William C. C. Chen's Tai Chi Form and Workshops
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Besides helping you understand the basics of the Tai Chi form, these videos offer glimpses into master Chen's specialty, teaching the connection between the Tai Chi form and achieving great speed and power for self defense. View rare film of Cheng Man-Ching teaching push-hands and sword form in class, some never seen before, Dr. Tao doing push-hands with students, and Max and Tiffany Chen with their many talents. Watch Josh Waitzkin doing push hands and Ken Van Sickle instructing the sword form
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DVD trailer showing Tai Chi boxing, pushing, and form
Introduces Master Chen's system of "Body Mechanics" for making effective use of Tai Chi Chuan as a realistic system of self defense and health maintenance. Includes clips from workshops conducted in Germany that show high speed punches, push hands techniques, and internal principles.
Tai Chi is an ancient martial art system for health and self-defense, promoting spiritual, mental, and physical well-being. The Yang style form, shown here, is slow, gentle, even flowing and relaxing. It has a reputation of being excellent for stress reduction, self centering and living a more enjoyable life.
In its many variations, the Yang style Tai Chi form (exercize) is the most widely practiced in the world. Grandmaster Chen is one of the world's preeminent Tai Chi teachers, a senior disciple of the legendary grandmaster, Professor Cheng Man-Ching, who, in turn, studied with Yang Cheng-fu, the most prominent modern descendent of Yang Lu-chan, the founder of the Yang style.
Workshop by William C. C. Chen in Hanover - short
Clips from one of Master Chen's Body Mechanics workshops in Germany.
Expanding your energy and making use of your opponents force to push
Driving energy from your chest walls ("heart") for a two-handed strike
Connecting to your inner thigh and alternating between loose and tense to create high speed hooks.
"Fingers are the Work of Art", article by William C. C. Chen (2012)
Master Chen describes the importance to Tai Chi and sports in general of directly connecting to the fingers. He explains how all movements are led by the fingers, and their role in achieving maximum punching speed and power.
(This is a downloadable PDF file. It's OK to give your browser permission to view.)
Instructional video trailer from Tiffany Chen
Some clips of Tiffany doing the form and shadow boxing. She talks about her growing interest in Tai Chi and the martial arts competitions she's won. Tiffany has been inducted into Inside Kung-Fu Magazine's "Hall of Fame".
60 movements of Tai Chi Chuan by William C. C. Chen (1993)
Through the use of a split screen, Master Chen makes it easier to understand the correct positions for hands and feet. In addition, he counts out each of the movements to correspond with the pictures in his book.
The Yang Short Form is broken into two parts (A and B), so that beginners can learn Part A first. This consists of the first quarter (or so) of the entire short form and has the most basic, simple moves.
60 movements of Tai Chi Chuan by William C. C. Chen (1993)
Master Chen narrates alternating "wake up" and "fall asleep" instructions that correspond to the breathing and energy pattern of the Tai Chi form. "Fall asleep" is when you exhale and relax the most (Yin), and "wake up" is when you inhale and expand your energy (Yang).
The coordination of slow movement and deep relaxed breathing helps explain the medical research findings that the Tai Chi form promotes blood circulation, increases the oxygen level throughout the body, and enhances the body's healing systems. Tai Chi has a reputation not only for being safe at any age, but also of slowing the aging process itself.
Tai Chi sword movements with English names
The double-edged Chinese sword lends itself naturally to the principles of Tai Chi because it is not designed to meet force with force. Instead, the sword is used to deflect, avoid, and redirect blows - before delivering a slash or stab of its own. This was the weapon of choice for many famous generals and scholars.
From: William C. C. Chen (DVD) (00:05:30)
The fist takes the shock
Grandmaster Chen throws some hard punches to illustrate that the knuckles are taking the shocks and the body is doing the punching. That is, it's best to think of the fist's role as just receiving the force instead of participating in its creation. (San shou class, 2010. Master Chen was 78 at the time.)
