Fajin

Re: Fajin

Postby ChiDragon » Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:45 pm

ChiDragon wrote:Have you ever wondered why Tai Chi Quan was practiced so slow? You see, most people just do it slow and took it for granted. If you had done it long enough, then, you would have felt that your body strength has increased tremendously. Finally, we can say that the tremendous body strength was acquired from Tai Chi practice which is called jin(勁).

So far, is there any objection to that? If yes, please express yourself for discussion sake!


Greetings!
Again, have you ever wondered why some had practiced for a long time and the body strength didn't make any improvement? Well, here is the critical point. Some teachers do not tell the beginners about breathing. If someone was asked, the teacher will tell them to breath naturally. Therefore, the students will always tried to breathe natural. At some point, after practice diligently for sometime, the breath will go deeper than normal. Unfortunately, the students remembered that they were told to breathe naturally. Thus they tried not to breathe deeply. They is where the error caused by the misconception.

In Tai Chi Quan, the goal is to reach abdominal breathing. Breathing deeply into the abdomen, as practicing along, is an indication of progress. It is at the point where jin is building up in the body. Since the abdominal breathing has been reached, the practitioner should be paying more attention to coordinate the movements with breathing. This is the turning point where the jinjin(勁) is begins to build up in the muscles. In few years, one has no idea where is the tremendous body energy came from. Surprisingly, that is the (勁) acquired from Tai Chi practice.

One might be practicing the slow movements, for a long time, with no (勁) build up; and thought that one is really practicing Tai Chi Quan. Sorry to say, it was not Tai Chi Quan but just going over the Tai Chi movements, that's all. Without (勁) in the body, one cannot advance to the next level like push-hands or Tai Chi sword or any weapons for that matter.

(勁) is the prerequisite for push hands or Tai Chi sword practices. Otherwise, one doesn't know what dongjin(懂勁) or tingjin(聽勁) is all about. I hope someone would have had realized that.

Any comments? You are welcome!
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Re: Fajin

Postby DPasek » Mon May 01, 2017 7:13 pm

CD,

I do not know what you are trying to refer to by “tremendous body strength.” Can Taijiquan masters lift more weight than trained weightlifters of equal size/mass? How is this “tremendous body strength” measured? There are weight machines, pressure sensors, and other equipment that can objectively measure strength – can what you are referring to be measured objectively? What differentiates it from regular strength used in a trained and unified way? How does this strength compare to the strength of a sinewy farm laborer? Is it something that those who do not train in Taijiquan totally lack, or is it just a matter of relative degree? Do you think that it is something supernatural or does it follow natural laws (e.g. physics)?

I suspect that you are trying to lead a discussion in a particular direction, but you have already lost me. To me the jin in Taijiquan is not something supernatural – it follows natural laws. Again, my understanding is quite close to what Master Zhang wrote:
http://www.ycgf.org/Articles/TJ_Jin/TJ_Jin1.html
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Re: Fajin

Postby ChiDragon » Mon May 01, 2017 9:09 pm

DPasek
The "tremendous body strength" was referred as jin which acquired from the diligent practice of Tai Chi. Jin is super strength but not supernatural. Yes, it can be measured objectively. The regular strength is prenatal and the Jin is postnatal from training. The strength of a farm laborer are considered to be postnatal also but consumes lot of energy. In Tai Chi, the energy was only used instantaneously.

The jin can be measured. Please take a look at 5:00 of the video given below:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJ7FuooWtRU

More scientific measurements of body strength:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_l-WgEQjpU

I suspect that you are trying to lead a discussion in a particular direction, but you have already lost me.

