Kick with Right Heel
Brush Right Knee and Push
Brush Left Knee and Punch Down
This second part of the Dr Chi variation brings the form back to join with the Cheng original sequence with Punch Downwards.
Bring Down offers an extended application to Rollback. At the end the energy needs to be strongly downward, with your spine and legs working on this together and with the downward emphasis focused in the right hand. At the same time keep a feeling of ‘up’ from the top of your head, so extending your spine in both the up and down directions.
Punch is as you’ve done it before and in Kick with Heel lift the right knee before extending the heel. You’ll feel a nice stretch along the back of your right leg.
It’s good to get a feel for Brush Right Knee and Push complimenting the Brush Left Knee and Push that you already know.
As I’ve already said in the Cheng Man Ching original sequence, with the Brush Knee and Push postures remember to have your pelvis/torso facing the diagonal as you step. Then, as you push forward off your back foot you get that lovely turning, spiraling energy.
With Punch Downwards, you step in the same way. Just look for the connection from back foot to fist and see if you can get a good, solid, committed feeling to the move.
Ward Off Right
All of these postures are familiar now and the only new bit is how to get into Ward Off Right from Punch Downwards. It’s one of those important linking moves. And it’s a move that I really enjoy because of the wave like motion and the feeling of how this creates a circle with your right arm and hand.
I think that’s the key part – keep it flowing and wavelike. Have the sense of ‘yielding’ as you come back and turn the left foot to the NE diagonal; let the forward momentum bounce back out of your rear, right foot as you come forward with the ward off. There should be no gap between moving back and coming forwards; just like when you throw a stone up in the air – there’s no gap between moving up and coming down, just pure change.
Angus Clark: Fair Lady Weaves The Shuttles gives us a superb posture, or sequence of four repeating postures, that really creates a weaving of the space that you are in. You visit each of the four corners and it sometimes feels like you’re touching all the corners of the earth, of our world.
If you write down the order in which you visit the corners it’s like this: NE, NW, SW, SE. However, you don’t visit in an anti-clockwise circle – and this is the point. You weave it.
This gives rise to a lot of footwork and stepping and there are two big steps around – the second one to the NW and the fourth one to the SE. In the video instruction you can see that I show you a way of doing it that helps you comfortably reach the bow and arrow stance on to the diagonal. This is what you want. If you try to step round but can’t actually do it, then you’ll twist your body and break your flow. So it’s much better to take your time to get good the good stances.
On a more esoteric note(!) at the end of each move, see if you can feel the outward, lower (push) hand coming directly from your heart and the upper hand connecting with the heavens. Like you’re joining with the universe. Nice.
Back down to earth – the martial application is a ward off with the rising arm, which ends up covering the opponent’s elbow (and protecting your head) while you push with the other hand. In the solo, make sure that your push (lower) hand ends up further away from you than the top hand.
The Chorus is where you return time again throughout the form and re-play all or some of the key moves of Ward Off, Rollback, Press, Push and Single Whip.
Ward Off, Rollback, Press , Push are known as the four Primary Postures in Tai Chi. In the eight-sided Ba Gua symbol corresponding to the eight trigrams, these four Primary Postures make up the cardinal directions.
As such they are the main building blocks of the tai chi form.
Ward Off is associated with the quality of strength and the trigram Ch’ien, heaven or spaciousness.
Rollback is associated with the qualities of earthing and yielding and the trigram Lu, receptivity.
Press is associated with the quality of flowing penetration and the trigram K’an, water.
Push is associated with the quality of ‘light-giving’ and the trigram Li, fire or vitality.
In the centre of the Ba-Gua is the yin yang symbol – the symbol of change and harmony, of balance.
I like to think of the Single Whip posture as playing a key role in helping you to find or return to a place of balance within yourself.
Thought of in this way, The Chorus plays an important role in moving you through some very fundamental life energies, returning you to a place of balance. It also marks a shift from one section to another, in this case from the Fair Lady section to the final section, taking you from one mood to another.
These moves are perhaps the most familiar to any player as they occur most often in the form. I always enjoy playing them over and over as a way to strengthen myself and restore my energy.
"Welcome to Living Movement. If you are interested in learning tai chi or qigong, or in applying tai chi or qigong in a specific way, you’ve come to the right place! Week by week, we post videos of each of the movements in the tai chi short form, as well as qi gong exercises. The Tai Chi short form videos were directed by Annabel Allison, with music by Tom Green. We hope you enjoy them. We're
"Welcome to Living Movement. If you are interested in learning tai chi or qigong, or in applying tai chi or qigong in a specific way, you’ve come to the right place! Week by week, we post videos of each of the movements in the tai chi short form, as well as qi gong exercises. The Tai Chi short form videos were directed by Annabel Allison, with music by Tom Green. We hope you enjoy them. We're based in Chagford, Devon, UK and work locally, nationwide and in Europe. If you’d like to get in touch then you are most welcome - just send us a message. Ever since starting to study tai chi and qigong in 1981 I have been inspired by the simplicity, practicality and beauty of its principles and recognise the tremendous potential in applying these to real life. Living Movement has evolved as part of my own journey and as a way to help you to explore, expand and apply these fabulous principles of movement and mindfulness" - Angus Clark
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