Thursday, June 4, 2020

Liked on YouTube: Single Whip Intent mp4

Single Whip Intent mp4
Single whip is a wonderful example of "martial intent" and how to use it with "internal discipline".
via YouTube

Liked on YouTube: Importance of Martial Arts Intent In Tai-Chi Form Practice

Importance of Martial Arts Intent In Tai-Chi Form Practice
Internal Exercise for Power and Vitality course Small Circle Tai Chi Form course part I For more info
via YouTube

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

靠 (kào)

"Kao", "shoulder or bump"

The left shoulder of Master Master Stephen Hwa  "offsets" the opponents' equilibrium, observation shows this."Shouldering" is (kào). The pronunciation is something like "cow."The meaning of (kào) in Tai Chi is to use your body to bump or press against something. "Shoulder" is used, but the word "Kao" actually does not mean "shoulder" specifically. It seems "old" as a word, perhaps traditional where "one word is used for many things* as Master Hwa has explained "The teacher forgot his keys and used "Kao" from his back to get into the office", unfortunately rendering the door useless, Master Hwa used "Kao" with his shoulder to bump his tall student Jim Roach. Master Stephen Hwa used Kao with his back to bump someone's chest that tried to get him in a bearhug from behind. Sifu Jim Roach was carrying a package and had to move a chair out of the way by using "Kao" to bump it with his derriere. Jack Eichel body checked the opponent into the "boards", and in Chinese, this would be called "Kao Not shown for Master Wu is only the beginning of and not how fluid a followup move to Part the Wild Horse’s Mane 野馬分鬃. Note the position of Master Wu's left knee as a "fulcrum". I did this application with classmates at Wu's Tai Chi Academy in Toronto quite a bit...very adaptable and efficient.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

"They don't want to do the work"!

Core moves and hand pushes forward

A student’s son once asked: "Why aren't there more people in class"? I responded, "(for one "good/bad" reason or another)...because they do not want to do the work..." That is the nitty-gritty of what I'm about to say here and why I have seen so many students come and go in 40+ years. I started learning Tai Chi in 1976 and heard from the start that it was “internal”. What I got was teaching that “talked a good game about internal” and I always felt empty. It was only 28 years later that I encountered this level of sophistication in movement. Try this and like playing the piano, just move the ring finger up and down repetitively. Being honest, notice how the other fingers move "extraneously" even ever so slightly On a larger scale, this is the problem one faces with what happens when you learn 1/4 (upper quadrant of core/torso) as Master Hwa shows here. One part moves ok, but the other half of the upper quadrant "chimes" in extraneously and drains off the power of the part you want to move. Piano players face the “extraneous” movement conundrum constantly and have to do designed finger exercises to overcome it The same attention to detail, doing exactly as Master Hwa does here over and over and over, etc., is the way to practice ¼, ½ body movement and holds true for learning “internal” in Tai Chi.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

An 按 and it syncs with Newton's 3rd law

AN 按 (push downward) Jin! And to paraphrase my own teacher Master Stephen Hwa who said:  "Sir Isaac Newton can't be wrong", so what happens here in a different presentation? In a previous video from Youtube and also published on Facebook, Master Hwa talked about "Fajin 1 and 2" and in 1 he compares "ordinary force" and "fajin". In one of the videos, he has a student kicking at him and uses "TSAI" to pull with fajin. His backward "reaction force" is nullified, but then he is pulled forward with the "reaction force". The movement "AN" shown here is really a downward push movement of long duration and "stays" with the opponent (yours truly) longer. This is unlike many other fajin push movements that push opponents away and this "stays with". It is very useful in sparring exercises. This particular use of the "An" move is found in the Tai Chi form right after "cross hands" where you do half body turn, step 180, and "diagonal brush knee". The important point here is the initial force is fajin and this has an external followup move. The fajin has a "tenses and relaxes" action but no "return path. With no path for a return (reaction) force, then Master Hwa's body is not being affected. In other words his arms and body do not remain tense, the "tension" is very brief. The followup is external and shows a reaction force as Master Hwa's steps are pulled to the direction of where the opponent moves.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Classical Tai Chi and its link to "The Bee King of China"

"The Torso Method" (aka Internal Discipline)

There are some perennial but interesting mistakes made about Classical Tai Chi and other Tai Chi.  By the same token, my own teacher "Hua Jiping" (Stephen Hwa "Uncovering the Treasure") is confused with the author (The Tao of Taijiquan, Jou Tsung Hwa) This is because of a  Western penchant for not understanding how Chinese surnames are placed.

