Notes from Master Chen online forms class 15 October 2020 – Paul Carlson

by Paul Carlson on 2020/10/15

The subject of the lesson was corrections of yilu. Four students performed parts of yilu and received corrections.

In step back and whirl arm on both sides we need to get ready then execute the move. Too often we only do the get ready part. All moves involve a tearing action using the kua.

From cloud hands the torso needs to rotate to go to high pat on horse. The forearm does not move. We need to have shoulder separation when doing high pat on horse. The shoulder needs to rotate 360°. We need to disconnect the arm from the torso. All movement comes from the torso and also from there to the rub right foot. All movements come from the rotation of the torso. From high pat on horse to rub foot, need to pivot into a twist step. Twisting fast pulls one of the feet so the feet are close. Center core must be strong.

On double kick, don’t move center after the kick. Don’t involve the middle when going to the fist protecting heart. Can involve the lower body.

Arms never go up and down and never go side to side. They appear to do those things but it is because of the torso going up and down and rotating. The analogy Master Chen gave is that of a barrel on the beach. It doesn’t move but if you dig the sand out from under one side the barrel will move but no individual part of the barrel moves. It moves as a unit. This is accomplished with our body by the knees going up and down but do not move.

When observing, if the kua is not open, the knees will move a lot. Likewise if the shoulder is not open the elbow will do a lot. In the beginning it is good to have a wide stance to keep the knees from moving. When our stance is wide our knees are not able to move.

In our taijiquan every move must be indirect. The saying from Grandmaster Hong was “No, I didn’t do it.” This means that whatever it was that affected the opponent was not noticeable to the opponent or observers. If someone fell down because of an application it was their fault not GM Hong’s.

When the taijiquan form is performed, smooth is NO yin yang separation. We need to have separation of movements. When smoothness is used it is used to hide intention.

We must always follow the procedures of Practical Method. This is the way we will improve. When asking questions, they should be geared to asking questions about the procedure.

If we find that there is NO difficulty in doing the form there will be no change. When sometimes we feel discouraged and feel like quitting that shows the way to improvement. That is when we realize what we need to work on, what areas we need to train.

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