My trip to the home of Tai Chi
Many looking at the plethora of Tai Chi styles, forms etc. forget or may not be aware that all Tai Chi started in one place – the Chen family village at Chenjiagou in Henan Province – central China.
It was here in the early 1600s that Chen Wangting created exercises and forms which became known as Tai Chi and it was here too in the house of Chen Dehu that Yang Luchan lived while he learned Chen Style Tai Chi from Chen Chanqxing, later transposed into Yang Style and taught widely – so leading to the development of the other Tai Chi styles, including Wu, Hao and Sun styles.
I therefore seized at the chance to visit this historic place – with some romance and a sense of coming full circle from my early days of martial arts in the 1970s. The trip was organised by Patrick Wan (London) who first introduced Master Chen Xiaowang to the UK and was kind enough to extend an open invitation to accompany him to a by now annual one week international training seminar with Master Chen Xiaowang in the Chen Village Taijiquan school at Chenjiagou run by Chen Ziqiang.