What is Tai Chi Chuan?

Tai Chi Chuan (Taijiquan, Taiji Quan)  is an ancient Chinese martial art deeply rooted in Chinese culture and tradition. More specifically it is rooted in Taoist philosophy and the concept of Tai Chi as the unification of yin and yang.

Very different from the common idea that when the going gets tough, it’s time to get tougher, Taoist thinking suggests that we don’t have to struggle when things gets tough and that while it is natural for us to get tense in tense situations, it’s always more effective for us to relax, find the flow, and go with it.

The concept of Tai Chi, represented by the Tai Chi symbol plays a central role in Chinese culture.

The Tai Chi Chuan symbol commonly, and inaccurately, referred to as a yin-yang symbol

Tai Chi translates roughly as the grand unification. It starts with the idea that everything has two inseparable, complimentary aspects: yin and yang, and that in the practice of everyday living, these aspects must be balanced and work together to achieve efficient functioning of any natural system.

As a martial art based on Taoist philosophy, the concept of Tai Chi Chuan (TCC) can be contrasted with external martial arts based on techniques that depend primarily on speed and strength. Rather than trying to overcome force with greater force, our goal in TCC is to overcome incoming force with a minimum of effort. We do this by relaxing, listening, following, and responding in a way that uses the energy we are given to our advantage. In addition to improving our effectiveness in martial situations, learning these skills has many immediate and long-term benefits for our individual psychological and physical health and well-being as well as for our relationships with our family and friends.

Our Tai Chi Chuan Class

Our Tai Chi Chuan class is suitable for people of all ages. We designed it to help all participants achieve the health and everyday life benefits of TCC practice as well as learn the martial aspects of TCC that are valuable in self-defense situations. The amazing thing about Tai Chi Chuan practice is that while improving our health and teaching us self-defense, it also slowly changes how we live our lives, teaching us to struggle less and relax more. When family and friends practice together tangible changes in group dynamics are possible.

Class meets at the Idyllwild Town Hall on Thursday’s at 3:30.

Our Tai Chi Chuan Teacher

I (Peter) have been studying TCC since 1992. In 1994 I began practicing Wu style TCC in the Yin Chung Gong Fa system, and have been teaching Tai Chi since 1998. I am a lineage disciple of Master Zhang Yun. I have written several articles on Tai Chi Chuan including: External Integrations in Taiji Quan and A Peace Lovers Guide to Taiji Jian. As a Ph.D. in Education and lifelong teacher, I take great joy in sharing what I have learned of this wonderful and deep tradition with anyone who is willing to practice.

I am now teaching this class on a donation basis. I don’t want money to get in the way of anyone learning Tai Chi Chuan. On the other hand, I do have to pay for the room in Town Hall and am trying to earn enough money to pay for fire insurance on our home in Pine Cove.

Please contact us if you’re interested or have any questions.