Tai Chi - How long before you feel the chi?

Discussion in 'Internal Martial Arts' started by MikeGore, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. EmptyHandGuy

    EmptyHandGuy Valued Member

    Steve Rowe posted this on FB and thought it might be of interest:

    Saturday morning and a few minutes before private lessons. A couple of people have referenced 'ki' and 'chi' so I thought I'd talk a little about it. The calligraphy is of steam coming off a rice pot and the translation is 'air', therefore it is that which sustains life', I have interviewed many oriental MA masters on the subject and they all couldn't understand how westerners could see something so natural as 'mystical'. I think the perfect translation for westerners is 'animation' as to animate we need to breathe deeply to get more air into the lungs to get more oxygen to the brain to make the mind aware. To breathe deeply we need good posture. To continue the 'animation' we need that aware mind to be focused, sensitive and intense. That aware, focused, sensitive and intense mind then needs to permeate and 'animate' the body, so we have good blood, air and neurological flow, put into an aligned and well trained body, we are is now fully 'alive'. When our ki (animation) in all these different aspects is in harmony we have 'kiai' when we can do this on a continuous basis we have 'aiki'. Most MA's reference this process and it often shows up in their names and logo's Aikido is the way of becoming a person of aiki, Wado is the way of harmonising mind and body into a peaceful state, Goju is balancing the hard and soft to achieve this state, Tai Chi is the supreme state achieved through this process and so on. It is simple to understand, not easy to achieve, the 'magic' is simple biological science and if you want to disrupt someone's 'chi' you disrupt air, blood or neurological flow, posture or mental focus. So where you read 'chi' or 'ki' just translate as 'animation' and you won't have the endless arguments that are rife on t'internet.
  2. nefariusmdk

    nefariusmdk Valued Member

    As far as objectivity goes, the first thing that came to my mind was Fight Science's analysis on the Iron Shirt technique.

    But here's a much more thorough article. It was an analysis of chi by both western and TCM doctors using heat sensor imaging:


    NYU Langone Medical describes the shortcomings of placebo-based testing:


    Personally I've heard all sides of the story. Fake kiai masters, scientific doubters, scientific observers, esoteric healers, christian healers, tele-evangelists... and Reiki healers.

    I think the first step to understanding chi is understanding it from a practical point of view. Master Po describes it best as breath, or air. Humans can last weeks without food. They can last 2 days without water. But humans can barely last a few minutes without air. By optimizing how you can control your breathing, you can do extraordinary things: run faster, sing better, hold it underwater longer. Controlling your breath through meditation is the first and most important step.
  3. David Harrison

    David Harrison MAPper without portfolio

  4. cloudz

    cloudz Valued Member

    Without getting into all the semantics of it, the point I wanted to make was that it's not something you can deny from the tradition of TCC training.

    It has or certainly had *something* to do with it. Personally I use a modern definition that fits with my practice experience and gives it meaning and is useful to me. I suggest that understanding the role of "qi" in ones practice is preferable to outright denial. Just my opinion, others may want to throw it out with the bathwater, but denying its traditional role is somewhat misleading however 'arguable' people may find that role today..

    It's something of a shame, because it (in the context of tcc practice) can be as simplistic as kinetic energy and a kinaesthetic feeling and awareness of it, most importantly combined with the role of the breath in 'exerting' or starting movement from the centre/ dan tien to the periphery; hands and feet. Let's just say I find it a sound place to start. Others mileage may vary of course.
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2014
  5. Avenger

    Avenger Banned Banned

    Everyone has chi, if you mind can led it, changes in the body happen, just like in your video, what did you do different from first to second attempt, you changed in your mind, which changed your body, usually what you did is called dropping the chi or sinking the chi, if your mind just froze like attempt one, your body is stiff and your chi is high in body, on the other hand , It is hard to lift something if it is soft, the points of contact move which don't help the linking up process.

    This is used often in all arts, the better you can control it, the more options you will have to use it efficiently. Being aware of reasons things happen is needed.

    Most styles seem to practice routines over and over, which usually led to situations that never happen unless demoed by you do this first, so I know what your going to do so I can do what I practiced for that, does not work that way, you need the basics which are never attained, taught or practiced by systems that adopt these technique based systems of chance that are interested more in making money.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2015
  6. Hannibal

    Hannibal Cry HAVOC and let slip the Dogs of War!!! Supporter

    Oh dear.....
  7. embra

    embra Valued Member

    Why are folk so excited about this?

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