Comments or notes from workshops by Chen Zhonghua and others in Taijiquan.

View posts in sub-category:

Competition and Conference Workshop FAQ Workshop Listing Workshop Organizers Workshop Registration Workshop Timetable


Basically, once again I will combine the 4-day seminar into a summary by grouping what I call related items. It was a great environment to get corrections from others or better understanding of push hand drills. Great bunch of people.


We did foundation work every day along with the Yilu form lots of either 13 moves or 81.

Twisting towel – This is like two versions of you working toward a common goal. The first version Locks the physical body. The Second you push from back kua to                   move arm when it stops pushing you go back. Zero percent of move came from the first you.

             This concept is also in fetch water – first you stretch from floor up through opposite shoulder. The Second you push the kua to the line from the back. The above              examples were shown in order to show the exactness required. When there is movement elsewhere in the body the intent and power evaporate.

Terms understanding

Throughout the seminar Mater Chen would make the following statements and show examples.  He would have us do a few items to engrain it in us.

                            The lock is Yin The move is yang

                          Definition of not moving the pieces of the arm. Master Chen encouraged us to take this learning and put them in our form  

To move the hand, you must move the elbow

To move the elbow, you must move the shoulder

To move the shoulder, you must move the kua

To move the elbow, extend to armpit,

He also said that in order not to be trapped bypass a Joint. So my elbow is moved by my shoulder then use the kua or foot to move the elbow. This leaves                                       nothing for the opponent to catch, it also makes the line longer


Stretch into legs through hip – I realized I moved my knees or stretched from one foot to another. Now I am trying to stretch through the hip like turning over a an hour glass to stretch or fill to the knees and then feet

Getting rid of slack example Positive circle Practise first aligning elbow (a little) without moving hand.  This gets rid of the slack because when you only rotate elbow it removes slack


Finding the center of the line - Real or otherwise all things go through the middle / centre. So you should beat the opponent to the center. Let your opponent create the two ends and beat them by recognizing and beating them to the center and creating the line

Example of structure and not moving –   The chair does not move. Someone stands between legs of chair. Someone holds one leg and someone else holds the other. When they pull at the same time the person in the middle moves


Rules You can work toward understanding and accomplishing

To move the elbow, try Bypassing joints

-        Open shoulder to move elbow

-        Open kua to move elbow

-        Open heel to move elbow

You always break energy through joints When opponent pushes elbow move turn shoulder / bicep to bring around elbow then there is no fight

Understanding the energy of in and out -Elbow In energy is on the bottom of the arm, hand out the energy is on the top of arm

You can go back and forward but cannot go sideways this would be considered retreat

Power comes from locking first then moving Looseness is like a cotton ball, energy is absorbed by the cotton. A thrown rock you feel it goes through you

Stretch from the back to connect and go through the opponents back


Example of not moving Positive circle hand out without moving or shifting energy will find the back foot

You must have a bite in your grip, do not grab the muscle penetrate to the bone or ligaments. you can penetrate with two fingers or a forearm or a single finger

When you step in if your arm is in front you only have access to the arm if your arm is behind the person you have access to the whole body

You must develop a rod from your front shoulder to front hip first to help remove space. Then you learn to move hand and elbow to create a byte.

All drills

  1. Get to the other side
  2. Stretch in order to cause rotation and bypassing joints
  3. Cause separation by not allowing anything in your body to follow the stretch


How to

Mater Chen talked about Bidirectional elbow rotation where the energy from the elbow went forward to the hand and back toward shoulder.

Mater Chen showed how you can sense this initially. He had me take my arm and place my palm on his elbow joint and the other hand on his wrist. And then he opened his elbow sending first some energy to his hand and then back to his shoulder.

