How is it possible to learn Tai Chi well? (Master Gu Mingwei, Chinese New Year banquet lecture, Mar 7, 2010)
CONFIDENCE: The primary advantage of practicing Tai Chi is its ability to strengthen the body, improve one・s health, and help us achieve long life; second is as a martial arts system for self-defense. Among the various forms of martial arts Wu style Tai Chi is ranked the top for promoting long life, furthermore it will not hurt one・s body nor are there any dangerous side-effects. Among the previous generations of Wu stylists many lived past 95 years of age, at the same time as being healthy and developing a high level of martial skill. People who study Tai Chi must set clear goals for their practice and understand Tai Chi・s special nature, they must stand fast in their confidence and pursue these aims, distinguishing the correct way to practice. Practicing Tai Chi is for the health and wellbeing of oneself, not for anyone else!

CONSISTENCY: One must find consistency in one・s practice of Tai Chi. The more one practices the more benefit one will obtain, the less one practices the less one will gain. Practicing Tai Chi is like paddling a boat upstream, if one stops one will immediately go backwards. Therefore one needs to set a certain time and certain amount to practice consistently, treating Tai Chi as an important part of ones life and in this way one is assured of benefit in the future.?
To think of Tai Chi as simply an amusement, to view Tai Chi as something to do only when one has free time, to think that if one is a little busy one can miss practice, to think that one is going traveling for a few weeks in one term so one will just not go to class for the whole term, to think that the weather outside is not suitable so not go to class, to think one wants a little rest so just not go to class, these are simply excuses for not practicing. Understanding Tai Chi practice in this way is a big mistake. A Tai Chi workout is a light cardiovascular exercise, practicing diligently is an investment in one・s health. Health is priceless, without health we have nothing. I invite you to be focused, mindful and settled in your practice of Tai Chi.
Best wishes for everyone・s health, and hope that everyone finds great improvement in their Tai Chi practice.

Why study and practice "traditional Tai Chi Chuan"H

Founding Grandmaster Zhang Sanfeng said, "I desire the whole world to achieve longevity, not only attain martial techniques;

Grandmaster Wang Zongyue said, "Fully pushing towards our purpose, in the end what is it all for? Longevity, and the promise of an eternal Springtime.;

The key aim of practicing tai chi chuan is to cultivate a strong and healthy body, prevent disease, and extend ones life. Certain effects that can be realized through this process of practice are: 1, preventing the initial onset of aging 2, increased balance and stability, thus preventing injury from falls 3, the treatment of various chronic diseases 4, strengthening of the immune system to reduce chances of cancer 5, the positive shaping of ones emotional states 6, live healthy, and so on.

Tai chi is a kind of kungfu. It relies on a process of:accumulation; through diligent practice to produce results. One must have perseverance, determination, maintain a still and peaceful heart and mind, and set correct personal objectives, only then can one learn this kind of kungfu.

The tai chi sage Wang Maozhai said,:Practice tai chi as you would write Chinese calligraphic characters, not just know how to write, but know how to write well, to write perfectly; practicing tai chi is the same.;

There are people who practice tai chi for some time, with no obvious effect. Other than the movements being done incorrectly, the key issue that prevents development of one・s tai chi is lack of perseverance. If you have some free time, practice. As long as things come up stopping you from training, or getting a little busy you come up with an excuse to not find the time, or because the weather is too hot or too cold so you are not able to practice, or because this term you want to play and not practice, and so on, you・re tai chi will not develop. How can this kind of approach bring about results? A good analogy is that of a doctor who prescribes medicine to a patient. The patient obtains the medicine but does not take it. May we ask how good the medicine is? Practicing tai chi is just like this. When people get to a certain age they must evaluate themselves and their lives, and ask what is most important? The answer is health and long life. By diligently practicing tai chi you can attain just this, health and long life.

Having the opportunity to learn traditional tai chi is a blessing, not everyone in the world has this opportunity, please treasure it!

Why is Tai Chi Chuan such a superior exercise?

Learning how to use the dantian in Tai Chi practice is a key indicator of its effectiveness. There are three dantians in the human body: lower, middle, and upper. Three essential points in Tai Chi practice are: emptying the neck to cultivate the head-top jin, finding the body・s centre of equilibrium, and sinking the qi into the dantian. This is what is called the Daoist internal alchemical practice of daoyin. The lower diantian is located in the lower abdominal cavity, below the belly button, and it is the root of one・s being. The beginning stage of one・s Tai Chi practice places emphasis on natural breathing. Breathing should be soft, slow, long, and deep. Gradually a feeling of qi will appear and sink. In conjunction with this breathing, the dantian should manifest a lively quality. In the next stage the qi will fill the whole body and there will be a sense of movement within. This qi is not air or breath, it is a substance produced through practice that exists and can be felt within the body. It is also a result of opening the micro- and macrocosmic orbits (xiaozhoutian and dazhoutian). There are many benefits of sinking the qi into the dantian, such as increasing lung capacity, promoting blood circulation and digestion, cultivating one・s personality, and strengthening one・s body to fight disease. Once the qi settles, the body will become light, lively, and soft like a baby, allowing one to find youth in old age. Understanding how to cultivate the dantian is an important part of nourishing and prolonging one・s life. It must be carefully understood and put into practice.

Student Page

  1. Tai Chi Recommended Learning Chart
  2. Tai Chi Sabre, Sword, and Spear Recommended Learning Chart
  3. Wu Style Tai Chi Reference (Chinese only)

Tai Chi Forms

  1. Wu Style Tai Chi Chuan Slow Form 108 Posture
  2. Wu Style Tai Chi Chuan Fast Form (94 Postures)
  3. Wu Style Tai Chi Sword First Form - Qian Kun Jian (108 Posture)
  4. Wu Style Tai Chi Sword Second Form - Qi Sing Jian (64 Posture) (Chinese only)
  5. Wu Style Tai Chi Saber (108 Posture) (Chinese only)
  6. Tai Chi Spear Forms (Chinese only)
  7. Tai Chi Push Hands