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The Tai Chi Form

The Tai Chi Form

Our form is derived from the classic Yang style form of Cheng Man-Ch’ing and modified by one of his students, Dr Sam Lee to emphasise the Qi Gong aspects of the movements and maximise the health benefits.

The Form – Part 1

Stand with heels almost touching, feet turned out at 45 degrees, arms held loosely at the sides, palms facing in. Spine upright, head upright, chin tucked slightly in. Joints relaxed, breathing in for 6 seconds and out for 6 seconds.

1. Opening (Preparation)

Inbreath

Sink, quarter-turn to the right, arms circle out and up to forehead height
Transfer weight into the right leg

Balance 1

Outbreath

Step to the left, turn to face forwards
Transfer the weight to the left leg, pivot on the right heel to a parallel stance as the palms float down to the thighs

2. Opening

Inbreath

With hands relaxed and fingers pointing downwards, wrists float up to chest height. Straighten the fingers and draw the elbows back

Balance 2

Outbreath

Palms float gently down to waist level

3. Sink Left

Inbreath

Shift the weight to the left leg

Left hand rotates to form a ball

Pivot on the right heel and look to the right

Turn Right

Outbreath

Transfer the weight into the right leg, taking the ball forwards

Left arm floats up level with the right

Lifting the left heel, look to the left

4. Ward-Off (Left)

Inbreath

Step with the left, left fore-arm floating up to chest height

Weight transfers into the left leg as right arm floats up level with the left

Lifting the right heel, look to the right

Grasp the Sparrow’s Tail (i. Ward-Off – Right)

Outbreath

Step forwards with the right, transferring the weight forwards, body upright

Rotate to the right, pivoting the left heel into the classic, split-stance

5. Grasp the Sparrow’s Tail (ii. Roll Back)

Inbreath

Rotate to the left, then draw the hips back

Right palm facing the heart, left hand floats down to the hip, palm upwards

Left palm rotates to meet right palm

Grasp the Sparrow’s Tail (iii. Press)

Outbreath

Hips move forwards, then left palm slides over the back of the right hand and hands separate

6. Grasp the Sparrow’s Tail (iv. Roll Back)

Inbreath

Hips move backwards, elbows draw back

Grasp the Sparrow’s Tail (v. Push)

Outbreath

Hips move forwards, palms slightly forwards

7. Single Whip – Draw Back

Inbreath

Hips move backwards, transferring the weight onto the left foot
Turn left 180 degrees, pivoting on the right heel

Single Whip – Push

Outbreath

Transfer the weight to the right leg, forming a ‘Crane’s Beak’ with the right hand
Pivot on the left toes, then step wide with the left and push with the left palm
Placing the ‘beak’, fingers pointing down, level with the jaw

8. Sinking Left

Inbreath

Transfer the weight onto the left foot, hands relax and float down
Look to the right, right heel rises

Play Guitar – Right

Outbreath

Draw the right toes in towards the left foot
Float the arms upwards slowly to chest height, left palm facing the right elbow
Lightly placing the right heel in front of the left at the end of the breath

9. Pull Back

Inbreath

Arms turn and float down the left side
Right arm stops with palm facing the left hip
Left arm circles back and up

Step with Shoulder

Outbreath

Leading with the right shoulder,
Transfer the weight into the right foot with
Left palm facing forwards close to the right shoulder

10. Crane Spreads it’s Wings

Inbreath

Hips draw back as
Left arm floats down and out and
Right arm floats up and out
Both palms facing forwards

Spread and Step

Outbreath

Transfer the shape forwards into the right foot
Turn to the left placing the left toes in front of the right heel
Right hand lowers to forehead height, left palm rises over left thigh

11. Circle Arms

Inbreath

Right arm circles forwards, down, back and up
Left arm circles up, back and down
Turning at the waist to the right

Left Brush Knee

Outbreath

Turn to the left and step wide with the left
Right palm pushes while, left palm ‘brushes’ over left thigh

12. Sinking Left

Inbreath

Right palms pushes forwards and floats down as
Weight transfers into the left leg
Right heel rises and right toes draw in behind left heel

Play Guitar – Left

Outbreath

Transfer all the weight into the right foot
Float the arms upwards slowly to chest height, right palm facing the left elbow
Lightly placing the left heel in front of the right at the end of the breath

13. Circle Arms

Inbreath

Right arm circles forwards, down, back and up
Left arm circles up, back and down
Turning at the waist to the right

Left Brush Knee

Outbreath

Turn to the left and step wide with the left
Right palm pushes while, left palm ‘brushes’ over left thigh

14. Pull Back

Inbreath

Hips draw back
Arms float down to the side, palms forwards
Left toes rise, waist turning slightly to the left

Hand to Qi Hai

Outbreath

Weight transfers onto the left
Right palm circles in to face Qi Hai
Left arm floats out to the left, level with right hand

15. Step with Fist

Step with the right, transferring the weight to the right
Right hand forms a fist at right hip, palm up
Left hand continues circle upwards
Left heel rises

Inbreath

Step with Punch

Outbreath

Step with the left, transferring the weight as
Right hand punches, covered by the left hand

16. Draw Back

Inbreath

Left palm slides under the fist
Fist turns and opens
Hips draw back with palms towards the heart centre
Palms separate and turn forwards

Push

Outbreath

Hips move forwards, palms slightly forwards

17. Draw Back

Inbreath

Hips move back as right rises to vertical
Left arm rises, left toes rise
Pivoting on left heel,turning to the right

Turn and Close

Outbreath

Weight transfers to left, lifting right heel
Arms circle, pivoting on right toes
Wrists meet, crossed at the forehead
Weight balanced, feet parallel

End of Tai Chi Form, Part 1

You may continue on the Part 2, or to finish…

18. Draw Down

Inbreath

Crossed wrists float down
Separating at the heart centre
Arms float down and out to the sides
Palms facing forwards

Finish

Outbreath

Transferring all the weight to left
Right leg slides in to meet the left
Arms float down to the sides
Weight balanced, feet together

 

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