How to Practice Tai Chi Well
Begin with Understanding the Theory
BEGINNER LEVEL II
Practitioner can begin Dynamic Exercises of single movements, that run along a straight and circular path. Below are a few examples:
Opening & Closing
3 Circles: Uprigth, Horizontal, Vertical
Learn Directions: Smooth & Reverse
Circle Walking: 8 Postures
“Begin Tai Chi practice with Tranquil Standing Pillar, and then Yin Yang will begin to open and close.” This is the ancient Tai Chi boxing masters’ take on Yin Yang Philosophy, and the ancients’ overall advanced summary of Tai Chi. The significant universal guiding principles can be found in the essay “How to practice Tai Chi Boxing well” by Grandmaster Feng Zhiqiang.
This sentence from the essay points the way to begin practicing Tai Chi Boxing
“must begin with tranquility”
Basically saying that practice must first begin with tranquility, then Tai Chi will follow. It is difficult to paint the pictures of Tai Chi without entering the realm of tranquility. Which further specifies that the opening and closing of Yin Yang is the core of Tai Chi. The opposition of Yin and Yang are Tai Chi, the opening and closing is a method to unify the contradictory sides, which is the movement of opening and closing. So, we must earnestly beseech “the opening and closing of Yin Yang” as it is the essence of how to practice Tai Chi well.
This sentence also reveals the nature of Tai Chi’s internal boxing exercises:
1. Dynamic and static. Upon reaching stillness, movement springs forth, amid movement strive for tranquility. Within tranquility is movement, within movement is calmness.
2. practice inner and outer. That is practice internal exercises as well as external exercises. Practice both Tai Chi Qi (breath life force) , and Tai Chi form (physical body).
3. Work on both your character and fate. That is train both the innate (what you were born with) and postnatal (that which you obtain after birth). Nurture all the spirit, the essence, and the vital energy of Qi.
The sentence is an appropriate guide for the beginner Tai Chi Boxer and Tai Chi Self-cultivator.