Everyone in the world of taiji quan must show respect & admiration to Chen style tai chi. As the forebear of taijiquan (by many historical accounts), Chen family Patriarch Chen Wang Ting was perhaps the originator of tai chi as we know it. The Chen family “cannon fist” style, and its unique development of a specific kind of internal power, has evolved over the last 500 years into the many various styles of tai chi as we recognize them today.
<<< Chen family patriarch Chen Wang Ting (1580–1660) >>>
While there are many parallel stories of the development of taijiquan, all the modern styles of taijiquan officially or unofficially credit the Chen family style as their originators. Chen style tai chi is traced historically back to many possible stories, verifiable beginning with Chen Wang Ting when the family settled in Chen Jiagou (Chen Village) in the Henan province.
One of the most amazing historical facts about Chen style tai chi is its impressive longevity. With roots reaching all the way back to the 16th / 17th century, there are many great tai chi masters today who can rightfully claim direct inheritance of this same family style. Specifically, the focus of this article are the Tai Chi Applications of Chen Yu – 19th Generation Chen Family Lineage holder (who currently resides & teaches taijiquan in Beijing).
Chen Yu’s Chen Style Tai Chi Applications
19th Generation Master Showing Some of the More Spiritual Side of Tai Chi
Chen Yu’s Tai Chi Chin Na Applications (Taiji Qinna)
Who Is Master Chen Yu?
Chen Yu (b.1962) is the only son of great Chen Style master Chen Zhaokui (1928-1981), one of the most accomplished sons of Chen Style modern Grandmaster Chen Fake (pronounced “Fah Keh”). Even as a boy, young master Chen Yu traveled around with his father, training intensively beginning as early as age 7. His father enforced Chen Yu’s disciplined practice strictly, “requiring him to practice 10 times per day.”1
It is this training discipline at the very root of Chen family 19th Lineage Holder Chen Yu. Today, master Chen’s skill is acclaimed especially for his incredible fajin ability, as well as his qinna skills. The qinna can be viewed above, and you can see more of Master Chen Yu’s Taiji Qinna ability here. You can see a video of Chen Yu’s Taiji Fajin here.
By age 14, in 1976, Chen Yu was already creating a stir in the martial arts world with his expert level performances of the Chen Style taijiquan forms. However, it wasn’t until 13 years later, at age 27, that Master Chen began to teach taijiquan full time, in Zhumadian, Henan province.
Since that fateful time in 1989, Master Chen Yu has been teaching taijiquan all around the world, to students of all nationalities & descent. To this day, Master Chen Yu teaches a huge variety (and volume) of top level taijiquan enthusiasts, via classes in Beijing and seminars all over the world. His skill is widely acclaimed, and is a prime example of the impressive depth & longevity of taijiquan … as he carries (one of) the torch(es) for the 19th generation of the Chen family.
If you can read Mandarin Chinese (or can make due with Google translator for now), check out Chen Yu’s taijiquan site.