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Thread: Chinese Wushu Association - Duan Rank

  1. #1
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    Wushu Duan System

    Posted: Jan 15, 2003 - 11:09 PM
    Hi all,

    I read in a recent Kungfu/Qi Gong article (see quote below) that China started the Duan system in 1997. Can anyone elaborate on the Duan System. What are the belt/sash levels and titles. Generally what criteria is to be met in order to achieve Duan ranks? Is it just a time practicing or age thing, etc. Is the Duan system based on an older or traditional ranking system? I was under the impression that belts etc. is a modern development and that traditionally ranks/sashes/belts were not awarded, that is, students always deferred to their sifu and older Kung Fu brothers and sisters and did not need belts to know who their brothers and sisters were.

    "In an effort to standardize Chinese martial arts, the People's Republic of China (PRC) established a national ranking system for masters, the Duan system. Officially commencing in 1997, there are nine levels of Duan. Currently, only four living masters have been recognized as the highest level, Ninth Duan. The youngest of which is Grandmaster Ma Xianda of Xian, China's old capital."

    Ching, Gena and Oh, Gigi "The Muslim Master of the Old Empire: An interview with Grandmaster Ma Xianda" Kungfu Magazine 2002 Nov/Dec. Available at <http://www.kungfumagazine.com/magazi...hp?article=244> Accessed Jan. 14, 2003.

    Sincerely,
    Eric Thomson
    Last edited by eric_thomson; 01-15-2003 at 06:07 PM.

  2. #2
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    It's pretty much the same as the belt system in karate and judo. I don't think it has any traditional (Chinese) roots. The duan system is only used in contemporary wushu and it doesn't apply for traditional martial arts. Maybe Gene can explain it in greater depth, umm.
    "Extra inch, extra power." -Tarm Sarm

  3. #3
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    lol @ Ching, Gena....


    There is also a question as to who actually looks and follows the duan system.
    practice wu de


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  4. #4

    Question what is the duan system

    ???????????????
    there are only masters where there are slaves

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  5. #5
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    It's a technical ranking system for sport wushu. I seem to remember seeing that it was on it's way out.
    "The man who stands for nothing is likely to fall for anything"
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Gash View Post
    It's a technical ranking system for sport wushu. I seem to remember seeing that it was on it's way out.
    yes, its a ranking system kinda like belts.... but with jo belts. each duan has a different level of difficulty and such. i honestly havent heard anything of it. ben is probably right then that its on its way out.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psycho Mantis View Post
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  7. #7
    duan used in this scenario would mean segments or degree.

    you may have belt system color coded or duan.

    you may have 5 or 6 duan.

    each is technically more difficult than the previous one.

    such as 2nd Duan is more advanced than the 1st Duan.

    you need to have good base of the first duan to move on to the next duan.

    if it is on its way out.

    you may have the 3 levels, beginner, intermediate and advanced levels.

    or you just have one composite level.

    either for practice purpose or wushu tao lu comp.

  8. #8
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    Its not on its way out. The IWuF is still pushing it, and I know many traditional masters in China who started accepting this.

    Our local Wushu Federation was talking about implementing the duan system down here. Still not completely sure if I like it or not.
    得 心 應 手

    蔡 李 佛 中 國 武 術 學 院 - ( 南 非 )

  9. #9
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    I see no decline in the duan system in China

    The duan system is an international ranking system established by the PRC. It's not exclusively for wushu at all, but given that most of the major political players in PRC now wushu, it's dominated by wushu people. Still, there are some traditional masters that participate in this system.

    We discussed the duan system in our cover story The Muslim Master of the Old Empire: An interview with Grandmaster Ma Xianda from our 2002 November/December. This online article is unabridged, but it doesn't include a short sidebar that ran with this article that broke down the duan system a little more completely. Basically, duan 1-3 is certified on a municipal or city level, 4-6 is certified provincially and 7-9 is national. There are a lot of issues with the duan system because it's based more on politics than skill level, but given the nature of the beast, that's not surprising. Keep in mind that teaching martial arts is a respectable career in PRC - people go to college for it. There is a national system of certification and it is tied to the duan system.

    What's ironic is that Shaolin has established it's own independent duan system, which I reported in Battling to be Shaolin’s Best: The Shaolin Kung Fu Grade “A” Tournament in our 2003 Shaolin special. Other groups have established duan systems too, mostly outside of China. What's funny is that some of the non-PRC duan systems go to 10 instead of 9, which betrays a fundamental misunderstanding of Chinese culture. It's a classic clash of East vs. West that reminds me a lot of Spinal Tap (this amp goes to eleven!)

    You might take a peek at our latest cover story too - The Big Monk of Shaolin Temple: Mantis Grandmaster Yu Hai in our 2007 January/February, since it discusses a leading master who rejected the duan system.
    Gene Ching
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  10. #10
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    Chinese Wushu Association - Duan Rank

    I was wondering if any of the forum members had any knowledge pertaining to the Chinese Wushu Association's method of duan ranking. Would this be a useful credential to seek out? Any information would be helpful. Thanks in advance.

  11. #11
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    In the martial arts credentials aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on. The only credential is skill.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Larson View Post
    I was wondering if any of the forum members had any knowledge pertaining to the Chinese Wushu Association's method of duan ranking. Would this be a useful credential to seek out? Any information would be helpful. Thanks in advance.
    *waits for Gene*...

    Gene knows about this ranking system and has written about it too I think.
    Maybe he'll pipe in here and give you some info.

    If you are a performance wushu artist, then yes, it's a worthwhile thing to pursue.
    Kung Fu is good for you.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by SanHeChuan View Post
    In the martial arts credentials aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on.
    Ironically, all that board breaking has reduced the value of paper.

  14. #14
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    How is Duan different from Kyu? As far as I can tell, there are 10 Duan and 20 Kyu.

    If the levels were properly tied to skill, then they would be useful.
    "It is the peculiar quality of a fool to perceive the faults of others and to forget his own." -Cicero

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by SanHeChuan View Post
    In the martial arts credentials aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on. The only credential is skill.
    can i get a witness??????

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