Master Wu Kung Yi –吳公儀 (1900 – 1970)
Third Generation, Eldest Son of Master Wu Chien Chuan.
Master Wu Kung Yi was the eldest son of the third generation. He was instrumental in establishing the spread of Tai Chi Chuan throughout the orient. In 1954, Master responded to the controversy started by the newspaper in Hong Kong regarding the validity of Tai Chi Chuan as a martial art by agreeing to accept a challenge to fight another style of martial art. He put only one restriction on the match – that the proceeds of it be donated to charity. The contest of the two different styles of martial arts intrigued thousands who came to view it. The Master was fifty-three at that time, some twenty years older than his opponent. It soon became apparent to the committee overseeing the fight that the opponents were not mismatched and that the contest was a serious one indeed. At the completion of the second round, they ended the fight by voting it to be a draw. Master had clearly demonstrated Wu’s Tai Chi Chuan as a formidable style of martial art.
In 1937 Master Wu Kung Yi and his oldest son Master Wu Tai Kwei also helped set up academies in Hong Kong and Macau while Master Wu Kung Cho moved south to Hong Kong to set up a Wu’s Tai Chi Chuan academy. After the Japanese army invaded Hong Kong the Wu family moved inland until the war ended. The Hong Kong Wu’s Tai Chi Chuan academy was headed up by Master Wu Kung Yi and the Macau academy by Master Wu Tai Kwei. These two centres developed large followings.
In the 1960’s, Master Wu Kung Yi taught Wu Style Tai Chi Chuan on television and sat on the Advisory Board of the Martial Art Association in Hong Kong. Master Wu Kung Yi promoted the circular form into a new segmented form, a detailed, smaller circular 108 Form throughout Asia in the 1950’s.