Based on what you had told me about your understanding about jin, I am not surprise that you have already been lost. From the past to present, people only knew the physical aspect about jin. However, it can be explained biologically. I hope I will clarify it some more in the near future.
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Re: Fajin

Postby fchai » Tue May 02, 2017 6:27 am

Greetings,

Quote, "In Tai Chi Quan (sic), the goal is to reach abdominal breathing.". Sorry CD, but I have never ever heard this as a goal, let alone as a primary or essential objective of Taijiquan! The 10 essential principles spelt out by Yang Chengfu also makes no mention of this. I know that you are a devout adherent to your belief in the UMB but that does not mean that others share your belief, or that they must be converted to this view of the world. As it has been previously mentioned in past posts as the wise advice from Master Yang Jun, "breathe"! In my humble opinion, breathing is essential else you will soon be lying on the floor unconscious and quite possibly quite dead. I also tell my students to breathe naturally because I know that as they become more proficient, their breathing will naturally deepen and slow, just as the Qi will naturally rise without any coercion or forcing on the practitioner's part. In fact, if someone tries to deliberately force their breathing into a rhythm they are not comfortable with they are likely to be doing more harm than good.

And the belief that doing the form slow is another mandatory requirement is also erroneous, in that it is not again a goal! Rather, one's form in the long form will become slow as a consequence of one's practice of the 10 essential principles and especially that of "stillness in motion". There is no direct relationship between doing the long form slowly and the cultivation of Jin. Just look at the likes of a Jordan Speith, Jason Day, Annika Sorenstam, etc. in the golfing world. In my opinion, they also use jin but it was not as a result of practising Taiji. Think on it!

However, others may have a different understanding and if their own practice and experiences gives them this understanding, that is fine. It is also more instructive to discuss what the words of a master may have meant rather than try to expound one's own pet personal ideology.

Take care,
Frank
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Re: Fajin

Postby DPasek » Tue May 02, 2017 2:14 pm

ChiDragon wrote:The jin can be measured. Please take a look at 5:00 of the video given below:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJ7FuooWtRU

More scientific measurements of body strength:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_l-WgEQjpU

CD,

So you think that the examples you gave are measuring jin force? If so, then I do not see how this would help your case, since I do not think that any of these people train slowly and with abdominal breathing to develop their power. Or do you think that Taijiquan practitioners who practice slowly and with proper breathing can produce more power than shown in those examples because they develop jin power rather than merely training coordinated power (using normal muscle power), or maximizing the kinetic chain?
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Re: Fajin

Postby DPasek » Tue May 02, 2017 4:07 pm

ChiDragon wrote:From the past to present, people only knew the physical aspect about jin. However, it can be explained biologically. I hope I will clarify it some more in the near future.

CD,

If your initial premises are unsupported, then anything that follows will, at best, be shaky.
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Re: Fajin

Postby ChiDragon » Tue May 02, 2017 4:39 pm

DPasek wrote:
ChiDragon wrote:The jin can be measured. Please take a look at 5:00 of the video given below:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJ7FuooWtRU

More scientific measurements of body strength:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_l-WgEQjpU

CD,

So you think that the examples you gave are measuring jin force? If so, then I do not see how this would help your case, since I do not think that any of these people train slowly and with abdominal breathing to develop their power. Or do you think that Taijiquan practitioners who practice slowly and with proper breathing can produce more power than shown in those examples because they develop jin power rather than merely training coordinated power (using normal muscle power), or maximizing the kinetic chain?


PDasek
Your original question was asked that can jin be measured. My answer is yes, it can be measured as shown in the videos.

Or do you think that Taijiquan practitioners who practice slowly and with proper breathing can produce more power than shown in those examples because they develop jin power.


I didn't say it can produce more power than shown in those examples. What I am really saying is that it can produce more power than one has had before. In order to issue the jin power, one must be able to perform abdominal breathing prior to the execution. Hence, without the ability to perform abdominal breathing, one cannot produce nor generate the jin power at anytime.

The martial artists in the video had developed their jin power already from their own practices. Thus they had reached the realm of their goal. If TAi Chi practitioners have to be told about the importance of abdominal breathing and had never done it, then, participated in the discussion in fajin. I really don't know what to say. I only see stagnation in their practice.

