The Xingyi Lin Wan Wu Shing Miaodao “5 Elements Linked Miao Dao form” was the last form taught by Grandmaster Wong Jack Man 黃澤民 (1941 – December 26, 2018) before his retirement in December 28, 2005 and closing his practice at Fort Mason, San Francisco. Sifu William Dere and Sifu Frank Lum were among those present who returned in the early 2000’s with others of the original “880” group to attend. I learned this first in UC Berkeley through Cal Taiji, where Sifu Dere was teaching in 2015, and continue to receive coaching with him, Sifu Bryant Fong, Sifu Frank Lum, and my martial uncle, Sibak Robert Louie to faithfully showcase this precious heritage piece.
This form has all 5 of the elements (fire, earth, water, metal, and wood) in it with some of the 12 animal movements (such as turtle, horse, and dragon) as transitions to link them together. The miaodao is used as an implement with whole body coordination and principles of internal practice to make a concise, effective, and thorough practice.
Proper practice in open palm Xingyi (“Mind Intention Fist” Xingyiquan) is important first to develop power not from external but internal principles. From there, learning the 5 separate elements (Wu Shing) individually are required peacticing with the weapon itself (often using a wooden bokken to substitute first the full, metal weapon). Following that, linking the standalone 5 elements into a continuous practice (Lin Wan) builds the transitions and mobility. Finally, the form itself (the Lin Wan Wu Shing Miaodao), which can be seen here covering a huge space (easily over 20 feet), can be pursued.
Video credit: Brian “Wuxiaman” Chansy Location: San Jose Convention Center, South Hall Event: 2023 Tiger Claw Championships, Masters Demo Sunday May 7th Emcee: Coach Christopher Pei Practitioner: Mason Tong, UC Berkeley Taiji Coach