with Master Chin King-Loon
Traditional Chen Taiji School
(650) 438-5248
(650) 212-1110
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   About Us      Taiji (Tai-Chi)

Traditional Chen-style Tai Chi is widely acknowledged as the oldest and ancestor of all the other Tai Chi styles. Although it is characterized by low powerful stances, more obvious coiling movements, stomping and explosive releases of power that are mostly absent from the practice of other styles of Taijiquan, Chen Tai Chi can also be practiced with graceful, slow, light movements. The health and martial aspects and benefits are preserved and retained in traditional Chen style Tai Chi.

Generally, there are 2 barehanded form sets in Chen Tai Chi (1st Form: "Yi Lu", and, 2nd Form: "Er Lu" also known as "Cannon Fist" or "Pao Chui") of which the speed, strength, and difficulty are all different. These variations are based upon the forms' lineage and what a teacher is trying to explain.

The first form (Yi Lu) is softer. This form is used as a tool to help develop a student's strength, balance, coordination, and understanding of basic Tai Chi principles. The strength of the form is based on the basic "Chan Si Jing" (spiral energy/force). Because of this characteristic, not only is this an essential form for beginners to learn, it is also beneficial for those who want to practice Tai Chi for health reasons.

The second form (Cannon Fist) is more complex. It is geared more toward the development of explosive power and fighting techniques. There are many fast, powerful, and hard movements.

Traditionally, beginners always start out with the first form of Chen Tai Chi along with some basic exercise to get rid of body 'stiffness'. Practicing the combination of the first form and the basic exercises correctly will help the beginner develop "Chan Si Jing" (spiral energy). The second form then develops more explosive power.

In most of Master Chin's classes, the Chen Family Lao Jia 1st Form will be taught because it is more straight forward and builds a strong Tai Chi foundation in the student, following the silk-reeling and Qigong exercises. This form is also suitable for a wide range of participants.  Master Chin will only teach Traditional Chen Tai Chi 1st Form (Yilu) and basic pushhands in selected classes.

The Chen-style 48 Tai Chi Form will be taught in Master Chin's intermediate classes where students have been learning this form.  The 48 Form is a popular Chen Tai Chi Form in the United States.  The Chen-Style 48 Tai Chi Form is derived from the Xin Jia Chen Taijiquan First Form (the 83-posture Yi Lu) compiled by Feng Zhiqiang, the 18th generation master of Chen-style Tai Chi.  The 48 Form contains approximately 95% of the First Form combined with a few postures from the second Form (the 71-posture Er Lu or "Cannon Fist").  This combination gives a more yin and yang balance to the form.  Within this form are influences from Feng Zhiqiang's martial arts background prior to his study of Chen Tai Chi.  Because of the unique incorporation of Feng Zhiqiang's prior martial arts background with Chen Tai Chi, the 48 Form gives a new character to the Chen 83 Form in terms of application and transition.

Master Chin will teach at his discretion the Chen Tai Chi Lao Jia Er Lu (Second Form), weapon sets, training methods, and advance pushhands to the more advanced students. There is no age, sex, nor health discrimination in the learning of this form. Students practice the form at their own pace and tempo.

History of Tai-Chi:

Known for its slow tempo and graceful movement, Taijiquan has been mainly practiced as moving meditation.  Most of the practitioners' unawareness of Taijiquan being an effective health exercise as well as an in-depth internal martial arts training that can be explained in terms of Taijiquan's evolution and practice.  After years of research and study of historial documents by Taiji practitioners, it has been proved that most of the major styles of Taiji currently practiced (e.g. Chen, Yang, Sun, Wu, Small Wu) were all derived, directly or indirectly, from Chen Family Taijiquan, which originated from a small village located in Henan, China, with the name Chenjiagou, literally, Chen family Ditch.

Chen Wangting (1600-1680), a warrior, a scholar, and a ninth generation ancestor of the Chen family, invented Taijiquan after a lifetime of researching, developing, and experiencing martial arts. Chen Changxing (1771-1853), the 14th generation Chen Patriarch, was the first to teach Chen Taijiquan to an outsider, Yang Luchan (1799-1872). Vowing to his master to never teach Taijiquan to the public or use its name, Yang was finally taught the Chen family martial art.  He later traveled to Beijing and became known as "Yang the Invincible." True to his oath, Yang formulated his own Taijiquan form based on Chen family Taijiquan's first form (Lao Jia Yi Lu) and became the founder of Yang Taijiquan.  Another possible reason for Yang Luchan to formulate his own Taijiquan form might be due to the fact that during those days, the Yang family was employed by the Manchu rulers of the Qing Dynasty to manage the practice and teaching of war.  As Manchus were considered the oppressive foreign rulers by the people in their sovereighty (i.e. the Han people), the Yang family probably decided to teach the Manchus only the boxing form, but not the boxing mwthods nor its applications. Manchus were taught to be soft as cotton so they would not use Taiji to attack or kill. Direct Yang family members and close disciples, on the other hand, were secretly taught both the hard and soft aspects of Taiji.  Yet, the soft form started to gain its popularity and gradually Taiji was recognized and associated with the soft form while people in Chen Village continued to practice both the soft and the hard forms. It's also uncertain when the name "Taijiquan" was given to this Chinese martial arts system. It's very likely that there was no name for Taijiquan when Chen Wangting initially develop their own style of martial arts. These arts then become known as the style of the family. Chen Wangting did not know the martial arts system he created would one day become one of the most popular health exercises in the world. The name taijiquan was given later possibly because this unique martial arts system was created based on the principles and theory of Taiji, "Grand Ultimate or Extreme" - yin and yang reaching the ultimate balance and regenerating from each other. Today there are basically two empty-hand Chen Taijiquan forms. The first form is soft and slow, also known as Yi Lu (First Form) whereas the second form is powerful and fast, also known as Er Lu (Second Form) or Pao Chui (Canon Fist).                                               
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