A little knowledge is a dangerous thing!

This is the section where Master Chen Zhonghua offers online information and classes on Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method. There are mini lessons, discussions and student evaluations.

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Yilu Correction:

  • The dantian should stick out, while the chest should cave in. It looks like an S.
  • Tie shoulders to the kuas.
  • Initiate action from the kuas.
  • BWAPM: Throw the right kua from down under and up to so the right knee touches the right elbow Read more


Master Chen Zhonghua only teaches a reference implementation, which represents an example of how the principle is applied.  There are many parts that need to be examined, explored and learned.  We must focus our effort on learning all the parts of the reference implementation, how they form part of a system, how each part functions, and the role each part plays, what the effect when all the parts work together, etc. We have to go over this reference implementation over and over again, because there is always something we miss previously.

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Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 62 min.   In: English   Year: 2021  Difficulty:3/5

John Upshaw Yilu Correction Series: Initial Closing
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Lever 4

by Kelvin Ho on 2021/01/15

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Fajin i

by Kelvin Ho on 2021/01/14

Examples of fajin:

  1. We stretch, then we add another stretch, another stretch.. When we can’t take it anymore, it explodes.
  2. If we have a full jar of marbles, we shove one more marble into it than it can take, the jar breaks.

Lu, Cai, Lie i

by Kelvin Ho on 2021/01/14

Master Chen demonstrated Lu, Cai, and Lie with in-with-elbow in “Shake the Pole”. These three belong to the same group.

Lu 捋 – You grab the opponent’s arm, pull him in, and throw him onto the other side. There is no severance of the arm in this case.
Cai 採 – You grab the opponent’s arm, and pull on it quickly to sever it at the shoulder. This is like plucking a flower.
Lie 挒- You grab the opponent’s arm, and pull him in. He hits your body, which provides a stop to the incoming force. This also allows the arm to be severed at the shoulder.

- Elbow/kua relationship. The elbow must touch the kua. Eventually the elbow always aims towards the kua.

- Integrity of the body. Keep the integrity by pulling the shoulders down and the kua up. The two must compress. Master showed this in relation to turning flowers out of the bottom of the sea on the R shoulder and R kua.

- Wavy Spoon/Pencil Illusion. Hold a pencil horizontally and shake it up and down. The pencil is totally firm, but the movement creates an illusion causing us to believe it is soft and wavy. Our body must be totally firm. When you hit it, it is like steel. The movements of the joints cause the illusion of being soft. Read more

- Form 70 High pat on horse. As step back, the R elbow need to keep going inward behind you. There is a second crack with the elbow as your opponent steps away. The elbow is tied to the kua with a rubber band, so there is integrity.

- Form 73 White ape presents the fruit. R in with elbow, rotate on R shoulder-kua line. Rotate on L shoulder-kua line fist stretches longer on the turn. Rotate the kua, hand does not move, the middle has to be tighter than the rest parts of the body. Elbow needs to aim to touch the kua so the moves are deep.
Step back to double shake feet is similar. Both shoulders need to go over. As the torso rotates, the R hand stretches out. Hand out from the top, it is a positive circle.
Both are six sealing four closing. Master Chen had a video before about this move we need to train 1000 times. Pure Gold https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WS1xgzN75Qw
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We practiced one knee up one knee down movement. The move after second Flash the back and before going into the jump.
It is the knee movements caused the kua to open, creating a hole which allows the torso to fall straight down.
The going down motion and the torso rotation are one move. The torso is passively dropping. The hands do not move, and the arms are adjusting accordingly.
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Yilu Count: 2863.

I still have some same general mistakes from last month record.


Self correction:
- My head is a bit forward, not suspended enough. Center line is not strong.
- A few places, when doing the stretch, lost the non-moving points.
- First Cloud hands, when out with hand, shoulders popped.
- Single whip, R toes should close more.
- Turning flower at the bottom of the sea, I leaned, lost the axis.
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For a special day to commemorate my master GM Feng Zhiqiang!

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A practice from the east to the west and the north to the south across the globe.
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- Train the elbow – lock the hand and shoulder, only stretch the elbow. This is a small movement. No move on the hand and shoulder.

- Jade Girl Works at Shuttles – the jump is for length, not height.

- Step Back to Double Shake the Feet – the feet are switching. They cannot jump and land together.

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- To train the elbow. Lock the shoulder and hand completely, better to ask someone else to hold it, only move the elbow. The movement is very small, like the door hinge. The movement of the elbow is the same as the knee.

- To change the direction of the fingers, we lock the wrist and the hand, move the elbow and the rest part of the body. Once the body is well trained, the movements can be much bigger.
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Stretch i

by Kelvin Ho on 2021/01/06

To create a stick, we, we need to stretch.

  • Think of pushing down the middle point, B, of a triangle with the two other points, A and C. locked. The stretch is between A and C, and the stick is formed between A and C.

To rotate, we also need to stretch.

  • Think of a non-moving rod. A rubber band is tied to it, and stretched outward away from the rod. When it can’t stretch any further, a small force tangential to the stretch will cause the stretched rubber band to go around the rod.

In both cases, there are both restrictions and the attempts to break the restriction.

In the first case, A and C are restricted from moving, while B is forced to break the A and C apart along the A-C line.

