|The essence of the Art|
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Tai Chi Classics
There are certain things that every taijiquan student should know.
This knowledge and ability will enable the student to follow the teachings outlined in the Tai Chi Classics.
Strict adhesion to the Classics assures correct practice of taijiquan, regardless of what style you practice.
The essence of the Art
Every taijiquan student in the world should be working towards acquiring these abilities and knowledge:
4 ounces of pressure
6 balanced pairs
Chin na (seizing): misplacing the bones, dividing the muscles, sealing the breath & cavity press
Conservation of energy
Double weightedness (avoidance of)
form pattern of movement martially
- at least 7 different ways
- in a thorough & convincing manner
- using shuai jiao, chin na & jing
- in keeping with The Tai Chi Classics
Invest in loss
Lead into emptiness
The meaning and application of The Tai Chi Classics
The meaning and
application of the martial Classics
- The Art of War
- The Book of Five Rings
- 36 Strategies
The meaning and
application of the
- The Way and Its Power
- The Way of Chuang Tzu
- The Book of Changes
Moving from the centre
Opening & closing
Optimal use of alignment and structure
Practical applications of yielding
Shuai jiao (take downs)
Sinking & rooting
Small circle movement
Strategy & tactics
Substantial & insubstantial
Tzu-jan (of itself so)
Uniting upper & lower
Using the mind instead of force
Wu nien (not preparing)
Wu wei (not forcing)
This list is not
comprehensive or exhaustive; it merely serves as an illustration. Many more
skills might have been included.
Other taijiquan schools might consider additional skills to be equally important.
If you can't do it, you don't know it.
It does not matter how many forms, drills or applications you know.
Your skill in taijiquan comes down to the essence of the Art.
Calculate your ability level
Go carefully down the list mentioned above. Add up the number of items you fully understand.
This is your actual ability level in taijiquan.
Would your instructor agree with your estimate?
Page created 29 May 1996
Last updated 03 April 2017