Talk:Tai chi chuan/Archive 3

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New Messages at Bottom of Page, Please

Article needs a lot more emphasis on Chi, Taoism and please remove the boring Lineage diagram.

Firestar - This article is weighted completely wrongly.

Taoism - As I said before there is hardly any mention at all of Taoism, in fact this should be right at the top of the page. Taoism is quite simply the basis of T'ai Chi, you have the yin-yang diagram so why isn't there more mention of it? Okay there is some discussion of yin and yang principles but you know that, I know it, the average person however will not make the connections with Taoism and the other related fields of Taoist study.

Chi - Secondly you have hardly mentioned the fact that T'ai Chi is not a physical form of exercise but is more closely related to Chi Gung. What about the micro-cosmic energy circulation and energy meridians and energy centres? T'ai Chi is not based upon physics or western science, I think you have confused it with aerobics! To talk about T'ai Chi without mentioning Chi is absurd. Just sticking a link in is not enough, this needs much more in depth discussion. Okay T'ai Chi is related to Martial Arts that much is obvious but you are giving completely the wrong impression here, westerners will think it's Karate.

Softness and Internal principles - T'ai Chi is a soft style and is not about fighting but about learning the skills to avoid fighting. Where are the discussions about internal style principles? Nothing! There is no mention of the principles of softness with regard to going with the flow of energy and yielding as opposed to the hard style principle of blocking force, this is the key to softness not how relaxed the muscles are altho of course this is also important from the standpoint of energy flow.

Lineage - This lineage diagram is absolute nonsense. Anyone with even a basic understanding of Taoist philosophy will know that lineage is not a Taoist concept but derives from Confucian ancestor worship. T'ai Chi masters are not ranked according to pieces of paper or even fighting skills but in their knowledge of Taoism and it's practical application as a teaching method of the way (Tao). In fact true Taoists would never dream of comparing themselves with others or ranking styles according to which is best. Why have this ridiculous lineage diagram which no one at all will be interested in? it is redundant. It is also extremely boring, please remove it at once.

Pre and Post Revolution - There needs to be some mention of the fact that many Taoists were exiled or forbidden to practise their T'ai Chi and related studies with the advent of Communism. Many Taoist masters had to go overseas and take their T'ai Chi to other countries. Have you seen 'Pushing Hands' by Ang Lee? Maybe you should. The point has to be made that Taoism and T'ai Chi practise was actively suppressed and that many documents and lineages not to mention people were destroyed so no accurate history of T'ai Chi can be compiled. Also T'ai Chi was often kept secret and not taught to the public so just looking at public records of those styles that have popularized themselves is not particularly relevant.

Do you do T'ai Chi Firestar? Let me guess, you do Yang style T'ai Chi. This article is far too heavily weighted towards Yang style and their attempts to promote their style through documentation and lineage. Get a life guys, no one is interested in this. Please can you stop censoring this article and find something better to do with your life? As for the rest of you let's hear something more interesting about Chi energy and Taoist philosophy and enough talk about redundant lineage documents. --Chuangzu 18:00, 3 March 2006 (UTC)

Chuangzu, I am very glad you bring up these subjects and the criticism is very useful. May I suggest, since you have knowledge on these subjects, that you write an article on each one of these subjects? Wikipedia exists by the grace of the contributors that have knowledge and want to share it. It may mean that this present article "Tai Chi Chuan" will have to be re-edited in some (major) fashion. So be it. If you bring in your knowledge others will most likely find and make the connections with other subjects and the quality and scope of the whole will increase. However, I implore you to respect the work others have done already. Their work may be periferal to your contribution or may have connections to it, but please let's respect each others work. I am looking forward to you articles. --JohJak2 21:05, 3 March 2006 (UTC)

Chuangzu, I'm sorry that you are disappointed with the article, although your comments make me wonder if you've even read it. Let's address them point by point, shall we?

  • Taoism - As I said before there is hardly any mention at all of Taoism...

Well, we have: T'ai Chi Ch'uan is seen by many of its schools as a variety of Taoism, and it does seemingly incorporate many Taoist principles into its practice (see below). and: "Various people have offered different explanations for the name T'ai Chi Ch'uan. Some have said: 'In terms of self-cultivation, one must train from a state of movement towards a state of stillness. T'ai Chi comes about through the balance of yin and yang. In terms of the art of attack and defense then, in the context of the changes of full and empty, one is constantly internally latent, not outwardly expressive, as if the yin and yang of T'ai Chi have not yet divided apart.' Others say: 'Every movement of T'ai Chi Ch'uan is based on circles, just like the shape of a T'ai Chi symbol. Therefore, it is called T'ai Chi Ch'uan.' Both explanations are quite reasonable, especially the second, which is more complete." and: As the name T'ai Chi Ch'uan is held to be derived from the T'ai Chi symbol, the taijitu or t'ai chi t'u (太極圖, pinyin tàijítú), commonly known in the West as the "yin-yang" diagram, T'ai Chi Ch'uan techniques are said therefore to physically and energetically balance yin (receptive) and yang (active) principles: "From ultimate softness comes ultimate hardness." and: Lao Tzu provided the archetype for this in the Tao Te Ching when he wrote, "The soft and the pliable will defeat the hard and strong." and: When tracing T'ai Chi Ch'uan's formative influences to Taoist and Buddhist monasteries, one has little more to go on than legendary tales from a modern historical perspective, but T'ai Chi Ch'uan's practical connection to and dependence upon the theories of Sung dynasty Neo-Confucianism (a conscious synthesis of Taoist, Buddhist and Confucian traditions, esp. the teachings of Mencius) is readily apparent to its practitioners., so you see we have quite a few mentions of and links to Taoism. Not everyone agrees that T'ai Chi is exclusively Taoist, however, the way it is taught by the Chinese T'ai Chi families also incorporates other traditions, such as Confucian didacticism and Buddhist pacific values, "kind-heartedness". Also, this is an article about T'ai Chi, not Taoism (even though we talk in several places how T'ai Chi depends on Taoist principles). If people want more about Taoism, they can always go to our Taoism article.

  • Chi - Secondly you have hardly mentioned the fact that T'ai Chi is not a physical form of exercise but is more closely related to Chi Gung...

There is: The slow, repetitive work involved in that process is said to gently increase and open the internal circulation (breath, body heat, blood, lymph, peristalsis, etc.). Over time, proponents say, this enhancement becomes a lasting effect, a direct reversal of the constricting physical effects of stress on the human body and: Breathing exercises; nei kung (內功 nèigōng) or, more commonly, qigong or ch'i kung (氣功 qìgōng) to develop qi or ch'i (氣 qì) or "breath energy" in coordination with physical movement and post standing or combinations of the two. These were formerly taught only to disciples as a separate, complementary training system. In the last 50 years they have become more well known to the general public. That seems pretty clear to me. Not every T'ai Chi school has its own qigong, some add outside systems, others don't do qigong at all. Again, if people want more about qigong, they are directed to qigong.

  • Softness and Internal principles - T'ai Chi is a soft style and is not about fighting but about learning the skills to avoid fighting. Where are the discussions about internal style principles? Nothing!...

Again, I'm wondering if you've even read the article, as there is: T'ai Chi Ch'uan is considered a soft style martial art, an art applied with as complete a relaxation or "softness" in the musculature as possible, to distinguish its theory and application from that of the hard martial art styles which use a degree of tension in the muscles. and: T'ai Chi Ch'uan as physical training is characterized by its requirement for the use of leverage through the joints based on coordination in relaxation rather than muscular tension in order to neutralize or initiate physical attacks. and the focus meditation and subsequent calmness cultivated by the meditative aspect of T'ai Chi is seen as necessary to maintain optimum health (in the sense of effectively maintaining stress relief or homeostasis) and in order to use it as a soft style martial art. and: a slow sequence of movements which emphasise a straight spine, relaxed breathing and a natural range of motion; the second being different styles of pushing hands or t'ui shou (推手) for training "stickiness" and sensitivity in the reflexes through various motions from the forms in concert with a training partner in order to learn leverage, timing, coordination and positioning when interacting with another. Pushing hands is seen as necessary not only for training the self-defense skills of a soft style such as T'ai Chi by demonstrating the forms' movement principles experientially, but also it is said to improve upon the level of conditioning provided by practice of the solo forms by increasing the workload on students while they practise those movement principles. and: In a fight, if one uses hardness to resist violent force then both sides are certain to be injured, at least to some degree. Such injury, according to T'ai Chi theory, is a natural consequence of meeting brute force with brute force. The collision of two like forces, yang with yang, is known as "double-weighted" in T'ai Chi terminology. Instead, students are taught not to fight or resist an incoming force, but to meet it in softness and "stick" to it, following its motion while remaining in physical contact until the incoming force of attack exhausts itself or can be safely redirected, the result of meeting yang with yin. Done correctly, achieving this yin/yang or yang/yin balance in combat (and, by extension, other areas of one's life) is known as being "single-weighted" and is a primary goal of T'ai Chi Ch'uan training. and: T'ai Chi's martial aspect relies on sensitivity to the opponent's movements and centre of gravity dictating appropriate responses. Effectively affecting or "capturing" the opponent's centre of gravity immediately upon contact is trained as the primary goal of the martial T'ai Chi student, and from there all other technique can follow with seeming effortlessness. The alert calmness required to achieve the necessary sensitivity is acquired over thousands of hours of first yin (slow, repetitive, meditative, low impact) and then later adding yang ("realistic," active, fast, high impact) martial training; forms, pushing hands and sparring. So you see that not only do we mention soft style principles many times, in this and in the pushing hands article, we explain them.

  • Lineage - This lineage diagram is absolute nonsense...

Actually, I didn't put it in the article originally (so it is interesting to at least one other editor), but I have added some names to it over the last year or so. Its content is very well documented from different sources and covers successive generations of the primary families that have been recognised as representative of T'ai Chi by 3 successive Chinese govts. and the overwhelming majority of the Chinese martial arts community. The only change to it I would make now would be to expand it, as we are missing too many Chen family members. The teacher-disciple relationship has been normative in traditional Chinese education for thousands of years. Your assertion that no one will be interested in it is unjustified. I'm sorry that your school isn't on there, but there seems to be no independent documentation of your style's lineage in the public domain.

  • Pre and Post Revolution - There needs to be some mention of the fact that many Taoists were exiled or forbidden to practise their T'ai Chi and related studies with the advent of Communism...

And again, we plainly comment on that with: ...because many of the family T'ai Chi Ch'uan teachers had either moved out of China or had been forced to stop teaching after the Communist regime was established in 1949.... Also, members of the Wu family, the Yang family and the martial arts documentation of the Kuomintang and Jing Wu Men whom they worked with moved to Hong Kong and Taiwan in 1949. As well, documents of Wu Yu-hsiang's lineage and the Qing dynasty military records in the Forbidden City (written in Manchu) and the 19th century gazeteers of Yongnian county survived the cultural revolution. So there is enough documentation to write a fairly reliable history of the principle players back to 1800 or so. Before that, there are many stories, but it becomes less verifiable.

  • Do you do T'ai Chi Firestar? Let me guess, you do Yang style T'ai Chi. This article is far too heavily weighted towards Yang style and their attempts to promote their style through documentation and lineage. Get a life guys, no one is interested in this. Please can you stop censoring this article and find something better to do with your life? As for the rest of you let's hear something more interesting about Chi energy and Taoist philosophy and enough talk about redundant lineage documents.

Well, you are wrong in your guess, I don't do the Yang style (I respect them notwithstanding), but I have studied T'ai Chi for 21 years (two of those years in China) and taught it now for 15, 13 of those teaching years as a disciple of another of the T'ai Chi families. I've fought lei tai and san shou using T'ai Chi exclusively and I've also been fortunate enough to learn tui na and nei gong as used by the traditional T'ai Chi teachers I stayed with in Hong Kong. If by "interesting" you mean speculation or original research, that isn't what an encyclopaedia is for. See Wikipedia:what Wikipedia is not. While I'm not averse to adding new info about Taoism, etc., it has to done well, and I see no reason to remove anything. I have answered every one of your criticisms, and after considering them I again can only conclude that you haven't read any of the article beyond the lineage chart. Your comments about "get a life" put you on the edge of our no personal attacks policy, which I suggest you read thoroughly along with the rest of the T'ai Chi article before we continue our discussions. --Fire Star 21:47, 3 March 2006 (UTC)

Fire Star, it looks like you put in a lot of effort to answer just one critical person. Well done. I hope Chuangzu will appreciate it and if he has something substantial to add we will hear from him. --JohJak2 09:27, 4 March 2006 (UTC)
Thanks for the consideration. Looking it over, The only thing I see missing from my response is that I should have emphasised more that I am quite willing to work with people on any article. It is good that Chuangzu made a list of his concerns and published it here, because that is the way to go forward. My response (perhaps a bit overwhelming) to the list's wording and overall tone was in aid of demonstrating, with citations, that I for one believe these issues had indeed been addressed in the article. Is the article perfect? Absolutely not. I'm not perfect, either. My response was probably triggered by my martial arts teachers' knee-jerk reaction to being condescended to by another stylist. ;-) Without being personally offensive, I wanted to convey my complete rejection of the use of that negotiating tool by anyone who assumes (based on a simple disagreement) that they know more about a subject, and ourselves (the little pat on the head about being a "Yang stylist"), than we do. Assume good faith is a forgiving policy, and if Chuangzu still wants to work with us, I'll be happy to address his concerns in a constructive, and as you've mentioned, respectful, manner. Regards, --Fire Star 14:01, 4 March 2006 (UTC)

Title of article

The titling this article seems weird. I'm not trying to rehash the old Wade-Giles/pinyin debate. However, even in Wade-Giles, 太極拳 is T'ai Chi Ch'üan not Tai Chi Chuan (which looks like it might mean 帶雞傳 or something). Not only that, but we begin the article T'ai Chi Ch'uan, which is confusing because it differs from the title. Can we come up with something a little more consistent?

Also, I'm kind of thinking "Tai Chi Chuan" should not be capitalised. - Nat Krause 08:46, 3 October 2005 (UTC)

Well, I agree its a big mess. It was Tai Chi Chuan before I started editing Wikipedia. In my experience over the years, the most common form I've seen is "T'ai Chi Ch'uan" (and every conceivable variant following). The largest selling periodical published in English devoted to the art, Marvin Smallheiser's T'ai Chi Magazine tends to favour the T'ai Chi Ch'uan form. Douglas Wile, another well known author, tends to prefer t'ai-chi ch'üan or T'ai-chi Ch'üan. Taijiquan is gaining ground, but mostly with the wushu bunch. So, my vote, I suppose, would be T'ai Chi Ch'uan for the primary form and all the others redirects. --Fire Star 21:39, 3 October 2005 (UTC)
Yes, I would definitely support a move to T'ai Chi Ch'uan, although, now that umlauts are an option, I would prefer T'ai Chi Ch'üan—Wikipedia style seems to heavily favor diacritics in titles, even in cases where I think it goes too far. - Nat Krause 17:05, 5 October 2005 (UTC)
I could live with the umlaut. With the right redirects, it won't be an impediment to first time searchers finding the article, and the prominent infobox does a good job of explaining things. --Fire Star 18:52, 5 October 2005 (UTC)
Try the Google test:
(Deceiving: all these tests are from Canada-google JohJak2 15:02, 16 May 2006 (UTC))
"T'ai Chi Ch'uan": 129,000 hits (1x)
Taijiquan: 672,000 hits (5x)
"Tai Chi Chuan": 2,370,000 hits (18x)
"T'ai Chi Ch'uan" "martial art": 21,600 hits (1x)
"Tai Chi Chuan" "martial art": 86,700 hits (4x)
I personally find the title to be fine. Shawnc 11:01, 18 November 2005 (UTC)

Are all the alternates redirects to the current article? That should take care of anyone having trouble finding the article. RJFJR 18:09, 18 November 2005 (UTC)

Yes they all redirect here. Shawnc 05:04, 19 November 2005 (UTC)

Moved contribution from User:Wintran downward.

So, I was thinking about the above for awhile and it kept seeming that there was something odd about it. Eventually, I realised that we seem to be assuming that one of these various spellings is the common name for taijiquan in English. But, of course, it's not ... the common name for taijiquan is "tai chi". I've never really heard anyone call it "tai chi chuan". How does one even pronounce "tai chi chuan"? (I know how to say "tai chi", and it's not the same as 太极). Why don't we move this article to tai chi? Bear in mind that we are normally stuck using the form of the name used in the title throughout the article (i.e., referring to it as "tai chi" or "taijiquan" repeatedly in the article), but, if we get around that, then we have to decide what we are going to call it instead. - Nat Krause(Talk!) 22:27, 17 March 2006 (UTC)

Romanising into English is a seemingly intractable problem, but the pronunciation, as we mention in the article, is T'ai4 Chi2 Ch'üan2 or Tàijíquán. "Tai Chi" redirects here, but the name of the art is 太極拳 which is what the Chinese call it, as well as those who study in a traditional school. "T'ai4 Chi2" or "Tàijí" by itself in Chinese refers to the principle of yin yang described in the taijitu, even if it is shorthand for the art with westerners. In the literature, most publications capitalise the term (although some don't), perhaps a Google test will show that conclusively. --Fire Star 05:15, 18 March 2006 (UTC)
Well, if you think it should be capitalised, that's fine with me. I'm more concerned with what the spelling should be. I still think "Tai Chi Chuan" is objectionable, because it is neither the most common name for 太極拳 nor is it a correct spelling. My preference would be to move the article to Tai Chi, which is the common name and will be easier to type, link to, and search for, but then to perform a switcheroo right at the start of the article and refer to it as T'ai Chi Ch'üan throughout. - Nat Krause(Talk!) 19:01, 8 April 2006 (UTC)
I originally learned "Tai Chi Chuan" 5 years ago. I finally found a class in the form locally where I live. I am very excited about that. I am also pleased to find so much information online about "Tai Chi Chuan" It is a disctinct form. I do not understand why someone would even say they have never heard it referred to with that name so just call it "Tai Chi"? It is what it is. (20:55, 3 May 2006
I'm not sure I follow you. You say that "Tai Chi Chuan" is a distinct form. Do you mean that it is distinct from "Tai Chi"? That is not correct. They are the same thing. I certainly have heard 太極拳 referred to as taijiquan, but I still think it is generally called Tai Chi in English. - Nat Krause(Talk!) 21:09, 3 May 2006 (UTC)

(Please don't hit me, Wintran, but I could not find your valuable contribution at first. Therefore I moved it downward to fit in timeline. --JohJak2 15:00, 16 May 2006 (UTC))

No problem, you're totally right :) I was a bit confused by the horizontal line and the sub-section below, that's why it ended up where it did, but now that you mention it this seems like a better place. Wintran 15:28, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

I'm confused over the latest move from Tai Chi Chuan to T'ai Chi Ch'üan. According to the Google test and my own experience, the most common spelling is "Tai Chi Chuan" followed by "Taijiquan". "T'ai Chi Ch'üan" is romanized using the dated Wade-Giles romanization system, and though "Tai Chi Chuan" is a simplified version of this romanization, the latter has been adopted by the English language as the most common spelling. If we do decide that we favor correct romanization over common usage, "Taijiquan" would seem like the correct main article, as it's both more frequently used than "T'ai Chi Ch'üan" and uses the more modern Pinyin romanization. However, to avoid going against Wikipedia:Naming conventions, my proposal is that we change the title back to "Tai Chi Chuan", as this is the most common English term among non-scholars. Wintran 14:05, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

I agree with Wintran. I find this a silly move. I find no redeeming value in a name change whereby the new name can most likely not even be pronounced properly by the majority of people that look for information here. Adding accents to the name is already confusing, but adding an umlaut that does not have any (or extremely limited) use in the English language is ridiculous. The name Tai Chi Chuan is easy to recognize and to write for everybody. Leave the phonetics to the specialists, please. --JohJak2 15:00, 16 May 2006 (UTC)
As I have argued above, "tai chi chuan" is not the most common English name, which would be, simply, "tai chi". To insist on including the "ch'üan" is pedantic. And so, the title "tai chi chuan" is probably the second most common spelling, but it strikes me as an odd mix of pedantry and anti-pedantry. I have stated my preference above to move the article to Tai Chi, but I prefer not to use "Tai Chi Chuan", which satisfies neither the criterion of common-ness nor that of pedantic accuracy. That said, I'll go along with what other editors decide (I wasn't the one who moved it a couple days ago). In any event, I worked a little bit to consolidate the redirected links to this article, which should make it slightly easier to sort the redirects out if we have to move the page again. - Nat Krause(Talk!) 17:32, 16 May 2006 (UTC)
PS - I'm still curious about how "tai chi chuan" is pronounced. I know how to pronounce "tai chi" (/tʰaɪ ʧʰi/, "tie chee"), and I know to pronounce "t'ai-chi ch'üan" (with a bit of an American accent, it would be /tʰaɪ ʤi ʧʰɥæn/ or /ʧʰjuæn/, "tie jee chyuan"). But how does one read "tai chi chuan"?
PPS - Y'all might like to know that there are way worse cases of squiggly-mark and foreign-character abuse on Wikipedia than this one. Check out Lech Wałęsa or Níðhöggr, off the top of my head. As I'm generally against that sort of thing, I'd appreciate input on pages like Wikipedia talk:Naming conventions (use English) and Wikipedia:Naming conventions (thorn)
I agree with you that "Tai Chi" is an even more common term than "Tai Chi Chuan", and a very common abbreviation. However, as Fire Star mentioned above, the concept of Tai Chi (or Taiji in Pinyin) has a much deeper meaning in Chinese philosophy, explained in Taiji, and is used by the English language as well. If you look at Wikipedia:Naming conventions (common names) it states the following: "Use the most common name of a person or thing that does not conflict with the names of other people or things." If we call this article "Tai Chi" I think there might be a conflict, so my belief is that "Tai Chi Chuan" is the best pick, even though I agree with you that "Tai Chi" is a more common term in English. One option could be to use Tai Chi Chuan as the main article, but use the term "Tai Chi" as an abbreviation inside the article, and explain that it's commonly used that way.
PS - I think you pronounce it something like "Tie Chee Chwan". However, if you want to pronounce it in correct Chinese you need to use the correct tones, and there is a bit difference in the pronounciation of the two "Ch":s.
Wintran 20:24, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

So, how about moving this article back to Tai Chi Chuan? This includes moving categories and such. Wintran 14:39, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

For me it is a toss up: either Taijiquan or Tai Chi Chuan. Rather than what it is now. JohJak2 14:57, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
Since the usage Tai Chi Chuan gets the most Google hits, it is arguably the most common form in English. W-G has problems, pinyin has problems, there are even two different versions in Chinese characters, traditional and simplified. We shouldn't decide the merits of the romanisation schemes. Most T'ai Chi literature (largely thanks to Cheng Man-ch'ing's prolific group of students) is in W-G. We should list all the variants in the infobox like we do, with perhaps the most common usage (Tai Chi Chuan, apparently) as the main title and everything else as a redirect. In the T'ai Chi articles, I propose W-G followed by a parenthetical pinyin for each phrase. --Fire Star 火星 16:00, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

Tai Chi Chuan is fine with me. I notice in de interwikilinks that it is about half-half Taijiquan or Tai Chi Chuan with a few stragglers. The google-most-used argument is good enough for me. JohJak2 17:57, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

I don't object to moving back to Tai Chi Chuan at this point; I don't know if anyone does object. I still thinking there's a lot to be said for moving to Tai Chi instead. There isn't much to be said in favour of the current title.—Nat Krause(Talk!) 06:37, 15 July 2006 (UTC)

There are some orthographic problems with this article, which is understandable considering Wade-Giles has been chosen as the method of transliteration. Chen (陳) and ch'uan (拳) have different initial consonant sounds, but the article referes to Chen style as ch'en throughout. I think the apostrophe should be dropped from Chen. I could very well be mistaken on this point, however, as I have pretty much abandoned Wade-Giles as a transliteration method long-ago. In fact, pretty much the whole world (outside the non-Chinese martial arts world) has done so too; even Taiwan now officially promulgates a new (and equally confusing) Tong Yong method. I think its time for the martial arts world to make a leap forward and begin using a more modern method.
The consonants at the beginning of 陳 and 拳 are not the same, but they are quite similar, and they are not distinguished in Wade-Giles romanisation. "Ch'en" and "ch'üan" are correct, respectively. Hanyu Pinyin does distinguish the difference, so they become "chen" and "quan", respectively.—Nat Krause(Talk!) 02:47, 19 July 2006 (UTC)
All the more reason to abandon Wade-Giles.--Baoluo 03:16, 19 July 2006 (UTC)

I took the liberty of performing the move to Tai Chi Chuan. If someone still objects, continue discussions here. - Wintran (talk) 23:03, 17 July 2006 (UTC)

I'm not sure if I fall under still object, because I just came across this article. But the name of the activity is actually 太极拳. The current standard representation of these chinese characters uses the pinyin system, which, when written, it is Tàijíquán or often simplified as Taijiquan. ~ Feureau 23:48, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

Double redirects

I noticed some double redirects and already fixed a couple before noticing that the recent move is within the last day. Hopefully the name can be quickly settled and then the double redirects also fixed.

I would have thought Tai Chi (with or without capitals) was the most suitable name, as this is what it is commonly known as in English; however I'll leave it to others to work it out. --Singkong2005 04:19, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

I'm going to go through and fix the double redirects that have main namespace articles linking to them. I'll try to consolidate some of the links in the form [[T'ai Chi Ch'üan|Variant Form]], which will make it easier to update things in the future if the page moves around again. - Nat Krause(Talk!) 04:37, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

Chi and naming

Apparently there is some relationship between tai chi and the chi/qi life-force concept, but it is not explained in this article. Is that relationship why "chi" appears in the in the name of this art, or is that a linguistic coincidence? (How did the art get its name, anyway?) -- Beland 20:39, 19 May 2006 (UTC)

It's a coincidence. The "chi" in "tai chi" is actually pronounced something like "jee" in Chinese, whereas "chi", the life-force concept, is pronounced something like "chee". They are different words. Tai chi is named after the bizarrely confusing philosophical concept of taiji. - Nat Krause(Talk!) 20:57, 19 May 2006 (UTC)

As far as I know, Chineese is only a written language, so when we talk about pronounciation we should talk about Mandarin, Cantonese, etc. /Kamil (Ruok) 03.06.2006 (06=June)

What is the basis for your statement that "Chinese is only a written language"? From my experience, studying Mandarin Chinese, which is a spoken and written language like English, and the official language of China, Chinese is what the language is called. Cantonese is also frequently referred to as Chinese, as it is a Chinese dialect. "Chinese" encompasses many dialects, all of which are not only written languages.Eh Nonymous 14:45, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
Chinese is a language incredibly rich in homophones, or words that have the same pronunciation but different meanings. In Chinese, these differences are represented by different characters, but in English these distinctions are lost. Additionally, the Wade Giles othographic system confuses things further with its use of apostrophes to distinguish certain consonant clusters. Tai chi (太極) is pronounced as 'tai4ji2 while ch'i (氣) is pronounced as 'qi4'. These words in fact, share neither pronunciation nor character, and are completed unrelated.
Secondly, 太極 is not a bizarrely confusing philosphy, but is actually elegantly simple and represented quite concisely by the 太極圖 (tai4ji2tu2) or yin yang. Tai ji means supreme ultimate, and is a fundamental principle underlying all existence. Simply put, everything has an opposite, and these pairs of opposites are in constant, perpetual flux, like the tides or phases of the moon. The confusing nature of taiji is due to the several thousand years of academic analysis that scholars have foisted upon it.
Thirdly, Kamil does have a point in distinguishing between written and spoken Chinese; until the early 20th century, Chinese was written in am archaic, classical form; scholars from any part of China could correspond quite easily with one another, regardless of the dialect spoken. Beginning with Hu Shi, scholars began to advocate modernizing the written form of the language, bringing it more line with spoken dialects. Before this process began however, it was senseless to speak of written Mandarin, or written Cantonese; these were spoken dialects only, and any writing that was done was done in the classical form. It is a recent inovation for a dialect to be linked with a writing system, and even today, many scholars and linguists are struggling to find ways to express dialects other than Mandarin in Chinese characters. To make a short point long, it is important to distinguish between pronunciation in different dialects, as a Cantonese speaker from Hong Kong will use the same characters to write 太極拳 as a northerner, but will pronounce them differently. If you're not going to use characters to talk about Chinese things, you're going to have to be more specific.--Baoluo 09:11, 18 July 2006 (UTC)
Baoluo- Thanks for the historical information, which I was not aware of. I stand corrected - Kamil is right to point that out. Thanks for your response.Eh Nonymous 19:48, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

Pinyin all over the place

The pinyin in this article is all over the place. Either use wade-giles or pinyin and stick to it everywhere.

Too much focus on references to certain commercial organisations in the west.

I have tried to remove some links that are too parochial.

Also removed some references to weapons that are not part of mainstream tai chi (i.e. wip/dart/3sectioned staff)

Recent history: Tai chi is being promoted within china recently to try and counter the cult of falun gong.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by Danielpoon (talkcontribs)

T'ai Chi and Diabetes

I think that the reference given for this is lacking in that the entry suggests it might rise to the level of a pilot study in the generally understood conventional medicine/research sense, and the cite is simply an interview in which, in my understanding, there's a bit of anecdotal reportage and the possibility of a pilot study forthcoming. Am I missing something? 23:56, 29 May 2006 (UTC)

Chi Kung

Shouldn't we say that the healing part of Tai Chi is acutally Chi Kung? People generally do not understand the difference between the two.

