The First Section is the place to begin. The First Section classes teach the first half of the Cheng Man-Ch’ing Yang-style short form, which includes foundational postures and movements. In addition, fundamental Tai Chi principles, energies, and basic application concepts are covered.
This class is typically $225 for first time students, $175 for repeat First Section students.
The Second Section classes teach the second half of the 37-posture form. The Second Section contains a similar number of postures, but many more movements than the First Section. Therefore, the Second Section is taught in two sessions, Part 1 and Part 2. Once the First Section becomes natural and familiar, you will be ready to start the Second Section.
This class is typically $115 for per section, $90 for Second Section repeat students.
Form Review offers correction and an opportunity to more deeply explore the various postures and movements in the form, and begins to introduce warm up exercises, standing meditation, and Sensing Hands. This class is varies in cost, depending on how many classes are in a session.
Sensing Hands, or tui sho, teaches the interaction of Tai Chi movement with others. Although most commonly referred to as “pushing hands”, tui sho is an exercise intended for learning, and not competition. Students will literally get “hands on” with others in order to broaden their understanding of the principles and skills of Tai Chi. Sensing Hands, done in a principled way, develops flexibility, adaptability, sensitivity, and mindfulness in an atmosphere of mutual respect and cooperation.
Weapons forms such as Jian Sword, Saber, and Cane are areas of study available only for students who demonstrate achievement in the postures and principles of Tai Chi.
The Tai Chi Chuan form is a sequence of movements that connect from one to the next, unlike most other forms of exercise or other Qigong practices. Therefore, it is important to commit to attending each class.
Similar to studying a musical instrument, Tai Chi classes are like lessons where new information is imparted, but daily practice is where progress is made.
It is important to adopt a patient and consistent attitude towards Tai Chi Chuan studies. Everyone progresses at a different rate, but consistent practice yields the best results. Many students repeat either or both Sections. It is far more critical to develop a deep foundation than to try and rise quickly through levels of study.
“Gradually, gradually.” – Professor Cheng
Click here for the current class Schedule.
Video and audio resources
- List of 37 Postures (pdf)
- Ben Lo full form demonstration (my grand-teacher)
- Ben Lo instructional video (postures repeated, in Chinese)
- First Section demonstration by Dr. Darin Henry
- Full form demonstration by Tricia Yu (CMC student)
- Various Ben Lo videos by Michael Jang on Vimeo
- Instructional audio recording for the Form by Kim Kanzelberger. An instructional audio recording for the CMC 37-posture Form by Kim Kanzelberger is available for purchase and downloading. This collection of high-quality audio tracks contains detailed instruction for each posture of the Form, plus continuous flow and standing practice narration. – contact Kim Kanzelberger for details
There Are No Secrets, by Wolfe Lowenthal, North Atlantic Books, Blue Snake Books 1993; ISBN 9781556431128 (available through Long River Tai Chi, the author’s website)
Cheng Tzu’s Thirteen Treatises on T’ai Chi Ch’uan, by Cheng Man Ch’ing, translated by Benjamin Pang Jeng Lo and Martin Inn, Blue Snake Books 1993; ISBN 9780938190455
The Essence of T’ai Chi Ch’uan: The Literary Tradition, translated and edited by Benjamin Pang Jeng Lo, Martin Inn, Robert Amacker, and Susan Foe, Blue Snake Books 1993; ISBN 9780615227771 (newer annotated edition) or 9780913028636 (available through Inner Research Institute, Martin Inn’s website)
Tao Te Ching, by Lao Tzu, translated by Stephen Mitchell, Harper Perennial Modern Classics 2006; ISBN 9780061142666
T’ai Chi Ch’uan Ta Wen: Question and Answers on T’ai Chi Ch’uan, by Chen Wei-Ming, translated by Benjamin Pan Jeng Lo and Robert W. Smith, Blue Snake Books 1993; ISBN 9780938190677
T’ai Chi Ch’uan: A Simplified Method of Calisthenics for Health and Self Defense, by Cheng Man-ch’ing, Blue Snake Books, 1993; ISBN 9780913028858
Conservator of the T’ai Chi Classics: An interview with Benjamin Pang Jeng Lo ; this article is included in Cheng Man-ch’ing and T’ai Chi: Echoes in the Hall of Happiness, Via Media Publishing Company 2015; ISBN 9781893765061 (also available as an e-book)
The Tao of Pooh, by Benjamin Hoff, EGMONT, 2019; ISBN 9781405293785