The Tai Chi Classics provide the principles for learning and identifying good Tai Chi Chuan
There are many stories about the beginnings of Taiji, and there is some evidence Taiji Quan was originally developed by Daoist Qi Gong Masters.
The Daoist masters focused their efforts on increasing health, extending lifespan, seeking harmony with nature and gaining enlightenment through the cultivation and development of Qi and Shen (Spirit).
Taiji Quan appears to have evolved from those efforts, as their Neigong practices led to development of the basic postures and movements that eventually became Taiji Quan. Nearing the end of the Song Dynasty Zhang Sanfeng*, further developed the practice that has grown through an unbrokn lineage into an advanced form of internal martial art, Taiji Quan (which means Supreme Ultimate Fist).
Taiji Quan, by design, promotes health, longevity, self defense capability and potentially may lead the practitioner to enlightenment. In order to achieve the higher levels and benefits of Taiji Quan it is important to gain a personal knowledge and understanding of the martial, energetic and spiritual aspects of the art. This occurs over years of diligent practice and right application of the principles with the assistance of a qualified teacher.
The beginnings of the Tai Chi Classics are attributed to the legendary founder of tai chi chuan, Chang San Fang at some point during the 12th-14th century. The Taiji classics have been further elucidated by the Yang Family teachingsand writings. Even though we may never fully know the origin of the classics they provide the principles and methods for developing our internal martial art, Taiji Quan, whether we practice Chen, Yang, Wu, Sun etc. all follow theprinciples put forth in the classics in order to develop their art.
A few examples from the Taiji Classics:
- You should be still as a mountain and move like a great river.
- The head is suspended from above like a wind chime hanging from the ceiling and the body is upright, stable, and comfortable with an aware mind.
- When any part of the body/mind moves there is no part that does not move.
- When the body/mind is still, there is no part that is not still.
- The form should have the appearance of a hawk gliding in search of its prey. Internally the heart/mind (Yi) should be like that of a cat ready to pounce on its prey.
- Four ounces are able to deflect a thousand pounds.
These guidelines provide principles, images and goals for the practitioner to cultivate their internal martial art practice.
Tai Chi, Yi Chuan and Qi Gong
Many clinical studies have demonstrated that the practice of Taiji Quan reduces stress and improves many areas of the practitioner's physical, mental, and spiritual life. Taiji and Qi Gong have been demonstrated through established clinical studies to ease arthritis pain, develop structural body strength,enhance balance, increase flexibility and deepen spiritual awareness.
Taiji Quan, Zhan Zuang standing meditation and Qi Gong are time tested holistic disciplines for cultivating and increasing the flow of Qi through the body's meridians, at the same time, taiji quan also has serious applicability for self defense.
Classes at Wind River Taiji focus on the practice of Yi Quan standing meditation, Yang Taiji Quan and Qi Gong practice as taught teacher by Grandmaster Sam Tam.
Our practice is directed towards developing, and cultivating the feeling, and use of Qi to improve our health, quality of life and strengthen our spirit (shen). Through the practice of Taiji and Zhan Zhang standing meditation, as passed down from Wang Xiang Zhai, Han Hsing-Yuen and Master Sam Tam our students are able to develop internal martial arts abilities and skills based on world class instruction.
The focal point of our
practice is on
correct internal principal
as demonstrated and taught by Grand Master Tam Man Yin (Sam
At the core of the program is Zhan Zhuang
standing meditation practice, Dao Yin Qi Gong, and a Yang
family Taiji Quan form
that may date back to the Song Dynasty (960-1127).
In our classes you will
learn about internal
strength and human energetics through
the practice of mind/body connections via hands on learning. The Internal arts focused on
understanding, feeling and using
internally generated energy have the potential to develop and strengthen any mental,
physical, martial or
When and where are classes?
In Tucson classes are held at:
Tucson Chinese Cultural Center
1588 W River Rd.
- Tuesdays—6:00 to 7:30PM
- Saturdays—9:30 to 11:00AM
Body Works in St Phillips Plaza
In Phoenix classes are held at:
UA College of Public Health Phoenix Campus
714 E. Van Buren Street, Suite 115
UA Phoenix Plaza Building 4
Phoenix, AZ 85006
For more information:
Contact Phone: 520-331-8961
Contact email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Wind River IMA Mission:
The Wind River Internal Martial Arts'
mission is to introduce and
spread Grand Master Sam Tam's teachings for Health and Enlightenment,
and share a way of life that uses this art to cultivate and strengthen
the whole person. Grandmaster Tam's students span the world from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Tucson, Europe, New Zealand to Japan.
The Chinese Jian (Tai Chi Sword)