Knowledge : Taiji FAQ

George Chen

Highlighted comment
George Chen 11 hours ago on Youtube Practicalmethod  channel.

Hi Sifu Chen, I really enjoy your videos. I know that different teachers have different emphases and skills, and that some skills are more “practical” in the sense that they don’t require setup or cooperation of the other person in a live situation. That said, there are 2 or 3 online taiji teachers (e,g, Liang DeHua and Adam Meisner) who use “na” energy extensively to capture the partner’s body and push him out. Do you also teach this skill, and if not, why not? Thank you for considering my question. Read more

Question and Answer part two of the Chen Zhonghua Sept. 2019 Toronto Practical Method Workshop.
Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 10 min.   In: English   Year: 2019  Difficulty:1/5  At:Toronto

TO 1909-Q and A 2
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Question and Answer session at the Sept. 2019 Chen Zhonghua Toronto Practical Method Workshop.
Presenter: Chen Zhonghua   Length: 10 min.   In: English   Year: 2019  Difficulty:1/5  At:Toronto

TO 1909-Q and A 1
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We are collecting people’s impressions of Master Chen’s ability in the format of a short and concise description. Is there anything that shocks you when you met him for the first time? Please add your own impression as a comment below. The following are a few examples:

Wall – Kelvin Ho

Spear that pokes at you – Kelvin Ho

Body is different from a normal person – Kelvin Ho

Able to move individual body part – Kelvin Ho   Read more

True Disciple i

by Kelvin Ho on 2017/08/04

Who is a true disciple?

A true disciple is someone who follows the teacher based on the principles of the teachings. When the teacher evolves in his understanding, a true disciple will do the same. Even if the teacher and the true disciple don’t see each other for an extended period of time, their evolutions will still head in the same direction.

Taiji Trinity i

by Kelvin Ho on 2017/08/04

Principle: Separation of Yin and Yang
Concept: Indirect Power
Action: In with elbow no hand, out with hand no elbow.

These are three ways of describing taiji. They are one and the same.

Master Chen Zhonghua discussed the above during a Q&A session at the North American Practical Method Training Camp from Jul 29 to Aug 2, 2017.

Hello Master Chen

I have a question about kua, shoulder and shun/ni.

My question is when you are doing say, cloud hands. You show this on one of your videos here called How To Keep The Center from 3.25. You are on left leg and kua opens on left side and the left hand looks like Ni. Does this mean that the kua opening always coincides with Ni chan and closing of kua is shun chan.

Also in one of your videos I remember you say that when hip opens then same side shoulder kua closes and vice versa. What does this mean exactly with the shoulder kua closing or opening. Does opening of shouldre kua mean that shoulder is not sunk and closed shoulder kua means shoulder is not sunk?


Video in Chinese:


  1. Master Chen when answering the question focused on Practical Method itself, and left it to the audience to do the comparison, as he couldn’t represent the other art.
  2. Practical Method’s core is rotation. Spiral and silk reeling is rotation plus distance.
  3. We can never do true rotation. It’s impossible for us to do 360 degree rotation. We can perform a lever action. A lever action is a part of a rotation.
  4. Form training is to create levers in our bodies.
  5. Grandmaster Hong Junsheng has the 10-word saying “Out with hand no elbow, in with elbow no hand”. Lin Ketong calls it 10-word mantra.
  6. This mantra actually describes the lever action.

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.

Questions students prepared for the June 2016 Chen Zhonghua Berlin Workshop.

Athanasios Alexatos

Master Chen can you show us and tell us a few things about the 8 energys in practical method ?

Read more

The answer is NO!

It looks like wrestling. It looks like wrestling. It looks like wrestling. Read more

In recent years, taiji has been (in China because of the demonstration at the 2008 Olympic Games Opening ceremony) described as moving clouds and running water. 行云流水。 Read more

Hi guys, after the workshop with Chen Zhonghua in Berlin – which was fantastic – I`m planning my training schedule. A minimum to do every – EVERY – day! Read more

Originally published in 2007

We are masters of tools and in return, tools also control us. Through years of teaching in North America, I have come to the conclusion that weapons and device training must be started at the beginning, not at the end. Read more

Xu (1)虚: Empty.
Shi (2) 实: Solid.

