Association News

Last updated 2014-05-28

Simon Watson Seminar in Potters Bar

Simon Watson Seminar 2014

Simon Watson gave his annual Daoyin seminar in Potters Bar on Saturday February 22nd.

Since the 12 forms Daoyin was well known to most of those who attended Simon was able to go into some of the deeper aspects of the exercises.

As well as the Chinese medical theory and breathing he was able to pass on some cultural anecdotes about the names of the movements.

Those attending had an enjoyable and informative time.

British Health Qigong Association Festival in Ewell

Group demonstrationThe British Health Qigong Association (BHQA) held a Qigong and Taiji festival in Ewell, Near Epsom, Surrey, at the end of April.

The Mayor of Epsom and Ewell attended along with representatives of the Chinese Health Qigong Association and the Chinese Embassy and over 300 Qigong and Taiji practicioners from around the country. Nearly 300 people, including several from the English DYYSG Association, took part in a mass demonstration of some of the Qigong sets the BHQA promote as well as the 24 step Taijiquan form. There were also some demonstrations by local schoolchildren.

Group demonstrationThe BHQA now includes Professor Zhang's Twelve Movement set among the Qigong exercises they promote. The Twelve Movement set is the only one devised by a living master, the others: Yi Jing Jin; Wu Qin Xi; Ba Duan Jin and Liu Zi Jue; being traditional. However, since it is the newest and fewer people have leart it so far, it was not included in the demonstraions.

The BHQA is run by our old friends Faye and Tary Yip and the organisers of this event included Vicky Ahern and Tony Hardiman whom many of our memebers will know.

Helped by the power of Qi keeping the rain off until all the outdoor activities were over, the Mayor and the rest of the delegation seemed to enjoy and be suitably impressed by the event.

Phoenix Cup competition in Datong

A personal report by Erik Foxcroft.

Sally and I received invitations to the First Shanxi Yangsheng Taiji competition (the Phoenix Cup) in Datong last November. Datong is about 350km West of Beijing in the North of Shanxi province, near the Mongolian border and looked like an interesting place to visit, so we planned a holiday around the event so we could watch the competition, take part in the workshop and do some sightseeing in a part of China we had not visited before (albeit in the August heat).

When Professor Zhang heard we were coming, the only ones from this country, he said we should take part in the competition, so we both opted to do the two Taiji Jin exercises and I entered the Daoyin Baojian Gong as well.

We had hardly arrived in Beijing when we heard that an official in Datong had decided that the organisers could not have Taiji and Qigong in the same competition, so we would not be able to compete after all. We decided to enjoy our few days in Beijing and then go on to watch the competition.

We travelled to Datong on a coach with Zhang Jian and atendees from several other countries including Indonesia, Singapore, Germany, Denmark, France, China and 19 from Belgium! It was an interesting four hour journey through the Chinese countryside.

On the journey Zhang Jian told us that the Taiji Jin forms were still included in the competition, so we would be able to take part after all. Fortunately we practise these forms regularly enough so that the lack of work for the previous few days should not make much difference.

In the evening there was an opening ceremony in the university indoor stadium where the competition would take place. Several groups of a wide range of ages and talents entertained us with dances and displays of wushu, Daoyin and Yangsheng Taiji. A local TV station was there to record it all.

On the following day Sally decided that her knee was not up to taking part (after all the walking round Beijing and four hours on a coach). So I went into the competition on my own. It was rather chaotic but fortunately my events were among the first so I was able to get them out of the way and relax whilst I watched the rest of the competition. I was quite pleased to score 9.6 for both sets but I did not get to see a full list of results. There were three judging areas in the stadium to cope with the large number of entries and we watched the belgian team perform one of the Taiji Bang sets and smaller teams perform some of the Yangsheng Taiji Palm forms. A few people were so keen to compete that, having their Daoyin Yangsheng Gong sets cancelled, they learned a new set, which did qualify for the competition, just the week before.

As the training had been changed as well as the competition we spent the afternoon and the next day sightseeing at the Heng Shan hanging monastery, the Yingxian wooden pagoda and the Yungang grottoes, all of which are well worth visiting.

In the evening of the 13th the closing ceremony was held at our hotel. It was a large gathering with a meal and lots of demonstrations of martial arts, Daoyin, music and dancing. The Indonesian group demonstrated one of their traditional dances (which looked like line dancing) and got everyone dancing along. Professor Zhang was obviously enjoying it and after a short while he got up and joined in to great applause from the crowd.

I collected my two gold medals and went to bid farewell to the Prof. He was very pleased that one of us had been able to take part and that the event had been so well attended.

