Various Tai Chi Forms

I've been interested in tai chi for many years now and in my study of it I've collected a number of books and a few videos on the subject. In order to help out people looking for some information, I thought I'd list the postures in different forms. Descriptions of the moves will not be given because this page is not meant to teach you the forms. If you're interested in something, I have referenced the books I copied them from so try to find those books or a video of the form (I know at least some of these are on VHS and/or DVD) for more information. And of course, it's best to learn from a good teacher. I will however try to include a few notes about the forms, primarily paraphrased from the books referenced. There are probably other forms on the web, but I'm not going to list everything I can possibly find. For now, I plan to stick to the forms in books and videos I own. I've also tried to stick with what appear to be either traditional or standardized forms. I do have some other forms in my books though, so if you're looking for something in particular, feel free to write and ask. I don't have a huge tai chi library though, so I can't guarantee anything.

Oh, and before you ask, no, I cannot do all of these forms. So far, the only one I was actually taught is a Yang style long form which appears to be essentially the same as the 88 posture form listed here, but with some generally minor changes. I originally tried to teach myself the Cheng Man Ching form from a book, then the simplified 24 posture form from a combination of TV programs and books, and the 48 posture form from a video and books, but after taking real martial arts classes and learning the Yang long form, I've basically focused only on that. I might try to pick up one of the shorter forms again just to have something quick to practice when I don't feel like doing my usual long form. Since I've now had instruction in the Yang long form, picking up another form that is primarily based in it might not be so difficult. I haven't really tried yet. However, I am taking a look into learning a sword form or two -- having something new to practice may encourage me to practice more often (I have a tendency to practice on and off in phases).

Quick Links: Simplified 24 Posture Form, Competition 42 Posture Form, Combined 48 Posture Form, 88 Posture Form, Cheng Man Ching 37 Posture Form, Yang Style Competition Form, Chen Style Competition Form, Wu Style Competition Form, Sun Style Competition Form, Chen's First Lu, Chen's Second Lu, Wu/Hao Style Form, Taiji Fighting Set, Taiji Sword


The 24 Posture Form

Copied from Simplified "Taijiquan" revised edition, compiled and translated by China Sports Magazine, published by People's Sports Publishing House of China. Also in Tai Chi Chuan, 24 & 48 Postures with Martial Applications by Liang, Shou-Yu and Wu, Wen-Ching, published by YMAA Publication Center.

This apparently goes by many names including Peking/Beijing Form, Simplified Tai Chi, Chinese National 24 Form Taiji, and probably other similar names. It was developed in 1956 and is based on the most popular sequences of the Yang style, arranged in increasing difficulty. As one of Dr. Paul Lam's articles notes (I forget which and the link changed, sorry!), the four sections (my book has eight, so I guess he paired them up) are arranged very logically -- the first has gentle stretching of the limbs, the second has more stretching and turning with Grasp the Bird's Tail as the theme of the form, the third has the climax with the most difficult moves like heel kicks, and the fourth has technically difficult but less physically demanding moves and slower, winding down movements to finish. It is performed at a slow, even pace and can be completed in approximately 4-6 minutes.

Section 1

  1. Commencing Form
  2. Part Wild Horse's Mane on Both Sides
  3. White Crane Flashes Its Wings

Section 2

  1. Brush Knee on Both Sides
  2. Strum the Lute
  3. Curve Back Arms on Both Sides

Section 3

  1. Grasp the Bird's Tail -- Left Style
  2. Grasp the Bird's Tail -- Right Style

Section 4

  1. Single Whip
  2. Wave Hands Like Clouds -- Left Style
  3. Single Whip

Section 5

  1. High Pat on Horse
  2. Kick with Right Heel
  3. Strike Opponent's Ears with Both Fists
  4. Turn and Kick with Left Heel

Section 6

  1. Push Down and Stand on One Leg -- Left Style
  2. Push Down and Stand on One Leg -- Right Style

Section 7

  1. Work at Shuttles on Both Sides
  2. Needle at Sea Bottom
  3. Flash Arm

Section 8

  1. Turn to Deflect Downward, Parry and Punch
  2. Apparent Close-up
  3. Cross Hands
  4. Closing Form

The 42 Posture Competition Form

Copied from The Dao of Taijiquan, Way to Rejuvenation by Jou, Tsung Hwa, published by Tai Chi Foundation.

This form was developed in 1989 and is based on the Yang style, but also includes moves and components from the other major styles (Chen, Wu, Sun) as well as techniques from Push Hands practice. For more information about this form, try the articles by Dr. Paul Lam, Siu-Fong Evans, and Simon Watson (in two parts -- part 1 [PDF] and part 2). The first section shows technique and style by opening with Grasp the Sparrow's Tail while again gently stretching the limbs as in the 24 posture form, the second opens with the Sun style's classic Opening and Closing posture and ends with the first climax using the Chen style's Cover with Hand and Punch with Fist and Parting Wild Horse's Mane, the third starts with easier moves immediately following the first climax then more difficult movements, the fourth contains the second climax with moves like Body Thrust with Half Horse Stance, Turn Body with Full Roll Back and Hold and Punch in Crossed Squatting Stance using some easier moves to wind down and finish.