One is empty while the other one must be solid. Taijiquan is the art of Empty rooted in the Solid and vice versa.

Empty and Solid must be equal. Use the feet as an example. One cannot stand on one foot and then the other. One must be on both feet at all times. But one foot is used to work while the other is used to support.

This is the overall way of action in Taijiquan.

Taijiquan practice requires that the body must possess five bows in order to have power. There are different versions of what the five bows are. In the Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method system the five bows are defined as:

  1. Hand to Hand.
  2. Foot to foot.
  3. Hand to foot (set one).
  4. Foot to hand (set two).
  5. Torso.

Dear Master Chen,

If I listened correctly you don’t move but rotate to change angles. I have a question about the positive circle. In the first half if you lead with the elbow it seems the angle in the elbow gets sharper. Is that a move or does that happen through rotation? As far as  know a rotation isn’t considered a movement. Also what happens when you keep “pushing” the elbow in the line of the shoulder and hand to create power? It look likes the elbow is dropping away from the line which should make the structure weak. I can’t seem to unite these directions although I think I understand them separately.





Hi there Master Chen, these past days i’ve had the same question everyday, been trying to find an answer, looked over the old videos, but didnt really help. Read more

Originally written by: Xavier E. Santiago-Albizu  Feb 1 2008

After reading Master Chen´s “Relaxation and Rotation” comment, I have the following question. When doing push hands would trying to apply concepts such as “neutralizing, listening, and adhering” still be getting into the opponents dimension? Read more

Originally written by: Blake Caldwell Feb 2008
Squares Triangles Rectangles Cylinders Circles. All of these are used in Taiji? Squares, rectangles, and triangles are all used in foundation and strength, circles and cylinders in movement, redirection.

By using mind intent we move the lengths of angles to make the angles center obscure and to increase the strength of the angle in relation to our movement and opponent (i.e. leverage)

A: No, we see GM Hong still have very high skill when he is old. Taiji skill is just riding a bike, learning to swim, you will never lose it once you master it. Internal strength is not based on muscle, but rotational joint dexterity for precise manipulation of power.

A: Other Chen style is for form competition and has been modified so it is easier to learn. Martial art form is more precise and is harder to learn.

A: We are doing push hand as a martial art and that requires special ways other than simple drills.

Master Chen:

I was reading the notes posted by one of the attendees at your Brazil workshop and he made the following notes: Read more

Red Rock Canyon, Nevada, USA

Red Rock Canyon, NV, USA

Master Chen and to those on this web site, I have a question I would like to get your input on.  In the taichi classics there is an expression, “Stillness in Motion, Motion in Stillness”.  I’ve always had this explained to me that it relates to the mind being still while the body is in motion and vice versa.  This has always perplexed me somewhat and didn’t seem like a thorough answer. Read more


so a lot of people i’ve talked to have said they wanted a in depth guide on stuff they might need to bring to the mountain, now this guide is less important for people here for shorter stays so if you’re here for less than a month it wont be so important, but if your here for more than 2 months this list might make your stay much more enjoyable, so here’s my first revision of the daqingshan survival guide apologies in advance for the terrible grammar and spelling Read more


I am checking in with another question. Read more

I hope someone who knows Chinese and/or TaiChiQuan literature help me on this one. Read more

Master Chen,
I am starting to feel something new.  It’s related to the post on the “Sweet Spot”.  Is it possible to initiate movement or generate power from the elbows?  I cannot differentiate the difference yet.  Read more

In terms of learning  the Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method system, the assumption is that unless you have a special method, you are not learning. You might disagree with this assumption and believe, like many others, that you are learning and making progress. Your beliefs and conclusions are based on criteria that are not taiji, therefore, they are not valid. Read more

The stomp 3

by ajax314 on 2012/03/02

I have a question that I hope someone can answer. What is the correct way to stomp when training ? Are there any training exercises we can do to be able to stomp the right way when doing the form?  I know that there is a wrong and a right way to stomp. I know that when it is done right it is very powerful. I just  want to make sure I’m doing that right.

Normally punching is something we all take for granted. We all think we know how to punch. Read more

How to rotate? 2

by admin on 2012/02/14

An example of one of the many methods to rotate. You will notice that this method does not “look” like you are rotating. That’s the whole idea: a real rotations is not what you think it is.

For detailed video, please purchase the original here: