Stand Down. United Tai Chi Digest 10/9/13


  • Retreat.  One of the connotations of the phrase ‘martial arts’, for the uninitiated, suggests the concept of fighting.  Yet there is a difference in the aggression of an offense, versus the acquiescence of a controlled defense.  Receive. Understand. Redirect.   We’ve talked here about topics like transforming conflict (Qi Gong Radio’s Dan Kleiman), humility (The Wandering Taoist), situational awareness and training yourself to discern antisocial aggression versus asocial violence (Survive the Unthinkable). Indeed our own instructor calls for us to communicate from the back of our spine not the front of our chest, and to ‘retreat until you can’t retreat anymore’.   And recently Ziva’s warrior girl persona from NCIS finally coming to terms with her past and deciding to start over—telling Tony there is someone crying for everyone she killed. Our anthropological instinct –part time predators, part time hunter/gatherers, is challenged with the internal arts. Yet here we are ready to embrace the noble art of retreating, the peacefulness of Receive, Understand, Redirect.  This week will you be more like Mr. Miyagi in The Karate Kid (“best way avoid punch, no be there”),  or like Bruce Springsteen in his 1984 cut from Born To Run, “No retreat baby, no surrender”?    



  • Wrap-up of the past week’s classes:  Drills on in-line Grasp the Sparrows Tail repeaters and palm changes; and holding Single Whip hand postures. Brush knee mechanics.  Eight pieces of brocade.  Drills of individual postures done to both sides. Dave K’s question about leg traps.  Dolores is the new Barbara.  Ambidextrous: work on that. Neck stretches and Cow Gazing at the Moon. Line drills of Grasp the Sparrows Tail. Path to your center with Thirteen Postures. Yang 108. Martial applications and palm positions of Look/Gaze. Finally, practicing Part I of Yang 108 at several different speeds to gauge the different sensations or things you notice when it is sped up or sssslllloooowwwed down.


  • Student News and Upcoming Events:  United Tai Chi will be at the West Chester Farmers Market this Saturday October 12 from 9am to 12pm. If you attend, could you snap a couple pictures for our FB page (I’ll be elsewhere working). Welcome back Irene. Safe travels to Christine H.  Welcome two new students on Tuesday afternoon.  Chris S thanks for the LinkedIn endorsement. Grand birthday wishes to Claudia.  Best of luck next week to Liz G with her surgery. Welcome aboard all our new Facebook followers and WordPress visitors this week. And a shout out to West Chester Chiropractic (we’ll blame it on Adam’s rib).   Tai Chi DVD night will be Friday October 11, 8pm at the Lionville Natural Pharmacy Holistic Health Center. Please let me know how many of you will be there and if you can bring a small snack or beverage to share (e.g., tea, water, fruit, nuts, etc). Christian will have a few videos from some of his past Wakulla Springs sessions to share, all are welcome.   


  • Etcetera:  If you missed out on the FREE Friday Amazon purchase of Paul Read’s “One Last Thing: The History of the Martial Arts Philosophy” it is now just a $3.99 Kindle download, and it is crazy funny. And Deborah it even includes Rocky!


  • Weekly Schedule:


Lionville YMCA  … 100 Devon Drive  Exton PA

Mon, Weds, Fri

7:30 AM


Eagleview YMCA …699 Rice Blvd  Exton PA

Tues, Thurs

4:45 PM


Lionville Natural Pharmacy    309 Gordon Dr Exton

[90 minute, small   class attention, *separate fees apply]


7:00 PM

Private paid lessons available   upon request –check with instructor for scheduling

Monday nights in the fall: 7 week   beginner class ordered through Chester County Night School


  • Follow these links to our social media presence on the web:





Have a great week, and may all your armpits have tuna sandwiches.

Kathleen Rice    


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