Sunday, March 28, 2010

Review: "The Xingyi Boxing Manual"

"When drinking water one should ponder it's source". (Ciu Heqing, in the forward.)

The above quote is a good reflection on this small book about an art cloaked in antiquity and mystery.
"The Xingyi Boxing Manual; Hebei Style's Five Principles and Seven Words" is short and poetic, with plenty of room for "pondering". John Groschwitz has translated Jin Yunting's edited collection of Xingyi "songs" and historical references and biographies.
Xingyi, the hard-hitting cousin of Tai Chi Chuan and Baguazhang is often overlooked because of it's apparent simplicity. Belying that simplicity is a system complex in structure and effective enough to be the core empty hand and weapon art of the Chinese Army.
Xingyi is a "niche" art, and as so "The Xingyi Boxing Manual" is a "niche book" that will apply to practitioners of the art. Don't expect a manual on fighting applications, consider this book as sampling a fine aged tea.
Again, from one of the many forwards, this one by Sheng Jun:

"Aside from the cultivation of virtue and the cultivation of wisdom, I also value the cultivation of the body. There are many paths to cultivation of the body, but if you are seeking one that is simple and suitable for all ages, there is none like Xingyi boxing, because this art specifically takes qi cultivation as it's foundation. Splitting, Smashing, Drilling, Pounding and Crossing correspond to metal, wood, water, fire and earth and divide externally into the five postures. Internally they fill the five organs and are the natural, profound way to health".

"The Xingyi Boxing Manual" is a light, poetic read with profiles of Masters dating back to over 900 years ago. For the Xingyi boxers out there, this book will add to your collection.

This book was provided for review by Blue Snake Books. This title and hundreds of other martial arts titles are available at Blue Snake Books website, LINKED HERE.

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