Section 1

  1. Commencing
  2. Right Grasp Sparrow's Tail
  3. Left Single Whip
  4. Lift Hand
  5. White Crane Spreads Wings
  6. Brush Knee and Step Forward (2)
  7. Sidle and Punch
  8. Roll-back and Press Posture
  9. Step Forward, Deflect Downward, Intercept and Punch
  10. Withdraw and Push

Section 2

  1. Open and Close Hands
  2. Right Single Whip
  3. Fist Under Elbow
  4. Turn Body and Push (2)
  5. Fair Lady Works at Shuttles (2)
  6. Right and Left Heel Kicks
  7. Hidden Hand Upper Arm Rolls Punch
  8. Mustang Ruffles Its Mane (2)

Section 3

  1. Cloud Hands (3)
  2. Stand Up and Hit Tiger
  3. Separate Right Foot
  4. Strike Ears with Both Hands
  5. Separate Left Foot
  6. Turn Around and Tap Right Foot
  7. Step Up and Punch Downward
  8. Diagonal Flying Posture
  9. Single Whip Downward Posture
  10. Golden Pheasant Stands with One Leg (2)
  11. Withdraw Step and Thrust Left Palm

Section 4

  1. Empty Step and Pressing Palm
  2. Lift Right Leg and Right Palm Up
  3. Left Shoulder Strike with Horse Stance
  4. Turn Body and Strike with Hand
  5. Capture and Punch in an Empty Step
  6. Thrust Palm and Sweep Down
  7. Step Up to Form the Seven Stars of the Dipper
  8. Step Back to Ride the Tiger
  9. Turn Around and Sweep Lotus with One Leg
  10. Shoot Tiger with Bow
  11. Left Grasp Sparrow's Tail
  12. Cross Hands
  13. Conclusion of the Form

The (Combined) 48 Posture Form

Copied from Taiji Boxing in 48 Forms, by China Sports, published by Hai Feng Publishing Company. Also in Tai Chi Chuan, 24 & 48 Postures with Martial Applications by Liang, Shou-Yu and Wu, Wen-Ching, published by YMAA Publication Center.

This form was developed in 1976 and is based on the Yang style, but also includes moves and components from the other major styles (Chen, Wu, Sun) as well as techniques from Push Hands practice. Generally peformed slowly in the usual Yang style, some moves are performed quickly. The first section stresses basic hand and foot movements particularly in Stroke and Push, the second involves flexible changes in movements of body and legs with Turn to Push Palms as the focus, the third has the first climax with many rises and falls and body turns with Pat Foot to Subdue the Tiger as the focus, the fourth centers around Kick with Right Heel, the fifth focuses on Work at Shuttles on Both Sides, both of the last two moves requiring balance, suppleness, and coordination, the sixth contains the second climax and a great variety of hand forms, stances, and body movements focusing on the two forms of Turn Body with Big Strokes and Turn Body for a Lotus Leg Swing. It is a development of the simplified 24 posture form and retains all the movments of that form (some with slight modifications) while maintaining a good balance between left and right style postures. The form can be completed in approximately 8-10 minutes.

Section 1

  1. The White Crane Flashes Its Wings
  2. Brush Knee and Twist Step on Left
  3. Single Whip -- Left Style
  4. Hand Strums the Lute -- Left Style
  5. Stroke and Push
  6. Turn to Strike, Parry and Punch -- Left Style
  7. Fend Off, Stroke, Push and Press -- Left Style

Section 2

  1. Lean Obliquely
  2. Punch Under Elbow
  3. Step Back and Whirl Arms on Both Sides
  4. Turn in Push Palms
  5. Hand Strums the Lute -- Right Style
  6. Brush Knee and Punch Downward

Section 3

  1. The White Snake Puts Out Its Tongue
  2. Pat Foot to Subdue the Tiger
  3. Turn to Left to Strike
  4. Thread Palm on Crouch Step
  5. Fend Off on One Leg
  6. Single Whip -- Right Style

Section 4

  1. Wave Hands Like Clouds -- Right Style
  2. Part the Horse's Mand on Both Sides
  3. High Pat on Horse
  4. Kick with Right Heel
  5. Strike Opponent's Ears with Both Fists
  6. Kick with Left Heel
  7. Strike with Hidden Fist
  8. Needle at Sea Bottom
  9. Flash the Arm

Section 5

  1. Kick with Right and Left Feet
  2. Brush Knee on Left and Right Bow Steps
  3. Step Forward to Strike
  4. Apparent Close-Up
  5. Wave Hands Like Clouds -- Left Style
  6. Turn to the Right to Strike
  7. Work at Shuttles on Both Sides
  8. Step Back and Thread Palm

Section 6

  1. Press Down Palms on Empty Step
  2. Stand on One Leg and Hold Out Palm
  3. Push Forearm on Horse-riding Step
  4. Turn Body with Big Strokes
  5. Swing Palm on Crouch Step
  6. Step Forward to Cross Fists
  7. Stand on One Leg to Mount the Tiger
  8. Turn Body for a Lotus Leg Swing
  9. Draw a Bow to Shoot the Tiger
  10. Turn to Strike, Parry and Punch -- Right Style
  11. Fend Off, Stroke, Push and Press -- Right Style
  12. Cross Hands

The 88 Posture Form

Copied from Taijiquan in 88 Forms revised edition, Chinese Kung-Fu Series 2, compiled by Victor Wu, translated by Huang Jun, published by Hai Feng Publishing Company.

Apparently this is a standardized version of the traditional Yang style long form. Other books I own contain essentially the same form: The Dao of Taijiquan by Jou, Tsung Hwa and Taijiquan, Classical Yang Style by Yang, Jwing-Ming. It seems that it's essentially just the grouping of postures that changes the number of them in the form. The form I learned in classes is slightly different, but is also essentially the same. This form can be completed in approximately 20 minutes.

