Greater Vancouver Workshop February/March 2017

by Camille Lipford on 2017/03/10

Like one drink sets an alcoholic back after 50 years of abstaining – so it is if we add a move (like move the hand)

Bigger from the kua

If you need to move the knee, fix the hip.  If you need to move the hip, fix the knee.

Stages in Taiji

Hitting- Feng (Tiger)

Neutralizing -? (monkey)

Bouncing -Hong (Buddha)

60 year cycles in a human life. In a few years (6000 year cycle on the Earth) come to Daqingshan.

Bring the elbow across the line, or bring the knee across the line.  By the time the elbow has crossed the line, everything is broken (on your opponent)

The shoulder is open when energy from your upper body can flow out through your hand to your opponent. The kua is open when energy from the floor can flow up through your legs.

Open – to be able to connect.

Yin Yang of Taiji= power always goes towards your opponent’s spine

                              physical body goes towards your own center

This combination in taiji terms is known as integrity.

Physical body goes inwards (towards center), energy goes outwards.

When talking about general principles do not cite specific examples.

All the physical movements must be such that the body does not fall apart.

Keep your aim. Uprightness is aim.  Any path is fine.

Devil is distraction.  Stay on the course – core knowledge.  Do not ask questions.

Greatest Dao is stupidity.

No time, no space in the universe.

The wise ones are hiding themselves in the mountains.  Don’t come out, then you can’t get distracted by all the things going on.

Don’t be hot-blooded.  Better to be cold-blooded.  Even better to be non-blooded.

When people are doing push hands – better to lose than to make one wrong move.  Don’t make moves that depart from the principles.

March 4, 2017

When touching Master Chen’s body to feel what he is doing, touch two sides, and then one more. When touching the knee to see how it doesn’t move (single whip), block it in the direction that it would move if it was moving the wrong way

Write questions down on a second sheet of paper.  Practice with the questions in mind, review notes and principles.  Find that in a few months that question is answered

Fill up before the point of contact.

Exercise: Push two hands into a wall.  Move anything you like except the hands.  Have a partner try to remove you from the wall. Then try: only one hand at a time must be touching.  Repeat with partner. Then move out from the wall a bit, and have a partner try to break your now imagined contact with the wall.  Imagine that hand on the wall when encountering an opponent.

Single whip: keep the rear knee stable over the ankle (keep the calf still) when shifting to the center.  Once the other calf is anchored, then the rear knee can adjust.


Don’t ask how to turn the light switch on.  Just turn it on.  He doesn’t care how.  Just follow the instructions. Keep telling yourself in your head the instructions, keep aiming for it.


Two hard parts (bone – yang) meet at a soft part (joint -yin). Open the joint, it won’t get hurt.  If you jam the joints or close them, it hurts the soft part.


March 5, 2017

You can still stretch from the foot to the floor (even only tiny bits of a millimeter)


Training goal: Foot.

Speed is keyboard.  Must be able to cover all keys at once (all the fingers)

“Instantly there”

Typing one finger at a time is ?  (missed the word)

3 parts : one in front, two behind

Master Chen demonstrated the transfer or switching at the kua for Draping over body fist.  Hard to describe in words. The switching is imperceptible to the opponent.  The purpose of switching is to access the opposite foot.


Each student demonstrated first 13 moves. Technicality -yang, Presentation – yin.

How do we recover from our mistakes?  It’s good to have confidence and feel good about what you are doing.  Your technicality will improve because your body will not be as stiff, and the movements can become more accurate?


Ball bearings carry 100% of the weight.  All the joints are like ball bearings. Full engagement and moves very smoothly and with freedom.


{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Samvanity March 11, 2017 at 6:34 pm

Thanks Camille for the notes. The person nicknamed monkey is Tian Xiu Chen (1917-1984)
Here is a video clip showing Tian perform Yilu


Camille Lipford March 12, 2017 at 9:50 pm

Thanks for filling in my blanks!


John Upshaw March 13, 2017 at 4:35 pm

“Master Chen demonstrated the transfer or switching at the kua for Draping over body fist. Hard to describe in words. The switching is imperceptible to the opponent. The purpose of switching is to access the opposite foot.”~great note! Thanks~


Gene Hess March 19, 2017 at 5:31 pm

Thanks for the great notes Camille!
I would like to add a few other things too.

In moving foundations, the bottom has three beats. (1.) Step, (2.) Settle, (3.) Step. Same process for both moving forward or backwards.

There is only one peak … the hand must be higher than the elbow and shoulder, before the hand has power.

Bow power: The end points are fixed and a point in between moves.
Lever power: Two end points are moving and a point in between does not move.


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