12, 2014
  • Hung Kuen Training

Hung Kuen Training

Hung Kuen Training: Chin Cheung & Fok Fu Kuen Deui Chak, by Lam Chun Fai & Hing Chao, is the second volume of the Hung Kuen Fundamentals series. It is an outstanding work on Hung Gar, one of the most popular systems of Southern Boxing. Written in both English and Chinese, with numerous illustrations, it offers comprehensive coverage of many aspects of the art: history and lineage, techniques, forms, and combat applications.

12 12, 2014

Paths Less Travelled

Paths Less Travelled, A Personal Memoir, by Hon K. Lee, recounts his success and fulfillment along multiple paths as scholar, warrior, teacher, and healer, who also happened to be a spy. Lee trained in several Chinese Martial Arts styles including Jow Ga, Jow Ga, Eagle Claw, White Eyebrow, Shaolin, and Tai Chi, as well as Traditional Chinese Medicine. The book is a fast-paced, enriching account of a fascinating personal and cultural journey.

23 11, 2014
  • Fundamentals of High Performance Wushu

Fundamentals of High Performance Wushu

Fundamentals of High Performance Wushu: Taolu Jumps and Spins, by Raymond Wu, is a valuable reference for learning jumping and spinning kicks in Traditional Northern Chinese Martial Arts. Includes explanations of body mechanics as well as practice drills and exercises. Techniques covered are Jump Front Kick, Jump Inside Kick, Running Jump Outside Kick, Standing Jump Outside Kick, Butterfly Kick, Butterfly Twist, Aerial, Aerial Twist, Back Sweep, and Front Sweep.