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10 Principles of Tai Chi

There are ten important principles to remember when doing Tai Chi Set.
Without practising them your set will lose flow, co-hesion, balance and power.
'The mind should always lead the body' thus developing deep concentration.

  1. Sink the chest, raise the head
  2. Sink shoulders and drop the elbows
  3. Keep your head erect
  4. Unity of internal and external
  5. Distinguish between full and empty
  6. Relax the waist
  7. Continuity without interuption
  8. Unity of upper and lower body
  9. Seek stillness in motion
  10. Use the mind and not strength

These ten principles were developed by the great Yang style Master Yang Chen-Fu to help understand the movements of the form.

The ten principles define a type of body structure rather than trying to dictate actual moves. They are regarded as the foundations of Tai Chi Chuan.

The ten principles are arranged in an order for the student to follow.
The first five principles are physical principles. They set up the conditions in the body for correct practice and without them being completed the last five will fail to develop. You will notice these first five priciples start at the head and finish at the feet.

The last five principles deal with co-ordination of mind, body and spirit.

Principles six and seven deal mostly with co-ordination of the upper and lower body while eight and nine deal with the unity of mind and body. The tenth principle deals with working with the spirit.

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