No Form. With its similar slow movements, Yiquan could be mistaken for Tai Chi. Unlike Tai Chi however, Yiquan has no fixed sequences or set form. Instead Yiquan favours the practice of simple core exercises.
A Distillation. Based on his intensive study of martial arts throughout China to discern what was essential; Wang Xiangzhai created a simple and direct method for the development of health and martial ability. The resulting Yiquan is Wang Xiangzhai’s practical but innovative distillation of the core elements of Xingyiquan, Bagua and Tai Chi.
The Primacy of Standing. The entire family of Chinese internal martial arts recognise the value of standing like a tree (zhan zhuang) for health and martial development. In Yiquan however, standing with the appropriate intent is regarded as the primary practice in developing the essence of martial arts namely whole–body strength (hun-yuan li).
Formlessness. In the final instance Yiquan aspires to formlessness. The experienced Yiquan practitioner expresses this formlessness through the Yiquan Health Dance; ever changing, improvised, lively free movement.
Simple. Some internal arts are taught in a highly technical way, others are explained in terms of esoteric Chinese philosophy. Free from this kind of intellectualising Yiquan is experiential and practical and focuses on the experience of doing.
yiquan n. (orig. Mandarin Chinese) trans. mind or intent boxing (pronounced yee chuan) also written as i chuan. Also called dachengquan (trans. ultimate achievement boxing), also called dacheng kung fu. A Chinese internal martial art.