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PDellArena
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PostSubject: coiling energy?   Sat Nov 14, 2009 2:42 pm

Is there a distinct "energy" considered "coiling energy" or is it just a combination of spinning, sliding and circling energies?
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PostSubject: Re: coiling energy?   Tue Nov 17, 2009 10:48 pm

PDellArena wrote:
Is there a distinct "energy" considered "coiling energy" or is it just a combination of spinning, sliding and circling energies?

Patrick,
While I am not an expert on this topic of the specific energies, my teacher would say that they are different. He teaches us that there are 49 distinct energies that are used in Taiji. Based on my understanding they are distinct but similar and it is possible to mistakenly interpret this overlap by labeling them the same. The way they are applied and the effect they have would be different though. Think for a moment about the distinctions simply between the words you used and we can explore these concepts further.
- Coiling brings to mind an energy that can potentially surround and constrict. It might also bring to mind a spring effect, however my teacher would say that springing energy is also it's own distinct energy.
- Sliding energy is just that. You would use sliding movements to effect a response. One example might be to slide the bridge of one or both arms along an opponents arm or neck. Now some may say that is rubbing energy, but again...these are arguably two distinct energies.
- Spinning energy might bring to mind a spinning top. When you think of a top spining and bumping off of whatever it hits, this may help to understand this one. But again, there are some who would call this bumping energy. Bumping energy is different in that it hits, while spinning energy deflects.
- Circling energy is used in some footwork applications where you would circle around your opponent. You see this in some applications of the footwork in the transition from push to fist under elbow in paragraph 2 of the Yang Long Form. You would also see this same type of footwork in some applications of single whip. Circling energy can also be used in some Qin Na applications where you see a person use their bridge to deflect an attack by engaging the attackers arm and then circling it into a lock.

If you think of it...jot some of these thoughts down and we can explore them in class. I want to reiterate that I am not very knowledgeable about this, and can only give you a very superficial understanding of these concepts.

Thanks for this question. Sorry it took me so long to see it...for some reason I am not getting the alerts when someone adds something to the forum. I need to go and see why that is.

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PostSubject: Re: coiling energy?   Wed Nov 18, 2009 10:10 am

Hi Pat:

The tai chi energies are very complex and I certainly, like Donna, do not claim to know everything about them. There is a very good book by Stuart Alve Olson now out of print called The Intrinsic Energies of Tai Chi Chuan. He speaks of the many energies present in tai chi which I will list for you here. "Coiling energy" is not mentioned specifically although it certainly has it's place among many of the other energies. Here they are:

sticking, listening, interpreting, receiving, neutralizing, borrowing, issuing, enticing, raising, sinking, seizing, opening, closing, dispersing, ward-off, roll-back, press, push, pull, split, elbow-stroke, shoulder-stroke, twisting, breaking, grasping, drilling, intercepting, frozen, interrupting, inch, separating, shaky coil, playful shaky, folding up, wiping, peeling, deceptive and approaching.

As you can see, there are many and the line at which one may interpret their meaning is a bit hazy. So circular, coiling, sliding and spinning could certainly fall into many of the energies listed above. The important thing in tai chi practice is to be aware of the various energies and try to sense them as you practice form, etc. Push hands is an excellent way to learn to incorporate energies internally.
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