> Issue 36
The german magazine for qigong and taijiquan

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Issue 36 – 2/2009

Learning through antagonistic forces
Partner exercises in Qigong

By Claudia Bartels

Traditionally Qigong is generally practiced alone, although some teachers integrate massage as a reciprocal exercise. However, practicing with a partner can be useful for gaining a better feeling for one’s own stability and for understanding the alignment of Qigong movements. Claudia Bartels has used her experience in Taijiquan to integrate systematic partner exercises into her Qigong teaching. She gives examples of how a second person, mostly by applying measured resistance, can support a practitioner in sensing the lines of force of a movement more clearly and in modifying the movement accordingly. Both partners can thus enter into more intensive contact, train their awareness and achieve a more profound understanding of the exercise.

 

»Empty your cup ...«
The same and yet not the same – the Snake Style of the Ip family

By Sascha Krysztofiak

In the previous issue we presented the small frame according to Yang Shaohou as one version of the Yang style that clearly differs from the better-known form according to Yang Chengfu.
Now Sascha Krysztofiak presents a Yang style form that is distinctive above all for the
movement dynamics within the body. Although it corresponds to the classical form in terms of its external movement sequence, the Snake style requires a new approach. It demands greater mobility of the spine and of the entire torso in order to carry out the movement in a »snakelike« way, and also includes specific exercise to activate special muscle groups.
Moreover, a consistent weight distribution of 100 to 0 is sought. The Snake style was passed from Yang Shouzhong to Ip Tai Tak, and he in turn passed it to Bob Boyd who was given the task of making public this form, which was previously taught only in the closest family circle.

 

»Taijiquan is not an ancient antique«
Interview with Li Deyin

By Ronnie Robinson

Li Deyin comes from a traditional martial arts family and for 40 years has taught Taijiquan professionally at Renmin University in Beijing. Drawing on this experience in an interview with Ronnie Robinson, he talks about the training with his grandfather, the differences between Chen style Taijiquan and the other traditional styles and between traditional and modern Taijiquan, and about the different directions taken in Taijiquan teaching in China nowadays.

 

Qigong and the psyche
By Zheng Buyin and Carsten Meyer

The health-promoting effects of Qigong include a strengthening of and beneficial influence on the psyche. On the basis of experiences of Qigong masters and results from empirical neuropsychological studies, Zheng Buyin and Carsten Meyer explain how Qigong can support mental and emotional balance. One special feature is that Qigong, as a form of »exercise with oneself«, promotes self-perception and inner motivation.

 

Expanding in unity
The transformational phase Fire

By Joachim Stuhlmacher

In the previous issue Ursula Rimbach gave a general introduction to the five elements or transformational phases. We now present a five-part series that will deal with the individual
transformational phases in more detail. Appropriately for the start of summer, Joachim
Stuhlmacher begins with the element fire, which in his view is the embodiment of synthesis, synergy and the striving for unity. First moving to complete expansion, it then withdraws
inwards and leads to an opening of the heart. Its yang and yin aspects are revealed in
expansion and self-revelation on the one hand and in devotion and absolute calm on the other. Through the experience of unity with all things, the fear of being alone or of death can be overcome and the connection with all other living things can be strengthened.

 

Fire – the fuel of our life
By Ursula Rimbach

Ursula Rimbach too sees the opening of the heart as an essential aspect of the element fire. Love, joy, empathy, understanding and forgiving are qualities that come from the heart and that nourish the heart. At the same time the heart, as the seat of shen, forms a connection with »heaven« – assuming we can let it become empty for this purpose. Time and again, Qigong can make us aware of this cosmic connection.

 

The Beginning
By Wang Ning

The beginning is represented by many images in Chinese script – birth, head, source, dawn, east, spring, root, the opening of a door and many more. The true beginning is represented by the figure one, which in turn – as the beginning of the universe – simultaneously contains all things. As a horizontal line it has two ends, which can equally be the beginning and the end.