PS
Why is it so offensive to you all if someone has mentioned the significance of "abdominal breathing" in Tai Chi practice? If you haven't tried, then, how do you know it is not true?
Last edited by ChiDragon on Tue May 02, 2017 5:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Fajin

Postby ChiDragon » Tue May 02, 2017 5:53 pm

Greetings!
Let's be aware of this in Tai Chi practice.
Tai Chi & Chi Kung Breathing Tutorial - from World Tai Chi & Qigong Day
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9xJJ4KDZEM
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Re: Fajin

Postby DPasek » Tue May 02, 2017 7:29 pm

ChiDragon wrote:PS
Why is it so offensive to you all if someone has mentioned the significance of "abdominal breathing" in Tai Chi practice? If you haven't tried, then, how do you know it is not true?

ChiDragon wrote:The "tremendous body strength" was referred as jin which acquired from the diligent practice of Tai Chi. Jin is super strength but not supernatural.

I do not object to practicing abdominal breathing! I do abdominal breathing myself.

What I am skeptical of is claims that Taijiquan cultivates "tremendous body strength" or “super strength” that differs from trained use of our muscles. To me, jin is not something separate from our muscles; jin is the result of training how we use our muscles.

Do you think that you have "tremendous body strength" or “super strength” above what the average person of your age and build has, especially as compared to a fit individual used to physical labor (like a farm worker)?

Again, refer to Zhang Yun’s article. Or refer to my article on moving through molasses for my understanding of how training slowly trains muscles differently than the general population typically uses them. I did not mention abdominal breathing in the article, but my understanding is that this breathing method is widely used among Taijiquan practitioners.
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Re: Fajin

Postby fchai » Tue May 02, 2017 10:29 pm

Greetings,

No one is in denial about abdominal breathing but it is not a goal of Taijiquan at the almost total exclusion of anything else. I personally began abdominal breathing when I was introduced to it when I joined a judo dojo at a very young age. I have continued doing so now for the better part of 50 years. Yes, I teach my students to breathe with their diaphragm but to do so "naturally" and not to force their breathing to a rhythm that is uncomfortable for them.

Jin is not super strength! Jin is Jin, and can be applied delicately and with finesse, or explosively as circumstances require. If one understands the 10 essential principles, it results in a person becoming more integrated physically, mentally, internally, externally and in balance. In my humble opinion, this is what allows one to exhibit a capability beyond the average, but by no measure, "super". Years ago, a friend of mine who was a 7 Dan Judo Sensei asked me how much force was required to shatter a person's sternum? Well, not a lot! That is why breaking bricks with one's appendages held no attraction for me. Also, it underlined the fragility of the human body, no matter how invincible it may seem at times. So, who needs to be a "super strength" person?

Take care,
Frank
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Re: Fajin

Postby ChiDragon » Wed May 03, 2017 1:03 am

DPasek wrote:I do not object to practicing abdominal breathing! I do abdominal breathing myself.

CD: Good! This is something which cannot be ignored.

What I am skeptical of is claims that Taijiquan cultivates "tremendous body strength" or “super strength” that differs from trained use of our muscles. To me, jin is not something separate from our muscles; jin is the result of training how we use our muscles.

CD: Yes, jin is a strength which was generated by the muscle cells. Jin is NOT the result of training how we use our muscles. It is the ability to generate the biochemical energy in the muscle cells. It is a biological effect which takes place in the body from the result of training.

Do you think that you have "tremendous body strength" or “super strength” above what the average person of your age and build has, especially as compared to a fit individual used to physical labor (like a farm worker)?

CD: Yes, I do have "tremendous body strength" or “super strength” above what the average person of my age and build has. I might or might not have the strength as compared to a fit individual used to physical labor (like a farm worker). It is because the physical labor had developed the strength from farm work as workout.