Kamil (Ruok) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ruok (talkcontribs)

It isn't necessarily the case. There are many different styles of T'ai Chi, and some have qigong and some don't. Schools without dedicated qigong training can still have a health benefit. --Fire Star 火星 01:15, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

External links abuse

Who is this annoynmous joker who keeps repeatedly adding the "Free TV channel" link (see history)? Can we block him some how? Can we lock the page for a while until he gives up the spam? Triponi 10:01, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

Reported IP address to WP:AIV - to temporarily protect the page see WP:PROT. --apers0n 11:59, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
Now semi-protected. Leave it a while and then remove the protection status and also remove from WP:PROT when the vandal has given up. --apers0n 12:19, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

We need to protect the page agian, that anon spammer with the "free tv channel" is back. VanTucky 21:51, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

I have sprotected it again as the "free TV" idiot is certainly presistant, so I think we need to keep the protection on for quiet a while. Please discuss removing it here, before doing it! Triponi 08:08, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
The semiprotection is now activated per request here --apers0n 19:12, 17 August 2006 (UTC)

Zhaobao style

We really could use a separate article on Zhaobao style. It is pretty well known and has serious practitioners, especially in China. Unfortunately, I don't know enough of its history to do it justice. Anyone else know anything about it? --Fire Star 火星 14:22, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

I think Tai Chi Magazine has at least one issue with an interview with a Zhaobao master. I might have a hard copy somewhere I can reference. VanTucky 00:47, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

We have a stubby new article at Zhaobao style Taijiquan. --Fire Star 火星 04:37, 12 August 2006 (UTC)

See Also

I think there should be an internal link to Chin Na in the See Also category. I'd do it myself but I'm a new user and I am not even really sure how. maybe one of the admins can do it. VanTucky 19:54, 9 August 2006 (UTC)VanTucky

It is already linked in the training section. Not all styles teach it, unfortunately, but I'm pretty sure 100 years ago they all did. Perhaps we can make the mention a little more prominent. --Fire Star 火星 16:59, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

I deleted the internal link to Waterbender, its too obscure. Olaus M 13:15, 22 September 2006 (UTC)

Good. As far as I can tell, the character's association with Taijiquan is mostly wishful thinking. It is apparently mentioned as part of their backstory, but they never (or hardly ever) do any Taijiquan in the show. --Fire Star 火星 13:21, 22 September 2006 (UTC)

TaiChi Website

About two years ago, I found this website on taichi which offered videos of various forms (24-form, 48-form, etc). I think it offered still photos as well. To put it simply, I cant find it anymore, do any of you guys know where it is? -Guest

So sorry, I found it myself within a few minutes. It is Could any of you senior users please add it to the External Links section (semi-protection)? I think it is of great practical importance. -Same Guest

Tai Chi America's website also has several form demonstration videos in a different format than realplayer. VanTucky 23:23, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

Merge from Taiji

The short article Taiji dates to September, 2003. It appears to cover the same ground as this one. Take a look and see if you agree that it should be merged here. --Blainster 17:09, 29 September 2006 (UTC)

Actually, they don't quite cover the same topic. Taiji is more of a concept commonly discussed in Taoism, while Tai Chi Chuan (or taijiquan) is a specific style of martial art based on this concept. - Wintran (talk) 21:32, 29 September 2006 (UTC)
However, colloqial usage of 'Tai Chi' refers to the exercise form, not to the Taoist concept. At least some kind of disambiguisation would be appropriate - 15:00, 30 September 2006 (UTC)
Yes, this is exactly what is confusing to the the English speaker who is not familiar with Chinese culture. Why does "Tai Chi" redirect here, while "Tai chi" redirects to the Taiji article? I believe that for non-expert westerners the quoted spellings refer to the slow, rhythmic exercise suitable for all ages. Anonymous User: in Montevideo, Uruguay silently removed the merge tag 24 hours after I placed it, but some clarification is still needed. How about this: first, the two variants just quoted should both point to the same article, and second, that article should mention the slow exercise in its first paragraph. (Note that the Wiki MOS recommends bolding redirect terms and placing them as close as possible to the beginning of the article.) --Blainster 20:25, 4 October 2006 (UTC)
That is a good idea. I didn't know about the "Tai Chi" and "Tai chi" thing. I've been a little busy lately, only managing cursory visits to WP, so I haven't done any work on the problem. We have a nice dab sentence we could adapt at the top of the pushing hands article. --Fire Star 火星 22:06, 4 October 2006 (UTC)

Buddhist Meditation

Although Tai Chi is largely based on the philosophy Taoism, isn't its meditation based on Zen Buddhist meditation except in a more moving form? Zachorious 08:44, 2 October 2006 (UTC)

What at least 4 of the 5 main styles teach is that the external forms themselves are from Buddhist martial arts, the meditation principles (neigong) are from Taoism and the teaching structure is from Confucianism. Nowadays, especially in the west, people mix it with whatever they want, but the way it was taught 200 years ago was in a coherent structure based on those three streams. --Fire Star 火星 12:29, 2 October 2006 (UTC)

Don't the Shaolin Monks (whose Shallow Temple is a Zen Buddhist temple) practice Tai Chi as well, or is it a combination of many forms of kung fu and tai chi? Zachorious 15:54, 2 October 2006 (UTC)

People with shaved heads living in Songshan who say they are Shaolin monks do teach what they call T'ai Chi Ch'uan. They may indeed be real Shaolin monks, I don't know, but the T'ai Chi I've seen them do is the Chinese govt. wushu variety. --Fire Star 火星 22:28, 2 October 2006 (UTC)

So what are the similarities and differences between Buddhist and Taoist meditation in that respect? Is it the moving in Tao or are they pretty much the same except for movement? Zachorious 03:27, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

Well, it is complicated. There are many different sects of both Taoism and Buddhism. Some seem complementary, some seem drastically different. Some Taoist schools seem to have more in common with some Buddhist practises than with other groups who also identify as Taoist, and vice versa. For T'ai Chi purposes (and remember mine is just one opinion, no matter how much I flatter myself regarding my teachers) Buddhist groups that appear to be most relevant are the Chan and Pure Land doctrines. The Taoist schools were described to me as the "hygienic" or naturalist sects, which eschew seeking psychic power or immortality in this world, as opposed to "alchemical" or immortalist Taoists. And still, over the years there looks like there has been much language and other influence from groups seemingly outside those streams that I think I can detect. Generally, the softer elements seem to come from Taoism, and the harder from Buddhism, although that isn't a 100% correlation either. There are qigong exercises I was shown that my teachers have said are identical to Shaolin exercises, for example. It is the practical study of yin and yang, whether Buddhist or Taoist, that characterises usefulness for T'ai Chi purposes, I'd say. The physical and energetic states involved in the meditation I was shown, the movement or stilness requirements and where they are required are all expressions of changes of perception relating to yin and yang categories. --Fire Star 火星 05:18, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

From my perspective, FireStar is pretty much correct. For general purposes is can be summarized that many physical/ethical practices of TaiJi come from Buddhist and Confucian sources. The mental/meditative elements of TaiJi are more akin to Taoist practices (having participated in Taoist religous ceremony, chanting and meditation myself). But again, when describing China and the products of its culture (like Taiji) one must remember that the line between Taoism, Buddhism and Confucianism is blurred. So for the article, its better just to discuss what the practices of TaiJi players are instead of discussing what may or may not be their origins. it also tends to start frivolous arguements VanTucky 19:32, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

ChineseText template

The {{ChineseText}} overlaps the text in my IE 6 browser. Yonidebest 22:51, 6 October 2006 (UTC)


Tai Chi Chuan Secrets Most modern teachers teach the form alone, but this cannot lead to a mastery of Tai Chi Chuan. This is the legacy of teaching the art to the royal family of the Qing Dynasty.

In addition to form, one has to learn the verbal secrets, called kou juie. This is used to coordinate the psychosomatic aspects of the art. Another secret is the movement of the chi, and how to coordinate it with the form. This involves using "locks" to control its flow, as dissipated chi is of not much use. Finally, application of the form is rarely taught; the student has to figure that out, and this takes years.

The above was removed from the article until sources are provided so it can be established that the above statements aren't original research on the part of their contributor. --Fire Star 火星 04:24, 24 October 2006 (UTC)

I just want to say bravo Firestar. Your recent work to make the Tai Chi family of articles gold-star quality has been greatly appreciated. I'd give you a barnstar, but I have absolutely no clue how. and as far as this balderdash about using verbal secrets as psychosomatic aids, I just have to say this person is the kind of New Age nutcase that makes skeptics discard taiji and qigong into the dungheap of superstitious nonsense. its an internal art, which means that chi moves through your body (either with or without intention) internally. the idea that saying a set of magic incantations is the heart of neigong is absurd. VanTucky 19:52, 24 October 2006 (UTC)

Well, thanks. I've conversed with the above editor (who is from Singapore), and I'm convinced there is a slight language issue and that the main misunderstanding is that they are very new to the project more than anything else. --Fire Star 火星 20:14, 24 October 2006 (UTC)
Yes, Fire Star is performing a great service. I do not disagree that the article modification is unsuitable, as pointed out by Fire Star. Nonetheless, regarding the nutcase comment, there could be some pertinent quotations from Arthur C. Clarke:
  • There is hopeful symbolism in the fact that flags do not wave in a vacuum.
  • Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
  • The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible. Cottonball 01:34, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

We certainly don't want to imply that there are nutcases at Wikipedia. I think (I can't speak for him, so this is a guess) that VanTucky is reacting to the dozens if not hundreds of bad T'ai Chi teachers he has seen, too. I put it down to a case of misunderstanding and would ask that we all work to get these articles to A class rating. I have mentioned, if only obliquely, here and at the Chinese martial arts article that bad or incomplete teaching (same thing, really) does harm to the reputations of our arts. We can have stylistic differences here, but we can all agree that we want good articles, especially compared to some debates I've seen here over the years I think we have a very good chance. Regards, --Fire Star 火星 02:28, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

Firestar is correct in his comment about why I reacted the way I did. it seems that simple misunderstanding is the culprit for any inappropriate content. to address whatever pertinence I can derive from your quotations Cottonball...

about advanced technology (or in this case, physical technique) seeming miraculous and the necessity for imagination in pushing the boundaries of a given field: there are many things about advanced taiji practice that can seem nearly magical to the untrained eye or that have little to no scientific proof but can be reproduced by anyone given time and effort. such as the ability of someone to push over the last person standing in a connected line while leaving all others before him standing. I'm not sure if what you mean to suggest by those quotes, but what I glean from them indirectly is that you are trying to say: dont be so sure of everything, what some have called impossible has been done. well, thats very true. but I think Arthur C. Clarke would agree with me in saying that just because some new and wonderful ability is professed doesnt stifle the requirment for the same simple empirical proof that we require of anything else. VanTucky 19:16, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

somewhat anonymous poster here, just wanted to point something out. Towards the bottom in the "Health benefits" section, it says that taijiquan burns more calories than surfing and almost as much as downhill skiing, when according to the supplied calorie burning chart link, neither is true.


