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Zhu Tian Cai of Chen Village, China—one of the Four Tigers of Chen Village—discusses his early training with the great masters Chen Zhao Pi and Chen Zhao Kui. He promotes Chen Style Tai Chi Chuan for both health and self-defense. He emphasizes the importance of relaxation, letting go of tension and stiffness. He describes the significance of Chan Si Jin (Silk Reeling Energy) and discusses the essential qualities of Push Hands practice. He is the founder of the Zhu Tian Cai International Taijiquan Federation. The interview was translated by Kam P. Lee of the Taiji Kung Fu Academy in Florida.
This in-depth interview with Sam Masich provides insights into his early training in several martial arts systems including Judo, Yang Style Taiji Quan, Push Hands, and other internal styles. He trained with a remarkable variety of teachers including Dr. Yang Jwing-Ming and Liang Shou Yu. Selected to compete at the 1st World Wushu Invitational tournament in Xian, China, as part of Canada’s National Martial Arts Team, Masich distinguished himself in competition during the 1980s. He pursued additional studies in China and offers lively descriptions of the training and of his many teachers. He discusses the goals and benefits of competition and offers tips for beginners in developing sticking and adhering skills in push hands.
Jason Tsou and Art Schonfeld discuss the value of Chang Quan (Long Fist) training as a fundamental way to understand the principles of combat. Long Fist training was originally designed to teach the mind and body essential fighting skills, not to simply demonstrate athletic prowess. The authors describe the origins of the style, methods of training, and the crucial differences between forms practice and application of the techniques in a real fighting situation. They contend that an emphasis on athletic performance, such as in tournaments and competitions, leads to a loss of understanding of the functionality of the movements. In turn, this leads to predictability and hesitation on the part of the fighter. The martial aspects of the style eventually become diluted and the true purpose and effectiveness of the training is lost. Weapons techniques are illustrated and their similarities to empty-hand postures are shown. Qinna and wrestling techniques are covered. Footwork is discussed as a crucial part of the effectiveness of kicks, punches, throws and holds.