From: William C. C. Chen (00:00:16)
Empty the chest. Stay loose. Don't push
Grandmaster Chen explains that the most effective punches use the lower abdomen (tan t'ien) and the inner thigh. Try pretending that you have a broken arm with a cast and so can't use your arms. Think of punching, unlike breaking a wall, as being like playing the drums, where playing louder yields more power. (San shou class, 2009)
From: William C. C. Chen (00:04:20)
Don't clench your fist
Grandmaster Chen explains and shows why the fingers of the fist should be left open, with the knuckles delivering the punch. As an exercise, pretend that your fingers are hiding a secret written on the target. Don't push in. Clenching slows you down and is not necessary to protect the hand. He illustrates the "one-inch punch" and rapid strikes from a close distance, which requires proper alignment of the fingers, knee, and toes plus a focus on alternating use of the fingers both for the strikes (thumb and first two digits) and for releasing the leg muscles between them (using the pinky finger). (Applications class, 2009.)
From: William C. C. Chen (00:08:23)
Sink down, relax, use your toe to spin your fingers
Grandmaster Chen explains and demonstrates the difference between using internal "compression" energy versus muscle power for punching. He compares chi to "pumping air in a tire". He talks about the how energy is transmitted from the toe and leg muscles to the fingers. He starts with images: you "get ready to jump" and then "jump your fingers". Your toe drives in, spinning the fingers, with the body following. Meet the resistance without pushing in. (San shou class, 2010)
From: William C. C. Chen (00:10:56)
And a few more....
In these videos, Nils Klug goes through Grandmaster William C. C. Chen's entire 60-step Yang Tai Chi form, demonstrating martial arts applications. Many have practical use in self defense, and all applications help give a better understanding of the mechanics of generating force and the proper shape for each movement. Nils has studied with Grandmaster Chen for over 25 years, runs a Tai Chi school in Germany, and organizes Tai Chi master classes and push hands competitions.
Detailed instruction of alternative martial arts uses
Movements: (1. Preparation;) 2. Beginning; 3. Ward off with left hand; 4. Ward off with right hand; 5. Roll away = pull back; 6. Press; 7. Push
From: Nils Klug (Forms & Applications DVD) (00:03:38)
Detailed instruction of alternative martial arts uses
Movements: 8. Single whip; 9. Lifting the hands; 10. Shoulder strike; 11. White crane spreads its wings; 12. Cross over the knee and step; 13. Playing the guitar; (14. Cross over the knee and step;) 15. Step up, deflect, intercept and punch; 16. Get the needle at the sea bottom
From: Nils Klug (Forms & Applications DVD) (00:10:05)
Army Rangers train in Gracie family jiu jitsu
Army Rangers train in Gracie-style Brazilian jui jitsu at Fort Benning, GA. Instructor Staff Sergeant Matt Larsen explains how learning hand-to-hand combat helps to develop fighting strategy, a vital battlefield skill.
From: Pacific Street Films (DVD) (00:03:51)
Savate combines the kicks of Chinese martial arts and English boxing
This segment explores the origin and development of Savate (French kickboxing). It features Nicolas Saignac, a French Cup Champion, who teaches in the Los Angeles California area. We learn about Professor Saignac's early training and fights in France and the need to overcome fear and gain confidence.
From: Pacific Street Films (DVD) (00:03:06)
The complete DVD of Pacific Street Films' special "Martial Arts: The Real Story" (2000) is presented here. Some of it has never been seen before, including silent newsreels of judo demonstrations in Europe; black and white film of famous masters of the Chinese "soft" arts performing in Taiwan, even footage of the most famous Tai Chi practitioner, Chen Man Ching.
Why do people study the martial arts?
This special starts with video clips of martial artists in action and interviews with experts about the different reasons that people study the martial arts.
From: Pacific Street Films (DVD) (00:02:22)
What's behind a martial art that emphasizes internal energy and relaxation?
