History of CBII
and Lineage of Sifu Kai Sai.
Mr. Casey’s work in international reinsurance
allowed him to spend many months each year in Taiwan (the Republic of China).
He was an accomplished martial artist before he began
his travels to Taiwan, holding fourth-degree black belts in jujitsu, kempo, and
Shorin-Ryu karate under the American Jujitsu Institute, the U.S. Karate
Association, and the Okinawan Karate Association, respectively. But it was in
Taiwan that he became an energy boxer.
The arts of Chinese boxing are generally hidden behind a veil of secrecy.
Penetrating this veil is difficult even for native Taiwanese. “Foreign
devils” such as Americans face even greater reticence. Taking lessons from an
expert is one thing, but receiving instruction beyond the superficial level is
something else entirely. Mr. Casey somehow pierced the veil and was accepted
into the innermost circles of Chinese boxing.
How did he accomplish such a feat? He had wealth and political connections. He
had a keen intellect and enormous talent. But most importantly, he impressed the
masters with his passion for learning and his fierce dedication to the arts.
Mr. Casey’s first teacher in Taiwan was Wang Shu-chin, one of the greatest
legends in the art of Pa-Kua Chang. Wang taught Casey Hsing-I Chuan inaddition
to Pa-Kua, but focused on the latter.
Casey studied with Wang until the master’s death, but eventually branched out
to learn other arts from other teachers.
Casey’s primary Tai Chi teacher was Master Tao Ping-siang, although he also
studied Tai Chi under several other instructors. Tao was for more than 30 years
a student of the famed Cheng Man-ching, founder of the Yang short form.
Master Shen Muo-hui became Casey’s primary Hsing-I teacher and secondary Pa-Kua
and Tai Chi teacher. Shen, a fellow eclectic, also taught Casey Black Shantung
Tiger, Lohan, Grand Chaining, Shuai Chaio, and Ching Bao Gong Ka.
The Pa-Kua short form found in our Chinese Boxing Synthesis curriculum comes
from Master Wang. Wang’s long Pa-Kua form, known as the Celestial Circling
Dragon, is taught in our Pa-Kua Chang curriculum. Shen’s PaKua is offered as
supplementary training for advanced students of that curriculum.
The Tai Chi short form found in our integrated curriculum is basically Cheng
Man-ching’s short form with a few modifications introduced by Mr. Casey. In
particular, Casey incorporated certain speed and power characteristics of Chen
style Tai Chi. We thus refer to the form as the Kai Sai (or Casey)
Chen-Yang Synthesis Tai Chi short form. This form is
also the focal point of our Tai Chi Chuan curriculum, although advanced Tai Chi
students are taught the long Yang form (which Casey learned from Master Shen).
Mr. Casey learned Wing
Chun from Master Lo Man Kam. Lo is the nephew of the famed Yip Man, with whom he
lived and studied while growing up on mainland China prior to the communist
Master Lo is the only teacher I know of who presents Wing Chun as energy boxing.
In fact, Lo calls his art “Yim Wing Chun” to accent its softness and
distinguish it from the much more common hard style. The soft style of Wing Chun
was taught by Yip Man to Lo and other disciples in China’s
Kwangtung province. Following the revolution, Yip
immigrated to Hong Kong. He taught hard style Wing Chun on a commercial basis to
at least the majority of his students there.
Mr. Casey studied the Stone Killer Monkey boxing style under its founder,
China’s legendary “monkey king,” the great Liao
Masters S.Y. Chen and P.C. Hsieh taught Casey Fukien White Crane.
In the course of his studies under all these teachers, Casey acquired a
comprehensive knowledge of chin na, the science of seizing and holding an
adversary. Chin na is not a style of boxing, but is embedded in most major
styles. This truly became one of his specialties. In fact, Mr. Casey formulated
an entire curriculum exclusively for chin na, although chin na is also taught
within each of our other curriculums.
Of course, as discussed in part one of this book, Mr. Casey did much more than
master an assortment of individual arts. With his gifts of insight and analysis,
he formulated a comprehensive theory that clearly defined the basic pillars of
In recognition of his achievements, Taiwan’s boxing masters gave Mr. Casey the
name Kai Sai, which means “victorious in every encounter.”