Section 1

  1. Pre-Opening Stance
  2. Opening Form
  3. Grasp Peacock's Tail
  4. Single Whip
  5. Raise Hands
  6. White Crane Spreading Wings
  7. Brush Knee and Twist Step -- Left
  8. Hands Strumming the Lute
  9. Brush Knee and Twist Step -- Left and Right
  10. Hands Strumming the Lute
  11. Step Up, Parry, and Punch
  12. Apparent Close-Up
  13. Cross Hands
  14. Return to Mountain with Tiger

Section 2

  1. Obliquely Grasp Peacock's Tail
  2. Fist Under Elbow
  3. Slip Back Forearm -- Left and Right
  4. Oblique Flying
  5. Raise Hands
  6. White Crane Spreading Wings
  7. Brush Knee and Twist Step
  8. Needle at Sea Bottom
  9. Flash Out Arms
  10. Turn, Sidle, and Punch
  11. Step Up, Parry, and Punch
  12. Step Up and Grasp Peacock's Tail
  13. Single Whip
  14. Wave Hands Like Clouds
  15. Single Whip
  16. High Pat on Horse
  17. Right Kick
  18. Left Kick
  19. Turn and Left Kick
  20. Brush Knee and Twist Step
  21. Step Up and Punch Down
  22. White Snake Showing Tongue
  23. Step Up, Parry, and Punch
  24. Kick with Right Heel
  25. Sidle Left to Tame Tiger
  26. Sidle Right to Tame Tiger
  27. About Turn and Kick with Right Heel
  28. Strike Opponent's Ears with Both Fists
  29. Kick with Left Heel
  30. Turn and Kick with Right Heel
  31. Step Up, Parry, and Punch
  32. Apparent Close-Up
  33. Cross Hands
  34. Return to Mountain with Tiger

Section 3

  1. Obliquely Grasp Peacock's Tail
  2. Side-Step Single Whip
  3. Parting Wild Horse's Mane -- Left and Right
  4. Step Up and Grasp Peacock's Tail
  5. Single Whip
  6. Working at Shuttles (at 4 Angles)
  7. Step Up and Grasp Peacock's Tail
  8. Single Whip
  9. Wave Hands Like Moving Clouds
  10. Single Whip
  11. Sweep Down
  12. Golden Cock on One Leg -- Left and Right
  13. Slip Back Arm -- Left and Right
  14. Oblique Flying
  15. Raise Hands
  16. White Crane Spreading Wings
  17. Brush Knee and Twist Step -- Left
  18. Needle at Sea Bottom
  19. Flash Out Arms
  20. Turn, Sidle, and Punch
  21. Step Up, Parry, and Punch
  22. Step Up and Grasp Peacock's Tail
  23. Single Whip
  24. Wave Hands Like Moving Clouds
  25. Single Whip
  26. High Pat on Horse
  27. Cross Palms (Back to Back) -- Left
  28. Turn, Cross Hands, and Kick
  29. Brush Knee and Punch
  30. Step Up and Grasp Peacock's Tail
  31. Single Whip
  32. Sweep Down
  33. Step Up to Form Seven Stars
  34. Retreat to Mount Tiger
  35. Turn and Swing up Lotus-Leg
  36. Archer Shooting Tiger
  37. Step Up, Parry, and Punch
  38. Apparent Close-Up
  39. Cross Hands
  40. Closing Form

Cheng Man Ching's 37 Posture Form

First source: The Complete Book of T'ai Chi by Stewart McFarland, consultant Tan Mew Hong, published by DK Publishing (I own this book.)
Second source: T'Ai-Chi: The Supreme Ultimate Exercise for Health by Cheng Man-ch'ing and Robert W. Smith (I do not own this book.)

Cheng Man Ching created this form from the original Yang long form, simplifying the form and modifying the dynamics and skills involved. The book I own doesn't number the postures, so I wasn't sure how to get 37 (the typical number) from the list. While searching for information, I found the second source at Amazon.com where I could look inside it and view the table of contents. It gives all the postures and numbers them, so I've adjusted the form list here to match the numbering scheme from this second book (which I don't own). Given that the creator of the form is one of the authors of the book, I think it's a pretty reliable source. But what's different about the numbering scheme here is that only unique postures are numbered, repetitions of previous moves are not. That's probably what caused my confusion before, but hopefully things will make sense when you look at the form list.

Footnotes:
[1]: quoting the book I own, "Turn the Body, and Lower the Hands may have been added to Master Cheng's original form to facilitate a difficult change of postures from the Push stance to the various Single Whip sequences." My book (first source) lists it as a posture in the form, but the other book (second source) that I'm using to group and number the postures doesn't. So I've left it in where my book has it, but not given it a number in the form.

[2]: This Ward-off is not listed in the second source, but since I don't own it, I don't know for sure if it's not included or just combined with an adjacent move.

[3]: In the book I own (first source), this Single Whip is listed under the Descending/Squatting Single Whip posture, basically as a sort precede to it.

[4]: In the book I own (first source), this Brush (Right) Knee, Twist Step is listed under the previous Brush Knee, Twist Step, basically as a follow to it.

Yang Style Taijiquan Competition Routine

Copied from Competition Routines for Four Styles Taijiquan, translated by Xie Shoude, published by People's Sports Publishing House.

This form is mainly based on Yang Chengfu's writings, but has some minor modifications. The Pat Foot movement is new and the form's difficulty is increased for example in Kick with Heel and Kick to Both Sides where the foot must be higher than the waist. The routine is "reasonably arranged according to practical needs of attack and defense, while bringing out the soft, flowing style characteristic of the Yang school."

As with the other three standardized competition routines, this form was based on traditional routines and meant to retain traditional characteristic features while having a higher degree of difficulty in technical execution suitable for sport and competition. The movements are also "more reasonably arranged and structured", including more symmetrical movements rather than the traditional emphasis on one side of the body.

