Luoxuanzhang: “Spiral Mystery Palm”

Luoxuanzhang is the martial arts equivalent of eating braised short ribs: you can’t believe all that flavor is packed into such a small package. It is astounding how much energy is unleashed in a few movements. When Master Yang Fukui first showed it to me I was dazzled. What was happening? The movements were exquisite and dynamic and…strange. They didn’t seem to follow the rules I had then accepted as fundamental. How could such power be manifested while violating so many of the hoary “truths” I held as gospel? I had to know more. And what I have found so… Read More

Throw Back Thursday: Rick Barrett demonstrates Instant Meditation

Continuing on with our Throw-Back-Thursday YouTube campaign, we have a brief instructional video on how to attain Instant Meditation. This was filmed in the Yoga studio of a gorgeous retreat center in the Hudson Valley of New York called Iris. This is part of an ongoing campaign so if you’ve missed the previous #TBT posts, catch up here. Enjoy, and please subscribe to our Youtube channel!  

Throw Back Thursday: Rick Barrett teaches William C. C. Chen’s full 60 Movements!

This week I have something special for you. Way back in the 80’s and 90’s Rick was studying intensively with Master William C.C. Chen, an institution in the T’ai Chi world. When RB started to teach, it was Master Chen’s Yang-Style short form that he spread around. Below is a video that he did, demonstrating and explaining the basic structure of this form. A lot has changed since 1992, of course! Rick’s own understanding of this form (and numerous others) has deepened and broadened. Still, it’s a good foundation, and you’ll find more up-to-date tips and exercises when you subscribe… Read More

Throw Back Thursday: Rick Barrett demonstrates Single Whip

Here we have a very useful breakdown of one of the most classic and widely recognized postures in T’ai Chi: Single Whip. This position shows up several times in the form, and can be used to great effect. In this video Rick explains a lot of the intricacies that exist in the transitions into and out of Single Whip. This is part of an ongoing campaign so if you’ve missed the previous #TBT posts, catch up here. Enjoy, and please subscribe to our Youtube channel!  

Song Kua: Clarification

I devoted a chapter to the kua in Taijiquan: Through the Western Gate and it’s time to clarify what is meant by song kua. (pronounced soong) I recently posted the steps to take to get more from your kua and I’d like to sharpen the focus a little here. For years, I have been telling students to “release” the kua in preparation for any movement. And that is still true. But don’t stop there. “Releasing” gets you out of the habitual hip tension that prevails in our culture. (I blame it on the flush toilet. In China, where you squat… Read More