МАБУ

Language:
ru us

TAIJI QUAN

 Tai Chi Chuan is perhaps one of the most famous Wushu styles.  There are all kinds of rumors and legends about its origin.  Some say that the Taoist ancestor is rightfully considered the Taoist monk Zhang Sanfeng, who lived in the Wudang Mountains during the Yuan or Ming era.  According to another legend, Zhang Sanfeng lived in the Song era, and the style he created was revealed to him in a dream.  The third legend says that the foundations of tai chi were laid by the master Xu Xuanping even earlier, in the Tang era.

 Nevertheless, according to the famous chronicler Tang Hao-deng, the early style of tai chi was the Chen style, whose founder was Chen Wanting, a native of the Chen family, who lived in Wan County, Henan Province.  Prior to the overthrow of the Ming Dynasty (1644), Chen Wanting was a well-known military leader, and after this event he lived in solitude in his homeland and in his spare time was engaged in improving his skills and creating a new style.  Therefore, it is believed that the origins of tai chi were laid in the Chen family.

 Chen Wanting's Chen style was based on three sources:

 1. Borrowing and summarizing the techniques of various schools of Chinese boxing during the Ming era and the rejection of the generally accepted rules described in the treatise "Thirty-two fisticuffs situations" of the famous commander Qi Jiguang.

 2. The adoption of the ancient art of Tao-yin (lead and stretch) and tu-na (spit and hold).

 3. Following the ancient Chinese teaching related to the concepts of yin and yang, and the teaching of traditional Chinese medicine about jing-lo (jing-lo are the channels through which the vital force of qi, blood and nutrients circulate).

 By virtue of the above, the style created by Chen Wanting is primarily a synthesis of the old heritage and the birth of a new one.  However, Chen's fisticuffer style was then called quite differently - chan-chuan.  In that case, when did this style get the name Tai Chi Chuan?  In the XVIII century, during the heyday of the Qing Dynasty, theorist Wang Zongyue, based on the originality of the Chen style, gave a philosophical interpretation of such categories and concepts as yin and yang, the Great Reach and their interaction in the general cycle of transformations.  Since then, a new name has appeared - Taijiquan (The Great Reach School).  And yet, why did Wang Zongyue rename it?  Initially, the concept of the Great Limit in the general cycle of transformations contains the idea of ​​achieving a certain height or limit.

The Sunshine philosopher Zhou Dongya drew a circle diagram of the Great Reach.  The explanation to her says: "Infinity is the Great Limit."  The meaning of this is simple: Infinity is the Great Limit, and the Great Limit is the basis of infinity.  The reason for changing the name of tai chi chuan can be considered the following: firstly, all movements in tai chi, without exception, are rounded, one cycle of the taolu complex just corresponds to one circle in the Great Limit diagram;  secondly, when practicing tai chi chuan, it is necessary in the movement to strive for peace, in peace to strive for movement;  to clearly distinguish between empty and full, to maintain absolute conformity with the doctrine of infinity and the Great Limit, about the interaction of yin and yang substances;  thirdly, the movement in tai chi, like one vicious circle in which power is generated and accumulates, occurs in the interweaving of all forms, continuity reigns everywhere, and you can not find any beginning or end, just like in the postulate "The Great Limit - the basis of infinity"  .

 During the evolution of tai chi, many different currents arose.  And although each had its own characteristics, nevertheless they are all united by common requirements:

1. The heart is at rest, the will is concentrated, natural breathing.  During classes, thoughts are calm, concentrated, the mind guides the body, breathing is even, relaxed.

 2. Serenity, softness and smoothness.  The body remains calm, natural and impartial, the movements are light, smooth, like a stream of water.

 3. Movements arcuate, smooth and complete.  All of them are characterized by continuity, ease and flexibility.

 4. Integrity, coordination, a clear distinction between empty and complete.  All movements are inextricably linked with each other, transitions are soft and smooth, at the same time a clear line is drawn between empty and full;  the lower back serves as a steering axis and transmission link, the transitions up and down follow each other, the center of gravity is stable.

 5. Lightness, liveliness, hardness and softness complement each other.  In each movement there is restraint, lightness and at the same time liveliness and energy, the body is not relaxed, but not stiff, internal softness hides behind its external softness;  the application of force is complete, but without tension, elasticity in everything.

 


 SCHOOLS OF TAIJI QUAN

 During the existence of tai chi chuan, many different directions arose and out of this variety stood out the five most common styles.