I found I could do the same thing by applying pressure on my elbow and then slowly opening the elbow I could feel the bidirectional stretch. I then took my palm away and tried to do the same

Master Chen said then try to take the backward energy all the way to the back shoulder



Exercise to live longer

Align yourself by Depressing chest and Ming man point (coccyx  ) in order to connect the points into one line in the body



Exchanging of energy Drills between you and your opponent

  1. The S curse in the arm to create a line (bent arm creates a line from shoulder to hand
  •   You have your hands on the biceps of the opponent. If your wrist turns out on the biceps then the shoulder turns inward. If your wrist turns in on the biceps then the shoulder turns outward

2. Bend arm release through hand

  • The opponent holds your wrist with both hands. You bent arm back toward yourself. When they have been up rooted split your energy by stretching your finger from left to right or right to left. You can feel the energy split if you did not unlock

3. Expansion and contraction

  • Master Chen had me push his chest with my two hands arms extended, his expanded his chest and arm. His chest then collapsed as he brought his elbow around and down through my two arms.

4. Changing the angle

  •  Match opponent then leaving your arms in place stretch sitting back stop do not move waist again just stretch with arms. You were able to move them because by moving back you changed the angle and force

5 . General Distance

distance is measured by eyes by shoulders. Boxers rely on elbow movement moving sideways hides elbows and shoulders


6 Ways to connect to your back Do not roll arms


  1. Depress chest and connect to lower back to put arms in front of body
  2. Now expand chest sideways and then Depress chest and connect to lower back to put arms in front of body

7. don’t see an arm see a line with your hands-on opposite side.


Pieces of the form


Fist protecting body

- Use the opposite chest stretch to first engage bent arm and get to fist without moving bent arm structure this arm is like a boomerang then use stretch in kua to move elbow while keeping same boomerang structure

Brush knee with opponent ( proper brush knee)  application

As you step out with heel push your arm down with a byte  in order to stretch opponents’ arm, Lock your forearm and elbow to your front kua. As you land your foot your arm moves down at the same rate as your kua

Tai chi expression for the above is called this is that = examples are your arm is tied to your kua your hand is tied to your foot before elbow in. If there is slack it does not allow this or that to happen


With the above information master Chen had us do drills or feel the experience by him performing the drills on us.

Exchanging of energy Drills between you and your opponent drills example 6

  1. This was a drill to show how to connect to both your back and your opponents back # 6 Ways to connect to your back = Do not roll arms Now expand chest sideways and then Depress chest and connect to lower back to put arms in front of body.

In this drill the opponent grabbed your arms above elbow. Now expand your chest as you raise your arms, your hand and forearm are attached below their arm, once out beyond their body Depress chest and connect to lower back to put arms in front of body. Now stretch from your back to fingers and beyond


  1. This was a drill to show how Expansion and contraction like #5

The opponent pushed my chest with two hands arms extended, I expanded his chest and arms. Depress chest and connect to lower back to put arms in front of body, then collapsed my chest as I brought my elbow around and down through the opponent’s two arms.


Alignment drills

Go backward have your chest become your feet

Someone pushes your chest and walks slow toward you with extended arm. Your chest leans back to where your chest becomes your feet walk back with each push

General Drills

  1. Opponent Steps in right leg you also have right leg forward they  are holding your elbows. They step in and stretch you out. To get rid of the feeling of locked upper body sink opening legs.


  1. Do the same step in as above three 3 times. On third time you do a front right elbow rotation. They have a feeling of hitting a wall


  1. Scissors – step with heel in back of opponent making sure your thigh touches theirs. Your arm stretched across them in front. As you land your foot the thigh effect’s them. At the same time, you stretch to your fingers stretching fingers behind them. You must open your shoulder to make energy goes to fingers.