Actually, his name is Hua Jiping and written so in a book about his father Hua Yizhi "The Bee King of China".  From  "Hua Yizhi (1893-1956) was a pioneer in Chinese modern agricultural development, the father of Chinese scientific Apiculture, and a dedicated educator, providing modern education to his home town. He was a renowned industrialist and a philanthropist of the Wuxi region" 

In an email to me from Master Hwa: "Jim: I know the confusion between "Jou" and "Hwa". Actually, I regret not meeting him. He is one of the few tai chi practitioners who is truly searching for the truth. Sometimes, he told his students " what I taught you last month, forget about it, it is not correct. let's do this way."
Stephen Hwa

I'm under the impression from speaking to Master Stephen Hwa, that he gets the question "are you related to Jou Tsung Hwa" quite a bit. He patiently explains that his surname is Hwa and therefore no relation to Jou (surname Jou). Actually, at a Rochester, NY World Tai Chi Day event (2005) while watching a demo of Hua Tuo's "5 animal frolics", Master Stephen Hwa told me that his family surname Hwa in original Chinese spelling is Hua. He also tells me that the family is related to a distant ancestor Hua Tuo who may be the first ancient Chinese surgeon.
Stephen Hwa mentions the "Dao of Taijiquan" published in 1989 in his own book "Uncovering the Treasure" published in 2010 and speaks of a couple of Jou's statements. In his book Hwa, (Stephen Hwa) makes reference to Jou, Tsung Hwa's statement that the "Torso Method" "The Torso Method" (aka Internal Discipline) he mentions in "The Tao of Taijiquan, p. A31" is none other than the "Internal Discipline" explained in loving detail in "Uncovering the Treasure, p. 1 and 2, that he teaches in Classical Taijiquan.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Liked on YouTube: Free Internal Exercise Course by Stephen Hwa

Free Internal Exercise Course by Stephen Hwa
Follow the link below for your free course. For more info: For online course:
via YouTube

Free Tai Chi online course till end of May 2020

100% off the original price!

 To encourage exercise and vitality to those sheltering in place due to coronavirus, I am providing this course free until the end of May 2020.
Enter the code FREESIGNUP at checkout to receive Internal Exercise for Power and Vitality free.

Internal Movements of Classical Tai Chi help create and maintain vigor and strength throughout life not achievable by any other exercises. This requires intense tuning and sharpening of the mind-body interaction.

Learning of the 108 Long Form Tai Chi through Classical Tai Chi Small Circle Form Instruction Part I and Part II requires dedication and patience like any endeavor.

I was asked if students could reap some of the benefits of Internal Discipline without learning the entire Long Form. I have been experimenting with the Silk Reeling movements from the Long Form, and I modified them into simple exercise routines to capture some of these benefits. These exercises have been used in my classes with good results.

Now, all these exercises are in Internal Exercise for Power and Vitality. You can easily follow the videos to practice these exercises. Explanations of these movements are included in the first half of this course, and the second half allows you to practice like any exercise video.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

What happens internally with "tension and relaxation"?

Youtube video:
So, what happens in the body when you do “Internal Movement” from the core with tension and relaxation (explained for Chinese and Western)?
Jim R. said: If you see Master Hwa's Youtube video in this post, there is less oxygen needed for relaxed muscles and hence the rate of breathing is slow. Since the heart is not required to be beating so fast to supply oxygen out to tense muscles, heart rate and blood pressure decline. Thus the normal blood flow will return to the belly and digestion resumes where the belly is calmed and also the hands and feet are warmed up. As a result, this series of body adaptations all occur and fall naturally into place as the voluntary muscles are being directed into a state of relaxation, and changes in mood will follow which makes the body feel calm and refreshed. A student of Master Hwa's said that she felt "heat" when she practiced but she said others faces turned red and perspired.
Master Hwa said:  “The Chinese way of explanation is that the abdomen is “Sea of Qi”. When one learns to connect one’s body so that Qi can flow without blockage during movements, Qi will fill every part of the body, Most obvious are fingers (hot and tingling). One will also feel hot and sweaty in the head. But, it should not be a flush red face, it should be a nice healthy color. Cardio exercise will result in a flush red face.”
Jim R: A Western explanation is that our internal movements are penetrating deep into the abdomen and the back, stimulating the function of the organs and promoting blood flow in those areas which result in the heat in the fingers, hot and sweaty in the head. Since most often, these movements are carried out slowly, the heartbeat does not increase significantly.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Liked on YouTube: Square1- 5

Square1- 5
Slow motion square 1 - 5
via YouTube