To "fix" Taiwanese martial arts

On this board over the years I have heard a lot of people talk about Taiwanese/Chinese martial arts and how they ought to be reformed/modernized or otherwise straightened out and how various things like MMA/UFC/PRIDE/San Da will fare here in Taiwan.

Let me make a suggestion to folks. Before one starts talking about how things in the Taiwanese martial arts world ought to change, it might be wise to learn a bit about the history of Taiwanese martial arts.

A great way to do that is by buying a great new book titled:
Chinese Martial Arts Training Manuals: A Historical Survey (Paperback)
by Brian Kennedy, Elizabeth Guo

The Amazon site for it is: … s&v=glance

It has a chapter on Taiwanese martial arts history. The only other english language book that really discusses Taiwanese martial arts history in any detail is Robert Smiths Chinese Boxing: Masters and Methods (its focus was on the situation here in the early 1960s).

And yes, I am the coauthor.

The other suggestion I would make to folks is to step back and look at Taiwanese society in general; is Taiwan a society where participation in sports is valued? Is Taiwan a society that spends a lot of money on sports type recreations. And last but not least; is Taiwan the kind of society where the people work together in cooperation to better the society or----(uh, well, I have an opinion but I am trying to be more cyber compassionate, so I will keep my comments about Taiwanese society to myself.)

Martial arts does not exist in a vacuum; the success or failure of martial arts in any society is a result of various social factors.

Another thing for the MMA folks to remember is that Tai Chi Chuan maybe a fucking joke as far as fighting goes but Tai Chi Chuan rules the martial arts world on this island. The group I train taiji with (The ROC Tai Chi Association headed by Zhan Lao shi) has (and I am not bull shi**ng about this; I am reasonably confident of these figures); it has 160,000 members in 111 groups spread out over the island.

Back when I was with Andy I would guess his school had

tai chi a joke for fighting well 99.9% of people that do tai chi chuan are a joke as far as fighting goes yes. However English tai chi master Dan Docherty is a good fighter. He has won several full contact kung fu competitions in Asia and i have personally met him. Yeah he is tough, and he learnt in Hong Kong Wu tang tai chi chuan, No he would,'t win against Chuck Liddel, but none the less he is pretty handy!
I’m sure you can look the guys site up on the internet it is interesting.


Brian, can your book be bought in any stores in Taiwan?

Taiwanese: “Haya!”
Me: Raise arm in a fist and hit on top of head.

j99 martial arts.