  1. Your right foot steps in behind the opponent with your arm in front of them at level of elbow. Grab their elbow and squeeze it toward you to have them move energy from right to lower left side. Then rotate thigh and circle your right arm up and back, variation simply move thigh and elbow against one another


  1. Your right hand grabs theirs you step behind their left leg and rotate your left arm around their right bicep. Your left arm rotates up and around while your left leg sweeps them


  1. Opponent pushes on your elbow you wrap your hand and arm around their grab towards ground open or stretch from kua your kua


  1. Do not move – Hold opponent allow them to push you back now connect to floor stretching through to hands and stretch to  hands only back to move opponent



Stand in normal horse stance your right arm is bent in front of you with elbow out right side. Lock your front by pressing front right kua up and front shoulder down.                Now stretch down center of the body to lock the rest of the body. Connect/stretch back left ball of foot to left kua. Feel the connection between the ball of the foot and the elbow. twist back left heel forward and rotate around center. Your elbow moves out not back

Try other side

Now have someone stand between your elbow and front foot. Perform the exercise


At the end of day one we each perfumed the first 13 moves individually

On the last day there was 12 of us. Everyone took turns where we stood in the middle of the floor and each person rushed us one at a time tapping center, one side and the other we had to perform the drill up until the flip. We each performed 3 different drills. It gave us a sense of dynamic execution


Read more

Instructor: Master Chen Zhonghua
Date: Sep 12-15, 2020

Tai Chi Gdynia

Detailed information and registration here.

Welcome to Gdynia!

See also impressions of 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016 and 2015 workshops in Poland.

This year, with Master Chen Zhonghua’s 9th Berlin workshop, we’re celebrating 10 years of the Practical Method in Germany. Anyone who’s interested in participating in this anniversary workshop, please click here for further information and sign up:


Looking forward! :)



Do you have a New Year resolution to become healthier in 2020? Taiji may be your answer. On Dec. 29, 2019 at 10 am, you will have a chance to experience what taiji is like and what health benefits it may bring you at the Chen Style Taiji Experience Class to be held at Channels of Wellness Centre. Come try it out for free!

Read more

Push Hands Only Version

Full Version

On Dec. 8, 2019, a Practical Method Taiji Push Hands Workshop was held in Toronto. We had 10 participants, and 4 of them were new to Practical Method. Bert Desjardins drove 4.5 hours from Windsor to Toronto to attended this workshop. We also had the pleasure of having Master Liu Xuwei, who teaches Chen Style Taijiquan Small Frame, in attendance. We covered foundations:

  1. Twisting the TowelDon’t move the hand, and only use the foot the squeeze out the hand.
  2. Fetch Water – Don’t move anything, only focus on opening the kua
  3. Six Sealing Four Closing – Lock the front hand and rear shoulder, push the front shoulder into the line formed by the front hand and rear shoulder.
  4. Positive CircleIn with elbow, turn with waist, out with hand. No other body part should be moving except the specific leader.
  5. Negative CircleIn with elbow, drop the hand on the outside, out with hand.

Read more

Sydney Chen Zhonghua Taiji Academy

Sydney Chen Zhonghua Taiji Academy 澳洲悉尼陈中华太极馆

Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method 陈式太极拳实用拳法

Master Chen Zhonghua has been coming to Sydney, Australia to conduct annual workshops since 2012. First established by disciples Paul Janssens and James Strider, the Sydney group has now grown to over ten disciples.

Brian Chung & Paul Janssens, Master Chen Zhonghua’s disciples, are the instructors for the Sydney Chen Zhonghua Taiji Academy.

Classes and Practice Sessions:
Read more

I was invited along with a number of taiji teachers in Toronto to perform at the 2019 Fountain of Youth Qi Event on Nov. 23, 2019. Each teacher first performed a routine of his choice on stage. In the 2nd part of the event, each teacher demonstrated Cloud Hands, Single Whip and White Crane (Goose) Spread Its Wings of his style. Over generations of transmission, there are many variants of these moves. Many thanks to Sharon Liu, Founder of Fountain of Youth Qi for the invitation and organization of such event.

Official Page:
Read more

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.
Read more

MC Bali Workshop 2019 FB Bannerv2

 Master Chen Zhonghua’s 2019 Bali Workshop

You are duly invited to join Master Chen Zhongua’s 2019 Bali Workshop, organized by Practical Method Indonesia.

