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Tai Chi 48-Form Movements

by Helen Liang, February 29, 2016

The 48-form is traditionally taught divided into six sections, so you may focus on adding a small number of movements to your overall form gradually.

The first section stresses basic hand and foot movements and the essential Peng, Lu, Ji, An (Ward Off, Rollback, Press, and Push). The second involves flexible changes in movements of body and legs with Turn Body to Thrust Palm as the focus. The third section has the first climax with many rises and falls and body turns with Slap Foot and Tame the Tiger as the focus.

The fourth section centers around the challenging Right Heel Kick movement. The fifth focuses on Fair Lady Shuttles on both the left and right, requiring balance, suppleness, and coordination. The sixth section contains a great variety of hand forms, stances, and body movements such as Turn Body and Sweep Lotus, and the final climax of the form.

The six sections of Tai Chi 48-Form Movements:

1st Section

  1. Commencing Form
    起勢
    Qishi
  2. White Crane Spreads its Wings
    白鹤亮翅
    Bai He Liang Chi
  3. Left Brush Knee and Push Forward
    左摟膝拗步
    Zuo Lou Xi Ao Bu
  4. Left Single Whip
    左单鞭
    Zuo Dan Bian
  5. Left Playing Lute
    左琵琶势
    Zuo Pi Pa Shi
  6. Roll Back and Press/Squeeze (3 repetitions)
    履擠势
    Lue Ji Shi
  7. Left Deflect, Parry and Punch
    左搬攔捶
    Zuo Ban Lan Chui
  8. Left Ward off, Roll back, Press and Push (Grasp Sparrow's Tail)
    左棚履擠按
    Zuo Peng Lue Ji An

2nd Section

  1. Lean on Diagonal
    斜身靠
    Xie Shen Kao
  2. Fist Under Elbow
    肘底捶
    Zhou Di Chui
  3. Repulse Monkey
    倒卷肱 (四)
    Dao Juan Gong
  4. Turn Body and Thrust Palm
    轉身推掌 (四)
    Zhuan Shen Tui Zhang
  5. Right Playing Lute
    右琵琶勢
    You Pi Pa Shi
  6. Right Brush Knee and Punch Down
    摟膝栽捶
    Lou Xi Zai Chui

3rd Section

  1. White Snake Spits Poison
    白蛇吐信 (二)
    Bai She Tu Xin
  2. Slap Foot and Tame the Tiger (L & R)
    拍脚伏虎 (二)
    Pai Jiao Fu Hu
  3. Left Diagonal and Back Fist
    左撇身捶
    Zuo Pie Shen Chui
  4. Piercing Fist and Lower Body
    穿拳下勢
    Chuan Zhang Xia Shi
  5. Stand on One Leg and Prop Up Palm
    獨立撑掌 (二)
    Du Li Cheng Zhang
  6. Right Single Whip
    右單鞭
    You Dan Bian

4th Section

  1. Right Wave Hands Like Clouds
    右雲手 (三)
    You Yun Shou
  2. Left and Right Part the Horse's Mane
    右左分鬃
    You Zuo Fen Zong
  3. High Pat on Horse
    高探馬
    Gao Tan Ma
  4. Right Heel Kick
    右蹬脚
    You Deng Jiao
  5. Strike to the Ears with Both Fists
    雙峰貫耳
    Shuang Feng Guan Er
  6. Left Heel Kick
    左蹬脚
    Zuo Deng Jiao
  7. Cover Hands and Strike with Fist
    掩手肱捶
    Yan Shou Gong Chui
  8. Needle at Sea Bottom
    海底针
    Hai Di Zhen
  9. Fan Through the Back
    閃通背
    Shan Tong Bei

5th Section

  1. Right and Left Toe Kick
    右左分脚
    You Zuo Fen Jiao
  2. Left and Right Brush Knee and Push Forward
    摟膝拗步 (二)
    Lou Xi Ao Bu
  3. Step Forward, Grab and Punch
    上步擒打
    Shang Bu Qin Da  
  4. Apparent Closure
    如封似閉
    Ru Feng Si Bi
  5. Left Wave Hands like Clouds
    左雲手(三)
    Zuo Yun Shou
  6. Right Diagonal Back Fist
    右撇身捶
    You Pie Shen Chui
  7. Left and Right Fair Lady Shuttle Back and Forth
    左右穿梭
    Zuo You Chuan Suo
  8. Step Back and Spear Palm
    退步穿掌
    Tui Bu Chuan Zhang

6th Section

  1. Insubstantial Stance and Press Palm Down
    虚步壓掌
    Xu Bu Ya Zhang
  2. Stand on Left Leg and Lift Palm
    獨立托掌
    Du Li Tuo Zhang
  3. Lean in Horse Stance
    馬步靠
    Ma Bu Kao
  4. Turn Body and Large Roll Back
    轉身大捋
    Zhuan Shen Da Lue
  5. Scoop Palm and Lower Body
    撩掌下勢
    Liao Zhang Xia Shi
  6. Step Forward and Cross Punch
    上步七星
    Shang Bu Qi Xing
  7. Stand on Right Leg and Ride the Tiger
    獨立跨虎
    Du Li Kua Hu
  8. Turn Body and Sweep Lotus
    轉身擺蓮
    Zhuan Shen Bai Lian
  9. Pull the Bow and Shoot the Tiger
    彎弓射虎
    Wan Gong She Hu
  10. Right Deflect, Parry and Punch
    右搬攔捶
    You Ban Lan Chui
  11. Right Ward Off, Roll back, Press and Push (Grasp Sparrow's Tail)
    右棚履擠按
    You Peng Lue Ji An
  12. Cross Hands
    十字手
    Shi Zi Shou
  13. Closing Form
    收勢
    Shoushi

Master Helen Liang, the eldest daughter of Grandmaster Liang, Shou-Yu, began training in traditional Wushu at the age of 4. She has participated in many international competitions and has won a great number of gold medals. She has been featured in many magazines and TV programs. Master Helen Liang lives and teaches in Vancouver, Canada.


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