Sally and I spent another week in China visiting the Wutai mountains (which we would not have done had it not been for the competition) where we were sung to sleep by the monks in the monastery attached to our hotel, Xian and Wudang Shan. We are putting some of our photographs on Google for anyone who is interested.

It was good to take part in the competition, my first and probably my last. It also introduced us to a fascinating part of China which we would probably not have visited otherwise.

Longfei group win first prize in China

Longfei group win first prize in ChinaA group from the Longfei Taijiquan Association UK won the first prize for a group performance at the tenth health Qigong competition organised by the Physical Education University in Beijing.

This year's events coincided with the celebrations for Professor Zhang's eightieth birthday.

As well as winning gold at the competition the entrants were awarded Duan certificates by the University.

Click on the image to see more from this trip. Read more on the trip in the Longfei newsletter

A Year of Change

2010 is a year of many changes for European and English Daoyin Yangsheng Gong. First came the news that Professor Zhang's appearance In Biarritz would be his last. Then Mark Atkinson announced that he would be stepping down as President of the English Association. When Mark came to give his seminar in February he told us that the International Institute had effectively shut down as a training organisation (see below) but that the club which had hosted the courses would still be running seminars with Professor Zhang's nephew and that Professor Zhang would be there this October.

I can confirm that the Kunming Association of Biarritz is still running courses, having attended the October 2010 session. They also have a programme organised for spring 2011. Despite saying that April would be his last appearance Professor Zhang was there but this was almost certain to be the last time.

Mark has now handed over the presidency of the English Association to Richard Watson of the Longfei Taijiquan Association.

Read more below.

New Look Website Launched

The English DYYSG Association website has been revamped for 2010.

As well as being more colourful we hope the new menu will make the site easier to navigate.

Despite the new appearance we believe in substance before style. All the useful information from the old site is still included, along with some new material and we hope to add more in the future.

The way the site is constructed is designed to keep the size of the pages small so that they will download quicly even if you happen to have a slow connection.

We hope you enjoy the new-look site and if you have any suggestions for additional content please do not hesitate to contact Erik

International Institute News

Institute to become a publishing house

Andre Peret and Mark Atkinson receive their diplomas

Last year Andre Peret, seen here with Professor Zhang and Mark Atkinson, who runs the Internaional Institute of Daoyin Yangsheng Gong, announced that the Institute would no longer be running courses. These are now being continued by l'Association Kunming, Biarritz

The Institute will be continuing to translate Professor Zhang's work into French and English. Latest news was that they had found a publishing company in the UK which was ideally suited to their needs and hope to be publishing new works soon.

We hope that the Institute is successful in its project and can add to the growing body of high quality material on the subject in English.

An Era Is Coming To An End

At the closing of the Diploma ceremony in Biarritz in 2009, Professor Zhang announced that his visit in April 2010 would - except for very special occasions - be his last to Biarritz, and probably to Europe.

The announcement, though saddening, was not entirely surprising as Professor Zhang had his 80th birthday in 2010, a reasonable age to retire by anyone's standard, and he had always said that he would commit himself for the first three year course, and after that hand over to his nephew, Zhang Jian.

In the event, the Professor continued for more than a year beyond his intended departure and even taught at the Association Kunming courses in October 2010.

So it is unlikely that we will see much more of Professor Zhang in Europe. However, Zhang Jian, Hu Xiaofei and other excellent teachers will still be visiting us and we now have our own close disciples of Professor Zhang working here in England (see below)

Richard Watson Honoured

Dick and Simon at the ceremony

Everyone connected with the English Dao Yin Yang Sheng Gong Association offers their warmest congratulations to our President Richard Watson who was recently honoured by Professor Zhang Guangde with the award of the status of Ru Shi Di Zi ("close and outstanding disciple") in recognition of his invaluable contribution to the promotion and development of Dao Yin Yang Sheng Gong in England. The ceremony took place during the Longfei Tajiquan Association's visit to China this spring.

At the same time, Richard was also awarded the level of 6th Duan Practitioner of Dao Yin Yang Sheng Gong by the Beijing Sports University and the Dao Yin Centre founded there in 1999 By Professor Zhang and his 'disciples' at that time. Simon, Richard's son, Vice President of the English DYYSG Association and celebrated international teacher and practitioner of Taijiquan and DYYSG also received the award of 6th Duan, and we offer him too our heartiest congratulations.

Without Richard and Simon there is no doubt that DYYSG would be far less well known in the U.K., than it is, and the receipt of these prestigious awards is a well deserved and fitting recognition of their contribution.

Read more about the Longfei China trip and the awards in the Longfei Newsletter.

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