The Broadsword form is the first weapons form taught within the Master Ding Academy, it allows the practitioner to focus on deepening their understanding of fundamental Principles while introducing further challenge to their practice.
The form is challenged through the introduction of the sword, a weighted object, to one hand. It can be held close to the body or at maximum extension. Its movement transitioning from slow and deliberate to fast and crisp. Both these elements will add the challenge of varying weighting and momentum into form practice.
Furthermore, with the Broadsword form, applications practice takes on additional focus. While our training weapons are wooden and unsharpened, the sight of our training partner cutting or stabbing towards us with a weapon, however blunt, certainly demands our attention.
This two day course is open to those interested in learning this form, there will be a beginners group, those leaning for the first time, and a second group for those who are ready to move forwards gaining a deeper understanding.
Price: Daily rate
Early Bird paying before 14th Jan MDA members: €70. Non members: €80
After 14th Jan MDA members: €80 Non members: €90
And a Christmas present...
We have two wooden training swords and sword bags to give to the first two new beginners to the Broadsword workshops that book and pay for both days training. Get them before they’re gone…
To see Tai Chi performed by a Master is to see the basics performed well. When watching their form there is a magnetic quality, you know you’re seeing something special and you just can’t look away.
One of those qualities is the unification of body with mind within movement. We see harmony within their movement that allows effortless expression of power.
We’ll spend the day in partner work developing our ability to integrate all parts of ourselves, integrate with our partner, and through that unity, express power through movement from the centre.
Suitable for all levels, beginners to advanced. Those new to the Academy are most welcome. Cost: MDA members: €70, non members: €80. Date: 19th November. 10am – 4pm Location: Clontarf Parish Centre, Church of St John the Baptist, Seafield rd West, Clontarf.
Contact Ross Cousens to book a place. e: ross@masterdingacademy m: 0877 527 013... See MoreSee Less
Master Ding Academy Ireland is pleased to announce Master Ding’s visit to Dublin October 1st. Sifu Ding will be in Dublin teaching a one day, open masterclass:
Topic: Sensitivity and Connection.
Sifu Ding will be in Dublin teaching a one day, open masterclass.
A commonly used work within Tai Chi practice is, ‘relax’. Why do we relax? We relax so that we might find stillness within the body, and within the mind. Once still we can develop sensitivity. Sensitivity to ourselves allowing connection all parts of the body and mind Sensitivity to others allowing connection with another’s system.
June is here already and our next Tai Chi workshop is just around the corner, on Saturday July 8th we will be running a Chi Kung workshop in the Clontarf Parish Centre.
It is said that whilst the Tai Chi Chuan forms give Chi energy direction and speed, it is Chi Kung that stimulates, concentrates and develops the Chi in the first place.
Chi Kung is a unique ancient Chinese exercise system based on the Taoist principles of harmony, simplicity and naturalness, and its aim is to cultivate, focus and balance the flow of Chi within the body, relaxing the mind, strengthening and improving health.
This workshop will focus on the 8 posture Zhan Zhuang Chi Kung system, focusing on body posture and breathing. Once the basics of the postures are established we will be using partner exercises to look at energy work, specifically integration of one's own system and connection with others.
This day is open to anyone interested in experiencing Chi Kung first hand and is open to all levels of experience, from beginners to advanced practitioners.
Through practice we cultivate, through partner work we truly learn.
Date: Saturday 8th July Time: 10am – 4pm Location: Clontarf Parish Centre
Members €70 Non members €80
If you’re interested, or have any questions, let me know.
Time flies and our second open workshop for 2017 is almost upon us.
The next event will be running on May 14th and the topic for the day will be ‘sinking and rooting’.
A fundamental aspect of Tai Chi Chuan practice is the development of a firm ‘root’. This is the ability to sink the energy in the body and develop strong stability. Stability in quietness, but more importantly, stability under pressure. The morning will be spent understanding how to neutralise external forces and earth them away. Ie Strength without confrontation. In the afternoon we will focus on bringing energy out of the structure and expressing. Without a strong root, we will be incapable of expression of energy.