Again, refer to Zhang Yun’s article. Or refer to my article on moving through molasses for my understanding of how training slowly trains muscles differently than the general population typically uses them. I did not mention abdominal breathing in the article, but my understanding is that this breathing method is widely used among Taijiquan practitioners.

CD: Now you are talking. This breathing method must be mentioned to indicate that you do know the most basic fundamental principle of Tai Chi. Nothing works without it in any practice. Please don't leave home without it.
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Re: Fajin

Postby DPasek » Wed May 03, 2017 2:02 pm

ChiDragon wrote:
DPasek wrote:What I am skeptical of is claims that Taijiquan cultivates "tremendous body strength" or “super strength” that differs from trained use of our muscles. To me, jin is not something separate from our muscles; jin is the result of training how we use our muscles.

CD: Yes, jin is a strength which was generated by the muscle cells. Jin is NOT the result of training how we use our muscles. It is the ability to generate the biochemical energy in the muscle cells. It is a biological effect which takes place in the body from the result of training.

Do you think that you have "tremendous body strength" or “super strength” above what the average person of your age and build has, especially as compared to a fit individual used to physical labor (like a farm worker)?

CD: Yes, I do have "tremendous body strength" or “super strength” above what the average person of my age and build has. I might or might not have the strength as compared to a fit individual used to physical labor (like a farm worker). It is because the physical labor had developed the strength from farm work as workout.

The reason that I mention a sinewy farm laborer for comparison is that they learn from long experience to use their muscles efficiently such that they can have a lot of power without needing bulked up muscles and without tiring quickly (i.e., power with endurance). Although they do not train Taijiquan, I think that their experience as laborers builds a similar musculature and usage to what Taijiquan practitioners can develop; both of which are different from what most consider being strong, i.e., with large muscle mass.

If your strength is not significantly better than a sinewy farm laborer, then I would NOT consider you as having "tremendous body strength" or “super strength.” At least you are better than being abnormally weak as many people in our modern cultures are.

It now seems clearer as to where we disagree. I think that jin strength is the result of the type and way that we use our muscles (and their attached tendons, possibly including the fascia connections as well). It is not entirely clear, but you apparently think that it is some biochemical energy (ATP?) in muscle cells that is enhanced from the normal levels?

I know of no evidence for an increased level of ATP in Taijiquan practitioners’ bodies over what sinewy farm laborers have, but if it could be objectively tested, then I would find the results very interesting.

For those who may be interested in ATP, the following article gives an overview:
https://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/galanis9.htm

The following is the Wikipedia entry for ATP:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adenosine_triphosphate

The following article states that “Cordyceps sinensis is considered one of the most valuable medicinal fungi in China” and it is claimed that “Mice given cordyceps supplements, for example, demonstrated an 18.4% increase in liver ATP levels.16,17 This was accompanied by a drop in the building blocks of ATP, indicating that the body was using them up to create new energy-rich ATP molecules.”
http://www.lifeextension.com/magazine/2014/2/beat-fatigue-and-boost-atp-production-with-powerful-herbal-duo/page-01

Potential studies on how ATP changes strength in Taijiquan should probably also include non-Taijiquan practitioner controls who boost their ATP levels with the supplements mentioned above, to see if boosted ATP levels increase strength and well as reduce fatigue (increase endurance).

For those who may have the ability to test ATP levels, the following paper, for example, gives some considerations that should be taken into account in any experimental design:
http://clinchem.aaccjnls.org/content/53/2/318
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Re: Fajin

Postby ChiDragon » Wed May 03, 2017 5:01 pm

The reason that I mention a sinewy farm laborer for comparison is that they learn from long experience to use their muscles efficiently such that they can have a lot of power without needing bulked up muscles and without tiring quickly (i.e., power with endurance). Although they do not train Taijiquan, I think that their experience as laborers builds a similar musculature and usage to what Taijiquan practitioners can develop; both of which are different from what most consider being strong, i.e., with large muscle mass.
CD: I cannot disagree with that.

