Water is fluid, soft and yielding.

But Water will wear away rock, which is rigid and cannot yield.

As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard.

What is soft is strong.


"Lao Tsu"

There's many styles in Tai Chi, and visually there's a big differences between them.

There's also a huge difference in the way the Chi (Energy) feels while doing them, even though it's the same Chi.


There are 5 styles that are most common Worldwide, but beside that, there's plenty of small ones,

only being practised in small areas of China. The small ones is just as good, but hard to get by.


The 5 most widely teached are: Chen, Yang, Wu, Hao-W'u og Sun Style.


Chenstyle is the oldest practised today, and is widely recognized as being the forefather of all the others.

 

According to the legend, It emerged in the Chenjiagoui Henan-provins, close to a small village, Dengfeng,

and was developed by Chen Wangting, in the late 1700's.

It's characterized with flexible spiraling, sometimes explosive moves, and low stances.

 

At the beginning of the 1900's Yang Luchan learned Chen Style.

Very fast he became a skilled and devoted practitioner, and developed his own Yang Style Tai Chi.

Compared to Chenstyle it's more fluid and with big postures.


Yet another style, Wu Style, was founded by Wu Chuanyau, a student of Yang Luchan.

It's focused on silence with moderate postures, and deep rooting with the feets, and have a light flow.


Hao-W'u Style is yet another popular Tai Chi style, was made by Wu Yu-xiang.

Caracterized with simple, fast and short- range moves, mostly including opening and closing of the arms.


Sun Style is the youngest style, founded by Sun Lu'Tang.

He combined his martial arts background of Xingyi and Bagua with Tai Chi.

It's characterized with small compact moves, high erect stand, combined with lively footwork.

It also includes a lot of openning and closing with the arms.


In the video below you can see some of the differences in 4 of the 5 major styles.

I'm sorry there's no demonstration of the Hao-W'u Style, but I don't know t.

An example of the same posture in different styles.


    Snake Creeps Down Chen Style                  Snake Creeps Down Wu Style                      Snake Creeps Down Yang Style

Thank you Michael for your geat teaching. You are a very patient and motivating teacher with an eye for the detail and so much passion. Within a short time I a have learned quite alot from you which has deepened my understanding of Tai Chi in general and of Tai Chi Bang in particularl. Your examples, suggestions and explanations were very valuable for my own home training and my progress."


Eike Wiltz, Leer Germany