COVER GUY DD FEBRUARY 2002 COMBAT MAGAZINE
Combat Magazine Wudang Spear Form
1. How (and when) did you start?
When my training started in September 1995 I had no idea I was getting into a martial art. At the time I was researching ways of dealing with regular migraines and read an article suggesting Tai Chi could help. Fortunately a class was starting locally, with no idea what to expect and out of curiosity went along.
2. Why Practical Tai Chi Chuan?
From the first class I realised this was not going to be just another exercise group, it was interesting where others were not, and it made me think. I like the structured practical way it’s taught with everything having an explanation, it’s like peeling off layers and finding out more, learning and realising how little you know, constantly challenging, always interesting. It was not too long after starting I went to my first workshop with Dan Docherty, if I’d had doubts about continuing with Tai Chi before there certainly weren’t after. On arrival I was a little bit in awe of him and everyone around all so knowledgeable and I was very much a beginner, but Dan was, and still is so very generous with his time and knowledge it confirmed this was what I’d been looking for.
3. What is your favourite technique - and why? (in 50 words)
Difficult to choose as all techniques are interesting in their way, however I’ve decided Step Back to Strike the Tiger – get the timing right; stepping, moving from the centre, everything moving together it demonstrates to me Tai Chi is not about physical strength.
4. One piece of advice or knowledge you would like to give to fellow practitioners:
Always look with fresh eyes, no matter that you’ve practiced a technique 100 times before, treat it as the first time and keep it simple.
5. How do you train now?
I train daily in different ways; weather permitting outside early morning Nei Gong or Forms, with my cat by my side – bliss. Workshops and classes - learning and sharing. Workshops/camps with Dan Docherty whenever possible – inspiring.
I have a website which is being re-vamped at present: chiinunity.co.uk