This segment introduces the "internal" martial art of Tai Chi Chuan, starting with demonstrations by Chen Yuen San, a master from Taiwan. Experts, including Robert Smith, a CIA officer well known for his martial arts writing, discuss "chi" ("internal energy"). There's footage of 20th Century masters, Wong Shu Jin and Cheng Man Ching, shown doing the form and pushing hands with a young William C. C. Chen.
From: Pacific Street Films (00:07:18)
How the tassle adds to Tai Chi Sword Form training
As he goes through the Tai Chi sword form, Master Ken Van Sickle explains the point of using the tassle with the sword. When the sword form is done correctly, the tassle won't slap your wrist, get tangled, or hang limp, and doing the form (and fencing) with a tassle is an advanced technique for further improving Tai Chi skill.
From: Ken Van Sickle and Joseph Zeisky (Feather Sword DVD) (00:02:16)
For loosening the shoulders, elbows, and wrists, while strengthening the body
Master Ken Van Sickle shows a practical exercise for speeding up sword movement and increasing its power while staying relaxed and fluid.
From: Ken Van Sickle and Joseph Zeisky (Feather Sword DVD) (00:00:33)
More videos from a senior instructor of Cheng Man-Ching's Sword Form
Master Ken Van Sickle is a leading expert in the Yang Sword Form. He studied Tai Chi Chuan with Professor Cheng Man-Ching for eight years and was his primary photographer and cinematographer. An experienced martial artist, who studied saber fencing, was an expert marksman with pistol and rifle, and had awards in archery and Goju karate, Master Van Sickle was a certified teacher for Professor Cheng until his death in 1975 and opened his own school in 1980.
Demonstrates ways to cause an opponent to lose their balance
Guru Mike Casto teaches and shows the techniques for disrupting an opponent's balance. He explains the use of imaginary triangles to determine how to direct a small amount of force to cause a major loss of stability. Through examples ranging from simple take-downs to pushes and leg sweeps, Guru Mike illustrates basic principles and moves that can be incorporated into any martial art.
From: Mike Casto (DVD) (00:20:02)
More videos showing balance disruption and Filipino techniques
Guru Mike Casto is a senior instructor in Filipino and Indonesian martial arts, including Eskrima (7th Degree Black Belt), Kali, Pencak Silat, and Sikal. He specializes in teaching joint locks and balance disruption.
More great martial arts and Tai Chi videos to come!
Daughter of Tai Chi master teaches Tai Chi and applies training
Non-stop takedowns of a tough and aggressive opponent (2012-05-26)
Lots of exciting action in this 3-round mixed martial arts contest between Max Chen, (white and black trunks) and his Italian opponent (gold and black trunks).
Winner by unanimous decision, Max demonstrates a full gamut of smoothly-executed takedowns against a strong, determined opponent. The relaxed, smooth style reflects Max's early years of Tai Chi training under his father, Grandmaster William C.C. Chen, followed by Muay Thai training in Thailand.
Highlight fights from the 2011 competition
At the 11th Wushu World Competition in Ankara, Turkey, Max (red trunks) won the bronze medal. Max wins the only medal for the USA in the kickboxing (sanda) events. This is the deciding bout, against Dubanevich Andrei (Belarus, black trunks).
This is one of the preliminary bouts from the the 11th Wushu World Competition, between Max (black shirt) and the Malaysian contestant in the 70 kg category.
Sudden K. O. ends this fight (2007-09-08)
Max Chen (in red) wins his spot in the 9th World Wushu Championships in Beijing by spectacular knockout at the U.S. Sanshou Team Trials in Lubbock, Texas. While short and one-sided, this fight is a good showcase for Max's smooth, mix-it-up style.
More great videos from Max Chen to come!
A close fight with a tough and aggressive opponent (2012-03-12)
Non-stop action in this 4-round boxing contest between Tiffany Chen, (blue shirt) and Amanda Wang (gold shirt). Tiffany wins the semi finals of the 85th annual NY Daily News Golden Gloves.
