The Ruler is Back

Tai Chi Ruler

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Well, it’s been a few years but we now can offer probably the first description and video of the Tai Chi Ruler ever done in English. Terry Dunn demonstrates over a dozen exercises with his usual clarity and intelligence. The ruler itself is a bit of a mystery not only as far as its origins but from the wide range of stories but also from its spectrum of methods. I had a student who had studied with Fu Shu Yun (of 1936 Olympics fame). She had learned the ruler from a man who supposedly grew up in the family that had developed it to a high degree. He remembers his mother practicing it. One day, while he was being taught by the local Kung Fu teacher, his mother happened to stop and watch the lesson. After a few minutes she started to giggle and make sarcastic comments. When she and the teacher started to argue she “showed him” a little of her ruler skill and tossed him to the ground.

The ruler is regarded by some as a sort of remedial help for basic form and others as hiding a profound secret in its requirement that the hands move together and the eyes focus on the center. Nevertheless, here is one of the reasons it became known in the West at all.

Here is Terry Dunn’s companion text on the ruler.

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