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Precision is a word consistently used in Practical Method Taijiquan. But what does that mean in terms of practice? One aspect during Yilu is to not only complete the movement, but to know exactly where that move is aiming towards (which is why knowledge of applications is important). It is not enough to repeat the move, but to understand the energy alignment and aim. As our training continues to develop, and we become more aware of additional body parts (ie: to become aware of the elbow, become aware of the hip, etc.), we are able to aim more pieces towards the same objective – making the move more effective as each body part compounds power on the next.

Master Chen and Josh Landau

That same exactness and consciousness of movement is required during push hands. When the foot is being moved, it’s not being moved forward or backwards, but to a very specific spot. The practitioner needs to be aware of exactly where that foot needs to be for that situation, and move it there with purpose.

Every interaction needs to move towards a goal. Too often we push to get a feeling of the other person, to practice getting in a favourable position, waiting for the opponent to make a mistake to capitalize on, etc. This is following our own familiar pattern. Within taijiquan we must be able to change the energy of the interaction without changing the shape.

Efficiency of movement is not changing the position/contact points in order to get into a place that is familiar to us. Rather, it is often to be able to capitalize on the position you are already in. Become comfortable despite being in an awkward position. You have to be able to let go of your ideas on what is a bad position in order to achieve a certain objective. It is often when we feel our body is uncomfortable that our body fights back, getting in our own way of being able to do what we need to do. The mind needs to let go first, train, and the body will follow.

 

http://practicalmethod.com/2010/05/yilu-detailed-applications-1-online-video-trailer/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6dUI7d5GS4&t=258s

iowa-2018

For the second consecutive year the North American Practical Method Training Camp was held at Prairiewoods Franciscan Spirituality Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. This seventy acre retreat, located in a mainly residential section of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, provided a relaxed and private location for training. While the center is an outreach ministry of the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration it is an informal center with an emphasis on ecology and  the many varieties of spirituality. It is easy to mistake the sisters for the volunteers working in the garden or helping maintain the grounds. One of the sisters, who is 80 years old and teaches Tai Chi Chih, a form of Qigong, can often be seen driving a tractor on the grounds. She took a break from her work to watch a group of us practice the First 13. Another sister told me she was happy to see our large, primarily, but not entirely, male group stay at their center, because we provided a different type of energy than is usually found there. My point in mentioning this is to suggest that the folks at Prairiewoods appeared to have enjoyed us being there

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Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 10 min.   In: English   Year: 2017  Difficulty:1/5

HongKong 2017 8
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Master Chen’s disciple Ping Wei will again conduct Irvine 1-day workshop. This time Ping will share with us his new understanding on “not-moving” and his lesson plan for his community college teaching. He will also revisit Foundations, more details on First 13 moves and beyond. First timers, beginners are all welcome.

Registration for the workshop is required for all newcomers; the deadline is 9/14/2018. Since Winston will be out of the country next few weeks, Al Yu will be the contact person for this workshop and Winston will still be back in time for the workshop.
In the interim, please direct all inquires to Al Yu at (cell) 949-331-2735, or via email: mralyu@yahoo.com.

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My name is Edward Liaw; I currently reside in San Diego, California.  I was accepted as Master Chen’s 283rd disciple during the 2018 North American Practical Method Training Camp in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, alongside Nathan Heintz and Spencer Jones.  Every day, I am grateful for being a part of a passionate and supportive community of practicioners, students, and teachers.

 

Taiji changed my life completely.  Up until the day I graduated from college, I was an awkward and introverted person.  I rarely exercised and spent most of my time in front of the computer.  When I was 22, I began to have migraines with aura.  As the migraines became more frequent and intense, I realized that this was not a wise lifestyle choice, so I sought to be more physically active.  I began with yoga, then light running, and then I joined a taiji class at the university I was working at.  While I enjoyed learning the form, I sought a little more.  I joined a local push hands meetup and quickly I realized that I lacked a good foundation and understanding of what taiji really was.  However, I could not understand the abstract terms that were often used to teach taiji.  I experimented with another local group that practiced Wing Chun, before I found the Practical Method Youtube videos.  What made this method unique was that the theory was logical and every exercise had meaning.  It gave me a process to understand my body.  I believed that to make real improvements requires a period of dedicated study and practice, so I arranged to leave my job and study full time at Daqingshan for 3 months.  It was an opportune time for me, as I had few responsibilities and enough savings for a year of practice.

 

Master Chen often remarks that when I came to the mountain, I was so loose and weak, like a bunch of noodles.  Looking back at some of the videos from DQS at the time, I can only agree.  I was incredibly uncoordinated.  My head was hunched forward from sitting in front of the computer all day.  In the push hands ring, I would spend more time on my back than on my feet!  Within the 3 months, I was able to gradually work up to doing 20 yilus a day, and listening to Master Chen and the other students helped to solidify the theories of Practical Method in my head.  3 years later, everyone that knows me from before can see that I’ve changed incredibly, and for the better.  I practice 5 yilus a day, 2 erlus, and about 100 repetitions of all the foundation exercises.  I attend many of Master Chen’s seminars in the US, as well as Ping Wei’s seminars in Irvine.  I hope to share Practical Method with the community in San Diego and anyone who is willing to learn.  I hope that it can benefit others as much as it has benefitted myself.