Section 1

  1. Commencing Form
  2. Grasp the Peacock's Tail
  3. Single Whip
  4. Raise Hands and Step Up
  5. The White Crane Spreads Its Wings
  6. Brush Knee and Twist Step
  7. Hand Strums the Lute
  8. Parry and Punch
  9. Apparent Close-Up

Section 2

  1. Oblique Flying
  2. Punch Under Elbow
  3. Step Back and Whirl Arms
  4. Work at Shuttle on Both Sides
  5. Part the Horse's Mane on Both Sides

Section 3

  1. Wave Hands Like Clouds
  2. Single Whip
  3. Pat High on the Horse
  4. Kick with Right Heel
  5. Strike Opponent's Ears with Both Fists
  6. Separate with Left Foot
  7. Turn Body and Kick with Heel
  8. Needle at the Bottom of the Sea
  9. Push Through the Back

Section 4

  1. White Snake Spits Its Tongue
  2. Slap Right Foot
  3. Tame Tiger on Both Sides
  4. Push Down -- Right Style
  5. Stand on One Leg -- on Both Sides
  6. Strike Groin with Fist
  7. Grasp the Peacock's Tail
  8. Single Whip
  9. Push Down -- Left Style
  10. Step Forward with Seven-Star
  11. Step Backward and Straddle Tiger
  12. Turn Body and Lotus Kick
  13. Curved Bow Shoots Tiger
  14. Parry and Punch
  15. Apparent Close-Up
  16. Cross Hands
  17. Closing Form

Chen Style Taijiquan Competition Routine

Copied from Competition Routines for Four Styles Taijiquan, translated by Xie Shoude, published by People's Sports Publishing House.

This form is "a merger of the traditional Routine No. I and No. II of this style." Symmetry of the major moves is emphasized, for example The Buddha's Warrior Attendent Pounds Rice in a Mortar, Single Whip, Cover Hands and Strike with Arm, and Firing in Rapid Succession are all done on both sides "to promote a balanced development of the body. The whole routine consists of circular, rhythmically paced, outwardly gentle, but inwardly strong movements as are the charcteristic of the Chen style."

As with the other three standardized competition routines, this form was based on traditional routines and meant to retain traditional characteristic features while having a higher degree of difficulty in technical execution suitable for sport and competition. The movements are also "more reasonably arranged and structured", including more symmetrical movements rather than the traditional emphasis on one side of the body.

Section 1

  1. Commencing Form
  2. Buddha's Warrior Attendant Pounds Mortar -- Right Style
  3. Tuck in Robes
  4. Six Sealings and Four Closings -- Right Style
  5. Single Whip -- Left Style
  6. Parry and Punch with Elbows
  7. Protect Heart with Fists
  8. White Crane Spreads Its Wings
  9. Walk Obliquely and Twist Step
  10. Lift Knee, Push and Press Palms
  11. Wade Forward and Twist Step
  12. Cover Hands and Strike with Arm -- Left Style
  13. Parry with Fist
  14. Lean and Break with Back
  15. Black Dragon Rises from the Water
  16. Slice with Palm
  17. Turn and Press with Palms
  18. Turn Flowers Out from the Bottom of the Sea
  19. Cover Hands and Strike with Arm -- Right Style
  20. Six Sealings and Four Closings
  21. Single Whip -- Right Style

Section 2

  1. Wave Hands Like Clouds (rightward)
  2. Wave Hands Like Clouds (leftward)
  3. Pat High on the Horse
  4. Combined Cannons -- Right Style
  5. Combined Cannons -- Left Style
  6. Deflect Through the Back

Section 3

  1. Strike Groin with Fist
  2. White Ape Presents Fruit
  3. Push with Both Hands
  4. Middle Winding
  5. Forward Trick
  6. Backward Trick
  7. Part the Wild Horse's Mane -- Right Style
  8. Part the Wild Horse's Mane -- Left Style
  9. Lotus Kick and Drop into the Splits
  10. Golden Cock Stands on One Leg -- on Both Sides

Section 4

  1. Step Backward and Whirl Arms
  2. Step Backward and Press Elbow
  3. Slap Foot
  4. Kick with Outer Edge of Foot
  5. Turn Flower Out from the Bottom of the Sea
  6. Punch Ground with Fist
  7. Turn Body and Front Jump Kick
  8. Stamp with Both Feet
  9. Kick with Heel
  10. Fair Lady Works at the Shuttle
  11. Smooth Elbowing
  12. Wrap Firecrackers
  13. Dragon Dives to the Ground
  14. Step Forward with Seven-Star
  15. Step Backward and Straddle the Tiger
  16. Turn Body and Lotus Kick
  17. Strike Face Like Cannon
  18. Buddha's Warrior Attendant Pounds Mortar -- Left Style
  19. Closing Form

Wu Style Taijiquan Competition Routine

Copied from Competition Routines for Four Styles Taijiquan, translated by Xie Shoude, published by People's Sports Publishing House.

This form is primarily based on forms created by Wu Jianquan who founded the style while incorporating strong points from the exercises developed by Wang Maozhai and other well-known exponents. A characteristic is "well-knit, lithe movements."

As with the other three standardized competition routines, this form was based on traditional routines and meant to retain traditional characteristic features while having a higher degree of difficulty in technical execution suitable for sport and competition. The movements are also "more reasonably arranged and structured", including more symmetrical movements rather than the traditional emphasis on one side of the body.

