Rules – Regulations – Standards – Guidelines

These are the Rules, Regulations, Standards, and Guidelines for the Martial Arts Exchange portion of the Festival, to be held on Saturday, July 6, 2019, from 8:00am – 4:00pm.

Also, read the Personal Letter from the Chairman to the Martial Arts Community



The Year 2019 – the Year of the Earth Pig – symbol of wealth and fortune, realism, action, energy, enthusiasm, compassion.  It is a year for success!  Kick off the Year of the Pig with our Martial Arts Exchange on July 6, 2019, at the Zhang San Feng Cultural Festival.

This is the only event of its kind to be held in the Denver metro area.  The overall vision of the Zhang San Feng Cultural Festival is to focus on the Five Excellences, which are the goals of the “scholar warrior”:  Chinese medicine, martial arts, calligraphy, poetry, and music.

Every year, there will be demonstrations on all Five Excellences throughout the event.  However, each year, we will highlight one of the excellences as the main event.  This year, our focus is on the internal arts – and more specifically to enhance and expand the pushing hands division into an Olympic-level event based on the integrity of the art.  And, of course, we remain focused on promoting all martial arts and educating all students, including our upcoming stars and champions, who are the future of all that we are doing.

This 2019 event has 4 layers:  (a) Martial Art Daytime Exchange; (b) Event Finals; (c) Festival/Evening Show; and (d) Sunday Workshops.

(a)  Martial Art Daytime Exchange:  On the morning of Saturday, July 6, we begin with the martial art forms, weapons, and push hands challenge (which will be primarily for the Taiji/Kung Fu community classmates, friends, and family, and a chance for us to highlight the kids martial arts division, which is going to be an adventure all in itself).  We would also like to set a stronger foundation in the push hands event, so there will be a demonstration of our continued focus on a new direction for Taiji development as a martial art.  We believe that it is a good idea to separate the martial art challenge from the public spectators, so we will not be inviting the general public to the morning event – this is only for us in the Taiji/Kung Fu community.

(b)  Event Finals:  The finals will happen mid-day.  The “Show Down”, where the best of the best meet in an exchange of skill, representing Chinese Martial Arts with the intention to develop and improve their ability.   The “finals” event is more exciting, and will give us a chance to really promote and introduce Chinese Martial Arts at a higher level.

(c)  Festival and Evening Show:  The Cultural Festival and martial arts show will be open to the public.  We will highlight masters and schools from the Denver metro and Rocky Mountain regional areas that would like to be a part of the show.  (Since the public will not be at the Daytime Exchange, they will come in at this point because we want them to see the best of the best.)  The idea is to have every school participate and do a group performance, in order to have the chance to show their system to the public.  So, each school should wear their matching school uniforms for the performance, and represent their school as a team.  The goal is to promote Chinese Martial Arts and related systems, so every such school is invited to be a part of this event.

(d)  Sunday Workshops/Exchanges:  On Sunday, July 7, the exchange continues!  After seeing a variety of martial art forms and demonstrations on Saturday, spectators will then get a chance the next day to experience this art “hands on”.  Everyone is invited to sign up for workshops of their choice in Taiji, Chi Gong, Kung Fu, Weapons, etc.

The goal of this festival is to give the Denver metro area a “Taste of China”, where the East meets the West in a language they will understand.  So, let’s come together and show the beauty and glory of our beloved art form.

This event is more of an “exchange” than a competition.  Remember, the Classics guide us to the importance of “investing in loss”, which is the key to mastery of any of the five excellences.  To “invest in loss” means to apply yourself in order to find out where you really stand.  It is not about winning – it’s about finding out how we can improve ourselves by letting others share information that will give us a higher level of understanding of our own goals and achievements.  Understanding loss is how you win!  You instantly improve once you discover a weakness or a problem within your training.  “Investing in loss” gives you a clear understanding of your journey and education.  So, we want to use this opportunity to gather information at this event, which will help us in the future.

