Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Taiji Spiral

There must be some physics to this that I haven't had the time to research on, but somehow, I think there is some scientific basis behind the spiraling force we use in taiji. When you spiral out, you may move the same distance along a single axis, but the force generate is much more compared to moving that same distance in a straight line. Why? Maybe because the distance actually travelled is different? For example, the straight line distance between point A and B is 10cm. When you spiral from point A to B, however, you definitely cover more than 10cm. The science behind this may have to do with the difference between a nail and a screw, and maybe has to do with torque, but I am not good with physics or mathematics... so I guess I will have to leave this to someone else to explore and come up with a scientific explanation.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Getting Rid of Brute Force

I am currently reading Matsuda Ryuchi's (松田隆智) newest book, "拳法極意-発勁と基本拳" (roughly translates into "Secret of Martial Arts - Generating Force and Basics"). In the section on Chen style taiji, he mentioned that one of the key to getting rid of brute force lies in stance training (站桩). An example provided by him is to slowly practise Xingyiquan Piquan (形意拳劈拳) while focusing on how the force is generated by the legs and reaching the hand. It brings me to think about what my teacher used to say about practising the opening move (起式) in taiji. I think it has a similar effect, while practising the opening move to think about how the force is generated from the legs, how it is then transferred through the body to the arms and hands, how that force becomes the energy that moves the rest of the body.