Wins award as best Lei Tai (raised platform) fighter
At the 1st World Kuoshu Championship in Sao Paolo, Brazil, Tiffany (yellow shirt, USA) won the gold medal. She pushed her opponent, Aimme Jurewicz (blue shirt, also USA) off the platform several times, showing effective application to fighting of her substantial Tai Chi push hands skills. Tiffany won a special award for Best Lai Tai Performance by a Female Athlete.
An exciting fight with non-stop power punches and kicks
At the 8th Wushu World Competition in Hanoi, Vietnam, Tiffany won the silver medal. This is the final, and the winner was Ha Thi Hanh (Vietnam, black shirt). Out of 42 categories, Tiffany was one of only two silver medals, and the U.S. did not win any gold medals in this very tough competition.
More great videos from Tiffany Chen to come!
||This is the largest collection of videos on the web of Cheng Man-Ching in action,
including 3 of his rare DVDs. Professor Cheng Man-Ching (1902 - 1975) was one of the most
influential figures in the evolution of Tai Chi Chuan. He was trained in Chinese medicine,
taught poetry and art at leading colleges, and was a successful artist. In his twenties,
he developed lung disease and started studying Tai Chi. Around 1930, he began studying with
Yang Chengfu (1883 - 1936), the grandson of Yang Luchan (1799 - 1872), who founded Yang-style
Tai Chi Chuan. Through changes he made to the Yang Forms and his training of many world-renowned
masters, Professor Cheng played a pivotal role in improving and popularizing Tai Chi.
Push-Hands workshop 1, 2, 3, a master tape, short form classes 1-6, and several sword workshop tapes.
Professor Cheng gives detailed push hands instruction while demonstrating correct positioning, the techniques for pushing effectively, and the need for lightess, relaxation, and gradual movements. With some quick and lite strikes he shows how the principles tie into martial arts. Well-known senior Tai Chi instructors participating include Ed Young, Tam Gibbs, Ken Van Sickle, and Lou Kleinsmith.
From: Cheng Man-Ching and Don Ethan Miller (Master Tapes DVD) (00:13:29)
Protect yourself at all times but don't attack first
Dr. Tao explains and shows how "yielding while controlling" is the key to making push hands an effective martial arts training exercise. He emphasizes proper positioning and control of joints, understanding the best defensive locations for avoiding a direct attack, and letting your opponents ambition give you an opening.
From: Dr. Ping-Siang Tao (4 Postures DVD) (00:12:37)
Yield. Don't let the bird land on your shoulder
Dr. Tao circulates through his class, correcting students as they push hands. He encourages them to make themselves open and receptive, so that they can practice yielding. He shows how to handle attacks by taking the opponent to one side or the other and by using the basic push hands "postures".
From: Dr. Ping-Siang Tao (4 Postures DVD) (00:09:47)
Josh Waitzkin's Push Hands Competitions
Chess master becomes world Tai Chi Push Hands champion
Josh Waitzkin - lots more videos
Match 1 of Chung Hwa Cup World Tai Chi Chuan Championship
Final moving step push hands contest (2003-11)
2004 National Push Hands Championship Videos - At the National Push Hands Championship in Orlando Florida in July 2004, Josh won 5 Gold medals at different weight classifications. He also won 3 Silver medals (moving step, restricted step, and fixed step) when he competed in the super-heavyweight class. These entertaining and educational videos are an encyclopedia of push hands techniques done under the pressure of high-level competition.
Push Hands Training Videos
Lots of great new videos, in case you haven't looked lately.
Master Chen's complete Body Mechanics DVD:
Ken Van Sickle's complete Feather Sword DVD:
"Martial Arts: The Real Story" a DVD from Pacific Street Films that includes a segment staring William, Max, and Tiffany:
"Balance Disruption Workshop", a DVD by a martial artist who teaches Filipino styles, and it contains interesting material relevant to push hands: