D1- White

Traditional Bow

The right hand is made into a fist, the left hand is held open vertically. Place the right fist into the center of the left open palm at chest height. Then bow for two seconds.

Two commands are used in conjunction with bowing at the beginning and end of class:

Prepare - Yubei
Salute – Gen Lai

Warm Up: 5 Animal Qigong

Qigong is a sister discipline to Tai Chi. It focuses on flushing negative energy out of your body and replacing it with positive energy. Tai Chi then uses that energy to perform martial arts movements. They are usually studied together because of this relationship between the two.

The following video shows all the animal forms, simple and complex. I recommend doing the following movements from this set:

Tiger raises it's paws
Engaging the antlers
Rub tummy like a bear
Monkey lifts it's paws
Flap wings like a bird
Sinking the Chi

Clock Drill

Imagine you are standing in the middle of a clock face. Use your legs to point to the different hours starting with your right heel at 12 and ending at 6. Then using your left heel starting at 6 and going to 12. Your base leg should be slightly bent as your other leg goes around the clock face. This drill helps increase your balance and leg strength.

Tai Chi Walking

Your First Form: Bafa Wubu

This basic form is based on the original 13 movements of Tai Chi, and includes 8 moves and 5 steps. The idea is to get these basic patterns down first, so that as you learn more advanced forms you can do them with power and precision. The video below is done in "mirror" format, so you can follow along more easily. Learn all of the standing forms to advance to the next lesson. (We will learn the moving forms in D2- Orange.)
  1. Commence Form
  2. Ward Off  (Left)
  3. Roll Back (Right)
  4. Press (Left)
  5. Push (Left)
  6. Pluck (Right)
  7. Split (Left)
  8. Elbow (Left)
  9. Shoulder (Right)
Then repeat on the opposite side.

Combat Applications

Before I say anything about how these moves can be used in combat, please be aware that these are for self-defense, not attacking someone. They are for getting someone out of your space, not attacking someone else's space. 

We will get into the combat applications in the next lesson (D2- Orange) after we go over proper stances and breathing. However, I want you to know from the beginning that these are self-defense movements and should not be treated lightly.

Cool Down: Stand Like a Tree

This set of movements helps you develop your sensitivity to chi. It also is a great lower back and leg work out. Watch the video to learn the postures, then do each pose for about 30 seconds at the end of your practice. 

Wu Chi (Roots)
Full Belly (Seed)
Holding the Balloon (Trunk)
Opening Outward (Branches)
Extending the Sides (Fallen Leaves)
Gathering Chi