Our master performed Tai Chi Chuan.
Tai Chi Chuan's roots go back to several time periods because there are five styles of Tai chi chuan. The five major styles practiced today are Chen-style, Yang-style, Wu or Wu (Hao) – style, Wu-Syle and Sun-style. There is a lot of debate about the exact origins of T'ai Chi and its founder. In English a rough translation comes out as “supreme ultimate fist”, “boundless fist” or “great extremes boxing”.
One prevailing theory is that Taoist and Buddhist monasteries contributed a number of formative influences. There is little physical proof for this theory, but many old orthodox schools assert a connection to it.
A second theory is that the practice was developed and formulated in the 12th century by the Taoist monk Zhang Sanfeng. Nevertheless, the earliest documented history regarding his teaching is recorded in a work called “Epitaph for Wang Zhengnan” in 1669 is the earliest piece linking Zhang Sanfeng and Taiji. Another theory is that Yang Luchan trained with the Chen family for 18 years before moving to Beijing to teach there. His artwork is believed to have been heavily influenced by Chen family art. This was allegedly developed around the 17th century.
While the exact origins of this ancient martial art cannot be pinned down, it has undoubtedly existed for centuries and has a rich history. Today, martial art is practiced all over the world not only for its martial benefits, but also for its health benefits.
In terms of its military use, it is about strengthening self-defense, which teaches students how to change in response to outside forces. They also use it to determine how much force to respond with. This all focuses around dealing with an attacker by yielding to their attacks and striking back with minimal efforts, unlike other martial arts which try to meet oncoming attacks with opposing force.
When tai chi is practiced for health benefits, it is done in a slow and graceful pattern. These movements are practiced along with proper breathing and stretching. When done precisely, they bring relaxation to the body and help increase the flow of energy throughout the body. It can relieve stress both in the body and in the mind, allowing the person to meditate and achieve optimal health. Practicing these movements has proven to be a healthy form of exercise that is not as rigorous on the body and also improves the practitioner's balance.