If your strength is not significantly better than a sinewy farm laborer, then I would NOT consider you as having "tremendous body strength" or “super strength.” At least you are better than being abnormally weak as many people in our modern cultures are.
CD: It is my least concern about my strength is significantly better than a sinewy farm laborer. My main concern was why is my energy level increased tremendously from Tai Chi practice in conjunction with abdominal breathing.

It now seems clearer as to where we disagree. I think that jin strength is the result of the type and way that we use our muscles (and their attached tendons, possibly including the fascia connections as well). It is not entirely clear, but you apparently think that it is some biochemical energy (ATP?) in muscle cells that is enhanced from the normal levels?
CD: Yes, it seems clear to me as to where we disagree to begin with. As I had said before, I can substantiate my claim with a scientific explanation since we may share a common interest in ATP.
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Re: Fajin

Postby DPasek » Wed May 03, 2017 6:11 pm

Since I am a Biochemist, I do have some familiarity with ATP. Although there is an ATP binding site on the protein that our lab studies [the Ryanodine receptor, a calcium release channel that is critical for skeletal and cardiac muscle contraction and other calcium signaling processes in cells], ATP is not an area that we study much.

I thought that it was plausible to propose that an increased level of available ATP in muscle cells may lead to a lessening of muscle fatigue, but I also thought that it was less likely that an increased ATP level would increase someone’s strength. A preliminary literature search leads me to think that neither strength nor fatigue would benefit from an increase in cellular ATP. The current research is not entirely conclusive, but I do not consider it to be likely enough to spend more of my time on it.

If CD wants to propose that ATP may have something to do with jin in Taijiquan, he would need to find some supporting information. As far as I can tell at this time, increasing the ATP levels in cells would make little difference in muscle strength or fatigue. See for example the following study:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2253504/
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Re: Fajin

Postby ChiDragon » Wed May 03, 2017 6:45 pm

How did I get involve with the interest in ATP?

My energy level had increased tremendously after years of Tai Ji practice. I was wondering what is happening in my body which causing the change in my energy level?

First of all, I was having a breathing problem. The problem goes away after year of Tai Ji practice. My breathing improved tremendously. I can breathe much deeper as compared to the shallow breathing problem before. At the same time, my body strength has increased to a point that can handle more rigorous tasks without getting fatigue quickly. Thus it made me to wonder and want a scientific explanation about that. What are parameters that I can work with?

Let's investigate what am I involving with and happening in Tai Chi practice.
1. Increase in body energy
2. Breathing deeper
3. More alert
4. Better body balance
5. Legs and arms are stronger with more endurance.

It seems to me that the first two parameters have the most influential effect to my body. Why my energy level increased, I wanted a biological or a physical reason. So, I looked into how does the body function and how the body produce its energy.

It was a great finding, I had discovered that it is the ATP was doing all the work to give me all the energy. ATP was generated by going through few phases in the cell respiration. To make the story short, let's just investigate the last phase. However, I need the energy formula to help me to get started.
The equation expressed in words would be:
glucose + oxygen → carbon dioxide + water + energy

3. The Electron Transport Chain and Oxidative Phosphorylation — this sequence requires the
O2 and produces most of the energy.
This energy comes in the form of ATP, or adenine triphosphate.

The last phase says it requires the oxygen and produce most of the energy. Where does the body gets the most oxygen from to produce its energy? Of course, that which leads me to think abdominal breathing has a lot to do with it. It is where the oxygen came from, you know! We also know that each molecule of glucose produced 38 ATP molecules. However, if I want to keep up with this process, then, I must keep up with the provision of oxygen by breathing harder. That's not all. The cell respiration takes place in the mitochondria. Hence, if we have more mitochondria in the body, then the body will generate more ATP energy. Don't you think?

Okay. I will stop here for awhile and let all of you to digest the material.




ReF: ATP
https://socratic.org/questions/what-is- ... espiration
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