John Upshaw

In the previous section I covered The  4 Essential Taijiquan Techniques, which included Peng, Lu, Ji & An.  I left that lesson on here for review and quick reference.  In this finial section, part 3, I will cover The 4 Corner/Auxiliary Techniques, which include Cai, Lie, Zhou & Kao.  It is located after section 2.   Subsequent information from Master Chen’s writing will also be included in the descriptions. For those that are interested, I will moderate a Zoom discussion about all 3 sections this coming Sunday July 5th at 8 am CST. If you want to attend and can’t, please message me and we can set up a private Zoom session.

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For this Online Video Class, I will be examining the contents in a segmented manner.  In this classic video, Master Chen descriptively teaches the 8 Techniques in Taijiquan.  In this 1st segment of the online video class, I will cover the Basic Energies in Taiji Applications.  In the 2nd segment I will cover The 4 Essential Taijiquan Techniques, which include Peng, Lu, Ji & An.  In the last segment I will cover The 4 Corner/Auxiliary Taijiquan Techniques, which include Cai, Lie, Zhou & Kao.

This video is definitely worth taking the time to thoroughly investigate and gain an understanding of the techniques of Taijiquan.  I will moderate a Zoom group session during the last segment for those that purchased the video as a means of solidifying the material taught by Master Chen.

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In this short online instructional video, Master Chen teaches many essential elements that are necessary when applying Ji to an opponent and several principles inherit to Practical Method.  Ji, squeezing, is a passive action that has “water like qualities”.  Ji, like water “takes up all the space in all directions”.

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In Adjust the Middle Online video, Master Zhonghua Chen teaches how to strengthen one’s own structure and how to break your opponent’s structure and take their power away.

Early on in the video Master Chen utilizes a rubber cord to demonstrate how the 2 ends are connected by pulling in the middle.  He emphasizes that the outside of the 2 ends are the outside and what is between the 2 outside points is considered inside.  In the video he demonstrated this on the rubber cord and then on a student.
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Click on the picture above to go to the video.  Please leave comments in the reply video section.

The important components: 1.  Having 2 lines, 2. Having separation 3.  Resolve through rotation (one line is the catch or lock and the rotation provides the other action for the other line).  Click on the gif

MCdemo

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In this short video, Master Chen teaches key concepts and principles that are necessary in push hands and in the development of our taiji skills.  After watching the video you will gain and understanding of what it means to “match” an opponent’s power. Additionally, you will have a clear understanding of how “adding” beyond the contact point requires yin yang separation, which is an inherent principle to Practical Method Taijiquan.
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The “Dimension: 5 Points” online video builds upon the understanding and skills that were covered in the Step Up To Ji, Move Into Empty Space and Warping Energy 2 Online videos and classes. It allows Practical Method Taijiquan practitioners the opportunity to expand on ones’ understanding of how to use multiple dimensions to immobilize an opponent much like a spiderweb does to ensnare a moth helpless.

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WarpingEnergy2

Thus far, the videos I have selected as curriculum have been focused on the functional aspects of using ones own bio-mechanical structure and the structure of the opponent to “take up space” for the gaining of strategic positioning and for martial purposes. The video “Step up to Ji” gave a basic procedure of how to make contact while matching power and move in other body parts that adhere to the Practical Method’s principle of separated and sequential movements.  In the following video, “Move into Empty Space”, several lessons were taught by Master Chen in various ways to take up the opponents space and demonstrated a few examples of applications, such as going down and adding a dimension.

In this video, Master Chen teaches additional methods of taking up space by “whatever happens, you fill in the gaps”.  It is taking out space, working with space, playing with timing, and/or playing with structure.  The information from the previous video online classes come into play.  Significant additions are made in this video that further advances ones’ repertoire on how to use ones’ structure and the intentional use of working with space as a means of building martial skills and abilities.