i have failed this for now. The article, for the exception of the medical benefits section, is not referenced well, and needs citations. A prose cleanup could defintely be of benefit, however. Clean it up, get some citations, then relist it. --badlydrawnjeff talk 02:17, 8 December 2006 (UTC)

The following discussion is an archived debate of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the debate was NO CONSENSUS to move page at this time. -GTBacchus(talk) 16:41, 21 December 2006 (UTC)

Requested move

Tai Chi ChuanTaijiquan — The name of the activity, because it originates from China, is actually 太极拳. The current standard representation of these chinese characters uses the pinyin system, which, when written, it is Tàijíquán or often simplified as Taijiquan. This complies with Wikipedia:Naming conventions ~ Feureau 23:56, 15 December 2006 (UTC)


Add  * '''Support'''  or  * '''Oppose'''  on a new line followed by a brief explanation, then sign your opinion using ~~~~.
  • Oppose. Most publications in English, periodicals and bound, use W-G, IME. As well, You'll get a lot more google hits for some version of W-G than pinyin. As we've gone over in the talk archive, I don't think that there is a satisfactory solution, there are even simplified and traditional Chinese character versions of the name, so I say we choose the most popular English version and a host of various redirects for those who may search with any of the many different variations. --Fire Star 火星 14:44, 16 December 2006 (UTC)
Actually, I stand somewhat corrected. A search shows 1,270,000 for Tai Chi Chuan and 1,120,000 for Taijiquan. 180,000 for T'ai Chi Ch'uan. 2,680,000 for Tai Chi, 2,060,000 for Taiji and 947,000 for T'ai Chi. Not all of the latter results will pertain to the martial art we are discussing, but many do. The last time we did something like this, the results were overwhelming in favour of W-G, but this shows some progress for pinyin, apparently. --Fire Star 火星 19:10, 16 December 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Agree with Fire Star. I assume that the number of google hits is related to the frequency of use of the same term as search term. JohJak2 15:26, 16 December 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose. There is a difference if you do a google search on English only web pages (however accurate that is). Tai Chi Chuan gets 898,000 hits, Taijiquan gets 400,000 hits, and Tai Chi gets 1,850,000 hits. So at least in web pages that identify themselves as English, Tai Chi is the most popular. Of course, that could be used to argue that the article should move to Tai Chi, but it is part of the name already, so confusion shouldn't be as big as Taijiquan. --Bobblehead 20:32, 16 December 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Fire Star & WP:UE. - Evv 20:46, 16 December 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose pinyin imperialism is bad. The common english name is "Tai Chi Chuan" (Tai Chi, actually), regardless of what the politicos in control of most Chinese people consider the correct latinization of things. 05:29, 19 December 2006 (UTC)


Add any additional comments:

Perhaps you could explain how Taijiquan complies with WP:NC? WP:NC(UE) says the English should be used and if there isn't an english name, then Pinyin can be used. Also, WP:NC(CN) says the most common name should be used. In this case Tai Chi is the most common name. I'm not seeing how Taijiquan complies with WP:NC, but if you can provide an explanation, I might be persuaded to not oppose the move. Thanks! --Bobblehead 01:11, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

I guess the point to consider is whether translation accuracy or the popularity if usage is more important. For the most part, only those that already aquainted with taiji are going to search under that version, and (in America at least) tai chi chuan is the accepted dictionary version not taijiquan. But personally, every Chinese speaking person I know says that taijiquan is the correct romanization, and that it also better represents proper pronunciation than tai chi chuan. VanTucky 03:05, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

Why would a Chinese speaking person be concerned about the romanized way of writing as it is only of interest to the western person who wants to pronounce the words as close as possible to the Chinese pronounciation and for that purpose agreed (as a group) to use certain letters as representation for certain Chinese chartacters. I would think that the Chinese speaking person is mainly interested in being sure the Chinese characters are correctly pronounced and the meaning understood. JohJak2 15:26, 16 December 2006 (UTC)
Also, The infobox does a good job showing pronunciations like taai3 gik6 kyun4 etc. There is an article that we might want to link at Daoism-Taoism Romanization issue. --Fire Star 火星 19:03, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

well, I disagree about the infobox. it does a crap job of explaining pronuncition. But I'm not sure which version youre pulling for when you disagree with my arguments JohJak. Do you oppose or support? VanTucky 21:32, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

I was thinking that has links in it to the articles on the different dialects and languages presented, which would explain their pronunciation schemes to someone researching. --Fire Star 火星 21:54, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

oh I see, that sounds helpful. but the pronunciation guides in articles (when they appear) are often more confusing than helpful. anyway, seems that everyone opposes for the most part. VanTucky 03:34, 17 December 2006 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the debate. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Disambiguation needed.

Tai Chi is a martial art form that utilizes both the fist and the external weapon. Chuan is the word that denotes the use of hands as weapons. It is incorrect to call Tai Chi "Tai Chi Chuan" unless you are talking specificaly about weapons-free forms.

No, Tai Chi by itself denotes a daoist philosophical concept which literally means the most elemental separation of yin and yang. Chuan at the end of tai chi means "fist" with the connotation of shadow-boxing and differentiates the tai chi concept from the tai chi martial art. You can shadow box with weapons. Dropping the chuan is like using a nickname it is informal and for convenience. Put it this way, if you were correct about this we would have to go back and correct the names of around 1000 chinese styles. Mlmalone 20:17, 5 April 2007 (UTC)

A suggestion or two for improvement

1. It is not necessarily true that most scholars agree that taijiquan began with the Chen family. Taijiquan's history, in fact, is in some dispute. For many years, Zhang San Feng was (and still is by many people) regarded as the founder of taijiquan. In recent years the Chen family has laid claim as the founders of taijiquan. A third arguement states that no one individual or family created taijiquan but, rather, the art evolved through the centuries from several different sources.

The arguement that Zhang San Feng was the founder of taijiquan is based on his authorship of the first of the tai chi classics. Scholars dispute the authenticity of this claim, however, pointing out that others could have just as easily authored the essay. Add to that, some historical suggestions that Zhang San Feng may have been nearly 200 years old and it is not hard to see why this story is often dismissed.

The Chen family's claim to authorship of taijiquan depends on how you define taijiquan. If, for example, you define it as an art utilizing the taiji principles as outlined in the taiji classics, then there are documented arts in China as early as the 7th century that fit this definition (see: "The Dao of Taijiquan" by Jou Tsung Hwa). Further, many of the guiding principles and energies of the art (chan si jing, fa jing, etc.) also predate Chen style taijiquan and are found in older arts including xingyiquan. Ba fa (ward off, roll back, press, push, etc.) are also found in arts older than Chen style taijiquan and many of the postures found in Chen style exist in martial art styles predating Chen Wanting.

I would like to suggest that the author offer the arguements on all sides and allow the reader to decide.

2. The author cites only two key components to training - solo form and push hands. No where is mentioned the most crucial aspect of taijiquan training - zhan zhuang (standing training). Most all traditional taijiquan schools begin students with zhan zhuang. Standing training serves many purposes. First, it helps practitioners memorize proper structure in static postures. Secondly, it teaches students to find and maintain complete muscle relaxation (song). Third, it trains concentration and intention (yi) through utilization of advanced mental exercises designed to facilitate contraindication within the musculature. The end result is a process that eliminates muscle tension while at the same time increasing strength, speed, reflexes and reaction time. Once this state can be maintained in a static position, the next stage is to introduce this state into movement. This is where tai chi form comes in. Perhaps most importantly, without the inclusion of standing training in the beginning stages, it is much more difficult to learn to produce and maintain peng jing, a key energy in taijiquan.

I would like to suggest that the author researches the subject and append their entry to include zhan zhuang. For further study, some of the more advanced standing techniques can be found in Yiquan, a martial system founded by the legendary master Wang Xiangzhai.


Jim Donnelly, Director, American Society of Internal Arts,

HANDS FOLDED IN RESPECT —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Jdonnelly001 (talkcontribs) 06:40, 27 December 2006 (UTC).

Greetings. The concerns you mention are addressed in the current article, if in the passive voice usually used to minimize controversy. We don't actually say the Chens invented T'ai Chi, but we say the current orthodox styles, all came through the Chen family. Other claim this or that, but haven't provided independent verification. We also give a mention to the Chang San-feng story, as well as mentioning the gradual evolution theory and the neo-Confucians. Reference is given to an exhaustive study of the origins of the art by Douglas Wile. I don't personally aagree with Wile's speculations, but the info he provides, names and dates, is valuable. The Debate on the origins of Tai Chi Chuan would actually be an excellent separate article.
Post standing is mentioned in the bit on nei kung:
  • Breathing exercises; nei kung (內功 nèigōng) or, more commonly, ch'i kung (氣功 qìgōng) to develop ch'i (氣 qì) or "breath energy" in coordination with physical movement and post standing or combinations of the two. These were formerly taught only to disciples as a separate, complementary training system. In the last 50 years they have become more well known to the general public.
Different schools have different approaches. Zhan zhuang is vitally important, but it is one of four varieties of meditation taught. The Yang family (esp. Yang Zhenduo, as he mentioned 11 years or so back in Smalheiser's T'ai Chi Magazine) have de-emphasised it in their curriculum in recent years. The Wu family teach it, but they teach moving stance training first, as they feel it is more difficult (and more valuable in this case) to learn to balance while learning to coordinate different body parts. Later they get people into as many 30 minute horse stances and golden roosters as they'd like ;-). Cheers, --Fire Star 火星 14:18, 27 December 2006 (UTC)

Hi Fire Star,

Zhan zhuang is, unfortunately, a poorly understood topic. Post standing is a multi-purpose tool, not one single practice. The posting referred to in the neigong section of wikipedia refers to the use of standing as a form of qi development. While this type of exercise may be found in taiji schools, this is not the same zhan zhuang used for structural training. Likewise, zhan zhuang is not the same as deep standing for 30 minutes in postures. That type of standing is designed primarily for developing leg conditioning and balance. Nor is it simply a form of meditation as one usually thinks of meditation. Yiquan probably comes closest to describing the old methods of standing training, although some argue that, as practiced today, even Yiquan has been watered down a bit. As for Yang Zhenduo, despite being the head of the Yang family, he doesn't necessarily speak for taijiquan masters everywhere. He's just one of hundreds with a single viewpoint. Good Holidays!