Section 1

  1. Commencing Form
  2. Grasp the Peacock's Tail -- Right Style
  3. Single Whip -- Left Style
  4. Step Up and Raise Hand
  5. The White Crane Flashes Its Wings
  6. Brush Knee and Twist Step on Both Sides
  7. Hand Strums the Lute
  8. Step Forward, Parry and Punch
  9. Apparent Close-Up
  10. Cross Hands
  11. Grasp the Peacock's Tail -- Left Style
  12. Single Whip -- Right Style
  13. Push Down -- Right Style
  14. Golden Cock Stands on One Leg

Section 2

  1. Step Back and Whirl Arms on Both Sides
  2. Needle at the Bottom of the Sea -- Right Style
  3. Flash the Arm -- Left Style
  4. Turn Body and Throw Fist
  5. Punch Fist Under the Elbow
  6. Part the Wild Horse's Mane on Both Sides
  7. Fair Lady Works and the Shuttle

Section 3

  1. Wave Hands Like Clouds -- Left Style
  2. Pat High on the Horse -- Right Style
  3. Kick with Toes of Right Foot
  4. Kick with Toes of Left Foot
  5. Strike the Tiger on Both Sides
  6. Kick with Right Heel
  7. Strike Opponent's Ears with Both Fists
  8. Oblique Flying
  9. Push Palm in Bow Step -- Right Style

Section 4

  1. Slap Crossed-Kick
  2. Brush Knee and Punch Down
  3. Needle at the Bottom of the Sea -- Left Style
  4. Flash the Arm -- Right Style
  5. Wave Hands Like Clouds -- Right Style
  6. Pat High on the Horse -- Left Style
  7. Turn Body Back and Strike Groin with Fist
  8. Push Down -- Left Style
  9. Step Forward with Seven-Star
  10. Step Backward and Straddle the Tiger
  11. Push Palm in Bow Step -- Left Style
  12. Turn Body and Lotus Kick
  13. Curved Bow Shoots Tiger
  14. Step Backward, Parry and Punch
  15. Closing Form

Sun Style Taijiquan Competition Routine

Copied from Competition Routines for Four Styles Taijiquan, translated by Xie Shoude, published by People's Sports Publishing House.

"The Sun-style routine is characterized by quick, nimble movements, good coordination between the opening and closing of the arms, rigorous method of performance, graceful bearing."

As with the other three standardized competition routines, this form was based on traditional routines and meant to retain traditional characteristic features while having a higher degree of difficulty in technical execution suitable for sport and competition. The movements are also "more reasonably arranged and structured", including more symmetrical movements rather than the traditional emphasis on one side of the body.

Section 1

  1. Ready Position
  2. Tuck in Robes
  3. Open Hands
  4. Close Hands
  5. Single Whip
  6. Raise Hand
  7. The White Crane Flashes Its Wings
  8. Open Hands
  9. Close Hands
  10. Brush Knee and Twist Step on the Left Side
  11. Hand Strums the Lute
  12. Step Up, Parry and Punch
  13. Apparent Close-Up
  14. Embrace Tiger and Push Mountain
  15. Open Hands (Turn to the Right)
  16. Close Hands
  17. Brush Knee and Twist Step (Turn to the Right)
  18. Tuck in Robes -- Right Style
  19. Open Hands
  20. Close Hands
  21. Single Whip -- Left Style
  22. Punch Fist Under Elbow

Section 2

  1. Turn Body, Brush and Push Hand -- Left Style
  2. Turn Body, Brush and Push Hand -- Right Style
  3. Brush Knee and Twist Step -- Left Style
  4. Tuck in Robes -- Left Style
  5. Open Hands
  6. Close Hands
  7. Single Whip -- Right Style
  8. Wave Hands Like Clouds -- Right Style
  9. Pat High on the Horse
  10. Separate Legs -- Left Style
  11. Separate Legs -- Right Style
  12. Step Forward and Punch Down

Section 3

  1. Turn Over with Flying Front Kick
  2. Turn Body and Tame Tiger
  3. Lift Foot -- Left Style
  4. Turn Body and Kick with Right Heel
  5. Step Up, Parry and Punch
  6. Apparent Close-Up
  7. Embrace Tiger and Push Mountain

Section 4

  1. Open Hands (Turn to the Left)
  2. Close Hands
  3. Brush Knee and Twist Step
  4. Tuck in Robes
  5. Open Hands
  6. Close Hands
  7. Oblique Single Whip
  8. Part the Horse's Mane
  9. Tuck in Robes
  10. Open Hands
  11. Close Hands
  12. Single Whip -- Left Style

Section 5

  1. Wave Hands Like Clouds -- Left Style
  2. Wave Hands and Push Down
  3. Golden Cock Stands on One Leg
  4. Flash Through the Back

Section 6

  1. Fair Lady Works at the Shuttle
  2. Pat High on the Horse
  3. Cross Slap Kick
  4. Step (Forward) and Strike Groin with Fist
  5. Tuck in Robes in Moving Steps
  6. Open Hands
  7. Close Hands
  8. Single Whip -- Left Style
  9. Single Whip and Push Down
  10. Step Up to Form Seven Stars
  11. Step Backward and Mount the Tiger
  12. Turn Body and Lotus Kick
  13. Curved Bow Shoots Tiger
  14. Clout with Both Fists
  15. Combine "Yin" and "Yang" Into One
  16. Closing Form

Chen's First Lu

Copied from The Dao of Taijiquan, Way to Rejuvenation by Jou, Tsung Hwa, published by Tai Chi Foundation.

This form has simple movements, more softness, and less firmness. Ward off, roll back, press, and push (the four directions) are emphasized, elbow, split, pull down, and shoulder strike (the four corners) are secondary. "For the student, the routine is like a self-teaching encyclopedia of the science of movement, of martial arts techniques, and of qigong." Frequent shifts from vigorous to soft help train transitions between yin and yang. The body leads the hands in this form. The form ends facing the opposite direction it started so it is intended to be performed twice in a row.