Open workshops are open to all, regardless of level of experience.
MDA Ireland is lucky to host not one but two Tai Chi Masters during the bank holiday weekend of 28th – 31st Oct 2016.
This is a great opportunity to meet and feel authentic Tai Chi Chuan from two individuals who have dedicated their lives to the ongoing development and dissemination of this beautiful art to all who are interested in learning.
One of the signs of a good teacher is the ability to teach a group of varying levels of experience, introducing a novice to the art while simultaneously filling the cup of the most experienced practitioner. The teacher’s ability to effortlessly determine the level of the student and find that learning that will bring them to the next level makes any day attended of full worth.
There will be two different sections to the weekend. There will be two one day open workshops. These two days will be covering the fundamental principles of Tai Chi practice and are suitable for all levels of Tai Chi practitioner. There will also be two closed sessions for Instructor and senior level students. These sessions will focus on deeper aspects of the art.
The programme for the weekend will be:
Friday 28th Oct 6:30 – 10:00pm Power Development Closed session €40 Location: Clontarf Scots and Presbyterian Church Hall www.clontarfchurch.ie/map
It’s Ireland and there are spirals everywhere, those ancients at Newgrange must have known a thing or two.
Spiral action is one of the essential dynamics that must exist within solo and partner practice of Tai Chi Chuan. Without it movements are linear, stability is sacrificed and the ability to project power hampered.
While the appearance of Tai Chi is of slow, graceful, flowing balance, in reality this is just the outward manifestation of an inner dynamic. A dynamic that cannot be seen, only felt. And once felt, understanding can begin to come.
We’ll be spending a fun day working spiral, firstly structurally then energetically, through the limbs and body, all within the context of Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan.
Ta Lu is a dynamic partner exercise focussing on the, ‘four corners of the square’, those being:
Choy (big pull), Liet (Split), Jau (Elbow strike) and Cau (Shoulder strike)
Ta Lu is a training practice that falls into the category of Gau Sau or the exchange of hands and is a vital aspect of our continued development in our Tai Chi Chuan practice. See the link below for a full description of the practice of Gau Sau and the benefits that it offers:
Strong Body, Still Mind. But most importantly - Have Fun! Tai Chi Chuan Workshop. Donation based. Demonstration at 4.15pm Get a taste of what Tai Chi is like at the Dublin Food Co-op. Chi Kung. Form. Partner work. More info: www.taichiclassesdublin.com Workshop conducted by Master Ding Academy Qualified Instructors www.masterdingacademy.com... See MoreSee Less
Open workshop in Clontarf in Dublin exploring the practice and benefits of Pushing Hands as applies to Tai Chi Chuan training.
The final and third element of the triad of Traditional Tai Chi Chuan emphasises the application of Chi, rather than its development and circulation within the body. This element takes theory into practice and requires you to trust in and cooperate with a partner, so that experience is gained first hand, of applying Tai Chi Principles into practice. Practitioners call this Gau Sau or the exchange of hands.
Posture testing forms part of this element of Tai Chi Chuan practice. Partner practice of this nature provides a point of reference to measure your own progress and will ensure you are on the right track. It is an opportunity for both parties to help each other refine movements and postures and gain better insight and understanding of applied energy.
Open to all levels, experienced to those who have never practiced Pushing hands before. MDA members €70, non-members: €80.
I won’t try to explain Yin Yang here, but I will share an excerpt from Master Ding’s book, ’15 Minute Tai Chi Strong Body, Still Mind’
Often the Yin-Yang symbol is used to represent Tai Chi Chuan because its concepts play an integral part within the art. Tai Chi Chuan is intrinsically concerned with yin and yang, and there is a constant dynamic interplay between these two opposite forces, in all aspects within our practice.
The form in particular has many examples of bringing the theory in practice. Throughout the form you will see that all the expanding (Yang) movements are followed by retracting (Yin) movements. Each flows seamlessly into the next, as Yin flows into Yang and back into Yin. Movements are also practised slowly (Yin), yet at the same time must contain focussed intent (Yang). Our muscles too are relaxed (Yin), yet the structure of Tai Chi Chuan allows us to exhibit the inner strength of Chi (Yang) – the analogy of ‘steel wrapped in cotton’.
Tai Chi Chuan has Yin and Yang everywhere within it. The entire philosophy of the art is based around it. But both theory and practice are equally important in Tai Chi Chuan. Endless theorising with ideas and debate will yield little result in the physical. Likewise mere repetition of movement without input from the ideas contained within Tai Chi principles and concepts will also reap little benefit. A Yin-Yang balance must be achieved between the two. Yin Yang describes all things Tai Chi Chuan and beyond and whilst the Yin-Yang symbol may look fairly simple it carries a much more profound meaning. Perhaps in much the same way that Tai Chi Chuan may look a simple exercise until you begin to do it!
Spend the day exploring this principle its application within Tai Chi Chuan... See MoreSee Less
Ta Lu is a dynamic partner exercise within the Traditional Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan Syllabus. See below an excerpt from the Master Ding Academy website explaining Gau Sau exercises, (partner work), of which Ta Lu is one.
‘Often Tai Chi Chuan practitioners prefer to practice on their own with minimal physical contact with others, in the belief that if they train long and diligent enough, they will be able to gain the awesome power that is available through the traditional art. Unfortunately, this is a mistaken view. A traditional method requires a traditional approach, and whilst individual practice is important, it forms only one aspect of Tai Chi Chuan training. Traditional Tai Chi Chuan requires participation in paired practice (Gau Sau) to enable you to polish your Tai Chi skills.
For a practitioner to be able to develop the acumen, and harvest the opportunities that are abundant in the art, there is a prerequisite that it must include the exchange of hands or Gau Sau. By doing this, will enable you to work with different people of different levels to help you to gain experience and refine and enhance your Tai Chi Chuan ability. Gau Sau training can be something as simple as posture testing but can also be developed in stages to include Push Hands, Sensitivity, Ta Lu, and martial applications. What is often forgotten is that the path of Tai Chi Chuan can only be negotiated through experiential learning. Only by working with people, will you begin to feel and discover the various aspects of Tai Chi Chuan talked about by masters.
It is often said that a teacher can only guide you on a journey and it is ultimately the practitioner that has to travel along its path. Part of this process is to feel what is not possible to adequately describe in words and only in doing so will you be able to harmonise the mind, body and spirit. Too often have practitioners over intellectualised Tai Chi Chuan and have subsequently lost their way. By being continually grounded and incorporating Gau Sau as part of your Tai Chi Chuan training, a practitioner has the potential ability to realize capabilities beyond that of known limitations.’
The day will cover 4 Corners, 3 Step Ta Lu and Ta Lu form. Those new to the Ta Lu exercise will begin with 4 corners, graduating to 3 Step. For those with experience in Ta Lu, we will be practicing the Ta Lu form, and relevant applications.
This workshop is open to all who wish to learn. A minimum of 1 year Tai Chi experience is recommended.... See MoreSee Less
To think of someone practicing Tai Chi Chuan is to conjure images of the old folks in the park in Hong Kong, silk suits flapping in the breeze, moving with slow deliberate softness, all in unison, faces calm and serene. We can almost see the benefit they are getting from this practice. Bodies’ soft and pliable, minds still like a lake in the morning. Wellness guaranteed.
Of course Tai Chi Chuan comes from a different time. A time when daily struggle was a certainty, work was physically hard and long, and wellness carried a very different meaning. It meant ending the day alive and healthy enough to go out tomorrow and provide, and defend what’s yours.
This is the world in which Tai Chi Chuan evolved. Tai Chi Chuan, The fighting art based on the principles of Tai Chi. Those principles of softness, sensitivity and flow. All within a context of focussed intention.
Take a day to explore this vital aspect of Traditional Tai Chi Chuan practice. This event is open to all interested in finding out what Tai Chi Chuan as a martial art is about and how the concepts of softness, sensitivity, flow and intention can be put to practical use.... See MoreSee Less
Everything we do in Tai Chi Chuan is from a stable, rooted base.
Imagine pushing a car on the road, now, imagine if you were standing in an ice skating rink instead…
No rooting means no ability to express power.
Spend a day learning about sinking and rooting, and more importantly, developing and testing your ability to sink and root in the face of oncoming pressure. This may take the form of a simple push, or a more energetic punch, you decide..... See MoreSee Less
How do we overcome someone of superior strength? With skill and the ability to listen to their force and flow with it instead of resisting. Spend 2 hours this Sunday looking at how we can use this idea in a self defence context.
This event is part funded by the Irish Sports Council through the Irish Martial Arts Commission. Discounts for introductory courses are available on the day.
While this is an opportunity for women to experience the aspect of Tai Chi Chuan, it's not just for women, you can bring your men folk too!!... See MoreSee Less
One day open Masterclass workshop hosting Master Ding in his only visit to Ireland this year.
Topic: Ting Jin: or Listening Energy.
Ting Jin as described in Master Ip's book: Tai Chi Revelations: Principles and Concepts:
'To Listen is to measure or assess the intensity of your partner's force. In push hands, one uses Ting Jin to detect the partner's intention. One 'listens' from the Xin (or 'heart') as if one is using the ears ... Listen before you react to your partner's force. Ting Jin must be accurate and swift. One can then follow your partner’s movements effortlessly.'
Fee: MDA members: €90. Non members: €100
This is a fantastic opportunity to meet and personally work with a real Master of the Art of Tai Chi. This will be Master Ding's only visit to Ireland this year so if you wish to experience Tai Chi first hand...
Book your place.
This Masterclass is open to all who are interested in furthering thier knowledge and skill in the fabulous art of Tai Chi Chuan.... See MoreSee Less
Sifu Ding will be returning to Dublin this October following last year’s successful visit. The Saturday and Sunday Master classes are open all who are interested in learning about Tai Chi Chuan, with or without prior experience.
The weekend will focus on the three main aspect of learning Traditional Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan:
1. Centralising energy through Chi Kung 2. Circulating energy through the Form 3. Applying energy through Gau Sau: partner work and posture testing.
October Fri 11th: Instructors session 7:00 - 9:30pm. Open to MDA Instructors and those attending the Advanced Level 1 course in Preston and Limehouse.
Sat 12th: 10:00am – 4:00pm. Principles and Concepts: Centralising. The first element in the triad of Traditional Tai Chi Chuan focuses primarily in bringing the energy, Chi to settle and concentrate at the Tan Tien point. The primary method in achieving this is through Chi Kung. The mind is quietened, the body relaxes, tension dissolves – mind and body working in harmony.
Sun 13th: 9:30am – 3:30pm. Principles and Concepts: Circulating. Once you learn how to centre and concentrate Chi at the Tan Tien point, the second element of the triad of Traditional Tai Chi Chuan focuses on the circulation of Chi through the body. The form contains within it flowing circular movements. Carrying them out with a relaxed body devoid of muscular tension in unison with a quiet mind gives Chi direction, so that it can flow naturally within the body. As the energy circulates, the mind/body state deepens and you begin to change and grow.
The final and third element of the triad of Traditional Tai Chi Chuan emphasises the application of Chi, rather than its development and circulation within the body. Posture testing, Push Hands, and Combat Application all form part of this element of Tai Chi Chuan practice. Partner practice of this nature provides a point of reference to measure your own progress and will ensure you are on the right track. It is an opportunity for both parties to help each other refine movements and postures and gain better insight and understanding of applied energy.
Application will form the common thread through both days of this Masterclass. The efficacy of both Centralising and Circulating aspects will be tested throughout the weekend through this vital aspect of our practice.
Saturday and Sunday will also see a continuation of the Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan Broadsword, (Dao), Form corrections and Applications. This is open to those who have completed the long form and attended an MDA Introductory Broadsword Workshop.... See MoreSee Less