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MoveIntoEmptySpace

Move into Empty Space

Various Methods

In this video viewers get to witness Master Chen teaching various methods of how to take up empty space along with a variety of applications. This complex video requires viewers to segment each movement in a number of lessons given.  In addition, with the direct examples demonstrated, key principles inherit to practical method are embedded throughout the video.
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StepUpToJi

We will have an online class based on this video using the comment section of this video at 10:30 am Central Time, 11:30 pm Eastern Time on Saturday, April 4, 2020. On the days that I am teaching, I have selected a series of videos that will be taught in a sequential manner. The primary emphasis will be improving your understanding of how to take an opponent’s space that utilizes the principles that are inherit to Chen Style Practical Method Taijiquan. The video’s include:
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PicsArt_11-25-04.25.43I started learning practical method on 2005. I had a lesson once a week from one of Master Chen’s disciples. At that time I practiced maybe once per week.
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Mise en place (French pronunciation: ​[mi zɑ̃ ˈplas]) is a French culinary phrase that means “putting in place” or “everything in its place”. It refers to the setup required before cooking, and is often used in professional kitchens to refer to organizing and arranging the ingredients, the components that a cook will require for the menu items that are expected to be prepared during a shift.

Master Chen often has referred to “the set up” before applying power…before doing “your move”.  What are the ingredients (components) of your set up?  What needs to be in place before you do your move/apply power?  Please add ingredients!!!

We are pleased to have Master Chen Zhonghua back for the 4th annual training camp.  Once again, the taijiquan training, lodging and dining will be at one location with one cost at the same location as last 3 years.  This will be an intensive workshop focused Theory, Foundations, Yilu, Push Hands and Broadsword.  Disciples will take part in the instructions.
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Practical Method Popsockets for your smartphones are $12 plus shipping. As many of you are aware I teach a group of kids, which several have attended Iowa workshops taught by Master Chen. I was able to work out a fundraising deal with the company so 50% of all the sales will be applied towards tuition for my kid students that have financial need. So an awesome item + good price + great cause = excellent purchase!

For orders email me midwestpracticalmethodtaiji@gmail.com or message me on Facebook.

Thanks,

John Upshaw

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I was having a discussion with my disciple brother Brennan Toh about what I have been working on with my long term students Gerry and Emily, with specific attention to Lie , one of the 8 techniques of Taiji.  At the North American Practical Method Training Camp last year Brennan was taking me down with this same technique, except his upper/lower body separation was crazily effective….he took out significant space from below without his top moving (his top continued to match my upper body).  This lead to him suggesting the following drill: Read more

Notes for North American Practical Method Training Camp 2018 by John Upshaw

August 1, 2018

Pretend to fight to find the end points. Once locked, move-in the middle point.   (Alignment) Rear fingers look for the front elbow. The rear kua looks for the rear elbow.  

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John Upshaw Resume

June 15, 2018

Personal Information I was born in Austin, Minnesota USA in February of 1968. I moved to the neighboring state of Iowa as a child. My early experiences in life set me on my path in martial arts and a career of helping struggling children. I was a homeless orphan at the age of 15. I [...]

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North American Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method Training Camp 2018

October 27, 2017

We are pleased to have Master Chen Zhonghua back for another training camp. Again, the taijiquan training, lodging and dining will be at one location with one cost at the same location as last year. This will be an intensive workshop focused on foundations, drills, form, push hands and applications. Disciples will take part in [...]

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Head and hand: 2 points in different dimensions

February 2, 2017

One of my corrections from Sifu during a private lesson in 2015 was on separation of hand from my head. For instance, when out with hand in Single Whip, as I placed emphasis on the stretches when my hand went out, my head would follow…this would occur at varying degrees, yet that isn’t relevant because [...]

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Midwest Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method – 2016 Year in Review

January 6, 2017

History and Development of the Midwest Group Master Chen Zhonghua’s first workshops in Iowa were in 2007 and 2008, hosted by John Brown. In the summer of 2009 I organized the first Midwest Practical Method gathering, along with Tim and Levi, in the Northeast Iowa area, which was led by Tim Duehring. The group met [...]