 I. Chen style


 This style is divided into two subspecies - old and new.  In the old one, founded by Chen Wanting, there were five taolu complexes.  Over the course of more than three hundred years of development, this style has been continuously polished, and only two complexes have survived to this day - the first and second chains.  The first Chen style track contains eighty-three forms.  The second lu chain was originally called pao chui (cannon strike), it now has 71 shapes.  Its main features are as follows: 1) a large number of crushing kicks;  2) the movement compared to the first chain is faster and tougher, the blow is stronger;  3) an abundance of strikes in jumps, a large number of jumps, dodges, lightning-fast turns and movements - a powerful force is felt in everything.

Taolu new directions also have two subspecies.  The first one in the main provisions resembles the Chen style created by teacher Chen Jiagou, the order of movements is similar to the old direction, only some of the most difficult elements are omitted.  It is also called Xiao Quan Quan (Small Circle Fist).  The old direction is called da chuan chuan (big circle fist), respectively.  The second subspecies of the new direction is the style created by Chen’s disciple, Chen Wuqingping.  His calling card is elegance, compactness, slowness.  As you master the exercises, the circle gradually increases, reaching the highest degree of difficulty.  Since this complex originally spread to the village of Zhaobao, Wen County, Henan Province, it is called Zhaobao Jia.


 II.  Yang style


 This style was founded by a native of Hebei, Yang Lu-chan (1800–1873).  His family was poor, therefore, as a child, Yang labored in the family of Chen Jiagou, the young man worked as an assistant to the teacher Chen and mastered his style.  In adulthood, he returned to his homeland and began to practice tai chi chuan there.  Practicing hard, he modified the Chen style, adding softness to him combined with determination and strength.  Contemporaries called him zhan-mian-quan (gentle fist), ren-quan (soft fist), hua-quan (disappearing fist).  Later, Yang Luchan, in relation to the requirements of ordinary people, simplified the release of strength, jumping, shocking kicks and other relatively difficult elements.  His son, Yang Jianghou, further refined this style in the direction of simplification.  In this form, the Yang style has become the most common.

 The founder of this style is Manchurian Quan Yu, who lived at the sunset of the Qing Dynasty in Hebei Province.  Quan Yu first studied with the famous Yang Luchan, and then went to his son Yang Banshi as an apprentice and became a first-class master of soft styles.  His son Jian Quan changed his surname to Chinese W and continued the family tradition of studying and spreading tai chi chuan.  Modifying and replenishing the arsenal of tricks with more plastic and softer, removing complex tricks and jumps, Wu Jian Quan created his own school, which later developed into the style of W.


 III.  Style U (first)


 The founder of this style is Manchurian Quan Yu, who lived at the sunset of the Qing Dynasty in Hebei Province.  Quan Yu first studied with the famous Yang Luchan, and then went to his son Yang Banshi as an apprentice and became a first-class master of soft styles.  His son Jian Quan changed his surname to Chinese W and continued the family tradition of studying and spreading tai chi chuan.  Modifying and replenishing the arsenal of tricks with more plastic and softer, removing complex tricks and jumps, Wu Jian Quan created his own school, which later developed into the style of W.

IV.  Style U (second)


 The founder of this style is considered to be the master Wu Yuxian, who lived at the end of the Qing Dynasty in Hebei Province.  First, he studied with Yang Lucian, and then learned the art of the old Chen style.  He became a master of the Chen style, his new and old styles.  Later, he studied the style of yang in his directions, big and small xiao.  Practicing and changing these directions, he tried to combine them together, choosing from these directions all the best.  So it also arose the direction of tai chi, which was called the style of W.
 V. Sun Style

 

 The founder of this trend is Sun Lutang from Wan County, Hebei Province (1861 - 1932).  Sun was a passionate fan of Wushu: he studied Sin-i-Quan, then Bagua-Zhang, and in the end, Wu Tai Chi Chuan.  Having delved into the essence of each of these styles and combining them, he founded a Sun style that was close in spirit.

 This style differs from others in shuttle movements back and forth, flexibility and calm, speed and dexterity.  Its complexes taolu resemble floating clouds, an endless and continuous stream of water.  The principle of each rotation of the body is similar to untwisting “kai” and twisting “he”, therefore the friends of the master called this style kai-hehobu (quick steps of twisting and twisting).  These are not only evasions, U-turns, jumps, movements, borrowed by the Yabagua Zhang, but also ups, downs, descents and upsets borrowed from Sin-i-chuan.