Which part of the body moves;The right feedback is whent there isn’t any; Eyes fixed on one direction; 3 vertical lines on the body; What is loose; Magic number 3; Procedure: rigid then relaxed; Twist Towel Fetch Water detail; Two-person exercise; Climb and go over
Presenter: Chen Zhonghua Length: 76 min. In: English Year: 2009 Difficulty:1/5 At:Toronto
00:24 to 00:40: Here Master Chen demonstrates an exercise that enables beginning students to understand the steps to stop using momentum when pushing. Leading to an understanding of ‘Not moving’.
00:41 Shows a small shot of ‘the right alignment’ to ‘repel/issue’. The full workshop video contains more details.
01:03 “Loose Hit; Tight Turn” (Song Da Jin na). Please note what Master Chen says: “If you don’t anything, I don’t turn. I’ll push…. But if you are strong, I’ll turn it….”
The terminology in the Chen style Taijiquan Practical Method is such that ‘Hitting’ is also referred to as ‘Pushing’ (and vice versa). A hit is a push, a push is a hit. When teaching students, hitting often produces a fright reaction, thus preventing the students from learning to make the correct moves. With pushing, the process of understanding starts without this reaction interfering with the learning process.
At 1:15 Master Chen moves his forearm and says: “I feel strong”, he touches upon a point that is often difficult to understand. Compared to the ground, his arm moved up vertically. However, in the Chen style Practical Method, this movement is considered a ‘Horizontal movement’, or, in other words, a movement (by the forearm) away from its axis.
At 1:17 his forearm makes a ‘Vertical movement’, being, an alignment displaced along the length of the forearm.
The caption “The right feedback is when there isn’t any at all” refers to the habit/need to ‘feel’ power in the arms when pushing, rather than learning to align the forearm along the vertical axis. When movement is properly aligned, the ‘strong’ local muscles of the arm that are used to make horizontal movements are not activated, and movement is generated by stretching distance muscles (for example: a fingers-elbow length stretch produces the bridge/unity of the forearm/wrist and palm). In other workshop videos Master Chen refers to tightening of muscles as ‘tying knots’. More on that later when I find an example in one of the videos.
From 1:25 to 4:39 are parts of the Yilu demonstration. Always nice to reinforce aspects of the form from different angles.
At 4:39 (to 5:27) is a small segment on the “Three vertical lines on the body”.
I gave a small introduction to this at the Pre-workshop introductory day in Sydney, and is most important in the achievement of understanding of ‘switching’.
At 5:58, no workshop goes without Basic Foundations demonstration and instruction, “Twisting the Towel”
At 6:55 demonstration and instruction of the Basic Foundation movement “Fetch Water” (including what not to do)
At 8:01 shows one of the Toronto workshop push hands exercise to teach proper alignment.
There is much more material in the Toronto Workshop video, and even looking back at them, I pick things up that my ears just wouldn’t listen to before.
(Paul Jenssens, Sydney, Australia)