Tàijí Qìgōng


Shíbā Shì

The Chinese philosophical concept of Tàijí ( 太極 ), also spelled Tai Chi, is a condition arising from Wuji ( 無極 meaning Primordial Limitlessness) which gives rise to the dichotomy of Yang and Yin. It can therefore best be translated into English as the Supreme Ultimate, as it embodies all potential. Furthermore, Qìgōng ( 氣功 ) means the meritorious accomplishment (Gong) of Vital Energy (Qi, also known as the Life Force). Thirdly, Shíbā Shì ( 十八式 ) means Eighteen Forms. In the video embedded below (recorded on 25 September 2023), budoka Johan Oldenkamp performs the first set (第一套 Dì Yī Tào) of these 18 forms of Taiji Qigong. To keep the length of this video as short as possible, he performed these eighteen forms considerably faster (and each form only four times). Furthermore, he prefers to perform Form #14 (Extended Arm Punch) with open hands, not clenched fists.

These 18 forms are:

  1. 起勢調息 – (Breath Control) – Commencing Form : Activating the Chi

  2. 開闊胸懷 – Opening the Heart

  3. 揮舞彩虹 – (Waving the Rainbow) – Painting an Energy Arc around the Crown

  4. 輪臂分雲 – Dividing the Clouds with Arm Wheels

  5. 定步倒卷肱 – Repulsing the Monkey : Reverse Reeling Forearm

  6. 湖心划船 – Rowing the Boat in the Middle of the Lake

  7. 肩前 – Shoulder Ball : Raising the Palm diagonally in front of the other Shoulder

  8. 轉體望月 – Turning and Gazing at the Moon

  9. 轉腰推掌 – Turn the Waist and Pushing the Palms

  10. 馬步雲手 – Brush the Clouds from the Sky

  11. 撈海觀天 – Scooping up the Ocean and Looking at the Sky

  12. 推波助浪 – Helping the Waves

  13. 白鴿展翅 – White Dove Spreading its Wings

  14. 伸臂沖拳 – (Extended Arm Punch) – Forward (Open-Hand) Thrusting

  15. 大雁飛翔 – Wild Geese Flying

  16. 環轉飛輪 – Rotating Flywheel

  17. 踏步拍球 – (Step to Shoot the Ball) – Bouncing the Ball : Simultaneously lifting Hand with other Knee

  18. 按掌平氣 – (Calming down by Pressing the Palms) – Balancing and Storing the Chi

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