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Inheritor Develops, Popularizes Traditional Physical Exercise

Viewed 457 times 2018-11-26 15:00 |System category:News

Hua Yi practices the Five-animal Exercise. []


A woman from the city of Bozhou, in east China's Anhui Province, aspires to popularize a traditional physical exercise throughout the world to benefit more people's health. 

Hua Yi (former name Zhao Dandan) is the 59th generation inheritor of Wuqinxi (five-animal mimic exercise), an intangible cultural heritage of China. She is also the image ambassador of tourism in Bozhou.

Wuqinxi was invented by Hua Tuo, a famous Chinese physician in the Eastern Han Dynasty (25-220), according to the theory of traditional Chinese medicine based on the movement of five animals, namely the tiger, deer, bear, ape and bird. 

Bozhou is the birthplace of this exercise. When Hua Yi began to learn martial arts in a local school, she was exposed to the exercise for the first time and was deeply attracted. 

According to Hua, innovation is necessary to pass down an intangible cultural heritage and help it keep pace with the times. The person who makes new ground in this respect must be truly interested in it. 

Hua has done a lot to popularize Wuqinxi. 

She has designed special suits for this exercise, adjusted it to help people doing sedentary jobs solve their health problems and composed an English song for foreign children as a means to help the exercise go global. 

Moreover, she seized each opportunity to introduce the exercise to people by taking part in cultural exchanges, variety shows and giving free classes to children in communities. 

Thanks to her efforts, more people have been attracted by Wuqinxi. Hua has become increasingly busy. In 2016, Hua resigned from her decent job in the media industry to better promote the exercise. 

Inevitably, Hua was confronted with problems in the process of popularization. 

Some insiders, for instance, have doubted the maintenance of expertise in the exercise as it becomes more popular. Regarding this doubt, Hua made the following mark: 

"I innovated to arouse people's interest in Wuqinxi. If nobody likes it, how can it be practiced and passed down? When people are attracted by the exercise, they will be more likely to explore it wholeheartedly. I want to establish a platform which will enable more Chinese people to find a traditional way of keeping fit that fits them most". 

(Source: China Women's News/Translated and edited by Women of China

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




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