Displaying posts tagged with

“tai chi”

May
13
2018

Coming Events

Plum will be travelling in May and June to a couple of kung fu tournaments: 10th Annual Tiger Claw Elite Kung Fu Magazine Championship, May 19-20, 2018, San Jose, California This year’s 2 day event will feature a NEW EXTERNAL DIVISION dedicated exclusively to Songshan Shaolin – the Kung Fu directly from Shaolin Temple alongside […]

Apr
5
2018

Four Things Hard to Believe

At the start of your training, if you’d asked: “What do I need to be a good martial artist?” you might have gotten a list which included strength, endurance, patience, humility, Ben-Gay, and a good pair of shoes. What would probably have been missing is the word “faith.” But anyone who’s done any kind of long-term […]

Mar
27
2018

Tutorial: Steps to Tai Chi Stepping

If you’ve spent more than 5 minutes at Plum, you know how highly we prize basics as the foundation of good movement. ‘Stepping’ in Tai Chi, is one of those fundamentals that you might learn on the first day of class, and which you might be refining well into your advanced practice. We prepared a […]

Jan
7
2018

Gary Shapiro: Looking Back

In the past, I’ve written some articles for Plum detailing my Tai Chi adventures on cruise vacations. After nearly 40 years of work as a physical therapist, I decided that it was the right time to take a permanent vacation. On Aug 4, 2017, I made my last patient visit, went to the “big” office, […]

Dec
22
2017

Come To The Party

Right before the end of the year, we welcome back a few old friends, Chinese Kung Fu books that are always welcome at Plum. We’ve got a lot of new material coming, too, in the next little while, so keep an eye on this spot. (Click each book to get more info, and to purchase). […]

Dec
18
2017

Allen Ginsberg on Tai Chi

In my kitchen in New York by Allen Ginsberg (for Bataan Faigao)       Bend knees, shift weight Picasso’s blue deathhead self portrait tacked on refrigerator door This is the only space in the apartment big enough to do t’ai chi Straighten right foot & rise–I wonder if I should have set aside that […]

Sep
16
2017

Why Relaxation is Not Easy

The problem posed in the title is a constant concern in all CMA (Chinese Martial Arts) training. Of course, one immediate answer recognizes that relaxation and exercise are just plain difficult to coordinate. This is especially true when you add thinking to the mix. But the true approach, like all martial training, is both more […]

Aug
20
2017

Instructor’s Notebook: Revelations

Sometimes, words that once held deeper meanings are now expressed in shallow terms. It’s just “aaawesssomme.” For instance, when people use the word, “revelation” they are probably pumping up some slight thing, like office gossip, or promoting the discovery of the correct word in a crossword puzzle. But the core meaning of revelation has more […]

Jun
14
2017

Daniel Mroz on Tao Lu: Formal Movements from the Martial Arts

 Here is something wonderful. Daniel Mroz, an associate professor in the Theater Department of the University of Ottawa and also a longtime friend, correspondent and Plum customer presented a lecture at last year’s Martial Arts Studies Conference in Wales. The subject of his engaging talk is Tao Lu, the martial art routine we call set […]

May
31
2017

Mina at the Kung Fu Tournament

The noise in the Kung Fu tournament hall never lets up. The waves of brass and drumming rolled along the ceiling fabric only to crash against an opposing wave of raucous sound from the opposite direction. To me, it vibrated like someone in leather and beard revving a Harley directly between my ears, but I […]

Jan
10
2017

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; […]

Mar
6
2016

Another Modest Proposal

Through my entire martial career I have been listening to everyone’s questions and problems with traditional forms. For most people, it all centers on practicality. For some people, the answer lies in detailed analysis of the forms and what self defense and fighting treasures are hidden therein. For still others, it’s a lost cause and […]

Feb
12
2016

Just a Handful of Books

We have SO many new texts in Chinese to offer that we are just picking some at random. Some are on rare material like Shi style Bagua, others are those classic collectibles taken at the beginning of the last century with dodgy photos and famous masters still young men. We picked a few subjects at […]

Jan
22
2016

The Basics

Jack Yan has emerged as one of our more favored writer/translators. His exhaustive series on the teacher Chen Zheng Lei has brought a lot of attention to this branch of the art, and his own series on Tong Bei is a welcome addition to what is otherwise a very under-represented field of texts and DVDs. […]

Oct
28
2015

Tai Chi: Wu and Hong styles

Today, we add the last installment of our selection on the Chen Tai Chi exclusive branch named Hong style. Chen style has a well-known “short fist” version. And this style, developed by teacher Hong JunSheng, presents a smaller frame, demonstrating a soft, slow elegance. This last DVD shows many throws and takedowns with high emphasis […]

Sep
20
2015

Adam Hsu’s Basic Kung Fu Training Books

Much earlier in his career, Adam Hsu Sifu created a special series of three linking sets. Each of these were progressively designed to waste as little time as possible, getting that crucial fundamental information to the students. For instance, there are no repetitious sections. Also, each movement is a crucial basic. Two of these sets […]

Sep
7
2015

George Xu on Power and such

  Three more DVDs from the latest workshop with George Xu, who seems an almost endless source of new ways to invigorate your study while nudging you gently toward higher skills. In this case the intriguing thing is that we have three levels of practice and George Xu is able to distinguish their complexity and […]

Aug
31
2015

Second Look: A Big Book on a Misunderstood Art

I often jokingly called YiQuan “the old martial artist’s pasture” because it seemed that only people who wanted minimal practice, yet expected super-human powers, ever ordered any related products. I have to admit that at this point I never really “got” YiQuan. Even though I’ve been in the field for a long time, this seemingly […]

Aug
25
2015

Edgy

I have to admit that I’ve spent many years standing around just… standing around. Standing practice entered my life in the late Sixties. I experimented from that point on with sessions of continued standing and then modifications. You should know that there was not a lot of information in English on the subject and it […]

Aug
14
2015

Legwork

Years ago I wrote an article focusing on some aspects of this undiscovered treasure.