This year, we plan to continue our use of a new scoring system – to introduce some fresh new concepts that may help improve and develop Chinese Martial Arts events.  We are using this event to set the foundation for the forms and weapons divisions, and to bring more clarity to Taiji as a martial art.  Then, a second event will take place at a later date, called “Tru2Form”.  The “Tru2Form” fighting event will build upon these foundations established through this first event, and will highlight Chinese kung fu boxing in its “true form”.  This is why this first forms division is so important – in order to apply those forms to fighting.

The “Tru2Form” concept was created by Master Christophe Clarke, and has been a tournament division since 2007 in Dallas, Texas, at the Legends of Kung Fu tournament hosted by Grandmaster Jimmy Wong.  This is the first year that it will be hosted here in the Mile High City.  Tru2Form has now gained national popularity and has merit for developing Chinese Martial Arts worldwide as a separate and independent event.

The Zhang San Feng Cultural Festival and martial arts exchange is open to all Chinese Martial Art practitioners and related systems influenced by the Chinese Martial Art philosophy, such as Kenpo, GojuRyu, Akido, etc., which would be a great addition to the festival, especially as a demonstration.  (Please call us if you are interested in performing a demonstration to represent your system.)  Even if you are not currently part of a local school, you are welcome to participate.  Upon accepting this invitation, all participants are required to show respect to the guidelines and regulations of this event, and must demonstrate sportsmanship towards their fellow athletes, judges, and other event officials.

These are the rules, regulations, and guidelines for all divisions within this martial art exchange, including:  forms, weapons, group forms, musical forms, and push hands.



All participants must sign in and register as “present” between 8:00 – 9:30 a.m. before the Opening Ceremony begins at 9:30 a.m.  Athletes must attend the Opening Ceremony in order to participate in honoring the spirit of the event.  Participants should become familiar with the floor layout, ring locations, and division assignments when they arrive, so that they will be timely to their designated locations when called.

After the Opening Ceremony, athletes must stay within the venue in order to hear the “call” to begin the first division after a short break.  While we will do our best to keep the schedule running smoothly and timely, due to the nature of the event, we cannot guarantee start times with complete and guaranteed accuracy.  Therefore, participants should stay close at all times, in order to hear the “call” for his/her specific division.  All athletes must pay attention to announcements and stand close to his/her designated ring at the scheduled time in order to be ready to go when called.

Note: At the time of creating these guidelines, our goal is to host only one division at a time, so that the participants are not overwhelmed with reporting to more than one ring at a time, and so that the camaraderie of “community”, “exchange”, and “martial spirit” will be achieved.  However, depending on the final number of participants, we may have to adjust the schedule accordingly and possibly have some overlap.  Nevertheless, we are determined not to overwhelm anyone and to make it as easy as possible for everyone involved.

All divisions will occur between 10:00am and 3:00pm.  Then, some finalists and other athletes will be “invited” to perform in the evening show based on his/her performance during the daytime exchange.



This guideline applies to those participating in both empty hand and weapon forms.

Traditional Chinese Martial Arts and contemporary Wushu uniform; any style of cotton or silk Chinese style uniform with frogs or buttons; Shaolin; Taiji; and southern style (sleeveless) are acceptable.

Wear shoes, such as the Feiyue brand or other brands, which are commonly used in Chinese Martial Arts.

Traditional Chinese Martial Arts footwear is commonly used as part of the uniform.  If this is something that your school does not do, and if your system trains barefoot, please inform the Chief Judge before your division competition begins, so that you will not be penalized in scoring for improper foot attire.

T-shirts of any type are not allowed.  This is a formal event.  We want to show the professionalism of Chinese Martial Arts.



“First Come, First Served”:  the first to register is the last to perform.  Therefore, the longer you wait to register, the more certain it becomes that you will be one of the first to be called.

Once called, each athlete should stand “at ease”, then enter the ring from the side that faces the Chief Judge.  Then, walk smartly to the standing point for the beginning of his/her form.



Once called to the ring and at the standing point for the beginning of his/her form, each athlete must greet the Chief Judge with a recognized salute or bow.  After the exchange has been made, the athlete must start his/her form.

After completing the form, the athlete must again come to attention and salute the Chief Judge, then stand and wait to receive his/her score.  After receiving the score, the athlete must give a final salute to the Chief Judge, walk backwards without turning a back to the judges, then exit at the side of the ring from which he/she entered.

