<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by ProfFilipe:
<B>Is there a precise position to put the feet in each movement of Tai Chi? If yes, which? If not, how should one do?
I made myself a rule which I'm using to draw a chart with all feet positions for the complete sequence of Tai Chi, which I shall publish in my homepage shortly [url=http://br.geocities.com/prof.fmpaiva/mi.html#Taj^gi^c^uano]http://br.geocities.com/prof.fmpaiva/mi.html#Taj^gi^c^uano[/url]
but I have many doubts.
Filipe: As far as distance between the feet is concerned, of course, there are no hard and fast rules, except that three broad possibilities are recognised: High, Medium and Low. The higher the frame, the closer the feet are together longditudinally in bow stance. Beginners should practise as low as possible, in order to develop leg strength, balance and co-ordination. The early Yang Masters used to make their young sons practise under a table, so that their thighs were practically parallel to the ground for these purposes. Later, it is possible to close up the longditudinal distance between the feet and practise the form in Medium or High frame. But there is no harm in continuing to practise low frame to remain suppleness. Of course, low frame is not possible for everyone, but Tai Chi is a 'movable feast' that caters for all levels of suppleness and physical strength. As for the distance laterally, between the feet, I have been taught that in direct, frontal applications such as Ward Off left and Ward off right, the heels should be in line. On the other hand, in Lu Shi Au Bu, for instance, (Brush Knee), or Tanbien (Single Whip), or Yeh Ma Feng Tung (Part Horse's Mane), the lateral distance between the feet is about a foot's width, because the application is a lateral deflection and counter-strike against an angled attack. However, Yang Zheng Duo in his book encourages about a foot's lateral distance between the feet in all applications of this sort, so obviously there are slight differences between the great Masters. In angled bow stances, the rear foot is at about 45 degrees and the front foot also angles outwards slightly. In direct fontal bow stances, the heels are in line, the rear foot is at a 90 degree angle and the front foot points straight ahead. In the Yang Cheng Fu form, in shifting from stance to stance, the feet are always put in place before the rest of the body follows, unlike some forms, where there is a subequent turning of the rear foot to accommodate the new position. I hope this helps. Kind regards, Simon.