This will be Master Chen’s only SE Asia Workshop for 2019, so it’s not to be missed!

Please read the details below for all accommodation and payment options.

Date: 22-24th November
Time: Friday 22nd – 1pm to 9pm
Sat/Sun 23-24th – 9am to 5pm

Location: Mercure Resort Sanur,
Mertasari St, Sanur Kauh, Denpasar Selatan,
Denpasar City, Bali 80228, Indonesia.

Workshop Price: US$200 Cash payable at the start of the workshop
Includes 2 Workshop T-Shirts – Sat/Sun Lunch – Coffee/Tea during breaks

Private Tuition with Master Chen: USD$100 for 50mins (*By appointment only & subject to availability*)

Accommodation Options: (*These will need to be booked by yourself*)

1. Mercure Resort Sanur:
(*When booking contact them directly and ask for the corporate rates listed below using the Taiji Workshop code*)
Mercure Website – TELEPHONE: +62 361 288 833

Rates Per Night: 1. Superior room IDR 1.350.000 (USD$96)
                                  2. Deluxe room IDR 1.250.000 (USD$89)
                                  3. Standard room IDR 1.000.000 (USD$71)

2. Blajong Home Stay:
Blanjong Website – TELEPHONE: +62 361 270 335
Rates Per Night: 1. Delux Room USD$29
                                  2. Standard Room USD$24

3. Various Options:
(*When booking remember to check Accommodation location against Workshop location for walking distance*) Website with Dates Entered for Sanur Area
AirBnB with Dates Entered for Sanur Area

*Once you have paid your workshop fee, please reply to: with CONFIRMATION OF RECEIPT (PDF or JPEG), your FULL NAME and your T-SHIRT SIZE.*

Airport pickup can be arranged at around USD $22. Please forward flight details to arrange.

If you need any further assistance, don’t hesitate to contact me, we’re here to help!


Read more

Instructor: Master Chen Zhonghua
Date: Mar 7-10, 2020

Read more

I moved out of Vienna and I‘ve been thinking how I could offer Practical Method classes here in Lower Austria. In Vienna I started a group from scratch, together with Fabian. But with three kids now and a full time job I simply have no resources to start a group this way. “There must be a better method” I thought. And, as is often the case at the country side, my neighbor helped me out.
Read more

It’s the third year since we started the European Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method Meet-Up Series. It continues this year in Toulouse, France in August 24/25th at the Main Garden Square or at the 3 rue du Gorp 31 400, depending on weather.

This years meetup is in Toulouse, France at the Weekend August, 24/25th Read more

TorontoWorkshopOct2018 Read more

Click to see match schedule and scores.

Tai Chi Gdynia

Detailed information and registration here.

Welcome to Gdynia!

See also impressions of 2018, 2017, 2016 and 2015 workshops in Poland.

Night of Push Hands is an event for push hands enthusiasts to improve their skills. Matches will be run in a tournament format with different weight divisions, and winners from the weight divisions will compete in the grand championship round. There will be a referee for each match with two 2-minute rounds with a 1-minute break in between.

Anyone interested are welcome to join. Spectators are also welcome.

Read more

Tian Cai Cup Chen Village Push Hands Competition 2018

September 8, 2018

Master Zhonghua Chen and the Rizhao Chen Zhonghua Taiji Academy team are participating in the Chen Village Push Hands Competition. Master Chen was invited as a guest.

Read the full article →

Full Time Blog – James Strider

June 10, 2018

The 6th Daqingshan International Competition Daqingshan Mountain from the Pagoda The start of my stay in China coincided with the 6th International Daqingshan Competition (April 28th to 30th this year), a yearly gathering that Master Chen started to promote both Taijiquan forms (a series of choreographed movements particular to each Family style) and also to [...]

Read the full article →

Master Chen Zhonghua’s fourth workshop in Poland. Gdynia, May 28-30, 2018

May 19, 2018

Detailed information and registration here. Welcome to Gdynia! See also impressions of 2017, 2016 and 2015 workshops in Poland.

