Sanshou: Understanding Taijiquan as a Martal Art


  • Greg Wolfson Great River Taoist Center



Today taijiquan is usually sought after not as a martial art, but as a health art. Within this milieu, sanshou or “free hands,” in which form applications are trained within a martial context, is rarely practiced and often misunderstood. By investigating the role sanshou plays within the taijiquan system, this article argues that the health benefits widely associated with the art can only be obtained through a mindful practice of martial application.


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Métricas alternativas


Chen, Gong (1943). Taijiquan dao jian gan sanshou hebian (Combined taijiquan, broadsword, two edged sword, staff, and sparring). n.p. .

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Yang, Chengfu (1931). Taijiquan shiyongfa (Taijiquan practical methods). n.p. Reprinted as Taijiquan Yongfa Tujie. Taipei: Wuzhou Chu-banshi, 1996.

Yang, Chengfu (1934). Taijiquan tiyong quanshu (Complete form and practice of Tai-jiquan). Hong Kong, n.p. Reprinted, Taipei: Wu Xue guan (Lion Books), 2001.



How to Cite

Wolfson, G. (2012). Sanshou: Understanding Taijiquan as a Martal Art. Revista de Artes Marciales Asiáticas, 2(3), 62–75.