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Stillness & Movement: Part Three

Dynamic Balance There’s a very old martial arts saying that we should “find stillness in movement, and movement in stillness.” It’s not just an old saw. For instance, say someone punches at you. You move out of the way extremely rapidly, but not so hurried that you resemble a bad example of the startle response; […]


Stillness & Movement: Part Two

Thinking About Movement Learning movement–and therefore footwork–is a progression through four modes of stepping. First, when the beginner has just walked in off the street and you ask him to punch,  he will shoot arm first, before stepping. Envision tense shoulders, chest out and arm fully extended as he steps/falls awkwardly. Here’s the first, or […]


Reprint: Stillness in the Martial Arts

Here is a piece I wrote for the now defunct Journal of Asian Martial Arts. A number of people have asked about the “myth” at the front of the piece. I believe it hints at the dialog between stillness and movement that can–and must– be found at the heart of martial practice. If nothing else, […]


The Heron: my totem

from its long still legs the heron with awkward arching grace lifts my dream     Peter Thelin is an all around teacher. Besides professing economics in the California college system, he  taught Tai Chi at the Academy of Martial Arts, Santa Cruz. He has written a number of breakthrough instructional books on economics not […]