Kai Sai was the only Caucasian to be granted full membership in the Hong Mein
Huey Society, the secret historical society heavily responsible for the
preservation of Chinese boxing into the 20th century.
Additionally, Kai Sai served for over ten years as the United States chief
liaison officer of the Kuoshu Federation of the Republic of China, the branch of
Taiwanese government responsible for the promotion of the Chinese martial arts.
He was given free rein to promote the Chinese martial arts in the U.S. in any
way he saw fit. (During the last three of these years, his responsibilities were
extended to Europe.)
As head of the U.S. Kuoshu Mission, Mr. Casey marketed films of many of
Taiwan’s masters demonstrating their arts. Eventually, the Kuoshu Mission
began offering correspondence courses in the general Shaolin arts. Camps were
later orchestrated to bring together those who seriously aspired to learn the
Chinese martial arts.
Later in his career, Kai Sai mastered the obscure style of Wa Lu. A private
family art, Wa Lu is completely unknown to the world at large. Kai Sai told us
he learned it from a man in Macao named Pa Ka, and that is all we know about the
style's background except that it has a close complementation to shuai chaio
(Chinese wrestling). We feel Wa Lu should be judged on its own merits, not
dismissed for apparent lack of lineage.
In the United States, Kai Sai studied Jun Fan Gung Fu,
the eclectic fighting system devised by Bruce Lee. (Jun Fan is commonly referred
to as Jeet Kune Do. However, this term actually denotes a set of principles
manifested in the system, rather than the system itself.) He was the senior
student of Taky Kimura, who was in turn the senior student of Bruce Lee.
In 1981, Mr. Casey authored the book In Pursuit Of Jeet Kune Do: A Source Book
On Jan Fan Gung Fu. This book was presented to the Kuoshu
Federation on behalf of the Jun Fan Gung Fu Institute
on the occasion of the induction of Jun Fan Gung Fu into the Kuoshu
Federation’s pantheon of Chinese martial arts.
Mr. Casey also authored two other books, which were published on a limited
basis—Kuoshu: Chinese Ultimate Mind And Body Discipline, and Mind-Hit Boxing:
Secrets Of Kai Sai Kung Fu.
Tragically, Mr. Casey passed away in 1986. He was surely one of the greatest
martial artists, and he has left us a rich legacy.
History of the Chinese Boxing Institute International.
The Chinese Boxing Institute International (CBII) was
founded by Sifu Kai Sai in 1982, shortly before he moved back to the United
States from Germany. He felt that Chinese boxing was so different from the vast
bulk of Chinese martial art that it deserved special recognition. He believed it
would receive this recognition only if it had its own organization to promote
In order to devote his full attention to launching the CBII, Kai Sai broke with
the Kuoshu Federation, which promotes Chinese martial art in general.
Sifu Kai Sai assigned me the position of chief instructor for the United States,
while naming his other student, Manfred Steiner of Hanover, West Germany, as
chief instructor for Europe. Master Lo Man Kam accepted therole of chief
instructor for Asia.
For the board of directors, Kai Sai recruited two of his other Taiwan-based
teachers, Master Tao Ping-siang and Master Shen Muo-hui, and one of his fellow
American martial artists, Professor Wally Jay. Professor Jay is thefounder of
the small circle theory of jujitsu, which bears close resemblance to Chinese
boxing chin na.
Sifu Kai Sai assumed the role of international chairman of the CBII. He
designated me as the institute’s director and international president.
The CBII is dedicated to fostering the Chinese boxing arts. It seeks to further
develop the science of energy boxing and to cultivate a widespread appreciation
of the boxing arts. The institute rejects the tradition of secrecy enshrouding
Chinese boxing. It sees these arts as a vital part of the cultural heritage of
all mankind similar to the music of Beethoven or the philosophy of Aristotle.
Our CBII group is small but is open to those who first have the attitude of
learning in the study of truth in martial arts