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Jim’s First Visit To China. March 2018.

Posted August 2021

At first I had two invitations to go to China. Xiaobo (Bob) Wang invited me during his year-long visit to San Diego in 2016. Then I met Hongjun Yu at the American College of Sports Medicine conference, and he invited me to visit Tsinghua University in Beijing. I asked both of them to coordinate plans for my visit, which they started doing. However, in mid-2017, I learned that Bob Wang had died unexpectedly at age 38 while playing basketball. See my blog in memory of Bob Wang ( The nature of the planned visit changed. The main purpose would be to lecture and consult at Tsinghua University, but I would also visit Bob’s wife and son in Zengzhou and present a lecture in Bob’s honor to his colleagues at the University. I want to thank Hongjun and Bob’s wife Lily (her American name) for working together to plan the visit.

This blog includes photos of colleagues, students, and the many places I visited. The notations are often vague, because I did not take good notes about the names of all the people I met and places I went. But the photos tell most of the story, especially about the beautiful places I saw.

At the end of this file are links to several Active Living Clips I took on this trip.

Hongjun and I take advice from Confucius.

Tsinghua University is part of an old Royal Palace, and there are extensive parklands and a water system.

This lake and pavilion are on the Tsinghua campus.

In the grocery store in the faculty village shopping area.

Some days were very smoggy like this one. Then the winds would blow the smog away for a few days until it built up again.

We went to a fantastic outdoor market.

My favorite places were the hutongs, a few traditional streets that have been preserved. They were among the few pedestrian zones, and they were all popular, especially with the locals.

Hutongs now have a mix of old and new.

Beautiful carvings on an old building.

Students toured me around the Olympic area. This is the famed Water Cube where swimming and diving events were held. It is now called the Ice Cube, in preparation for 2022 winter Olympics.

Jiali, another student, and I pose in front of a mural.

Part of the VIP area inside the “Bird’s Nest” stadium. Obviously inspired by MC Escher.

The VIP area has paintings of Chinese athletes.

From the top of the Bird’s Nest stadium you can see the Dragon building, an old temple complex that was preserved, and a piece of modern Beijing.

Jiali and Key toured me around this massive Royal Palace.