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North American Practical Method Training Camp July 28 – Aug 1, 2017

November 12, 2016

We are pleased to have Master Chen Zhonghua back for another workshop. This time Taijiquan training, lodging and dining will be at one location with one cost. This will be an intensive workshop focused on foundations, drills, form, push hands and applications. Date: July 28 – Aug 1 2017

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“Step Up To Ji” Online Video Trailer

November 9, 2016

Partner exercise to train getting inPresenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 10 min.   In: English   Year: 2016  Difficulty:1/5  At:Vancouver

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“Ji Power (Perth)” Online Video Trailer

September 6, 2016

Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 8 min.   In: English   Year: 2014  Difficulty:2/5  At:Perth In this short online instructional video, Master Chen teaches many essential elements that are necessary when applying Ji to an opponent and several principles inherit to Practical Method.  Ji, squeezing, is a passive action that has “water like qualities”.  Ji, like [...]

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Midwest Workshop July 16-17 2016

April 6, 2016

 

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“Matching Power” Online Video Trailer

May 23, 2015

Theory and training for matching power principle, to use indirect force to match opponent push Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 13 min.   In: English   Year: 2015  Difficulty:2/5  At:Edmonton In this short video, Master Chen teaches key concepts and principles that are necessary in push hands and in the development of our taiji skills.  After [...]

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Iowa Meetup May 20

May 20, 2015

An awesome practice on Sunday with Levi and Gerry. We focused on separation of movements/body function, finding the lines, taking and not losing space…just to name a few…Levi corrected our first 13 postures

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“Scissors power” Online Video Trailer

March 12, 2015

Theory and practice of scissors power Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 14 min.   In: English   Year: 2015  Difficulty:2/5  At:Toronto The important components: 1.  Having 2 lines, 2. Having separation 3.  Resolve through rotation (one line is the catch or lock and the rotation provides the other action for the other line).  Click on the [...]

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Let the Principles Do the Talking or The Floor Becomes the Teacher

February 24, 2015

Last Sunday I made arrangements to have coffee then train with my elder disciple brother, Levi. He teaches Practical Method at The University of Iowa’s Chinese Martial Arts Club. We decided to train during his regularly scheduled class time as it provided a good space to practice. A new student arrived wanting to check out [...]

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“Move into empty space” Online Video Trailer

January 24, 2015

Theory and practice for finding space to move in during push hand. Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 51 min.   In: English   Year: 2014  Difficulty:4/5  At:Toronto

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“Adjust the Middle” Online Video Trailer

October 22, 2014

How to make connection in own body, and how to disrupt connection in opponent’s Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 14 min.   In: English   Year: 2014  Difficulty:2/5  At:Toronto

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Upper Midwest (Iowa) Practical Method Gathering August 9

July 23, 2014

Upper Midwest Practical Method Gathering will occur at Mount Hosmer City Park in Lansing, Iowa. We will cover Yilu, Erlu, and push hands. We will be meeting on 08/09/2014 at 5:30 am through 9:00 am and 7:00 pm through 9:00 PM.We will meet again the following morning on 08/10/2014 at 5:30 am through 9:00 am.

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“Dimensions: 5 Points” Online Video Trailer

June 17, 2014

A Taiji move has to be done with sub moves in different dimensions. This 65 minute video cover the Theory, Training and Application of this principle Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 65 min.   In: English   Year: 2014  Difficulty:2/5  At:Oakland

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“Don’t move the back” Online Video Trailer

April 22, 2014

Mini lesson on the importance of not moving the back, training for isolation of the arm by doing spiral movement. Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 15 min.   In: English   Year: 2013  Difficulty:3/5  At:Oakland   The Drill In the beginning of the video Master Chen demonstrates a drill that emphasizes separation.  This is the primary [...]

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Relationship of Taiji Movements

December 19, 2013

 By John Upshaw and Levi Sowers The interaction occurring amongst the various elements of our body are numerous and complex.  This is especially true when applied to the movements, and thereof lack of movements, in Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method.  The purpose of this article is to provide a framework that will allow the reader to [...]

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“Taiji Applications 2011” Online Video Trailer

August 18, 2011

1. Beginning. 2. Basic Energies in Taiji Applications. 3. 8 Techniques in Taijiquan. 4. Some Applications. Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 53 min.   In: English   Year: 2011  Difficulty:3/5  At:Daqingshan International Taiji Training Center

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