Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Practice the Taijiquan Form Faster

Grandmaster Yang Jwing-Ming advises us to practice the Taijiquan form (sequence) by 1) practicing the sequence slower and slower, 2) developing a sense of an enemy, and 3) practicing fast Taijiquan.  He says,

    "In order for the sequence to be meaningful, Jing and technique must be combined.  An important way to do this is to PRACTICE FAST TAI CHI CHUAN.  Once you can do the sequence of movements automatically, and can coordinate your breathing and Chi circulation with the movements, you should practice the form faster.  Remember, if you ever get into a fight, things are likely to move pretty fast, so you have to be able to respond fast in order to defend yourself effectively.  If you only practice slowly, then when you need to move fast your Chi will be broken, your postures unstable, and you Yi scattered.  If any of this happens, you will not be able to use your Jing to fight.  Therefore, once you have developed your Chi circulation you should practice the sequence faster until you can do it at fighting speed.  Make sure you don't go too fast too soon, or you will sacrifice the essentials such as Yi concentration, Chi balance, breath coordination, and the storage of Jing in the postures.  When doing fast Tai Chi, do not move at a uniform speed.  Incorporate the pulsing movement of Jing so that you are responding appropriately to the actions for your imaginary enemy.  It is difficult to develop the pulsing movement of Jing solely by doing the sequence, so you should also do Jing training either before or concurrently with the fast Tai Chi."

-  Dr. Yang Jwing-Ming.  Advanced Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan.  Volume One: Tai Chi Theory and Tai Chi Jing.  By Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming.  Boston, Massachusetts, Yang's Martial Arts Academy, YMAA, 1986, p. 67.  

Tai Chi Chuan Martial Power: Advanced Yang Style. By Dr. Wang, Jwing Ming. Foreword by Tsung-Hwa Jou. YMAA Publication Center, 3rd Edition, 2015. 320 pages. ISBN: 978-1594392948. 

Tai Chi Chuan Martial Applications: Advanced Yang Style. By Dr. Wang, Jwing Ming. YMAA Publications, 3rd Edition, 2016. 400 pages. ISBN: 978-1594392993. VSCL.

Also, you might take a look at Yang Style Tai Chi Fast Form by Master Jesse Tsao from San Diego, California.  

"Yang Style Tai Chi Fast Form is a traditional practice with self-defense as its main focus. It trains the body in a dynamic energy flow, with agility in dodging, stepping and jumping along with solid strikes in flashing speed. The fast form is secretly carried forward by a limited population, as Tung Yingjie (one of Yang Chengfu's students) mentioned that the fast form is regarded as advanced-level training in old times. Tai Chi Healthways presents this routine for those who love to practice Tai Chi for martial arts applications. It is a good reference for home study, or a resource for instructor's teaching preparation. Suggest 50 class hours. (Difficulty: Beginner through Advanced Levels). DVD-R, (61 minutes)."

I viewed this instructional DVD on Amazon for $1.99, and then ordered a DVD copy ($34.95) from Tai Chi Healthways.  I like to view and listen to instructional DVDs using my small CooVu portable DVD player.  

When I lived in Red Bluff, California, on a 5 acre homestead in the rural North Sacramento Valley, I used many instructional DVD's created by Master Jesse Tsao, Master Jiang Jian Ye, and Grandmaster Yang, Jwing-Ming.  Master Tsao's instructional DVDs appealed to me because of their pace, breakdowns by sections, summary demonstrations, clarity of audio, diversity of styles presented, and background scenery around some very familiar San Diego locations (my brother lives in nearby Carlsbad).  

I particulary enjoyed learning, from Master Tsao's instructional DVD, the Eight Immortals Tai Chi Cane, Routine 1, in the Yang Style of Taijiquan. I've not practiced this form in the last 15 months, so I would need to replay the DVD and rehearse again lesson by lesson.  When you relearn, it is different from learning the first time.  

This relearning of the Eight Immortals Cane Form is one objective of mine in 2018; along a second objective of learning the Chen 19 Taijiquan Form of Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang.  

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