  1. Beginning of Taiji
  2. King Kong Nailed Fist
  3. Grasp Sparrow's Tail
  4. 60% Open and 40% Closed
  5. Single Whip
  6. King Kong Nailed Fist
  7. White Crane Spreads Wings
  8. First Side Walk and Twist Step
  9. First Conclusion
  10. Kick Forward and Twist Step
  11. Second Side Walk and Twist Step
  12. Second Conclusion
  13. Kick Forward and Twist Step
  14. Hidden Hand Punch
  15. King Kong Nailed Fist
  16. Chop Opponent with Fist
  17. Bending Back and Shoulder Strike
  18. Blue Dragon Flies Up from Water
  19. Push with Both Hands
  20. Three Changes of Palm
  21. Fist Under Elbow
  22. Upper Arm Rolls
  23. Backward and Press Elbow
  24. Middle Stage
  25. White Crane Spreads Wings
  26. Side Walk and Twist Step
  27. Fan Through the Back
  28. Hidden Hand Punch
  29. 60% Open and 40% Closed
  30. Single Whip
  31. Cloud Hands
  32. High Pat on Horse
  33. Rub Right Foot
  34. Rub Left Foot
  35. Turn Body and Kick
  36. Kick Forward and Twist Step
  37. Hit Ground with Fist
  38. Jump and Kick Twice
  39. Animal Head Posture
  40. Hurricane Kick
  41. Turn Body and Kick
  42. Hidden Hand Punch
  43. Samll Grasp and Hit
  44. Embrace Head and Push Mountain
  45. Three Changes of Palm
  46. 60% Open and 40% Closed
  47. Single Whip
  48. Front Posture
  49. Back Posture
  50. Mustang Ruffling Its Main
  51. 60% Open and 40% Closed
  52. Single Whip
  53. Shake Foot Twice
  54. Fair Lady Works At Shuttles
  55. Grasp Sparrow's Tail
  56. 60% Open and 40% Closed
  57. Single Whip
  58. Cloud Hands
  59. Sweep Leg and Cross Kick
  60. Golden Pheasant Stands on One Leg
  61. Upper Arm Rolls
  62. Withdraw and Press Elbow
  63. Middle Stage
  64. White Crane Spreads Wings
  65. Side Walk and Twist Step
  66. Fan Through the Back
  67. Hidden Hand Punch
  68. 60% Open and 40% Closed
  69. Single Whip
  70. Cloud Hands
  71. High Pat on Horse
  72. Cross Hands and Sweep Lotus with One Leg
  73. Punch Opponent's Groin
  74. White Ape Offers Fruits
  75. 60% Open and 40% Closed
  76. Single Whip
  77. Sparrow Ground Dragon
  78. Step Up to Form Seven Stars of the Dipper
  79. Step Back to Ride Tiger
  80. Turn Around and Sweep Lotus
  81. Face Opponent Cannon
  82. King Kong Nailed Fist
  83. Conclusion of Taiji

Chen's Second Lu, Paochui

Copied from The Dao of Taijiquan, Way to Rejuvenation by Jou, Tsung Hwa, published by Tai Chi Foundation.

This form has more complicated movements, more firmness, and less softness. Elbow, split, pull down, and shoulder strike (the four corners) are emphasized, ward off, roll back, press, and push (the four directions) are secondary; this is the opposite of the first lu. Fast action is important and in this form the hands lead the body. For an attack to have real fajing the whole body must act as a single unit and the energy must be internal; external, physical force should not be used.

  1. Beginning of Paochui
  2. King Kong Nailed Fist
  3. Grasp Sparrow's Tail
  4. 60% Open and 40% Closed
  5. Single Whip
  6. Deflect Downward, Intercept and Punch
  7. Guard the Heart Punch
  8. Side Walk and Twist Step
  9. Sink Waist with Elbow and Fist Down
  10. Punch Down the Well
  11. Plum Flowers Swept by Wind
  12. King Kong Nailed Fist
  13. Hidden Body Punch
  14. Drape Over Body and Punch
  15. Cut Hand
  16. Sleeves Dance Like Turning Flowers
  17. Hidden Hand Punch
  18. Flying Step and Elbow
  19. Cloud Hands
  20. High Pat on Horse
  21. Cloud Hands
  22. High Pat on Horse
  23. Machine Cannon 1
  24. Machine Cannon 2
  25. Machine Cannon 3
  26. Ride Unicorn in Reverse
  27. White Snake Sticks Out Tongue 1
  28. White Snake Sticks Out Tongue 2
  29. White Snake Sticks Out Tongue 3
  30. Turn Flower Under Sea Bottom
  31. Hidden Hand Punch
  32. Turn Body and Six Coincides
  33. Left Firecracker 1
  34. Left Firecracker 2
  35. Right Firecracker 1
  36. Right Firecracker 2
  37. Animal Head Posture
  38. Cut Frame
  39. Sleeves Dance Like Turning Flowers
  40. Hidden Hand Posture
  41. Subdued Tiger
  42. Color Eyebrow Red
  43. Yellow Dragon Plays Water (Right)
  44. Yellow Dragon Plays Water (Left)
  45. Turn Body and Kick Left
  46. Turn Body and Kick Right
  47. Turn Flower Under Sea Bottom
  48. Hidden Hand Punch
  49. Sweep Ground with Leg
  50. Hidden Hand Punch
  51. Left Rush
  52. Right Rush
  53. Insert on Opposite Direction
  54. Turn Flower Under Sea Bottom
  55. Hidden Hand Punch
  56. Seize Upper Arm 1
  57. Seize Upper Arm 2
  58. Machine Cannon
  59. Fair Lady Works at Shuttles
  60. Turn Head and Cannon Forward
  61. Fair Lady Works at Shuttles
  62. Turn Head and Cannon Forward
  63. Chop Opponent with Fist
  64. Twist Elbow
  65. Submissive Elbow
  66. Elbow Through Heart
  67. Embraced Cannon
  68. Punch Down the Well
  69. Plum Flowers Swept by Wind
  70. King Kong Nailed Fist
  71. Conclusion of Paochui

Wu's/Hao's Taijiquan

Copied from The Dao of Taijiquan, Way to Rejuvenation by Jou, Tsung Hwa, published by Tai Chi Foundation.

