Ma Weiqi ??? Ma Weiqi was the second student of Baguazhang founder, Dong Haichuan.

It is reco rded that he was one of Dong's favourite and best students; in fact, he was accl aimed in his time to be better than even Cheng Tinghua and Yin Fu in combat. A l arge part of Baguazhang's present lofty reputation can be attributed to his duel ling successes. However, he was also infamous for his penchant for duelling, and he died while o nly in his 30s by an assassin's hand. It is said that, while touring Henan, Shan dong, and nearby areas, he defeated a group of martial artists. Some unknown per son then dosed him with a slow-acting poison. He only succumbed to the poison af ter returning to Beijing. Therefore, few of his disciples were qualified to carr y on his style of Bagua after his passing, and Ma Weiqi Bagua is a rare art toda y despite its founder's fearsome reputation. In truth, Ma Weiqi was not anywhere near as needlessly violent as he is often ch aracterised to be today. It was normal in those days to engage in duels, and Yan g Banhou, Cheng Tinghua, and a younger Dong Haichuan were all experienced duelli sts who had caused their shares of death. Back in those days, duels were to the death, and being merciful was very dangerous. Furthermore, Ma Weiqi was a pillar of Baguazhang, and losing was to him an unacceptable outcome. Most of the stories circulating today about Ma Weiqi are just that - stories. Mo st of them have roots in works of fiction from the 1920s and 1930s. Also, becaus e he had defeated so many martial artists, he had many tongues against him. Li Z hongxuan (disciple of Xingyiquan's Shang Yunxiang), who passed away a few years back at the age of 95, once wrote an essay stating clearly that Coal Ma was, at the time of the writing, greatly respected by the martial community. ________________________________________________________________________________ _ ??? Ma Weiqi

Ma Weiqi, one of Dong Haichuan's favourite disciples and progenitor of Ma style Baguazhang, was from Beijing. Because he operated a coal shop in that city, peop le nicknamed him "Coal Ma". Owing to his daily diligence in training and Dong's excellent instruction, Ma quickly became extremely proficient at Baguazhang. In fact, it was said in those days that Coal Ma's skill surpassed those of Cheng (T inghua) and Yin (Fu). Ma Weiqi was fiercely dedicated to his martial art of Baguazhang and spent his i dle hours practising circle walking, one of Bagua s chief training methods, in fro nt of his coal shop. Once, an acquaintance of his who was skilled in Changquan ( Long Fist) greeted him with the question, You spend all day walking circles aroun d your coal heap. Is that actually going to help you win any fights? Ma responded, Try me. The Changquan boxer took up a ready stance in front of Ma. Before he could do an ything else, however, Ma stepped forward, hooked his guard aside, and smoothly f lung him several zhang (one zhang is three metres). Ma s great skill allowed him to open his own school even while his teacher still l

Ma nevertheless approached him. I don t want to fight anymo re! I don t want to fight anymore! Regardless. he immediately set off to look for him. Go home! It s no matter if I perish. he made many bitter enemies. many of his disciples left to study under Cheng Tinghua. the priest was meditating. with. When Ma found him. not many among them had attained a high level of skill during their time with him. Ma had a terrible temper and seldom pulled his punches. Ma pounced upon the retreating figure and dealt a blow upon its back . I m sure y ou wouldn t mind teaching me a little something. Ma s Bag ua together with Cheng s and Yin s make up the three great schools of Bagua. The priest then replied. He maimed or killed many of the Shaolin experts he met in combat. and he moved aggressively toward Ma. But the moment Ma moved. the pri crown. there were few who could c arry on the Ma line. him. sir. Because Ma was so vicious in his duels. the guard realised he was completely outclassed. but it would be such a pity if someone as young as you were to die. Eventually. that you are highly skilled. Eventually. there lived on Mt. the guard turned tail and ran. he sought challenge through all of H ebei. He was reputedly able to crush hard stones with his palms and was responsibl e for the deaths of many martial arts experts. Since we re both martial artists. Ma swaggered off home. he fell to assassination. During Ma s time. Upon Ma Weiqi s death. however. He added his own early martial knowledge to Do ng s Fenglunshou (Windmill Hands) to create the unique Ma style Baguazhang. I ve h eard. although Ma had had many disciples. and Henan. When the priest ignored him. Ma scorned the guard. Unfortunately. Therefore. Ma ignored the priest s advice and persisted in pestering est lost his temper and sent a powerful blow towards Ma s at strike with a Paochui (Cannon Hammer) counter into the hich caused a torrent of blood to burst from the latter s t s corpse where it lay. but found not h is match. sir. and even ventured yet further afield. I ve heard that yo u. Tai a Taoist priest famous for his palm strik es. Ma loved a good fight. and I d like to see a demonstra tion of your skill. Blood gushed from the mouth of the guard and he died in a month from the injur y. When Ma heard of this man. Ma intercepted th priest s floating ribs w mouth. martial artist? Even someone such as you considers himself a That of course infuriated the visitor. Shandong.ived. His blood running cold. When he met the Bagua master. the guard issued a polite challenge. Leaving the pries On another occasion. Al so. One of this small number was Yang Rulin. Early in his career. and his students were many. are quite the accomplished martial artist. a professional caravan guard travelled to Beijing to pay Ma a visit. . hollering. Ma repeated his request.

Yang moved to Shenyang prefecture where he event ually taught Bagua to Zhang Xueliang. Yang became friends and training partn ers with Li Wenbiao. After Ma s death. While in Shenyang. . one of Cheng Tinghua s best disciples. where he served until his death. and Liaoning) for casting a Japanese swordsman off a dueling stage wi th just one sword stroke.Yang Rulin is arguably the next most important person in the Ma lineage after Ma Weiqi himself. Yang became famous in the Three Eastern Provinces (Heilongjia ng. During his time with the Fengtian school. Jilin. He was then made chief instructor of the Fengtian (old name for Shenyang) Martial Academy. Yang and Li kept the b anner of Bagua flying high in the Three Eastern Provinces throughout the rest of their lives.

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