Jim Donnelly, Hands Folded In Respect

While you certainly show credible knowledge and sources mr. Donnelly, I have to disagree with you. The majority of credible scholars place Zhang San Feng in the same context as such chinese cultural hero-founders as the famous general Yue Fei. That is to say, most likely a real person at some point, but who has been mythologized enormously. Zhang San Feng is not only credited as the founder by taiji practitioners, but by just about anyone practicing an art with internal characteristics. While the idea that the Chens are the first and sole originators of taiji principles or the first incarnation of the ba fa is totally inane, it does not make a semi-mythical character in chinese folk tales out to be the sole originator. like you said, taiji is really the work of hundreds of individuals throughout the generations contributing to its development. and just to repeat FireStar's arguement...while I personally agree about the importance of standing meditation, it is by a huge margin NOT the core taiji practice in the west or east among current practitioners. though regretable, we can all regcognize that the days of students spending weeks/months only learning zhan zhuang are over. Just look at the advent of the multitude of short forms, people have neither the time nor the inclination to spend that much time on zhan zhuang as a core/founding practice. We are not going to return to some "golden age" of taiji where people revere zhan zhuang practice. VanTucky 20:55, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

I'll try to dig up the Yang Zhenduo interview, perhaps that would be a good way to source the changing rôle of the practise.
In the T'ai Chi meditation methods I learned from the Wu family, zhan zhuang was 1/4 of the whole, there was:
  • Stillness inside/stillness outside (zhan zhuang)
  • Stillness inside/movement outside (forms, pushing hands, some nei kung)
  • Movement inside/stillness outside (hsiao t'ien in various positions)
  • Movement inside/movement outside (silk reeling)
Unfortuantely, I hasven't found this actually written down in my sources anywhere, so as interesting material as it is, I can't put it in the article! I'll keep looking of course... Cheers, --Fire Star 火星 14:05, 29 December 2006 (UTC)

stub expansion

I was just considering the idea of expanding the number of tai chi stubs like the single whip stub. a group of stub explaining the postures of tai chi found in every style (single whip, grasp bird's tail etc.) and detailing the differences in execution and application. anyone want to collaborate? VanTucky 01:45, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

Tchoung Ta Chen Style?

I just discovered the pages for the so-called Tchoung style tai chi. Not disputing that this guy taught his own version of tai chi which was obviously Yang influenced. But his students claim he learned from a much older generation of Yang teachers than Yang Chengfu, this and other claims by the people who wrote the page (his students of course) allude to the Tchoung style being "original" Yang style that is superior to the lineage of all other Yang teachers. Historical truth not withstanding, wikipedia has strict NPOV and if we dont let people write their own bios, then we sure as hell cant let his students lord it over the article of their "style" claiming to be the pure standard bearers of Yang teachings. I suggest the article for a serious overhaul, maybe even deletion. VanTucky 20:04, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

I've only ever heard of the style just now (not that that means much) and I agree the articles need to be either completely re-written or removed. Good catch. --Fire Star 火星 21:40, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

I've revamped them for npov. this makes them okay for inclusion I think, though having not a single indedpendent citation, they are still on shaky ground. VanTucky 21:51, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

I've moved that the contents of Tchoung Ta Chen style tai chi be merged with the Yang style page. VanTucky 21:57, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Consistency of links

The following two articles link to tai chi, should there not also be reverse links here?

Currently there seems to be no mention of these two associated arts that are frequently taught alongside tai chi. (CJE) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 12:58, 24 January 2007 (UTC).


first of sorry but i dont know how to input chinese yet. second, the quan or chuan in tai chi chuan or taiji quan does mean fist when used by itself. however in martial arts it connotes "boxing" to distinguish itself from just taiji, which is just a philosophical theory. Almost all Chinese martial arts have a quan at the end to denote it being a "boxing" style and not just a family name. However, quan or chuan in itself means fist.--Blckavnger 15:52, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Indeed, Tai Chi Chuan is in fact one of the forms of Tai Chi, not Tai Chi itself. I have changed the redirect that led "Tai Chi" to this page. If anyone is interested about the subject I did a quick search on google and found an ok site about it. [1] All the best, Whiskey in the Jar 15:47, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

To clerify: Tai Chi Chuan is the Martial Art which can further be broken down into many substyles under the overall heading. Tai Chi itself is the daoist philosophical concept which the martial art is loosely based on. Mlmalone 20:28, 5 April 2007 (UTC)

Definition Needed of Qigong

The word Qigong is used a few times in the article, but there is no definition of it. I suggest adding at least a short parenthetical definition after the first reference. (I would add it myself, but I don't know what it is.) --Skb8721 17:39, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

We've got:
  • Breathing exercises; nei kung (內功 nèigōng) or, more commonly, ch'i kung (氣功 qìgōng) to develop ch'i (氣 qì) or "breath energy" in coordination with physical movement and post standing or combinations of the two.
The initial definition of "breathing exercises" is pretty accurate. From there, the opinions differ widely what they entail, and those opinions can be treated better at the linked articles like nei kung, ch'i kung, ch'i, zhan zhuang, etc. --Fire Star 火星 17:45, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Its not really necessarry to include a definition. Thats what internal links are for. If someone doesnt know what Qigong is, then they read the definition on the Qigong page. VanTucky 23:22, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

What would be nice is something on the differences and similarities between qigong and tai chi, or whether one is a subset of the other. Rojomoke (talk) 12:26, 2 February 2008 (UTC)

Failed GA

No inline citations. Also, for future reference, you should put {{GAnominee|date}} here on the talk page when you nominate, as described in the directions at WP:GAC. --Ideogram 04:37, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

Youtube Tai Chi Video Growth

Just want to share that I have noticed a growth in the number of quality youtube videos of tai chi including rare clips of well known masters. I ahve some on my page on youtube Master Gohring's Tai Chi & Kung Fu Youtube Videos.

There are also many many more. I don't know if they can be embedded and discussed here, Youtube's interface is a bit difficult for discussions and it often has non Tai chi practicioners commenting on tai chi videos. Anyway, if you have any ideas please share. I am still pretty new to wikipedia so let me know if this is not appropriate to post here.

Thank you.

Master Gohring Master Gohring's Tai Chi & Kung Fu 6611 Airport Blvd. Austin TX, 78752 512-422-4245 Master Gohring's Tai Chi & Kung Fu

Intro/first sections

To reach GA status, I think we need to rewrite the intro and first few sections to make them as concise as possible, also keeping in mind order/grouping (i.e. puttin all the mentions of where it comes from etc. together for cohesion). I think for someone who has no idea what exactly tai chi is, this article's intro would be highly confusing. Remember, first and foremost Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, a resource for people. Despite my personal feelings, I think we also need to review the entire article for NPOV concerening the fair and balanced presentation of the martial art versus health/exercise points of view. I will be doing some bold edits, so please feel free to discuss them with me of course. VanTucky 03:29, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

What you say is sensible. There was weight towards justification, with the martial arts therapy link, etc. That is good to have in the See also or health section, but stremlining the initial explication is fine. I'm going to (time and external commitiments permitting) start collecting as many inline refs as I can as well. I'll post them here first to see what people think. --Fire Star 火星 14:19, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

Neijia pride!

I've proposed getting a userbox for tai chi players. Bout time we had one. You can view the request here. Cheers! VanTucky 01:05, 7 May 2007 (UTC)


I've removed the following paragraph, as it seems to want to make a causal connexion between the prevalence of squatting in Asia with the practise of T'ai Chi Ch'uan. I'm pretty sure that squatting (from prehistory) predates T'ai Chi (Song dynasty at the earliest, but only recorded from the late Qing dynasty), and is probably more directly linked to the relative scarcity of chairs in rural villages, at least until recently. For us to imply that an aspect of T'ai Chi may be a contributing factor to the syndrome is opinion or even original research if it isn't explicitly stated in a secondary source.

Even for the young, Tai Chi's focus on relaxing the kua may be a contributing factor in the greater pelvic flexibility observed in Asian countries and the use of the squatting position as a more common rest mode.[1]

--Fire Star 火星 13:03, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Most of the section refers to referenced and peer-reviewed medical journal articles, so I personally think deleting the paragraph is fine. Orangemarlin 16:21, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

I'm okay with that since it could fall under "interesting but useless facts" since it is out of context, but it isn't original research. This concept was introduced in a NY Times article on Tai Chi's health benefit that I think is still in references. I would like to see a cite for your claim of the squat's age as a cultural attribute Fire Star, as I could find no other sources on the history of the squat position (check the article) dating back that far. Also, the paragraph doesn't categorically suggest that all Asian squatting traditions are a product of Tai Chi, only that it is distinctly possible that it contributes to the ability to do so. A broader suggestion would be totally inane, considering that the squatting position is arguably more prevalent in other countries (say, Thailand) that do not practice Tai Chi on such a wide scale. It seemed pretty tame compared to other statements in the article, such as a direct quote from an AIDS patient saying Tai Chi and Qigong have helped put his condition basically into remission. VanTucky 18:53, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
I'll agree that doing T'ai Chi regularly should promote the ability to squat (especially among relatively unsquatted westerners!) and coincidentally there are several squat like stretches in Wu style beyond the ubiquitous variations on horse stance. They may exist in other styles too, for all I know. It may have struck me wrong, but the paragraph as worded seemed to imply that T'ai Chi was partly responsible for Chinese squatting, which didn't seem likely, because as popular as T'ai Chi is, I don't think it is that popular. If we can get a secondary source saying that T'ai Chi promotes the ability to squat, we should feature it. I brought the paragraph here though, so we could sort it out and perhaps reword it. The NYT article cited (which seems interesting) requires registration, which opens up the spam floodgates most times, so I didn't access it. For an overview of the prehistory and history of squatting, archaeologists (and pathologists) have long been aware of changes in the leg and hip bones they call "squatting facets" in skeletons of people who squatted for extended periods of time. A Google search will provide a lot of descriptions and examples of the syndrome. Regards, --Fire Star 火星 19:55, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, that's very interesting. Yeah, the NYT registration doesn't give out your info for spammers or send any of their own, but it does cost money. I can sign in again with mine and look at the articles in the refs again to be sure, but if it can be cited would you agree to a rewording for clarification (that it contributes to the ease of motion, not the reason for the motion in Chinese culture)? and btw: almost every other style has squatting exercises or sustained kua-opening in its forms (Chen style is like one long squatting exercise for christssake!)VanTucky 20:17, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I think the idea is fine, but a reversal of the wording will be better, perhaps paraphrasing the article cite. I suppose squatting (ankles to butt, feet flat on ground) is the deepest horse stance, after all! On a side note, I have been reading excepts recently of what sinologists think is a 4th century BCE chapter (out of many others) of a collective philosophical work, the Guanzi (text). The chapter in question (chapter 49, called "Inner Training" 內業) mentions a lot of the same kind of language of shen, jing and qi in the same way that it is used by many T'ai Chi schools. I wonder if anyone else thinks that would be worth expanding on for the article? --Fire Star 火星 21:05, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, that has interesting implications for the history section. Can you give me the sections you are referring to here? I think with a proper quotation or paraphrase it would be good to add a sentence along the lines of "...not only are there predecessor neigong arts to Tai Chi Chuan (Tao Yin etc.) but the theoretical terminology still in use today dates back to mentions in Chinese philisophical texts, notably the Guanzi (and maybe the Tao Te Ching) of the 4th century BCE. VanTucky 22:30, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
I'll post some of A.C. Graham's translated excerpts from the chapter here tomorrow to give you an idea. I've got the whole chapter in Chinese, but just excerpts so far from well known translators. My classical Chinese isn't good enough to do it justice, I'm afraid... --Fire Star 火星 02:02, 13 May 2007 (UTC)