Read the full article →

Daqingshan 6th International Taijiquan Competition Opening Ceremony April 28, 2018

April 28, 2018
Read the full article →

2017 Martial Arts Festival in Toronto

December 4, 2017

Practical Method was invited to participate in 2017 Martial Arts Festival in Vaughan, Ontario, Canada. Shaolin martial arts from China were the main attraction for the event. Many local martial arts school were also invited to showcase their talents. Kelvin Ho leading Bruce Robinson, Kevin Sun, Lucas Lu and Mark Hanley performed a yilu demonstration. [...]

Read the full article →

Practical Method AGOAC Performance on June 17, 2017

June 25, 2017
Read the full article →

Practical Method Markham Open Class Photos

April 9, 2017
Read the full article →

Practical Method Markham Open Class on Apr 9, 2017

April 2, 2017

Location: Vine Cliff Park – Vine Cliff Blvd and Hazelton Ave. Date: Apr 9, 2017 Time: 8 am – 10:30 am Instructor: Kelvin Ho Fee: Free and open to public If it rains that day, the event location will be moved to: Bayview Hill Community Centre (open area near the pool) 114 Spadina Rd, Richmond [...]

Read the full article →

First European Practical Method Meetup in Vienna, Europe

March 5, 2017

What a cool experience! On 17th of February 2017 we had the first PM Meetup in Europe. A meetup which was dedicated to meet other groups practicing our art. It was no workshop in that sense, but we were lucky, that Rick Pietila, a disciple of Master Chen was still in Vienna at that time [...]

Read the full article →

Workshop Group Photo Procedure

September 24, 2016

During the Toronto workshop today, Master Chen asked me to write about taking the group photo before we start the activities for the day from now on.

Read the full article →

Master Chen Zhonghua’s second workshop in Poland. Gdynia, June 11-12, 2016

May 5, 2016

Detailed information here.

Read the full article →

Master Chen Zhonghua in Berlin June 4./5.

May 2, 2016

Now you can sign up for the next Berlin Workshop. More information and application form here:

Read the full article →

Taiji Seminar Tour Daqingshan China August 2016

March 25, 2016

August 2016 Taiji China Seminar Tour. This trip is organised to coincide with Master Chen Zhonghua’s seminar for Chinese and International students. The 7 days seminar will focus on Push Hands applications, but there will be ample opportunity to improve your form and or to learn a Chen style sword form (Straight Sword or Broad [...]

Read the full article →

Poland Workshop 2015 Photos

July 3, 2015

These are some of the local people and the people who arrived already from other countries. We have people coming from the UK, Belgium, Germany, Finland and Scotland. Worked on drills to do Elbow in without moving the hand. Change push into a pull. And not moving. — in Gdynia.

Read the full article →

Master Chen Zhonghua’s first workshop in Poland. Gdynia, June 27-28, 2015

April 22, 2015

Detailed information here.

Read the full article →

Master Chen’s Berlin Workshop – June 20 & 21

April 20, 2015

Details and sign up here:

Read the full article →

Practical Method’s “The Eight Methods of Taijiquan” Seminar

September 18, 2014

Guest Speaker: Master Chen Zhonghua Topic: The Eight Methods of Taijiquan Date: Wednesday, Sep. 24, 2014 Time: 8:15 pm to 9:45 pm Place: German Mills Public School 61 Simonston Blvd., Thornhill, Ontario L3T 4R5 Fee: Free Thank you for the overwhelming response, this seminar is now FULL. Photos of this event can be viewed on [...]

Read the full article →

Weifang Martial Arts Festival 2014

August 19, 2014

Chen Xu won gold on Adult 65 kg push hands Ling Zili won gold on Adult 60 kg push hands Han Rui won gold on Adult 80 kg push hands Hugo Ramiro won silver on Adult 65 kg push hands Michael Winkler won gold on traditional taiji form (8.46) Tim Duehring won gold on taiji [...]

Read the full article →