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Fair Maiden's Wrist CLASS NOTES

Today we will begin with breathing , add some warm up exercises. This order will be typical of all the following classes. We'll practice walking , circling , swinging and finally the form.

Fair Maiden's Wrist
Begin with breathing into your center. Sink down in the knees turning the elbows outward. As you inhale fill a balloon and rise to about shoulder level. Exhale and let the balloon collapse.

Fair maiden's wrist is the concept of the hands and arms forming a straight yet curved surface. This forms the striking edge and allows for complete relaxation from the elbow downward. Compare the difference of the fingers curled verses the fingers naturally forming as if grabbing a beach ball.

Tai Chi breathing and movement should relax the whole body. Instead of moving the arms, think of a puppet on a string and how the puppet only moves as the string allows. Our hands and arms should move as a result of the body in motion as directed by the waist.


For warm ups we will review the ward off movement from side to side. Be sure and totally separate the weight. This time form a ball on each side of the body. The ball should form as the weight is totally separated. Use the body and waist movement to draw the hands across. The top hand should always be connected to the the shoulder.

Carry the Ball Application
Show the application with the reversal of the left and right palms both for a fist and foot strike.

press warm up
We'll add two more warm ups. The press is a press into the wrist to one side. As you turn, reverse the palms by sliding them against each other and press back toward the other side.

Press Application
Show the application of shifting the direction of force.

roll back warm up
The roll back movement is shown by the hands forming line with palms facing inward. One palm faces the elbow, the other is farther out like playing a guitar. Then begin the movement by turning the hand at the elbow outward and letting the other palm rise up and form a focal point on the back of the wrist. Roll back across to the other side and repeat.

Roll Back Application
Show the application of stepping away from on coming force.


Do the 5 star stepping with alternate steps. Add ward off, press and roll back.

Sweep Applications
Show the application of the feet sandwiching with the knee. Demonstrate the difference in a forward or side to side sweep.


Review The Opening and The Beginning .

Horse Stance
So far all movements of the form have been from side to side. This side to side stance is called the horse stance. It is often called being double weighted by the chinese and considered a difficult postion to defend when the weight is evenly distributed across both feet.

Traditionally training began when a student could hold the horse stance for long periods of time. It helped strengthen the legs and prepare one for the rigorous training of a martial art.

Ward Off Left
Ward off left is the next form movement. Turn placing all the weight on the left side while forming a ball. The right foot should pivot on the heel at the same time until it faces 90 degrees to the right.

Carry the ball across to the right foot as you shift all of the weight to the right. Pick up the left foot and step it forward maintaining the shoulder width between the feet.

Shift forward to 70 percent weight forward while warding off left. The top right hand moves down to the side of the thigh, the bottom left hand moves forward to just in front of the left side of the chest.

Ward Off Left Application
Show the application with the hand moved to the side and the ward off used to lock the arm.