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Chen Xin (1849-1929), student of Chen Zhongshen and author of famous "Illustrated Explanation to Chen family Taijiquan"


 
4."Rather advance than retreat, (move) lower (part of the body) first before the upper (one)". The center of gravity would rather advance than retreat; when shifting the weight lower body moves before the upper body [3].

5.Eyes Method (Yan Fa) - "Spirit (Shen) escorts front hand, the head should not sway". The Intent (Shen Yi) should be on front hand, however eyes should not be fixed on the front hand, the head should not sway following hands movement.

6.Strength Method (Jin Fa) - "Crotch shall open and be round, should not twist (Niu) or sway to the left and right horizontally (Shuan)". Bottom should relax and spread out to both sides, so that hips "wrap" (as if trying to embrace a big ball with legs), hip joint is kept tucked in (hips are folded), opening (Kai) at the rear and closing (He) at the front, so that the crotch becomes round; crotch plays the role of an axis of legs and waist, and during rotation transfers the "Silk Reeling Strength" (Chan Si Jin),

also called "Spiral Strength" (Luo Xuan Jin), which "coils" starting from toes along shin, thigh to Hui Yin Point, from the body (Ming Men Point), shoulder, upper arm, radius, ulna and coils to the tips of the fingers; when Yin and Yang transfer (i.e. the center of gravity is shifted from one leg to the other), the hips draw a rear, low arc; hips are like a tray, remember never to twist or sway them to the left and right horizontally (along straight line); both hips should draw figure "" and strength should not break, coiling (Chan) should circulate in the shape of "~" (Bei Si Kou); strength should be full, without excess or deficiency.


7.Many vertical circles, few horizontal circles - the reason to move along vertical circles is to transmit the strength (which raises from feet) from bottom upwards, all when relaxed (Song), sunk (Chen) and shifting (the weight) in circular way (Yuan Zhuan). Besides, it is easier to maintain stability when moving along vertical circles. For this reason Small Frame in movement uses mainly vertical or almost vertical circles.

8.Many full circles, few arcs - the reason for using full circles is to make strength paths (Jin Lu) complete, to reduce unnecessary, repeated "Storing of Strength" (Xu Jin), to achieve continuity of neutralizing (Hua) and striking (Da), and launch an attack with speed.


TRACING THE SOURCES OF "SMALL FRAME" OF CHEN STYLE TAIJIQUAN

Before Chen Youben - 14th generation descendant of Chen clan and 6th generation inheritor of Chen style Taijiquan - there was only one method of Taijiquan practice transmitted, and there was no division into Large and Small Frames. Chen Youben was key personage who played epoch-making role in dividing Chen style Taijiquan into Large and Small Frames.

According to the records in "Genealogy of Chen Family" (Chen Shi Jia Cheng), Chen Gongzhao, Chen Youben's father "achieved pure and precise (Taijiquan) skill, and trained many students with deep understanding (of Taijiquan)" (in Chenjiagou there is a story about Chen Gongzhao competing in strength with a mad cow); Chen Youben and Chen Youheng, his blood brother, "were both Xiang Sheng (students of the ancient local school) and learnt

 

Chen Peishan, second son of Chen Lixian, lives in Japan and teaches Xiao Jia outside of China

Taijiquan, especially (Chen) Youben, who received "the dragon's pearl" (i.e. true transmission of Taijiquan), and trained his sons and brother's sons in the art (of Taijiquan), had a modest carriage, always as if (his skill) was inferior (to others), at that time most of people who excelled in Taijiquan were his disciples. (...) (Chen) Youben's disciples - Chen Qingping, Chen Youlun, Chen Fengzhang, Chen Sande, Chen Tingdong had certain achievements, Chen Gengyun also called him (Chen Youben) a teacher.

 

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