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Before going into details about Tai Chi Chuan I would like to highlight that all my knowledge about it is the result of experiences with my master. In 20 years of practice and 10 as a teacher, I still follow classes. I belong to a school of a Chinese master who is a direct descendant of one of the founders of this art
Tai Chi Chuan is a martial art and this one is defined as "Internal Style" because its practice is focused on developing internal strength. Tai Chi Chuan literally means "Tai" = Universe, "Chi" = Energy and "Chuan" = boxing, battle. One only can discover the real meaning of the discipline by combining these three elements. Some people ask me if Tai Chi and Tai Chi Chuan are the same. Well, Tai Chi does not exist as a practice as it means "Energy of the Universe" and this cannot be a human art. The "Chuan" part is compulsory as it represents the will of man to use the "Energy of the Universe" in the battle.
Practicing Tai Chi Chuan is a complete action. Its preparation consists of rapid movements with basic Kung-Fu techniques, then comes body co-ordination, followed by muscle training and finally Taoistic Gymnastics and Chi-Kung. The Tai Chi Chuan training also includes slow movements which simulate a battle in progress. Although these movements seem not to be difficult, their exact execution into perfection takes years of training. In reality when performing these movements, not only the muscles do work but also something more profound, deep inside the body. For that reason Tai Chi Chuan is called "Dynamic Meditation".
One will now understand that it is unrealistic to expect to learn Tai Chi Chuan from a book or CD. You need a master who introduces you into this ancient Chinese knowledge and who guides and supports you through hours of practice. Once you understand this you will realise that it takes a lifetime to learn the real meaning of a "simple movement of a hand".
Daniele Scilingo (616 834 002) lives on Fuerteventura and has written an autobiography in Italian about how Tai Chi Chuan changed his life.