This same format also applies to weapons forms.  However, each weapon has its own traditional salute and required way to hold the weapon, so go over these guidelines with your Sifu/Teacher/Master in order to make sure that you are correct.


  • First Timers Division and First Tournament – under one year of training
  • Beginner – over one and under two complete years of training
  • Intermediate –over two and under four complete years of training
  • Advanced – four years or more of training

Note:  If you know that your ability is really high, even though you have only been training for a short period of time, you are more than welcome to challenge yourself.  There will be no restrictions for stepping up.  However, if you been practicing longer and sign up for a lower division, this is considered dishonorable.



The 2019 general division categories are as follows, divided into sub-categories based on age and experience level:

TAIJI / INTERNAL – (1) Empty Hand – Tai Chi (All Styles); (2) Empty Hand – Other Internal (Hsing-I, Bagua, Wudang, etc.); (3) Weapons – All)

KUNG FU / EXTERNAL – (4) Empty Hand – All External; (5) Weapons – All

PUSHING HANDS – (6) Stationary – Co-ed; (7a) Stationary – Men; (7b) Stationary – Women; (8) Moving Step – Co-ed; (9a) Moving Step – Men; (9b) Moving Step – Women

MUSICAL AND GROUP – (10) Musical Form – Individuals; (11) Group Performance – 3 or more




INTENTION:  Look up on the internet “The 10 Basic Principles of Taiji”, dictated by Yang Cheng Fu, written by Chen Wei Ming, to use as a guideline.

Zhang San Feng is the founder of Taiji.  This event highlights the internal aspects of martial arts.  It is important for us to give the public a chance to see, feel, and research the beauty of this mysterious art.


PERSPECTIVE:  This event is about “investing in loss” – not about winning or losing.  We want you to elevate yourself to a higher level of awareness, while getting the chance to be guided with information and feedback that can help you to improve your practice.  Investing in loss will help you see the truth of what you need to focus on to develop further in your training.  We are specifically incorporating extra time and attention to “feedback” and “guidance” so that every participant will leave with information leading to higher levels of martial arts achievement.


Participants will be judged according to his/her proficiencies within the following categories:

  1. Appearance (uniform, personal grooming, neatness, attitude, and overall presence)
  2. Foundation of Stances (balance/root/stability)
  3. [TAIJI:] Centeredness, Softness, Slowness / [KUNG FU:] Power, Focus, and Overall Martial Spirit/Pride
  4. Martial Intent of Each Move Within the Form
  5. Eye/Hand Coordination and Continuity of Form

Each category is worth 20 points, with a possible total score of 100.

Our judges will be familiar with these categories and standards.  The goal is to simplify the scoring, and also have data to share with the athletes through a feedback system that will help each participant reach a higher level of achievement.  (For example, just giving a participant the score of “75” or “82” points, without further feedback, will not help improve his/her skills.  By incorporating feedback in particular categories, there will be no “loss” – only a “gain” of information of what is needed to improve.)



INTENTION:  The push hands event will be well managed.  There will be no roughhousing!  We will be following the fundamental principles of the Taiji form.  Stay at one even speed – don’t speed up and start wrestling – and there will be no injuries.  Bad sportsmanship or aggressive behavior will be outlawed at this event.  (NO Sumo-Wrestling Allowed!!!)  Follow these guidelines and our push hands event is guaranteed to be safe and educational!

THREE DIVISIONS:  Male, Female, and Co-Ed (Beginner and Advanced will be separated by size, weight, and experience level on the day of the event.)

NOTE:  Male and female can also choose to enter the Co-Ed division.

For the Co-ed division, participants will have the option of chest protection available to wear, for those who would like to feel more comfortable and free through the use of this protection.

STATIONARY PUSH HANDS:  To be clear, stationary means that the foot does not move from its position.  Once the foot is placed, it must stay rooted.  If the heel lifts, or if the foot moves out of its place, the participant loses points.  Stationary Push Hands is the practice of the stability of the “mountain”.

