Thursday, March 8, 2012

Tai Chi

You may have felt the pressure before: "What can you do for the talent show?"  I thought it would be cool to learn a choreographed routine, and so I looked to Wushu, and in particular T'ai Chi Ch'uan.  I once owned “Tai Chi Ch'uan: A Simplified Method of Calisthenics for Health and Self Defense” by Cheng Man-ch'ing, but I think I sold that a long time ago.  A local martial arts instructor, Master Scott, has "Wu Style Tai Chi Chuan Gah Gee" by Master Leung Shum, "Tai Chi Tao" by Cai Long, and “Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan” by Yang Jwing-Ming.  He teaches Wu style Tai Chi.  But the best book I've seen by far is “Tai Chi Chuan: 24 and 48 Postures with Martial Applications” by Shou-Yu Liang.  Along with some clear video instruction I might know how to answer the next time someone asks me "What can you do for the talent show?"

The nice thing about 24 posture Tai Chi is that it was standardized for competition in China (see a list of the existing forms of Tai Chi).  Consequently anyone who teaches this version does so identically.  The DVD "Tai Chi for Beginners" by Paul Lam has a demonstration of this version that is the same as that described in words and text by Yang Jwing-Ming. 

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