Master Tang Li Long (唐理龙)
The teacher of the academy is Tang Li Long (Daoist name). He is a 15th generation Wudang Xuan Wu Pai internal martial arts master. Encouraged by his father, he started training martial arts in his home town from a young age. Later, after studying Wudang Taijiquan in Wuhan from a well known master, he was recommended to go to the Wudang Mountains to become a Wudang Disciple. His teacher wrote a letter of commendation for him, addressed to the Wudang School of Martial Arts, and some time later he was invited to study with the 14th generation Wudang Xuan Wu Pai Grandmaster You Xuan De, then Abbot of the Wudang Temples and keeper of Wudang Internal Martial Arts.
Master Tang first arrived in Wudangshan in 1994, and started to learn from Grandmaster You. After a long time of hard training, he became one of the main disciples of Grandmaster You Xuan De. His former background in Taiji Quan offered him skills and a layer of understanding beyond many of the other students. He worked close to Grandmaster You, and helped him write down ideas about Martial Arts and Daoism. Tang Li Long is now one of the “5 Dragons of Wudang” and a Wudang Xuan Wu Pai lineage holder. In 1998, he won a Medal in the 1st World Traditional Wushu Championships, and was in 1999 awarded with the title “Outstanding Taiji Master”. In 2000, he was awarded a first prize in the 1st Wudangshan International Wushu Symposium. In 2004, he followed Grandmaster You to the South Korean and South-East Asian Wushu Festival, attaining a Gold medal. Between 2006-2008 and in May of 2017, he has offered teachings internationally in Germany and Sweden, to the acclaim of internal students. In 2010 and 2016, he led students competing in the 4th World Traditional Wushu Championships and the 5th Wudang International Wushu Conference respectively, totalling more than 10 medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.
Tang Li Long’s vision is to whole-heartedly pass on his teachings to his students in carrying on the tradition.
Master Tang Li Long, or “Tang Laoshi” as most people call him, has over 20 years of experience with Wudang Martial Arts, and has a system that is different from other schools on the mountain. He teaches the foundations of the style and focuses on Basics, Qi Gong and Applications. His long-term students has won many competitions and attained a high level of skill in Wudang Gong Fu. He has remarkable ability in bringing out a good quality of training among the students, and teaches the essence of Wudang Internal Martial Arts. He holds the position of Secretery of the International Wudang Mountain Taiji Gongfu Association, and has published many articles in the Chinese Martial Arts Wudang Style Magazine and the Hubei Daily Newspaper. He was mentioned in a book about famous Gongfu Masters in 2010 (“Chinese Folk/Unofficial Gongfu Masters”). In 2010 set up the school and the present location in Wudangshan, the same year that his student Jakob Isaksson, Sweden, won a Silver and Bronze Medal in the 4th World Traditional Wushu Championships.
The legacy of the Founder Zhang San Feng (张三丰)
Almost 800 years after Zhang San Feng was preaching the texts of the Dao De Jing at “Wu Long Gong” (“The Five Dragons Temple”) in Wudangshan, his legacy lives on. In its preservation throughout history by Daoist scholars and revolutionary heroes, the system of Wudang internal martial arts was passed on from one generation to the next, and was thus at times difficult to trace over the course of the centuries past. The Daoist culture and practices of Wudangshan had its moments of flourishing and its moments of being close to extinction. The unique arts of Wudangshan are now open to the public so that the knowledge can spread and live on forever. At the beginning Zhang San Feng had a humble amount of disciples who followed him to live in huts around the early temples of the mountain. They were studying the stars, energy, medicine and martial arts, thus forming the legacy we still keep alive to this very day. Based on the Daoist Principles, the knowledge about Yin and Yang, the Five Element Theory and the martial heritage of the Song Shan “Shaolin Temple”, this movement grew strong. A movement that would change the world of martial arts forever. It is considered that the modern forms of Taiji Quan, Xing Yi Quan and Bagua Zhang were born out of this movement, and Wudangshan was, and still is, a place for people to gather for internal martial arts practice and self cultivation.
Xuan Wu Pai (玄武派)
Under the reign of Yong Le in the Ming Dynasty (1413), the Emperor instructed for the start of a monumental construction project here at Wudangshan. Zhang Yu Qing, a Daoist from the Zheng Yi Sect, acted upon the order, and called more than 500 Daoists from nearby provinces to follow him to Mt. Wudang. Among them, around 20 were assigned with important duties and positions in many different temples. All of them considered Zhen Wu to be the common deity and Zhang San Feng to be the founder of their movement. Therefore, people called them Zhen Wu Xuan Wu Sect. In 1989, upon the common understanding, the Daoism association agreed to change the name of the sect into “Wudang Xuan Wu Sect”. This sect boasts classics, among which, the Zhen Wu Cannon remains the mainstay.
“Zhang San Feng transmitted his knowledge to Lu Qiu Yun, Liu Gu Quan, Yang San Cheng, Zhou Zhen De, Li Xing Zhi, Qiu Xuan Qing. Li Xing Zhi also transferred his knowledge to Zhi Dao Ren, Shu Fu Chu; Qiu Xuan Qing to Yan Shan Ming, Pu Shan Yuan, Ma Shang Ning, etc.”
The Daoism Sects Chronicles, an ancient book circulating the Wudang area, has the recording that Xuan Wu Pai was one of the eight branches of Wudang Pai.
Grandmaster You Xuan De (游玄德)
Daoist Master You Xuan De is the 14th generation Grandmaster of Wudang Xuan Wu Pai. Coming from a family with a strong tradition in martial arts, You Xuan De had been practicing martial arts since childhood. When he turned 18 he was already assisting his father in training the Chinese Special Forces. Even though his knowledge was already on an advanced level, he left home to seek even more guidance by great masters. After studying Wudang Boxing with Wang Wei Shen, the inheritor of Wudang Song Xi Pai, he was strongly recommended to go and learn at the place of origin of Wudang martial arts– Wudangshan.
At the mountain, his teachers were the foremost Wudang Daoists of their time: Tong Shen Wang (a hermit at Wudang Temple), Zhu Cheng De (Daoist headmaster) and Lu Ming Dao (who lived more than 100 years). During the 1990s, Grandmaster You demonstrated in many exhibitions and shows in helping to spread the culture and practices of Wudang all over China.
His teachings are based on Daoist principles and Chinese Medicine. Every movement has a practical application which underlines the heritage of Wudang Pai as an effective martial/fighting art. Grandmaster You Xuan De is now resident at Nan Wudangshan, close to Wuhan.