Professor Ju-Rong Wang, represented the National Chinese Wushu team
and served as coach during a visit to Burma in 1968
Professor Ju-Rong Wang (1928 – 2005)
新中国第一代杰出的女武术家，王氏武术，继往开来的传承者 — 王菊蓉教授
(Master Helen Wu’s mother)
Grandmaster Ju-Rong Wang is one of the most highly respected Chinese martial artists in the world. She is the first female professor of Chinese martial arts and represents the first generation of female wushu masters in post-Revolution China. Born into a martial arts lineage, Ju-Rong Wang began training at the age of 5, under the guidance of her father, Grandmaster Zi-Ping Wang. A gifted and hard-working student, she practiced six hours a day, never shying away from more rigorous aspects of the training. When it came time to train with a weapon, she requested the challenging Kuan Doa (heavy broadsword), an audacious and unusual choice for a young girl.
As a young person, Ju-Rong Wang had already established a name within the martial arts community in China. She was well-versed in the Northern Shaolin styles, and had mastered Tai-Chi, Bagua and archery. In 1946, at the age of 17, she won the Women’s Championship at the 7th National Athletic Games and in 1953, the gold medal awards for Cha Chuan and Green Dragon Double Sword routines at the National Wushu Competition.
In 1953, Ju-Rong Wang became a founding professor of the Shanghai Physical Education College, where she was to teach for 36 years. She designed and taught the Master of Martial Arts Degree Program. Over the course of her teaching career, she continued to explore the practice and theories of a wide range of Chinese martial arts styles, including Shaolin, Wu Dang, Tai Chi, Beichuan, and Nanchuan. She extended her expertise to all of the major Tai Chi Chuan styles: Yang, Wu, Wu1, Sun, and Chen.
While the two Wu names are pronounced the same, they are in fact different names, each written with a different Chinese character.
Madame Wang has enjoyed an illustrative career in competition, not only as a performer, but also as a judge, serving as general judge, vice-general judge, and honorary advisor to national and international wushu competitions and archery competitions. In 1989, she was invited to serve as judge and advisor for the National Chinese Martial Arts Competition in Houston, Texas and to help prepare an American wushu team to travel to China. She and her husband, Dr. Cheng-De Wu chose to remain in Houston, taking on the job of ambassadors of the Chinese martial arts in the United States.
An innovator as well as a promoter of traditional forms, she has developed many forms besides the rainbow fan series, including the Dragon and Phoenix double sword forms, and routines for weapons such as the double-headed spear, dagger and metal rings. She harmonizes tradition and modernity, celebrating both, while sacrificing neither. That spirit is imprinted upon her Houston-based school of Chinese martial arts. The comprehensive program offers traditional and contemporary bare-hand routines, a dizzying array of weapons forms, and two-person routines. She takes particular delight in teaching the less familiar wushu styles and weapons.
She used to give seminars around the world and to serve as chief judge, arbitrator or honorary advisor at traditional as well as modern wushu competitions throughout the United States. She has helped to preserve, to enrich and to expand the corpus of Chinese martial arts, offering practitioners her vast repertoire of martial arts knowledge, her consummate artistry, her impressive skills as an instructor, and her characteristic generosity.