The Taiji and Golf Connection

I was telling a coworker of mine about the upcoming Chen Zhonghua workshop and how I have been kicking my training into full gear to prepare. I mentioned that the Chen Style Practical Method is different than my previous training so I have a lot of unlearning to do.  One of the primary differences is the idea of not doing lateral weight shifting from leg to leg.  Instead, the weight distribution is roughly 55/45 with change being initiated by functions of the kua.  The knees only move up and down and when one kua goes up, the other goes down.

He didn’t really grasp what I was talking about since he doesn’t practice taiji, so I proceeded to demonstrate the difference. Immediately after the demonstration, he noted, "that’s just like golf!" Huh?!?? My coworker said that in order to get the most power in a golf swing, you stand with your feet shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent. During the back swing and follow through, there is NO side to side horizontal movement, the turning of the shoulders is initiated by a turning/folding of the inguinal crease, aka KUA!!  As I watched him perform the motion, one kua went up while the other kua went down! Furthermore, throughout his movement, the knees only moved up and down, not side to side!

My coworker went on further to explain that a lot of people will shift their weight and slide the knee in a horizontal lateral motion in hopes of generating more power through momentum.  But in reality, this side to side knee motion obstructs the power generation path.  The more I watched him demonstrate a golf swing, the more excited I became as I saw the principles of taiji manifest.  He demonstrated perfect harmony between the movement of the kua and the shoulders. He did not shift his weight in a lateral horizontal movement.  He was relaxed and at ease with knees slightly bent during the swing.  It was as if the instruction he received in golf confirmed the notions of power generation within the  Hong Chen Style Taiji Practical Method as taught by Chen Zhonghua.  I was baffled and awestruck!

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About wujimon

taiji, meditation and health
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5 Responses to The Taiji and Golf Connection

  1. john says:

    Well, there you go. If you want to hit something and have it go the other way, have your body stay solid and centered, grounded through its core, in its connection with the ground—-and as joints rotate, the power will go into whatever you hit….instead of being dissipated into your own body or indifferent directions. Sounds like a universal principle. Sounds like Taiji.

  2. Rick Matz says:

    Ha! I’m planning on taking up golf after my youngest graduates high school, and yet a little more time comes into my hands. I think it would be a perfect complement to my taijiquan study.

  3. Ahh, gotta love body mechanics. It works because it allows energy to flow, even if we can’t feel it.

    I think that’s pretty interesting. In the beginning my master was always saying ‘just do the movement and let the energy take care of itself’. I guess he really does know what he’s talking about, even if I sometimes don’t want to listen.

  4. Pingback: What Kind of Listening Skills Are Most Important? | John's Tai-Blog @ Camp Tai Chi

  5. Shang Lee says:

    I think tennis works the same way too, but in a back to front swing.

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