The Taiji practiced by the Chen family has become far more popular and well known in recent years. Though few dispute their primacy as the creators of what we now call Taiji there are many opinions about the actual practice of this style. Three main forms are acknowledged: Lao Jia or "Old Frame", Pao Chui or "Cannon Fist", and Xin Jia or "New Frame." With these three as a tripod foundation there are, nonetheless, many variations on the forms and practice of this fascinating style...
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KF014 The Five Levels of Taijiquan
by Chen Xiao Wang, translated and with additional commentary by Jan Silberstorff
If you are thin-skinned you may find this book an indictment. It is meant to be a statement on the standards for judging one’s own progress in the art of Taijiquan. Chen Xiao Wang discusses those qualities which define each level of practice and eventual mastery. Basing everything on the writings of Chen Xiao Wang—one of Chen Taijiquan’s top teachers and his own instructor—Jan Silberstorff adds additional commentary to apply these levels to the normal evolution of Taiji skills. He clearly explains the differences in skill and training methods. He details the application of well known features such as Peng energy with commentary on its different features and refinements.
For some, if you take this too seriously and specifically it will be a deflating experience. Having dedicated a substantial portion of his life to this journey, Silberstorff is a determined and authoritative critic. This does not prevent the book from threatening to fall back across that shadow line where, by implication, everything WE are doing is right and everything THEY are doing is wrong. Sometimes this is truly the state of the art, but it can also be the result of over-active critical analysis, so critical is becomes less productive.
D22062 Qi Gong and Health Routines DVD:
KC056-KC058, KC066, KC068 Chen's Tai Chi Series
Chen Zhen Lei, Translator/Editor Jack Yan
Order any three for a 10%discount
Order the entire series plus DVDs for a 15%discount
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See details about each volume below
This is a major contribution from Chen Zheng Lei and Jack Yan, especially if you are an aficionado of Chen style TaiJi. This four-part series, in which each volume stands alone is, at its core, a very detailed description of Taiji health movements, the two major forms of Old style and the two major forms created by Chen Fa Ke of the new style. Then a volume with four major weapons sets explained. Add to this the fact that each volume has its own supplementary text with an in-depth discussion of its topics. The translation is literate and intelligent and very clear. Jack Yan resolves translation problems that have been stumbling blocks for a long time. Of particular interest is the second volume which has over 100 pages on the deeper practices of Chen and how, once you have reached a certain level, to use these principles in your own practice. A bit pricey, but a solid presentation.
D22063 Lao Jia DVD:
DVDs by Chen Zhen Lei
Chen Zhen Lei's DVD Lectures series
KT006 Taijiquan Hand and Sword
Ren Guangyi & Stephen Berwick , forward by Kenneth Chung
photographs by Martin von Hasselburg
The well known student of Chen Xiao Wang here demonstrates both the Lao Jia form but also the Chen style Tai Chi sword. Excellent pictures and an introduction by Lou Reed add elegance and interest to this book. There are over 1000 photos and the effect is that of an instructional DVD tying together Ren's strong form. Not a great deal of text but all of it poignant and interesting.
KO001 Old Frame Chen Family TaijiQuan
Mark Chen, forward by Kenneth Chung
$19.95 PLUM Price $17.95, Softbound,
243 pages, photographs
Mark Chen is a disciple of Chen Qingzhou, in fact with the status of "rumen" as a 20th generation inheritor. Chen is a good writer with a keen mind. Much of the information in this book is very useful. First, of course is the Lao Jia of Chen QingZhou ( in our opinion one of the best practitioners of Chen in its combat orientation) is broken down and shown. Mark Chen also has much to say about many topics and is not shy about saying it. He discusses intelligently such issues as why some sets are slow, some fast, fantasy Kung Fu, Push Hands (along with an instructional section) and more. His comments are intelligent if not sometimes condescending. His honest and incisive criticisms of some misunderstandings about Chen Taiji should interest all players of the art. His introduction alone brings up many interesting and well thought out points on practice and attaining skill. A good book.
See VCDS of Chen QingZhou.
DVDS of Chen QingZhou.
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KC005 Chen TaijiQuan
Chen Xiao Wang, Feng Zhi Qiang, & Feng Da Biao
is a major book. It's been around a while but this is still
one of the best books on Chen Style published in China. Two
Chen style Taiji (T'ai Ch'i) sets with examples of self-defense
applications. Short set performed by Chen Xiao-Wang. A fine
introduction for those interested in Chen style. Demonstrations
of usage and good English breakdowns along with some decent
pages on theory. Topics include:
of the Forms in Road One
of Attack-Defense in Road One
of Road Two
of Attack-Defense in Road Two
of the postures in Chen 38 form TaiJi
of: Chen Fa-Ke, Feng Zhi-Qiang and Chen Xiao-Wang
- See Chen Xiao Wang's DVD and English language VCD series