Blogs having to do with Internal Martial Arts

An Jin: The “Push of No Push,” Part 2

An Jin: The “Push of No Push,” Part 2

In Part 1 of “An Jin: The “Push of No Push,” I broke down Jin and what makes it so powerful. I then explained the mysterious An Jin, the “push of no push,” and how it needs both Song and Fang to work. This post gets right down to how to train it.

An Jin: The “Push of No Push,” Part 1

An Jin: The “Push of No Push,” Part 1

My teacher, Grandmaster William C. C. Chen, would often speak of the “punch of no punch” and the “push of no push.” It was his ironic way of saying that the power of the punch or push didn’t come from crude muscular force. What made it work didn't translate easily into English. It requires understanding and application of some really nuanced stuff. That stuff is called Jin. And its particular expression in the Taijiquan "Push" posture is called An Jin. An is one of the four primary Jins that...

Stress. Gongfu. Shen.

Stress. Gongfu. Shen.

We each have opportunities to extend beyond our comfort zone and explore what else is possible for us. It doesn’t have to be on the big stage. Without stress there is no growth. We get to choose how much Shen we welcome into our lives. 

Wu Wei and Wei Wu Wei in Taijiquan Practice

Wu Wei and Wei Wu Wei in Taijiquan Practice

Wu Wei and Wei Wu Wei in Taijiquan Practice   When your body is not aligned [形不正], The inner power will not come. When you are not tranquil within [中不靜], Your mind will not be well ordered. Align your body, assist the inner power [正形攝德], Then it will gradually come on its own. (From the Nei Ye, “Inner Training,” possibly the oldest Chinese text of Daoist mystical practices. It was written around 350-300 BC, likely before the Dao De Jing and the Zhuangzi.  Quoted in Wikipedia. The terms Wu Wei...

Yin Power in the Legs for Health and Gongfu

Yin Power in the Legs for Health and Gongfu

The power I am talking about here is of a different sort than is addressed through common forms of exercise, like walking running, swimming, cycling, and yoga. It is a “soft power”: a receptive, Yin power.

The Healing Power of Elbow Jin

The Healing Power of Elbow Jin

My old friend David suffered a near-fatal stroke a year ago. His right side was paralyzed and the prognosis from his doctor was not good. It's been a year, he was told to expect a decline. But that's not how David and his wife Susan roll. Both are taijiquan teachers and are not about to let the pessimism of a doctor to rain on their parade. Susan has been agressively assisting in the rehab and both are convinced that recovery is going to happen. When I called a bit over a week ago, David had...

Stillness in Taijiquan

Stillness in Taijiquan

Except for the point, the still point, There would be no dance, and there is only the dance. I can only say, there we have been: but I cannot say where. And I cannot say, how long, for that is to place it in time. T. H. Eliot, Burnt Norton     The ultimate of movement is stillness, the ultimate of stillness is movement. To move is to generate stillness, and to be still is to generate movement. Therefore, (if you) use stillness as movement, (your) movement will be stronger every day....