MOVING STEP PUSH HANDS:  In order to participate in the Moving Step division, you must sign up for, participate in, and show your ability in the Stationary division.  The goal is to avoid sumo-wrestler activity and bad illustrations of Taiji application.  Due to the nature of the activity and the fact that it is “moving”, this is a more advanced level of push hands, which creates a higher risk of potential injury.  Therefore, we reserve the right to evaluate your skill level in order to determine and adjust your participation level within this division.  We will introduce additional guidelines at the event, before division competition begins, in order to help everyone achieve a higher level of understanding of Taiji Moving Step – to “flow like a river”.  Again, remember the ultimate goal is to create an event that is more of an “exchange” and a learning experience.  We are searching for the “scholar warrior”.



Our goal at this event is to promote Taiji as a martial art – not just as a healing art.  Push hands is a great way to exemplify the application of Taiji as a fighting art.  Therefore, in scoring, there will be a distinction between (1) just a movement that may throw someone off balance, and (2) using a specific Taiji application movement from a form to create the unbalance.

Half Point – throwing your opponent off balance without specific use of a Taiji application move.

Full Point – using a Taiji application move from a form to throw your opponent off balance.  (For instance, postures like fair lady, roll back, push, snake creeps down, etc. will receive a full point.)

It is important that Taiji players use this practice of push hands as a way to translate their forms into applications of the postures.  Learning to use the techniques makes the practice of push hands more fun and exciting.

NOTE:  About 2 months before the event, we will begin having workshops every Saturday morning from 9:00am to 10:30am leading up to the event, providing specific instruction on push hands consistent with event rules, so that everyone will feel comfortable at the time of the event.  These workshops will be held at Rocky Mountain Movement, 4380 S. Federal Blvd., Englewood, Co 80110.  Call 720-244-3927 for more information.  (And, if you would like to host a workshop in your region, call 720-244-3927 for scheduling availability.)



Either Taiji or Kung Fu.  Three or more people performing an empty hand or weapons routine as a unit.  3 minutes or less.  For scoring guidelines, see paragraph 8(c) above.



Individuals should be prepared to bring your own music, cords, and audio players as a backup – just in case our audio equipment malfunctions.  Each participant has up to 4 minutes to perform a routine that is choreographed to music.  Can be either weapon or empty hand.  For scoring guidelines, see paragraph 8(c) above.



All athletes at this event will be shown appreciation for their time and effort.  Even without a medal, you will receive feedback, guidance, and lessons learned from the exchange.

During the Daytime Exchange, a participant must receive a score of 80 or above in order to advance to the finals.  There is no limit to the number of people in the finals.

Once in the finals, all previous scores are wiped out.  This starts a new challenge for first, second, and third place.  In these finals, a participant can do the same form that he/she qualified with, or can choose to do a different form.

Once all finalists have performed, the judges will write down their scores as to who they choose to be the first, second, and third place winners, but will keep those choices hidden.  Then, the judges will ask all finalists to write down their choice of who should be the first, second, and third place winners.  (The idea is to have an event of integrity and honor.  It is important that everyone has a choice as to who is the true winner, based on skill and not popularity.  Allowing the athletes to be a part of the process creates a higher level of sportsmanship.  If you receive education, it’s a win-win for all!  Based on this idea, we have added a new concept called the “Peer Honor Award”, so that everyone is involved in choosing the winner.)

So, there will be two sets of awards given for the Finals:

*  The “Judges Award” – based on the judges’ combined choices.

*  The “Peer Honor Award” – based on the total number of combined finalist votes.



Another new concept we are carrying forward from last year is the “People’s Choice Award”.  The goal is for us to see beyond ourselves and recognize the abilities of others.  At most martial art events, there is always someone who stands out and inspires everyone.  We want you to pay attention throughout the day and then select the practitioner – male or female – who you believe is the best example of “martial spirit”.  We will have a voting box at the venue, with cards to write down your choice.  Then, we will announce the winner after the Finals awards.



We thank you for your participation and support of the Zhang San Feng Cultural Festival.  Remember, this is still a fresh event in the making!  We started local last year, and then we achieved our goal to grow and host a regional event this year.  We want to continue to use this experience as a way for us to gather information and learn from the process, which will help us to prepare for and improve future events.  So, we welcome your feedback and comments about your experience.  We look forward to sharing in this 2019 martial art adventure together!


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