A question of categorisation

I recently was reading {{Template:Martial arts}} by type and found that tai chi was listed as a striking art. This seemed absolutely ludicrous to me, so I moved it to the grappling section. While this isn't exactly correct, as tai chi isn't interested in sustaining holds, locks or groundwork like judo or wrestling and does implement some strikes, placing tai chi in the same category of martial art by type as taekwondo and karate seemed especially foolish. It also depends on style, because different styles apply the bafa in different ways. Chen style could most definitely be called a grappling art, but I'm not so sure about Yang, Wu, or Sun styles. Any thoughts on how tai chi should be categorised in this context? VanTucky 01:10, 19 May 2007 (UTC)

I had a nice long reply all typed out for you, accidentally hit the esc button and it all went bye-bye. Crap. Short version: I believe any single category is unsatisfactory - traditional tai chi trains all of these things in multiple ranges. Wu style also usually emphasizes grappling, wrestling, hitting the floor and fighting on and from the ground (groundwork) and throws before striking and kicking, esp. if the student is younger. What sets Wu style (and I'm sure other styles) tai chi apart from more conventional wrestling systems like shuai jiao is that there has to be training in the sensitivity required to completely neutralise an attack with sticking, adhering connecting and following expected from the first instance of contact with an opponent. "Give up oneself to follow the other" (yin) coupled with a simultaneous counterattack (yang). We may not always respond this way (we may go all "previous yang" on a caught red-handed rapist or child molester, for example) but without this ability, we say we can't really be doing tai chi. Other systems respond, too, of course, but tai chi has to have the ability to have a soft response. And then, there are weapons... Cheers, --Fire Star 火星 17:48, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
After doing some reading, I too agree that it shouldn't be categorised at all. I'll remove it entirely. Other than the style differences, especially poignant to me was this passage from Fu Zhongwen's Yang Shi Taijiquan,

"Taijiquan is not the kind of martial art whose applications can be broken down into specific elementary techniques against specific kinds of hypothetical attacks. It is rather an art that teaches one, gradually, through individual and partner training, to respond with sensitivity to circumstances..."

applicable no? VanTucky 19:04, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
Maybe the template could be changed to include a fourth category for martial arts that cannot be pigeonholed into just "striking" or "grappling". Tai Chi Chuan could be included under a heading titled "mixed", for example. The template is more valuable if it is more comprehensive, rather than less, and Tai Chi is too prominent and important a martial art to be excluded.
Alternately, perhaps a consensus could be reached as to Tai Chi's primary focus as either striking or grappling. For example, weapons are an indispensible part of most karate curriculae, but karate is still primarily a striking art, and thus belongs under "striking". Likewise with jujutsu - most traditional schools teach a comprehensive set of striking skills, but it is still properly categorized as a grappling art, which is its primary feature and focus. What is the ultimate combative purpose of Tai Chi, to be able to kill with a strike, immobilize with a pin, disengage or injure with a projection, or something else? Thoughts? Bradford44 20:40, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
Again, the problem isn't particularly that tai chi as a whole defys categorization , but that each family style of tai chi applies the art in a different way (same theory, different look and techniques). Chen style is often described by Chen teachers as a grappling art. You can see about Wu style above. Yang style is the most ambiguous in my opinion, employing grappling and strikes almost exactly equally. Sun and Wu/Hao are more focused on fajing strikes in my opinion. If you insist on being comprehensive (which is generally a good idea) in the template, then you could possibly cat. each style of tai chi in a different area. But not everyone might agree with my personal assessment of the styles. A mixed category might work, but in my mind the purpose of the template is to group those arts which are otherwise unrelated except as grappling, striking or weapons arts; not just to list all the martial arts articles. If tai chi doesn't relate to any of the categories (and hence the martial arts) listed, then it doesn't need listing. VanTucky 20:57, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
Well, the template is actually a navigation bar. A reader should be able to jump from type of martial art to type of martial art without using the search function. So I think the purpose would be comprehensiveness. Bradford44 23:15, 20 May 2007 (UTC)
I was under the impression that karate was a separate discipline that was primarily forms and sparring, and karateka would take a jujitsu or judo class if they wanted grappling or a kobudo class if they wanted weapons training. Japanese martial arts tended to be more specialised like that (I do use the past tense, though), and one of the things Morihei Ueshiba apparently wanted to do with aikido was to bring weapons and grappling under one roof. Chinese martial arts have historically been much more independant, sometimes even seemingly jealous to western eyes, each school providing an wider range of training in one place under one name without relying on other schools, with notable historical exceptions, of course. Tai chi has 5 main styles, and nowadays each style has different emphases in their training. Yang Zhenduo for example, has stated in interviews that while tai chi chuan is indeed martial, his branch of the Yang family no longer teaches the martial art to the public. Other styles are still martial, and some modern "styles" eschew any mention of martial art in their classes whatever. I can only speak definitively for Wu style, but it works basic stances and forms first, basic pushing hands and sticking to neutralise second, hitting the floor third (tumbling and throws), joint traps, locks and breaks (wrestling) fourth and then combining all of that with striking into freestyle pushing hands. About a 5 year process for a student under 30 or so, longer as they get older. So at the beginning, it is predominantly grappling and groundwork, but in the perspective of an overview of where the training eventually goes, the different aspects even out. At that point, it depends more on the skills and preferences of the individual practitioner what techniques they will prefer for fighting. There are also didactic, nei kung and traditional Chinese medicine curricula from the families that are studied simultaneously with martial training at intermediate and advanced levels, which are actually more complicated.
A teacher's job is to at least introduce the different aspects so that the student may eventually teach them all in their turn, even if they only specialise in one, two or three areas. That kind of introduction can take up to 20 years in traditional schools! At that point, if the instructor(s) is(are) satisfied, a student can then open their own school.
What I was taught was that the ultimate martial goal was to be able to defend ourselves effortlessly, to not get hurt, ever, by an opponent; and the ultimate health goal was to be perfectly healthy, to feel no aches, pains or disease. They also said that only one out of a thousand ever got that good, but the benefits on the way to that goal are significant enough to justify the work even for an "average" student.
Much of this isn't stuff I'd put in the article, as a lot of it is from oral transmission (the written records being more circumspect, the old-timers not wanting to "give away the store"), but I wanted to add my 2 fen towards the issue of categorisation. It's a tough one. Wu Chien-ch'uan said: "Scientific principles could apply to every aspect of T'ai Chi Ch'uan skills. That being said, the ways that empty and full transform are truly unfathomable." --Fire Star 火星 21:16, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
Note that a suggested replacement for this template (addressing categorisation) is being discusses on Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Martial_Arts#Navbox_revision if you want to add your opinions on a wider basis. -- Medains 08:30, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

superflous languages

Why should their be translations into Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese in the infobox? There aren't translations for other non-originating countries, and tai chi isn't a unique part of the aforementioned countries culture's. VanTucky 01:22, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

I don't know about Korea, but I know tcc is popular in Japan and, surprisingly, Vietnam (which has a large overseas Chinese population). Whether that is enough of a reason to have the info in, I don't know. It's interesting, I guess. --Fire Star 火星 02:20, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
I guess it just seems like the transliterations should be there bc that is the original usage of the word. And as no cites on numbers of tai chi players can be found by country, it is pretty debatable about how popular tai chi may be in some country. It may be that taiji is just as popular in say, the UK or Malaysia, as Vietnam. I think that the other languages are included bc they happen to be Asian, which is sheer ignorance. VanTucky 02:24, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
I don't have any cites, but coincidentally I'd agree from my own original research the UK and Malaysia have more. Vietnam is a former Qing colony, so it kind of makes sense. There was a thing where 1,000 Japanese in identical silk outfits demonstrated a wushu Yang form in Tiananmen a few years back. I'll see if I can find a link to that... --Fire Star 火星 03:01, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Whoa whoa, I'm not saying taiji isnt certifiably popular in those countries, I'm just saying that there isn't a translated name for taiji from all of the countries it is popular in, so that is clearly not the qualification for inclusion, nor should it be. It seems more to have to do with regional association of origin. But we all know taiji isn't a Japanese or Vietnamese martial art. So why do we need them translated in the English Wikipedia's infobox? Isn't that the purview of the Japanese and Vietnamese wikis? VanTucky 06:52, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
We don't currently have (or probably need) sections like Tai chi in Europe, Tai chi in Canada, Tai chi in Japan, etc., which is a logical place for that kind of info to go (if we want it) anyway. Bradford44's suggestion is good, IMO. --Fire Star 火星 14:01, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Instead of the boxes that are there now, why don't you use {{infobox martial art}} for the right-hand corner, and use {{zh-tspw}} inline with the beginning of the article as recommended by WP:MOS-ZH#Combination Templates? (See Xingyiquan for an example where this was implemented) Bradford44 13:35, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
I would go for that for consistency with other MA articles. --Fire Star 火星 14:01, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Good suggestion Bradford, I'll implement it (if someone didnt already). Thanks for batting this about with me FireStar. VanTucky 14:16, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

