Tai Chi is kung fu and kung fu is life. To some long term students I will mention how they can rig up simple contraptions at home to enhance their training. The very last time I did this was when I went to Art Friend in Clementi with a student and he left lugging some art accessories home.
However, to have a student inform me of how training at home can be enhanced is more interesting. So it is with excitement that I heard what my student used and the image below popped to mind :-
Ah, trust a lady to use an ironing board for Tai Chi training. But before you snicker I should tell you that it is a very smart idea. She explained how it helped her feel what she was doing.
It is a good idea though it is not really a new idea. Anyone remember the four pictures on page 72, TaijiKinesis Vol 1 specifically the third picture from the top?
Yes, the third picture from the top is that of Grandmaster Xu who taught Master Leong the Tai Chi Ruler system. In the picture Grandmaster Xu is demonstrating a method of practicing fajing. Below is part of the picture :-
The wooden board contraption is known as Leaning Board and it is also found in at least one other northern style of Chinese martial art. Do you see the connection between what my student spoke of in terms of using the ironing board? That’s right, she was not talking about the ironing board that is positioned for ironing but rather an ironing board in upright, folded position as shown below :-
There are many ways to Master Tai Chi Today. If you are inspired to use an ironing board so be it. Any apparatus is fine as long as it helps you to gain an understanding. By the way, did I tell you about the relationship between ironing clothes, scrubbing the floor and deflecting your opponent’s bridge arm?
Well, maybe a story for another time. If you can’t wait for it try doing some ironing and get down on your knees to do actual cleaning and you should be able to find out. If not, do it a few more times. Even if you don’t find the answer for guys I would say that at least your wives would thank you and appreciate you learning Tai Chi.
Want to learn Tai Chi in Singapore? At Singapore Tai Chi Yang Style (TaijiKinesis) lessons covering forms, weaponry, push hands, fajing and applications are offered. Lessons are conducted in English. Send enquiry today