Note that this is sometimes called the Hao form because Haoweizhen was a popular master of the Wu style and had many students. This is not the same Wu as the Wu style of Wujianquan; that style is basically a modification of the Yang style.

  1. Beginning of Taiji
  2. Left Grasp Sparrow's Tail
  3. Right Grasp Sparrow's Tail
  4. Single Whip
  5. Lift Hand
  6. White Goose Spreads Wings
  7. Brush Knee and Twist Step
  8. Playing Guitar
  9. Brush Knee and Twist Step
  10. Playing Guitar
  11. Step Forward, Deflect Downward, Intercept and Punch
  12. Withdraw and Push
  13. Embrace Tiger and Push Mountain
  14. Playing Guitar
  15. Right Grasp Sparrow's Tail
  16. Single Whip
  17. Lift Hand
  18. Fist Under Elbow
  19. Step Back to Repulse Monkey, Right
  20. Step Back to Repulse Monkey, Left
  21. Step Back to Repulse Monkey, Right
  22. Step Back to Repulse Monkey, Left
  23. Playing Guitar
  24. White Goose Spreads Wings
  25. Brush Knee and Twist Step
  26. Playing Guitar
  27. Push Posture
  28. Blue Dragon Flies Out from Water
  29. Drape Over the Body
  30. Three Changes of the Back
  31. Single Whip
  32. Downward Posture
  33. Cloud Hands
  34. Single Whip
  35. Lift Hand
  36. High Pat on Horse
  37. Submissive Tiger Posture, Left
  38. Separate Right Foot
  39. Submissive Tiger Posture, Right
  40. Separate Left Foot
  41. Turn Body and Kick Right Foot
  42. Single Whip
  43. Jump Forward and Punch Downward
  44. Jump High and Kick Twice
  45. Turn Body Posture
  46. Withdraw and Kick
  47. Turn Body and Kick with Right Heel
  48. Step Forward, Deflect Downward, Intercept and Punch
  49. Withdraw and Push
  50. Embrace Tiger and Push Mountain
  51. Playing Guitar
  52. Grasp Sparrow's Tail, Right
  53. Diagonal Single Whip
  54. Downward Posture
  55. Mustang Ruffling Its Mane
  56. Single Whip
  57. Fair Lady Works at Shuttles
  58. Playing Guitar
  59. Grasp Sparrow's Tail, Right
  60. Single Whip
  61. Downward Posture
  62. Cloud Hands
  63. Single Whip
  64. Downward Posture
  65. Golden Pheasant Stands with One Leg
  66. Step Back to Repulse Monkey, Left
  67. Step Back to Repulse Monkey, Right
  68. Step Back to Repulse Monkey, Left
  69. Step Back to Repulse Monkey, Right
  70. Playing Guitar
  71. White Goose Spreads Wings
  72. Brush Knee and Twist Step
  73. Playing Guitar
  74. Push Posture
  75. Blue Dragon Flies Out from Water
  76. Turn Body Posture
  77. Three Changes of the Back
  78. Single Whip
  79. Downward Posture
  80. Cloud Hands
  81. Single Whip
  82. Lift Hand
  83. High Pat on Horse
  84. Palm Strike to Opponent's Heart
  85. Turn Around and Sweep Lotus with One Leg
  86. Step Forward and Punch Opponent's Groin
  87. Grasp Sparrow's Tail, Right
  88. Single Whip
  89. Downward Posture
  90. Step Up to Form Seven Stars of the Dipper
  91. Step Back to Ride Tiger
  92. Sweep Lotus with One Leg
  93. Shoot Tiger with Bow
  94. Double Cannon Punch
  95. Playing Guitar
  96. Conclusion of Taiji

Taiji Fighting Set

Copied from Tai Chi Chuan Martial Applications by Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming, published by YMAA Publication Center.

This is an interesting form and apparently a rather advanced one. In the same author's book Taijiquan, Classical Yang Style, the fighting set is number 21 of 22 in the training sequence provided. This book has a pretty good description of this form though and includes "other options", other ways each of the moves could be used in combat practice, but are not used in the form.

As a fighting set, this is performed by two people alternating moves. However, moves 28 and 29 are both performed by the same person (the one who did move 2) and moves 78 and 79 are both performed by the same person (the one who did move 1). So in a sense, the roles switch twice during the form.

