Flash the back- the left hand cannot move.
Once you know the choreography, you will be corrected in terms of applications. The applications will help you with the choreography.
Step forward to hand covering punch – imagine as if your hands while you are punching are tearing something. The left hand holds hard and the right hand tears it. It is not like what we normally understand as a punch.
When you do the form you have to have the feeling that you have a one day old baby in your hands and that you are afraid to touch it. I need to hold “the baby” in a special way. The feeling is very difficult to get unless you have that experience. By the time we have three days you’re still very careful, but whoever sees you thinks you’re not.
Hands have to be soft on the opponent and only holds the opponent and there is no fighting. And you still have a very strong posture. It’s a contradiction you have to learn to resolve. You have to show your power and it never interrupts your alignment. You want your opponent to express these actions and make your opponent utilize his own moves to hurt himself. When you express rough handling you will know your opponent will fight you. Your opponent can’t fight back at higher levels because you’re not fighting him. Were using his own moves. This is very difficult. Wherever you touch your opponent there is never any expression of power. The expression of power is with your joints and you never touch your opponent with your joints. You only touch and open up with your surface. Joints are not surfaces you can use. They are hidden surfaces. The work of the joints are only express on the surfaces, and surfaces are not for fighting. Example, the surface on your bed does not give you cushion. The spring box is a cushion but you cannot touch the springs. The spring is hidden inside the mattress. The surface locks. If you don’t have good material you have to leave the springs and nail them on a piece of board. Now they are boxsprings. Now on the board you soften your physical touch. When people say your hand is strong, in reality the tissues and your skin and muscles are soft, but your bones are the spring your opponent does not touch your bones. Your opponent is now feeling you are rough. This is difficult to understand, to apply, and to express. You can do this only at a high-level. Right now you need to know this without the ability.
Block touching coat- the left arm cannot be straightened. It should always be a curvature. If I move my hand, the opponent will feel that I’m rough. Only move the joints. At the beginning the joints wobble like a boxspring that doesn’t lineup. Eventually they lineup. And it feels as if your hands are moving. This comes down to the outside does not move, you only move the inside. When you’re inside is fully expressed it is fully lined up. At the beginning you move chaotically. Eventually it all lines up.
Punch covering hand is done at 45°.
The problem with everybody is that were programmed to naturally flow. We do not want to flow in Practical Method. You naturally want to flow. Our method is by stretching and making your moves very big so that you cannot flow. If your moves are so big., it is so difficult to flow and forces you to adjust and a line. Make it more difficult to get into the next move and the difficulty comes when you’re moving in a much larger way than you can handle.
Your form not looking stiff is a problem for us in the Practical Method. You want your form to look very stiff and un-taiji like in the beginning to then grind the corners off., and in Practical Method we go from no shape to tai chi. If you start with Taiji shape in the beginning you train 20 years and you never have tai chi. You begin as a piece of rock with any shape and it has grinding, and grinding until we look like tai chi. You have to have rigidity. You cannot allow your body to toss. Shifu wants us to do the form in fragmented way at the beginning. Imagine as if you have tire rubbers tied to your hands which lock you and force you to pull from your joints.. All the so-called internal is like an internal combustion engine. On the outside you have the strongest steel so your car cannot vibrate or shake. Only the inside moves. It forces your joints to work so hard that it will reproduce lubricants in the joints. You do that every day and the body adjusts. That’s why you cannot make your moves loose.
When you hear instructions, you understand but your body does not understand. Think of the white crane. Imagine five people are giving you bear hugs. It is impossible to get out. So you have to go from the inside to struggle to get out. You have to use your Kua, elbow and shoulder to open. Every move has to be done as if your appointment is over powering you. Imagine as if there’s weight in your hand. That way you have to shrink and power up from the inside. It is not possible to use the hand when you have weight on it. Everything outside of you has to feel like a compression. You have to fight back from the inside pushing out. The outside is too inefficient to move.
Fall into a split- as you land sit on the floor, rear knee faces forward. Left hand pushes against the rear knee and the left hand supports it on the floor to move forward. The movement is down, and then forward. You never go up and down.
Brush the knee in oblique stance- You pull the hand and then hand goes forward to opponents crutch. Leave it there, and switch hand. Then flash the back and throw.
The problem with many people is normally people do not listen to Master Chen. Many flaws by Taiji practitioners is because they like to watch videos of grandmasters. That is very dangerous. Because many of those grandmasters have been training 40 to 60 years. They move so smooth and you should not really watch it. When you watch them, your mind processes that information and you wanna copy that. Remember the procedure is that you start not learning the form. At the beginning your teacher puts in a posture and then another posture and then another posture and then another posture. You do months and months. Smoothness comes very very late. Once yo move smooth the you are at the high level and you cannot come backwards. Do not watch or listen to the grandmaster’s smooth performances. They will tell you that it’s very easy and just flipped the hand. To them it’s very easy because they’ve been doing it for 40-60 years. The beginner looks at that and thinks it’s very easy and moves very loose but has no tai chi. That is a fallacy. It will not work out like that. You have to understand the yin and yang of things. Mainly it is important to follow the steps. Following the steps will lead you to the ability to grind. To grind means everything. Without the grinding you’re just going through the form. Grinding really comes from something around it. Usually that is a joint. First grind is to grind your elbow into your hand. It is a straight move. It is like grinding a screw with a screwdriver. If you wobble the screwdriver it will not put in the screw. You must be like a screw that is very stable on the wood and continue to be so screwed into the wood. It does not wobble anymore.