The 10,000 Victories Team competed at the 2023 Tiger Claw Elite Championship on Saturday and Sunday May 6th and 7th at San Jose Convention Center in San Jose. The Tiger Claw Elite Championship is the largest and most prestigious Kung Fu and Tai Chi tournament on the west coast and one of the most important in the USA. Henry Geddes won the Gold Medal for his performance of Xing Yi Quan 99 or “Form and Will Boxing 99” in the Other Internal Martial Arts Category. Carol Miranda won the Silver Medal for her performance of 46 Style Tai Chi Sword form. Sean Lim also competed with Northern Shaolin #8 Unearthing Steps and Earth Dragon Staff but was unable to place in very competitive divisions. Miranda and Lim were both first time competitors who had never even been to a tournament before. We hope that future tournaments will see the return of a large and extremely strong 10,000 Victories Team!
This was the first time the 10,000 Victories Team has competed since the Covid crisis began four years ago. This is also the first time in four years the Tiger Claw Elite Championship has been held. What was the state of competition after a four year break? The answer is: Intense! Normally enrollment in this event is limited to 500 competitors. According to Gene Ching, one of the tournament organizers and publisher of Kung Fu Tai Chi magazine “This year enrollment was stopped far earlier than ever before after we were shocked to receive over 1700 entries in a few days. Everyone is enthusiastic.” Most categories had plenty of competitors, but the kids and teens divisions were huge. The level of skill of the competitors and their competitive spirit were extremely high. Even though the enrollment was high the tournament progressed swiftly with experienced officials moving things along rapidly.
Henry Geddes performed the Form and Will Boxing 99 routine. This routine contains 99 movements of strong striking and kicking based on the 12 Animals and 5 Elements. Xing Yi Quan, or Form and Will Boxing, has health benefits similar to Tai Chi but is much more vigorous, and features powerful punching and palm strikes and active advancing steps. Geddes did a great job of demonstrating both the explosive suddenness and whole body power of Form and Will Boxing while capturing the spirit of the animals.
Carol Miranda performed Tai Chi with a sword. The routine is called the 46 Style Tai Chi Sword. This routine is famous for having a large variety of beautiful movements. 46 Style Tai Chi Sword is also noted for being especially excellent for developing balance because it has many beautiful movements on one leg. Miranda did a great job slowly and gracefully entering and extending each difficult balance moves.
Sean Lim performed Northern Shaolin Earth Dragon Staff. This routine is long and requires a lot of stamina. In addition to facing fierce competitions, he injured his foot a couple of days before the tournament. This is Sean’s first tournament performance. He performed with a lot of spirit and did well!
Sifu (or master) Scott Jensen judged many youth divisions and also the extremely competitive and closely watched elite Teens Wild Aid Championship. Wild Aid is a conservation organization dedicated to protecting the last remaining wild Tigers. The Wild Aid Division funds are donated to the Wild Aid foundation. There is only a single winner with both female and male competitors in the same division. The winner receives a huge and incredibly impressive Tiger Head Trophy. Sifu Jensen was invited to officiate in this division because of his expertise and reputation for impartiality.
Our new session of classes is starting right now at the San Rafael Community Center on Monday and Wednesday nights. Registration information can be found here. We look forward to seeing you there!
P.S. Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube Channel if you haven’t already!