Here’s an interesting post, complete with pictures, by David Ross of NY Sanda about the Lei Tai tournaments in China in the 1920s. These were supposedly the first organised national martial arts championships. They would have been part of the GuoShu movement of the Republic as they set about using martial arts to strengthen the nation.
The following are some quotes said about the tournament, from his post. I’m just providing them here without commentary. I leave it up to the reader to draw their own conclusions.
Some quotes said about the tournament:
You don’t see high level internal power, and Faijin that send people flying 10 feet away in this tournament.
The Taiji principle didn’t work well. 4 oz could not defeat 1000 lb.
– 也就是说号称以巧取胜的中国功夫 实际上也是在跟人拚勇力比高大
The taller, heavier, stronger guys won in that tournament.
After this tournament, people wanted to learn the style that can be used on the Leitai.