Tai Chi Alchemy visits China – Day 1

It was the trip of a lifetime for me. Last spring my friend/teacher, Master Yang Fukui, suggested we visit Wudang Mountain, the legendary birthplace of taijiquan. We would also visit his hometown of Tianjin, another place with a rich martial arts history (see Jet Li’s film Fearless).  Sign me up! I had visited Beijing in ’99, a great trip, but going to Wudang with Master Yang was like a back stage pass to a world I could never access on my own. Maria was immediately up for the adventure, and so were some Tai Chi Alchemy regulars: Jonathan Bricklin, Mike… Read More

Taijiquan at Kripalu

Many thanks to the wonderful Kripalu folks for sponsoring last weekend’s “Taijiqan Immersion.” It was an intensive introduction to both taijiquan and to my particular teaching methods and language, and I had my doubts going in. How were we going to do justice to all this material in such a limited time? This group was more than up to the challenge, though, and we did cover the entire Yang Cheng Fu’s 13 Original Postures plus a solid grounding in my “Three Pillars”: Energetic Coherence Central Equilibrium Song Kua The only way we could do all this was to abandon upfront… Read More

Taijiquan Immersion at Kripalu, December 9-11

I’m very excited about a weekend course I’ll be giving next month at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Fitness in Lenox, MA next month. It’s called Taijiquan Immersion and it’s for anyone who would like to really feel internal power easily and dependably and would like a short form to develop it. For decades, I have been showing people how to get the most out a taijiquan form that they know or are studying. What is different here is that I’ll also be teaching a short, powerful form called Yang Chengfu’s Thirteen Original Postures. I learned it from Master Yang Fukui,… Read More

Song Kua Seminar at Peaceful Wolf T’ai Chi

A week ago I had the wonderful opportunity to teach a seminar at Peaceful Wolf Tai Chi  in East Haddam, CT, hosted by my good friend, Sifu David Shaver. David is an 81 year old testimonial to the power of the internal martial arts to keep you youthful and active. He has been an actor and a rodeo bull rider, among other professions, and now focuses on teaching taijiquan and other martial arts in his beautiful studio (built by David and his students and modeled after the Zhang San Feng Hall at the T’ai Chi Farm). As I mentioned in… Read More

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