6.b.vii.-chen-style-taijiquan-fzq-cxw Section

Chen Style Taijiquan

Author: Feng Zhi Qiang & Chen Xiao Wang 

Paperback: 227 pages                                                        

Publisher: Morning Glory Publishers, China (1986)            


ISBN-10:  7505404806           ISBN-13: 978-7505404809                 

Reviewer: Nick Gudge (Dec 2011)

Chen Style Taijiquan (Feng + CXW)Book CoverThis was the first book on Chen Style Taijiquan I read back around 1989. It was available before Chen Xiao Wang produced his set of instructional videos and was one of the very few if not the only resource available on Chen style taijiquan in English at that time.

Its curiosity is that Feng Zhi Qiang is Bejing trained, being a taiji student of Chen Fake and his son Chen Zhaokui. The input from a younger Chen Xiao Wang who was trained in Chen village is of smaller extent.

The two authors provide completely different elements to this volume: Feng Zhi Qiang’s first 2/3rds of the book is dedicated to the applications of the xinjia forms. These are provided with minimal text and primarily by picture series, moving step by step through the applications. Given the need to have attained basic skills before attempting applications, while very interesting in themselves they hold little learning materials or opportunity for over 99.9% of taiji students.

Chen Xiao Wang’s 1/3rd of the book is dedicated to conveying teaching instruction for someone trying to learn his 38 Step Form. A student attempting to learn from this book alone would be swiftly frustrated. A student learning this form from an experienced teacher may find it very useful as a set of course notes. I set myself this very task with Chen Xiao Wang in the 1990’s and found the book to be more frustrating than assisting. My first copy of the book still contains my notes from his classes

(The opening section of the book is notable for it includes an introduction by the very famous taiji author Gu Luxian whose own book on taijiquan (regrettably only available in Chinese) is recommended by high level students.)

This book set the mould for outlining the lineage of taijiquan practitioners and this style of conveying information is very frequently copied in more modern volumes. Historically and for the collector it is an interesting book to have.

Ratings:          Overall: 5.75  out of 10

Content: 4 out of 10  Language: 6 out of 10       Accuracy: 10 out of 10   Helpfulness: 3 out of 10