  1. Step Forward for Punch
  2. Raise Hands to the Up Posture
  3. Step Forward, Intercept and Punch
  4. Deflect and Punch
  5. Step Forward and Left Shoulder-Stroke
  6. Strike the Tiger (Right)
  7. Left Elbow Strike
  8. Push to the Left and Right Elbow-Stroke
  9. Withdraw the Step and Strike the Tiger (Left)
  10. Right Downward Strike
  11. Raise Hands to the Up Posture
  12. Turn the Body and Push
  13. Right Swinging-Body Strike
  14. Intercept and Punch, One
  15. Intercept and Punch, Two
  16. Wild Horses Shear the Mane (Left)
  17. Strike the Tiger (Right)
  18. Turn the Body, Withdraw the Step, and Rollback
  19. Step Forward and Press (Left)
  20. Turn the Body and Press (Left)
  21. Double Dividing and Heel Kick
  22. Punch the Groin
  23. Step Forward to Pluck and Rend
  24. Fair Lady Weaves with Shuttle, One
  25. Fair Lady Weaves with Shuttle, Two
  26. White Crane Spreads Its Wings
  27. Left Shoulder-Stroke
  28. Rollback the Shoulder
  29. Turn the Body to Rend the Shoulder
  30. Turn the Body to Rollback
  31. Two Winds Pass Through the Ears
  32. Double Push
  33. Single Whip
  34. Right Push
  35. File the Shoulder (Right)
  36. Follow the Posture and Push
  37. Neutralize and Strike with Right Palm
  38. Neutralize and Push
  39. Neutralize and Strike with Right Elbow
  40. Pluck and Rend
  41. Exchange Steps and Rollback
  42. Step Forward and Press
  43. Exchange Steps and Rollback
  44. Strike the Tiger (Right)
  45. Turn the Body, Step Backward, and Rollback
  46. Step Forward and Press to the Left
  47. Return with Press
  48. Exchange Steps and Shoulder-Stroke
  49. Turn the Body to Fly Diagonally
  50. Right Elbow-Strike
  51. Turn the Body for Rooster Standing on One Leg
  52. Downward-Neutralization
  53. Heel Kick
  54. Turn the Body, Step Forward, and Strike
  55. Rollback Left Arm
  56. Turn the Body and Right Kick
  57. Double Dividing and Embrace the Knee (Right)
  58. Turn the Body and Left Kick
  59. Double Dividing and Embrace the Knee (Left)
  60. Change Hands and Right Shoulder-Stroke
  61. Return Right Elbow-Stroke
  62. Step Forward and Grasp the Sparrow's Tail (Left)
  63. Wave Hands In Clouds (Right)
  64. Step Forward and Grasp the Sparrow's Tail (Right)
  65. Wave Hands In Clouds (Left)
  66. Divide Upward, Press, and Downward Heel Kick
  67. Low Hook Kick
  68. Turn the Body to Sweep Lotus
  69. Left Elbow-Stroke
  70. Hook Hand and Snake Creeps Down
  71. Diagonal Flying (Right)
  72. Strike the Tiger (Left)
  73. Double Dividing and Push Down
  74. Step Back and Repulse Monkey
  75. Left Push
  76. Step Back and Repulse Monkey
  77. Right Push
  78. Repulse Monkey
  79. Right Palm Strike
  80. Step Forward to Seven Stars
  81. Pick Up Needle from Sea Bottom
  82. Fan Back
  83. Pluck Right
  84. Draw the Bow and Shoot the Tiger
  85. Neutralize Up and Press Forward
  86. Punch Under the Elbow
  87. Cross Hands
  88. Embrace Tiger and Return to the Mountain

Taiji Sword

Copied from Taiji Sword, Classical Yang Style by Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming, published by YMAA Publication Center.

I recently purchased this book and haven't had a chance to read it and go through the sword form described in it. This is for straight sword, by the way -- the long, thin, double-edged kind of sword. From what I've seen so far, the form in this book is not the 32-posture sword form, which I think is considered a standardized/simplified form. The book calls this the traditional Yang form and counts 54 postures for it (if you know this form, your count may vary slightly). The only other comment I have now is that I found it interesting how many of the posture names involve animals and how many different animals are named. I'll try to add some more notes later, after I've had a chance to go through it in more detail.

  1. Beginning
  2. Step Forward and Close with Sword
  3. The Fairy Shows the Way -- 1
  4. Three Rings Envelop the Moon
  5. Big Chief Star
  6. The Swallow Dips Its Beak in the Water
  7. Left Sweep, Right Sweep
  8. Little Chief Star
  9. The Yellow Bee Enters the Hole
  10. The Spirit Cat Catches the Mouse
  11. The Dragonfly Touches the Water
  12. The Swallow Enters the Nest
  13. The Phoenix Spreads Its Wings
  14. Right Whirlwind
  15. Little Chief Star
  16. Left Whirlwind
  17. Waiting for a Fish
  18. Part the Grass in Search of Snake
  19. Hold the Moon against the Chest
  20. Send the Bird to the Woods
  21. Black Dragon Waves Its Tail
  22. The Wind Blows the Lotus Leaf
  23. The Lion Shakes Its Head
  24. The Tiger Holds Its Head
  25. The Wild Horse Jumps the Stream
  26. Turn Body and Rein In the Horse
  27. Compass
  28. Clean Up Dust In the Wind
  29. Push the Boat With the Current
  30. The Shooting Star Chasing the Moon
  31. The Bird Flying Over the Waterfall
  32. Raise the Screen
  33. Left and Right Wheel Sword
  34. The Swallow Picks Up Mud with Its Beak
  35. The Roc Spreads Its Wings
  36. Pick Up the Moon from the Sea Bottom
  37. Hold the Moon against the Chest
  38. The Night Demon Gauges the Depth of the Sea
  39. The Rhino Looks at the Moon
  40. Shoot the Geese
  41. The Blue Dragon Waves Its Claws
  42. The Phoenix Spreads Its Wings
  43. Left and Right Step Over Obstacle
  44. Shoot the Geese
  45. The White Ape Offers Fruit
  46. Falling Flowers Posture
  47. The Fair Lady Weaves with the Shuttle
  48. The White Tiger Waves Its Tail
  49. The Fish Jumps Into the Dragon Gate
  50. The Black Dragon Wraps around the Post
  51. Fairy Shows the Way -- 2
  52. Wind Blows Away the Plum Flowers
  53. To Hold a Tablet
  54. Hold the Sword and Return to the Original Stance

Some Closing Notes

One of my books mentions a 66 posture form as another standardized form, but nothing else about it. While web searching, I happened to run across this Combined Tai Chi Chuen form with 67 postures. I thought it was probably the same form, but didn't know why it had one more posture than the official version. But the author of that page wrote to me after finding my link and explained it -- the form was originally 67 postures, but later the last High Pat the Horse was removed to make the 66 posture "official" version; his teacher sticks with the original form. Thanks to P.K. Shiu for the information and form list.

I recently added this link to my hobbies page, but if you'd like to see videos of some forms being performed, visit Taiji.de (here's the English starting page). I don't think all of the forms I listed here are on video there and I know that they have videos of forms I do not list here. For some additional tai chi related links, head over to the martial arts section of my sports page.


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James Marshall (e-mail me)
http://www.jmarshall.net/

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