Tai Chi with weights

Tai Chi with weights

Postby ProfFilipe » Mon Nov 12, 2007 7:12 pm

Does anybody practice the Taichi barehand form with weights around the wrist, let us say, about 0.5kg or 1kg or more? I mean, using weights like ankle weights, but around the wrist; I don't know the name in english. Is that a good practice? Is that bad? Thanks,
Filipe
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Postby Louis Swaim » Mon Nov 12, 2007 10:55 pm

Greetings Filipe,

What is your objective in wearing wrist weights during practice? The reason I ask is because weight training is ordinarily for training the strength and size of the muscles. The objective of taijiquan is different. You may have a specific therapeutic need for strength training. If that is the case, I would encourage you to do that separately from taijiquan form training. Adding artificial weights during taijiquan form training may decrease your sensitivity, and may distract you from the principles and objectives of taiji.

I had a young classmate years ago who tried using ankle and wrist weights during taijiquan class. Our sifu discouraged him from doing so.

Those are my thoughts on the matter. Others may have different opinions.

Take care,
Louis
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Postby Steveg219 » Tue Nov 13, 2007 12:31 am

I don't see any direct application per se, but it is interesting to note that when you advance to sword form you are dealing with a 1-3 lb object added to your arm. It adds a significant new range of challenges, strength and skills. In this same vein, staff, sabre, etc. all are intended to work additional skills and develop certain kinds of strength.

What we normally associate with wrist weights in terms of increasing resistance in western exercise doesn't seem to apply so well to Taiji. I think the reason is that most people are walking around with too much tension and "strength" to begin with. This would be training you to use additional muscular force to move the arms rather than less!

One place I could see using wrist weights, ironically, is after you have really learned to relax and root. I could see how it might be beneficial at a more advanced stage when you are working on subtle muscle and tendon activations, it might be worthwhile to play with at that point, but I think it would take you in the wrong direction in the early stages.....
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Postby JerryKarin » Tue Nov 13, 2007 10:51 pm

Years ago Rocky Young was doing taiji with leg weights and maybe arm weights too. He had used it to develop the most incredible long bow stance. Long, low, solid, everything in the right place. It was pretty awesome. He told me he looked at the videos of Yang Jun, took actual measurements of his stride off the screen and used the leg weights while practicing taiji to develop his leg strength to the point where he could duplicate Yang Jun's stances. Ironically at the seminar Yang Jun told him to shorten up a bit..

I've never tried the weights myself, but several people I know have done it.
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Postby T » Wed Nov 14, 2007 3:38 am

I asked my sifu a very similar question about a month ago. He looked at me like I was a bit crazy and said "no".

Just train the forms properly and train the stances properly and you will gain the strength you need.
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Postby fol » Wed Nov 14, 2007 4:34 am

I use the giant "rubber bands" (like for physical therapy). It's not for strength training, though. I don't have a regular practice partner locally, and if I rig the band right (attaching it to a door, or standing on it) it gives some feedback about structure. I can feel if my bones are in the wrong place (at least sometimes). Good luck!
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Postby shugdenla » Wed Nov 14, 2007 3:55 pm

ProfFilipe,
Innovation in taijiquan practice is great but personally I have found it better to use weights (when I do use them) on the days I do not do taijiquan.
When doing shuaijiao, the training tools often enhance taiji so no need to overdo and promote lactic acidosis with the form by adding the weights.

If you see a value and you feel it aids your practice then all power to you!
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Postby Steveg219 » Wed Nov 14, 2007 5:14 pm

The example of weights for training the legs is interesting.

What about when placed on the wrists as in the original post?
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Postby ProfFilipe » Tue Nov 20, 2007 9:41 am

Thanks for all answers. The reason I would like doing taiĝiĉûan with weights is the following. Working with weights in a gym is very boring for me, but I've found out that practicing tajĝiĉûan with weights is quite a nice thing to do. Therefore, I practice tajĝiĉûan with weights for the sake of the weights only, not for the sake of tajĝiĉûan. However I do practice tajĝiĉûan without weights as usual.

My actual question is: would the practice of the sequence with weights be physically bad for ones health and specifically for the muscles and bones?
Thanks,
Filipe
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Postby mrnaples » Wed Nov 21, 2007 2:56 am

<My actual question is: would the practice of the sequence with weights be physically bad for ones health and specifically for the muscles and bones?
Thanks,
Filipe>

no!
just a different kind of a work out. that's all

M.
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Postby mrnaples » Wed Nov 21, 2007 3:36 am

hello one and all. I have not been here in years ..
so, all of u should welcome me back! ))
<Does anybody practice the Taichi barehand form with weights around the wrist, let us say, about 0.5kg or 1kg or more? I mean, using weights like ankle weights, but around the wrist; I don't know the name in english. Is that a good practice? Is that bad? Thanks,
Filipe>


hello Filipe,


their is nothing wrong doing the form with weights....

just as there is nothing wrong, with working out with weights
some folk may be too weak or some folk want to get stronger, it's all good!

but there's always a but! )))

remember to balance or should i say (counter balance) your training...
weight training ( with form or not) tends to make your center/chi rise.....up... up.... up.....
not so tai chi-ish.. ...

so then u need to bring it back down...and do twice as much tai chi things as you did before! )))

so you see, filipe, there's always too much work in tai chi chuan.
))


M.
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Re: Tai Chi with weights

Postby jasonanderson » Sat Feb 27, 2010 1:28 am

Hello, I am new to the sight so please forgive any writing or grammar errors. I study tai-chi with a man who was taught by stuart Olson and let me tell you as of right now tai-chi is the only martial art that matters, it is incredible. After practicing other arts for some years, this seems to me to be the most fullfilling in all aspects marial,spiritual or otherwise. Just to comment on the post, Ihappen to use tension bands at various angles using either heaven or bow stance, and let me tell you, trying to maintain root whilst you got tension in either direction(backwards or forwards) is a challenge to say the least. The hardest part is keeping yourself from leaning to far forward over the bubbling well in the front leg while you are equalizing the where the qua should stop in relation to the tension. I guess one thing i have noticed however, is that in doing these exercises the hamstrings really become more a part of what is going on during the exercise i think it strengthens them considerably. Im not sure this kind of exercise is something that the late great tt liang would consider necessary to improving tai chi root but it seems to work for me alright.
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