About Bagua

Baguazhang is an "Internal" Chinese martial art that has constant change as it's defining principle. It is one of the 3 main styles of internal martial art along with Xingyiquan and Taijiquan. Bagua involves training various types of stepping on a circle with changes of direction called "palm changes" that involve twisting, turning and spiralling the body in order to physically neurologically challenge the practitioner in different ways. Emphasis is placed on developing fluid connected movement, a certain mental calmness within that movement and on building solid structure and "whole body power".

There is much more to a complete system of Baguazhang than this classic circle walking practice however, and more "external" body strengthening exercises, single movement drills, angular stepping, fast mobile footwork, standing grappling, throwing and striking must all be trained and properly developed.

Indeed, the particular style of Bagua we study is called Gao style and comes to us fom Gao Yisheng - a Bagua practitioner who explicitly separated his training into Xiantian or "Pre-heaven" practices (the circle walking, palm changes, swimming body practices etc) and Houtian or "Post-heaven" practices (short linear "forms" similar in approach to Xingyiquan which more obviously address combat application and are concerned with developing solid structure and whole body strength) It is through training both the Xiantian and Houtian material that we develop both a strong , supple and healthy body and also develop usable combat ability.

This material was learned from Gao Yisheng by Zhang Jun Feng to whom he gave the generation name Yizong. This was also the name of the school where Zhang taught many students on Taiwan including the Hong brothers - Hong Yixiang, Hong Yimian and Hong Yiwen. It was in Hong Yixiang's Tang Shou Tao school that Luo De Xiu was introduced to the Internal Martial Arts and he became one of Hong's top fighters in full contact fighting competitions. Later he studied with the other Hong brothers as well as seeking out as many of Zhang Jun Feng's original students as possible. Luo Laoshi also studied with Lui Qian a direct student of Sun Xikun in his investigation into Baguazhang and is now regarded as one of the foremost practitioners of Internal Chinese Martial Arts in the world.

Luo laoshi continues to teach the Yizong material of Gao Baguazhang, Hebei Xingyiquan and Chen Pan Ling TaijiQuan in Taipei Taiwan and travels to England regularly to teach seminars.