New version

I'm fine with that, but just FYI: we're probably going to get grumbling about unequivocally attributing the creation to Chen Wangting. It may be better to say: Disputed. And possibly include both Wangting and Zhang San Feng. VanTucky 17:55, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

That's fine, I changed to "disputed". One of you guys with tai chi experience or knowledgable about the history should fill in the fields for "parenthood" and "notable practioners" if possible. Bradford44 18:03, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

I filled in parenthood, but there are too many famous prac's to mention. Also, does "hardness" refer to difficulty or to hard and soft styles? VanTucky 18:12, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Actually (and don't blame me, I didn't make the template), "hardness" apparently refers to the hardness of competition,. so I always fill it in with "full-contact", "light-contact", "no-contact", "forms competition only", or "non-competitive". Bradford44 19:10, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Would it be possible to put pushing hands in in place of the light contact bit? Also, I've competed in sanshou and leitai tournaments when I was younger with only a tcc background. Striking, kicking, knees, elbows, throws. This is fairly common for Wu stylists in SE Asia. I'm pretty sure there are Chen guys who compete too, esp. in Taiwan by my recollections. Do you think that could (or should) be included? I'll go over some tournament results online to see if I can find any mention of tcc people competing this way. --Fire Star 火星 02:07, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
leitai and sanshou (especially under modern wushu governance) are separate practices/courses of study than taiji. It is so rare in taiji study (in Asia and beyond) for students to practice full-contact fighting as to be completely negligible in a functioning definition. Besides, people participating in leitai and sanshou are simply utilizing taiji, they aren't practicing taiji. And restrained contact push hands is the norm for taiji tournaments the world over. To include a full-contact note in the infobox on a resource on taiji for those who don't know it already would be sorely misleading. VanTucky 02:14, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for your input. Unfortunately, I'll have to agree that the overwhelming majority of schools have zero experience with full contact. I found this [2] that lists Eddie Wu as chairman of the Canadian wushu association, which oversees "Asian Games" style sanshou in Canada and in whose tournaments I have competed (I'm not his student, however, I learned from one of his uncles and his uncle's students). I don't think it is explicit enough for what I had in mind, though. --Fire Star 火星 14:34, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
Dan Docherty fought using TCC in tournaments in 1976 and 1980 at least. He refers to it as "South East Asian Martial Arts Championships", the 1980 competition held in Malaysia - where he took the Super Heavyweight title after beating Roy Pink (a five ancestors stylist) - by KO - and Mr (first name not supplied) Lohandran (Chi Ke Chuan) on points. ref: (apparently published in "Fighting Arts International"). I've not been able to research either the original article or the tournament claim - though I once saw a video claiming to be of Dan knocking out Roy -- Medains (talk) 13:51, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

health benefits

WTF? I personally placed a NY Times citation to the last paragraph, and now it's gone with a fact tag on it. VanTucky 18:11, 30 June 2007 (UTC)

The current link (this one) is very much a product advert interspersed with references. Finding these references and linking directly would be useful. I've done one, Article in The Lancet, requires free registration.

"See also" section

Hi, just wanted to mention that the "See also" section could use some trimming, as it should not include terms appearing in the body of the article. See WP:GTL#See also. Bradford44 12:40, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

P.S. And as long as I'm here, I'd also like to mention that I haven't seen any arguments in a while, so perhaps the "controversial topic" tag at the top of this talk page can come down now. Bradford44 12:41, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

Agreed on both points. VanTucky (talk) 15:27, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

Is there a cult-element to this.

We have seen Christianity often manipulated towards that of a cult, by individuals with a hidden manipulative agenda.

Is there anything to suggest a 'hidden agenda' within the Tai Chi movement in North America ?

--Caesar J. B. Squitti : Son of Maryann Rosso and Arthur Natale Squitti 17:08, 11 August 2007 (UTC)

This is my opinion, and doesn't have much to do with the article, so if you want to discuss after this we should take it to my talk page. The tai chi movement, like Christianity or professional wrestling or theoretical physics, in North America or anywhere else, isn't a unified thing. So there are would-be cult leaders, and there are reputable teachers. Caveat emptor. The traditional schools focus on technical physical training, not spiritual speculation; New Age non-martial schools tend to get into abstract philosophising in aid of personality driven "teaching" that easily leads to manipulation. The teachers whom I learned from taught that correctly studied, tai chi chuan is like water. It benefits everyone equally, regardless of their religious denomination. If there is a crossover into spiritual training, it would be that anything a person does to improve their health, their relaxation and their ability to focus will assist them in their devotional activities, whatever those activities may be. Tai chi chuan is a martial art. Everything should tie directly into learning self-defense, if it doesn't, the teacher is teaching something else. --Fire Star 火星 18:39, 11 August 2007 (UTC)

Tai-Chi and Chi-Gong

What is the actual difference between the two in terms of health benefits? For if we only talk about health, Tai-Chi seems like another form of Chi-Gong. Also, both Tai-Chi and Chi-Gong are used by martial artists to improve their abilities. In that sense they both seem like the backbone of many martial arts styles. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

While there is a great deal of overlap, traditional Tai Chi Chuan (Taijiquan) is more work, with greater demands and much larger repetitive range of motion than stand alone chi kung (qigong) forms or styles. Chi kung is a part of Tai Chi Chuan, but Tai Chi Chuan isn't a part of chi kung, which is to say, Tai Chi schools have historically done their own chi kung, but chi kung schools don't also do traditional Tai Chi. The martial requirements, if met, can also protect one's health against a physical attack, which is another benefit beyond that of a stand alone chi kung school. --Bradeos Graphon 15:53, 10 October 2007 (UTC)
How about their suitability as health systems? Would Chi-Gong be the one people train mainly for greater health benefits? Btw I have seen Chi-Gong styles in motion that require just as much dedication as any Tai-Chi form. I did some Chi-Gong that accompagnies the Choy-Lee Fut school. There were an external (18 Lohan) and internal form that were truly exhausting, much to my surprise. In many ways they resembled Tai-Chi. Then again, there was a separate third Tai-Chi form ... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:36, 11 October 2007 (UTC)
I've trained in China off and on since 1993, in Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei, Wu Tang and Hong Kong, and have never seen a chi kung system that was:
A. As complicated or demanding (in terms of balance, concentration, stamina and technical requirements of martial application) as a long traditional Tai Chi form.
B. On top of that, there are weapons forms in Tai Chi Chuan which are yet more complicated and demanding.
C. While these forms are demanding, they are not exhausting, you should have more energy after training than before.
D. Not all forms are created equal, for traditional Tai Chi, I mean the styles preserved and taught by the 5 families. The thoroughness with which traditional Tai Chi Chuan approaches health and conditioning (govt. wushu Taijiquan and New Age mix and match "facile gesturing" are a different story) is not approached by any stand alone school of chi kung for health.
F. Even if you could find a chi kung style more complicated than a long 45 minute low sitting 108 posture form, there is pushing hands in which you have someone trying to knock you down while you train to the same standard. Pushing hands is yang to the form training yin.
G. To mention pushing hands again, chi kung by itself doesn't teach self defence, and cannot help you maintain your health in the face of a physical attack. Martial chi kung coordination (which you describe) is helpful training concentration and for neutralising physical impact, but it isn't a stand alone system, it is trained as an adjunct to martial training.
With all that being said, I have to say that this discussion page is primarily for discussion of the article itself, not the art form in general. I don't mind answering a question or two, but this isn't the place for a chronic debate on the subject rather than the substance. Cheers, --Bradeos Graphon 11:24, 11 October 2007 (UTC)
NO problems and thanks for the info! I was just under the impression that Chi-Gong was the big umbrella and Tai-Chi under it, and partly the bridge that seemed to link martial arts with chi-gong, something in-between. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:51, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

Tai Chi Weapons and self-defense

I appreciate, whoever made better claims to Zhang San Feng in the article. I also agree with another person who posted here on this page, that Zhang San Feng, not "Chen" style is the original creator of Tai Chi. The article should make note of that. Also weapons and more on self-defense should be added and empathized. I am from direct Cheng Man Ching lineage. Thank You.—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Why does the infobox say no strikes?

This is curious. Traditional tai chi chuan is loaded with strike training. Is the infobox meant to just represent wushu competitions? --Bradeos Graphon (talk) 22:18, 24 November 2007 (UTC)

Tai Chi or Taiji and Tai Chi Chuan or Taijiquan?

Just wondering why most of the Chinese words in Wikipedia are written with their Pinyin Romanization system, yet the Taijiquan article is written Tai Chi Chuan? It seems to be more mainstream to spell it Tai Chi Chuan and more "in the know" the spell it Taijiquan. This linguistic turn could also shed light on the initial discussion on this page regarding fists and such. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:08, 22 January 2008 (UTC)

The issue is covered in the talk page archives linked above. --Bradeos Graphon (talk) 14:35, 22 January 2008 (UTC)

Modern Tai Chi

I do not claim to have any knowledge about Tai Chi, and I simply stumbled across this article by coincidence. I did think it should be mentioned that the section entitled "modern tai chi" seems almost like a complaint instead of fact. With quotes like, "practically anyone can call themself a teacher" and "If they do teach self-defense, it is often a mixture of motions which the teachers think look like tai chi chuan with some other system", it seems more like a disgruntled tai chi teacher complaining than facts about the art. I suggest that the paragraph be rewritten or taken out due to the overall tone of this section of the article.

Ldavis57 (talk) 20:41, 29 February 2008 (UTC)ldavis57

Consistency in transliteration

This article is not consistent in the way Chinese terms are transliterated. I started to make changes, but soon realized that I did not know the Wikipedia style well enough to do a good job, so I did not make any changes. I don't know much about t'ai chi, but I know enough Chinese to spot inconsistency. OatFarm (talk) 02:30, 30 March 2008 (UTC)


In this article, it's variously referred to as Tai Chi, tai chi, and Tai chi. Is there any reason to capitalize either or both words? Considering the meaning of the phrase -- "supreme ultimate fist" -- I see none. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Joeyharrison (talkcontribs) 21:06, 31 March 2008 (UTC)

It may be in caps (the third way) as the start of a sentence. But tai chi is not a pronoun, so it shouldn't be arbitrarily capitalized. VanTucky 21:41, 31 March 2008 (UTC)