See the Oxford University Taijiquan Association website for details.
Monday 7.30-9.00pm class held at the Iffley Road sports centre, in the Rugby Fives court which is hard to find (ask someone working in Reception if unsure!) – go past the turnstyles and turn right (you should have a gym on your left and an indoor multipurpose court on your right). Head to the end of the corridor and exit the door. Take a left so that you can see the running track. On your right ahead of you, you should be able to see a small building with a path leading up to it. We are inside to the right.
This is a mixed activity class which includes both health training (hand form and partner exercises), and martial training – pushing hands (grappling), self-defence techniques and pad work.
Video clips and image gallery of students practising Hand Form in the University Class. As well as encoding many practical self-defence applications, and teaching martial concepts such as single-weighting, whole-body movement and balanced turning/stepping, the hand form offers many health benefits by encouraging good posture, minimal muscle tension and relaxed breathing – a great way to de-stress before Finals!
Video clip and image gallery of students practising Fixed Step Pushing Hands during the University Class. This exercise trains useful grappling skills, such as a rooted stance, flexible upper body and fast, responsive arms. Martially, this translates into more skill in Moving Step Pushing Hands (wrestling) – each “step” can be thought of as a Fixed Step bout, where one opponent is off-balanced by the other setting up throws etc. As skill develops, the practitioner also learns to move with less tension, and this relaxation translates into the hand form movements to allow greater relaxation and health benefits.
Video clip of University student class members practising Running Thunder Hand (continuous punching) in pairs using gloves and focus mitts. As well as training strong and efficient punching technique, this trains holding a protective guard (shoulder muscles) and, since punching should involve the whole body – legs, core and arms – this acts as a general stamina conditioning exercise as well.
The video clip below shows two members of the student class working on some striking combinations (punches, knees and elbows) using pads.
The photo album below shows James (University student attending public class) performing the technique “Parry and Punch” from the Hand Form upon John.
In this technique, when the attacker throws a committed punch to the head, the defender quickly evades the defense using “Seven Stars” footwork (trained in paired pushing hands exercise), lightly parrying the attack and countering with a close-range punch to the floating ribs.
Wearing boxing gloves (optional) allows the partners to train more intensely to better re-create the conditions of an authentic attack without risking injury.