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Tai Chi

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    Taijiquan or Grand Ultimate Boxing, often simply called taiji, or tai chi in the anglicized version, is a Chinese martial art of the Neijia or soft/internal school that uses soft, slow movements, but is a premier martial art as well. Taijiquan is intrinsically linked to the Daoist (Taoist) philosophical, meditative, air jordan 12 for sale, and medical tradition.

    Chinese legendary history attributes taijiquan’s origin to Zhang Sanfeng, a Daoist adept who was canonized in 1459, but taijiquan enters recorded history centuries later as a tremendously effective martial art practiced esoterically by the people of Chenjiagou (Chen village) in Henan Province. A form of the art was first demonstrated and taught in public in Beijing by Yang Luchan (1799–1872),who had learned it in Chenjiagou.Yang is said to have accepted all challenges from the many Beijing martial arts masters, never to have been bested, and never to have injured an opponent seriously.He became known as “Yang the Invincible” and was appointed martial arts instructor to the Imperial Court. Nike LeBron 11 NikeID White Black Red 131127-002. The form publicly taught by Yang and his successors is the source of popular conceptions of taijiquan as an only vaguely martial, though particularly beneficial, health and longevity exercise.However, the more obviously martial and physically very strenuous Chen style continues to be practiced, as do the derivative Wu,Hao and Sun styles.

    As a martial art taijiquan employs a cultivated subtlety of touch to sense an opponent’s strength in order to instantly redirect his or her motion so that one’s defensive movement effectively neutralizes it and becomes a counterattack as well.Descriptions of this capacity use such phrases as “when the opponent is still, be still; when the opponent moves, move first,” and “use four ounces to deflect a thousand pounds.” The technique depends upon the ability to maintain gentle physical contact with the opponent without resisting, i.e., to “never meet force with force.” The taijiquan player’s counter to the aggressive move, once the instant has been seized and the movement’s force captured, can be any of a number of techniques.Most simply and most benignly, the taijiquan player can accelerate or redirect the opponent’s motion, sending him or her many feet away.Alternatively, any of a variety of in-fighting techniques ranging from low kicks to punches to openhand strikes and grappling techniques can be employed singly or in combination, practically simultaneously with the blending with the opponent’s force. The initial contact is said to be as soft as cotton, the counter that it becomes, as springy as steel. The sensitivity, skill, strength, and mental attitude necessary to perform such feats spontaneously and without effort are cultivated partly through the practice of solo forms, or sequences of patterns, and partly by other means. Form practice is a form of meditation in motion and requires great concentration without tension. Paired practice routines in which one Works with a partner to simulate martial encounters exist in varying degrees of formality, ranging from duo form sequences to freestyle sparring. The full range of taijiquan skills includes the use of weapons as well; the sword, broadsword, spear, and staff are used according to the principles of the art. The expectation is that the player will gradually learn to direct and augment the flow of vital energy within the body with his or her mind in harmony with the breath and that bodily functions will be enhanced as the body is renewed by the improved circulation of the qi.

    The mechanical principles of taijiquan involve natural erect stances that combine great stability with nimbleness of foot.Movement begins at the dantian, an anatomical point at the body’s center of gravity, just below the navel.With no tensing of muscles and with remarkable mechanical efficiency and relaxed precision, the weight is shifted and energy transmitted via the waist to the hands. In effect the legs, spine, and arms become like five bows, resulting in springy whole-body strength to be applied at the optimum instant. From a Chinese cultural perspective the medical and psychological value of the art as well as its martial potential are quite reasonable expectations. During the Cultural Revolution taijiquan was under political attack in the People’s Republic of China, but now it has been reinstated as a national treasure and a uniquely Chinese form of art and sport. Basic Taijiquan is now taught there publicly in parks and other suitable places, as it is in other parts of the Chinese world. Advanced instruction is available, and form competitions are held frequently.

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