3 week induction course

New students undertake the course in order to gain an introductory understanding of the training.

• £7.50 per lesson or £20 for the 3 week course 
• 3 consecutive classes
• Explore new skills every week
• Receive corrections, tips & pointers
• One-to-one help throughout the course


The perfect exercise

In modern life, time is in short supply and a person wants to get the best possible benefits from any new endeavour they undertake.
Harvard Medical School suggests that taijiquan may indeed be the perfect exercise.
It combines 8 crucial ingredients:
  1. Awareness (including mindfulness & focussed attention)
  2. Intention
  3. Natural, freer breathing
  4. Embodied spirituality (including philosophy)

These 8 taijiquan components offer a multi-layered approach to the cultivation of health, vitality and wellbeing.
The depth of study available within a bona fide system of taijiquan is incredible; a student can quite literally explore the art for their entire lifetime and still discover new mysteries, secrets and skills.

As a martial art, taijiquan is unparalleled in its sophisticated biomechanics, diversity of combat skills and variety of application.

Not talking

It is good to talk, yet talking is also a problem.
If your mind is never still and quiet, you cannot possibly feel relaxed and at peace.
For many people talking is a compulsive habit, serving to mask the silence within.
Without the chatter, people feel alone and isolated.

Try this: become aware of your own need to talk.
When you feel the urge to speak arise, let it pass again.
Gradually, you become quieter inside and begin to notice more.
You speak when necessary but your sentences shorten, you are more succinct and direct.
You feel calmer. 


What is silence?

Silence occurs when the mind becomes quiet and still.
This process cannot be forced. The mind must naturally settle and relax.

Taijiquan creates a situation where your attention is absorbed with where you are and what you are doing, so the mind becomes quiet automatically.

Unlike concentration, you allow the mind to open and become expansive.
You feel, hear and see everything around you.
chattering of your thoughts will begin to fade.


Notice things

The first indication of a growing sensibility for quietude lies in your capacity to notice the world around you.
Instead of driving past in your noisy car, you walk slowly.
You see.

Insignificant-seeming things catch your attention: a butterfly, a leaf, a flower, the sound of an insect or the call of a bird.
If you experience genuine awe and delight, then you are learning.



To find lost places you need to become a little lost yourself.
Not lost in drink, drugs, illusion or stimulation.
Quite the opposite.

You will need your wits about you.
You need to step off the familiar pathways of your life and walk somewhere different.



For many years the disciple must avidly seek to 'steal their teacher's art'. This involves being exceedingly cunning, diligent and earnest.
The aim is to pass belts rapidly and skilfully; to race through the syllabus.

The apprentice must work much harder than they expect to. Harder than every other student in the school. They must outpace all competition.
They must meet the master's standards, not their own

The apprenticeship stage lasts for the equivalent of 7 years full-time study: approximately 10,000 hours of quality tuition and practice.


Conventional training

External training methods such as push-ups, running or sit-ups are not part of the kung fu repertoire.
We do not need to train weights either.

Conventional training will not necessarily improve your kung fu
Many exercises actually create muscle tension, and tension impedes the natural movement of the muscle itself.
The slower the muscle can move, the less effective you are in combat.



Set aside talk about relaxation, qi, softness and other concerns...
Your body is flesh and bone.
It is moved by muscles.
In order to be strong, agile, flexible and adaptive in combat - you need to strengthen your body.


Eight internal styles

There are only eight known styles of internal martial art:

• Taijiquan (supreme ultimate fist/absolute boxing)
• Baguazhang (8 trigrams palm)
• Xingyiquan (form/intention fist)
• Liuhebafa (water fist)
• Tongbeiquan (spreading power from the back fist)
• Ziranmen (natural fist)
• Bajiquan (eight extremities fist)
• Yiquan (mind fist)/dachengquan (the great accomplishment) 

We teach the first two arts: taijiquan and baguazhang.



A common misconception is that any martial art offers the opportunity to reach an 'internal' level of practice i.e. a karate man can become internal.
This is not true.

Internal forms are quite different to external ones.
They were designed to be a vehicle for the exploration of a very unique way of moving and using the body.
ovement is initiated by the centre (not by the hips) and entails moving every part of the body as one fluid unit. The joints do very little work.

The combat skills and sensibilities of the internal martial arts require a perceptual shift: blending, yielding, listening, stickiness. 
There is no blocking, struggling or forcing involved.


What is internal?

Exploring the internal martial arts is not the same as practicing a mainstream/conventional/external martial art.

There are many different considerations:
Conventional martial arts Internal martial arts
Obvious Hidden
Combat is the main concern Health and combat equally important
Straightforward Significantly more detailed and sophisticated
Favour military-style warm-up exercise Strength is built using unconventional means
Uses existing body habits Body must be trained to move in a manner that is unfamiliar
Mechanical Organic, natural
Jerky Flowing
Typically focuses on striking or grappling, seldom both Striking and grappling trained together
Blocking/resistant, force versus force 4 ounces of pressure, stickiness, sensitivity
Favours the younger, stronger student Age is less of an obstacle
Fighting/competition Incapacitation is the aim
Aggression/emotion Composure
Forcing Allowing, leading, misdirecting
Speed Spontaneity and timing
Isolated limb use Whole-body movement
Extended Close-quarters
Linear Circular
Planning Listening, sensitivity, adaptation
Struggling Blending
Being in your head thinking about what to do next Being in the body and sensation-oriented
Denying your vulnerability Feeling your vulnerability
Contracted, locked musculature Loose, fluid and relaxed musculature