In the second case, the rod is restricted from moving, while the rubber band is pulled and stretched away from the rod. If the rubber band is ever loose, the little nudge cannot cause the rotation.

Adjust Yourself, Not Your Opponent

First you make contact, then you adjust yourself, in the end you defeat your opponent. This process is what we generally call “Adjust yourself, not your opponent”.

On making the initial contact, Peng must be present. As soon as you touch your opponent you must establish superiority over him/her. You must be lose advantage.

If you succeed in dealing with the initial contact, you already have won half the battle. Where you make the contact, do not move it. You can only make some minor adjustments. The key to success is whether while holding (Peng) your opponent, you can adjust yourself. Beside the point of contact, adjust the rest of your body to the most advantageous position.

At this point, you can beat you opponent any way you chose to. If it is not the case, your first two steps were not done right.

The older and smaller person is Shao Changyu of Juxian, Shandong. She has been taking lessons at the Rizhao Chen Zhonghua Taiji Academy for almost two year. She is a conscientious student. Most of her training was at the Academy by attending afternoon classes. She has no Push Hands training. The opponent is a college student from the Irrigation College who has martial art experiences and is currently on the college Sanda team. This match is an impromptu match. Read more

  • Iron Shirt ( 铁布衫) – physical structural act.
  • Golden Bell (金钟罩) – same exercise but devoted to the training of timing.
  • Buddha’s finger – to poke.
  • Eagle claw (鷹爪) – to grasp.
  • Vermilion palm – timing based.

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In early Autumn 2019 I was training with Lutz and Fabian. I was doing a common drill for the Practical Method, Fabian as partner: He was pushing my arm repeatedly with same power, speed, distance and rhythm. On his move I was training the elbow-in/foot out (on the front side). Read more

- Movements need to be deep enough to make sure every body parts are stretched out. To feel the bottom. Fingers touching the wall and body sinks to find the solid. Read more

Yilu Daqingshan 2013 i

by admin2 on 2020/12/11


SmartSelect_20201211-044226_Video Player

• Whenever you do a move with the arm, it doesn’t effect the torso.
• Then enhance the size of the arm movement.
• Then when you do arm movements, the torso can move up and down. They are still functioning separately.
Movements are separated when:
• If then they’re considered touched.
• If body specifications match, it is called real.
• movements need to be totally independent.

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13 Moves Side View i

by admin2 on 2020/12/09


Some mistakes I recognize by myself.

In general,
1. Fingers and wrists need to be stretched more. Keep tile hand especially my L hand. Sometimes the wrists are bent.
2. Some moves I looked down and lost the position of the head.
3. Not enough KUA.
4. Some of the circles, hand turned by itself.

Some details,
1. First form on the turn, my L hand went up. I have never noticed this until today. Checked some of my old videos and I have been doing this probably since day one. L mid finger supposed to be at the same dot, still in line with the center of chest.
2. Form 13 when turning to the right, my body popped up.
3. Form 17 punch downwards, didn’t lock the elbow, overextended.
4. Form 35 Punch to the ground. My torso leaned forward.
5. Shaking pole three times. Lost the direction of the left fingers. Hand was moving up and down. Daoshou.
6. Fall into split and Step up to ride the whale. Kua did not switch first/enough. Still led by the shoulders.

From Master Chen,
Lower cloud hands is horizontal stepping.

Thank you Master!

Cannon Fist Daqingshan i

by admin2 on 2020/12/07

Robot Taiji i

by admin2 on 2020/12/06

Fetch water with the rubber cord

  • Step on one end of the cord to lock it on the ground, pull it with the rear hand.
  • Train opening of the front kua.
  • Find the appropriate strength in the rubber cord to be strong enough that we cannot use the hands/arms to stretch it, but weak enough that we can use the kua to stretch it. Read more

We hear those things often. In this article I‘ll give an overview of what that means and also write a little bit of how to implement it into your body.

The concepts are very easy to explain. So here we go: Read more

Head and kua are locked like a triangle.
Separate the top from the bottom.
Kua is the demarcation line. Read more

Prague Open House 17 i

by admin2 on 2020/12/02

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Iowa Workshop 2017 i

by admin2 on 2020/12/02

The Berlin/German branch of Practical Method would like to announce a free online workshop via Zoom, in german language.

For sign up, please go here:

and see this clip to get an idea:

Thanks for sharing to anyone who might be interested, and thanks to Master Chen for inspiration!

Practice Yi Lu segmented for 10 years. If not, you are moving all over. That is wrong. Every move must show exactly what you are doing. If you don’t finish the moves, you will not synchronize and it is as if you are speaking a different language from Practical Method Chen Taiji. Read more

In today’s class the following students received partial Yilu corrections:
  • Spencer Jones
  • Xavier Santiago
  • Winston Wang
  • Josh Landau
  • Jody Hall
  • Paul Pryce
  • Liu Yuxin
  • Ong Wenming
  • Sven Gusowski
  • Rick Pietila
In today’s class, the following students received partial Yilu corrections.
  • Sergey Schepin
  • Paul Carson
  • Carlotta Viviani
  • Paddy Hanratty
  • James Tam
  • Vincent den Hengst
  • Lutz Liese
  • Dina Kerr
  • Ardarsh Khalsa