Sunday, June 18, 2006

Tai Chi for Health: Yang Style (Xin group)

Yang style tai ji was founded by Yang Lu Chan ( 杨露禅,1799-1872). His grandson, Yang Cheng Fu ( 杨澄甫,1883-1936, third generation of the Yang family), taught many famous indoor tai chi students. One of Yang Cheng Fu's leading disciple was Li Ya Xuan (李雅轩) (1894 - 1976). Li Ya Xuan's famous disciple was Liu Zhong Qiao (刘仲侨 ) whose last disciple was Xin Yu He (信玉和)。 Master Xin followed his teacher nine years and reached a very high level in Yang style tai chi. He founded his Yang style (Xin group) tai chi in Jinan, Shandong Province of China. The current leader of Xin group tai chi is Master Li Guang Qi ( 李广起). Li Guang Qi learned Yang style (Xin group) tai chi from Grand Master Xin for eleven years and continues to teach and practice tai chi in Jinan of China. To have a look of Yang Style (XIN) Tai Chi, you amy click on the following link to view some videos:

I started my formal Tai Chi Chuan training more than 20 years ago, first in college, then in 1987, I became a disciple of grandmaster Xin on the same day as master Li Guang Qi. I continue to learn and practice Yang style (Xin group) tai chi since then.

In order to practice tai chi in a right direction, in my opinion, one needs to follow gradually:
1. The spirit at the top of the head should be light and sensitive.
2. Sink the chest and raise the back.
3. Relax the waist.
4. Distinguish full and empty (substantial and insubstantial).
5. Sink the shoulders and drop the elbows.
6. Use mind not strength.
7. Coordination between the upper and lower body.
8. Internal and external unity.
9. Continuity without stopping.
10. Seeking stillness in movement.
The above rules are attributed to master Yang Chengfu: Tai Chi Chuan 10 Important Points. These are the general principles in practicing tai chi chuan.

The teaching and learning quality DVDs of Tai Chi Hand and Sword forms are available upon request:

Cheng Zhao, Ph.D
Indiana Tai Chi Academy, Indianapolis and Terre Haute, Indiana

Both my 24 simplified tai chi form and 32 sword form books are just listed in under the author name: Cheng Zhao

24 Hand Forms

32 Sword Forms

Many people think Yang style tai ji is always slow. You may click the following link to view the fast yang style tai chi long forms in about 4 minutes. This long form in a normal pace takes about 30 minutes. Click the following address to view Master Li Guang Qi's Tai Chi Fast forms: