Tajiquan & Chugoku Kenpo
Some people like to divide Chinese Martial Arts into external & Internal Arts.
The only way this makes sense to me is if you use the following criteria:
If the art makes your Qi flow more deeply into your body’s tendons, ligaments and bones, then it is an Internal art. If the art makes your energy flow closer to the surface of your body and primarily into your large muscles, it is an External art.
All of the Chinese Internal Arts promote internal changes in our bodies.
Regular practice of Taijiquan and Baguazhang (just like any good Qigong), will:
- Increase our strength, flexibility, range of motion, bone density.
- Enhance the function of our immune system.
- Detoxify and improve the circulation in our lymph system.
- Improve our posture and our senses of balance and coordination.
- Increase our concentration.
My focus in the Chinese Martial Arts or Kung Fu is the Internal Arts of Taijiquan (Tai Chi) as taught by Master Chen Weigun. and Bagua as taught by Shoto Tanemura Soke.
In his Chugoku Kenpo or Chinese Fist Methods, Shoto Tanemura Soke teaches Baguazhang (Pa Kua Chang, Bagua, or Pa Kua) and its related self-defense drills from Grandmaster’s Li Zi Ming’s lineage. He learned the art from Grandmaster Li Zi Ming’s direct disciple Grandmaster Sato Kinbei.
I teach the first section of this art, which includes Qigong, the first two sets of Palm Changes (Circle Walking) and Chin Na. These are wonderful compliments to Master Chen’s Taijiquan (Tai Chi).
The physical, energetic and spiritual origins of Taiji and Bagua are the subject of long debates. However, I believe their essence is “Harmony with the Way Things Are.”
To be effective and to reach a high level of practice in either of these internal arts, you must be able to harmonize your own energy with that of your uncooperative opponent. Your Yin and Yang with that of another person’s Yin and Yang.
In order to achieve this, you must first understand and then control your own energy flows. Then, you can begin to sense and then to control your opponent’s energy. It requires mindfulness to align all of your joints properly for the action you want to perform. It requires calmness. It requires balance and harmony. It requires determination, will power and the proper instruction.
You can achieve all of this and more. All of these skills are also in High Level Ninpo and Jujutsu. They may not be emphasized as much in the Japanese Arts; but they are there and need to be mastered in order to achieve the higher levels of accomplishment in these Arts also.
Very Sincerely Yours
Gary Giamboi, Kyoshi, Shibu-Cho