Brief History and Current Events
Wushu, Chinese martial arts, has been around for several thousand of years. Yet, it wasn't until the 1980's that the international community became familiar with the term Wushu. In the martial arts community around the world, there had been a deep misunderstanding about Wushu. Many people thought Wushu was simply an acrobatic and gymnastic like dance. Few had ever heard of the the term Sanshou. Martial styles of different countries often thought of their style as the best.
It was during this time, that our current Chairman, Shou-Yu Liang came to North America. As a way to introduce Wushu to North Americans and to deepen his understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of the various martial arts styles, he accepted numerous fighting challenges.
In 1985 and 1986, Shou-Yu Liang was the first national coach of the Canadian National Team. When he took the team to China for the world competition, he met Fu-Lin Ma, the editor-in-Chief of the Jingwu and the Self-Defense and Subduing the Enemy magazines. Fu-Lin Ma later became the head coach of the Heilongjiang Wushu Institute. While visiting Canada in 1987, Fu-Lin Ma and Shou-Yu Liang discussed the possibility of forming an international organization dedicated to the training of the practical Chinese martial arts. In that same year, Shou-Yu Liang contacted various well-known martial artists and established the International Wushu Sanshou Dao (IWSD) Association.
Since the content of Chinese Wushu is very extensive, they used the Sanshou component of Chinese Wushu as a foundation, adding on the strengths of other martial arts styles with the goal of nurturing well-rounded martial artists and establishing a research and learning organization. The term Dao or Do is the way, the goal, following nature, and the road we travel. Thereby, the name Wushu Sanshou Dao was selected as the name of the organization.
The original members included: Shou-Yu Liang of Canada, Fu-Lin Ma of China, Jwing-Ming Yang of U.S.A., Yuwa Wong of Canada, Alan Arsenault of Canada, Michael Levenston of Canada, Sergeev Michail Yurevitch of Russia. Each was a highly achieved martial artists in their respective disciplines as well as leaders of their communities. They all contributed much of their time and energy in the founding of this organization.
Fu-Lin Ma has since moved to Mexico. Yuwa Wong is in Asia, Jwing-Ming Yang has continued with his own work. Most of the day to day organizational work was reassigned to the second generation members. Wen-Ching Wu was assigned the responsibility of Administrator and Vice-Chairman in the United States. Wei Yang was assigned the responsibility of Vice-Chairman position in China. Tony Chen was assigned the responsibility of the Vice-Chairman in charge of organizing competition and the professional Sanshou Team. In 1994, the North American United Wushu (Sanshou Dao) Team consisted of 38 members who visited and performed in 10 major cities in China. The team consisted of champions in various martial arts styles including Wushu, traditional Kung Fu, Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Aikido, Judo, Jujitsu, Thai Boxing, Kick Boxing from all over North America. The team and their performances were warmly received and welcomed by the people of China. It was also the first time that the Chinese people had witnessed the various martial arts styles other than Chinese. The Canadian Prime Minister, and the office of the U.S. President both wrote a letter of congratulations to the team.
In recent years, the Sanshou Dao affiliate in China organized many China-Russia Sanshou Dao fighting competitions, along with Asian and European coach training and summer camps. In the United States, there also have been many national, international, and world cup competitions in which the members of the IWSD affiliate schools have competed. Many of our members have been awarded gold medals in these competitions. Some of our members have also competed in the World Wushu Championship and have attained the top three places in forms and fighting categories. Furthermore, our affiliate chairman and the coaches from all over the world have written and published numerous books as well as numerous articles in national and international magazines in their respective countries.
Joyful congratulations goes to the China Sanshou Dao Association, the presidium, the six committee members, and advisors. After many years of organization and preparations the China Sanshou Dao Association was officially registered in Hong Kong, China. More congratulations go to the publication of the Sanshou Dao Member Magazine in China which has heightened the level of mutual learning between the members.
The IWSD Association currently has over 20 affiliated nations. China alone, has 12 provincial and over 30 regional affiliates. We also have a compelling team of advisors composed of highly experienced individuals in the martial arts community. We thank them for their years of continued involvement and support. It is with great sadness that our advisors, Professors Zhi-Qiu Zhao, Shu-Tian Wang, and Ju-Rong Wang have recently passed. Even though we have lost three extraordinary teachers and friends, they will forever live in our hearts.
Our members include a range of diverse talents from all walks of life and from around the globe. These members’ selfless contributions to the development of martial arts, the well-being of the people, the advancement of their communities, and the continual development of Sanshou Dao will be remembered in our history and forever be remembered.