Push Hands VS Tai Chi Nei Kung

Tai Chi is unique in martial arts in that it builds energy.

Now I know what you’re thinking,

“but all the internal arts build energy.”

…and they do, sort of.

At least they do in training.

Take Xing Yi for example,

While training you spend a lot of time building energy with Qigong and Neikung aspects of the art.

…but then when you fight you expend a lot of energy.

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In Xing Yi’s case this is a very powerful and highly effective strategy.

However, as you get older this expenditure of energy becomes a problem, and if you look at older Xing Yi & Yiquan masters you’ll typically see them cutting back on the ferociousness and refining the internal to minimize this energy expenditure.

Bagua can do this as well, though it tends more towards moving and changing energy when it fights more than expending it.

Tai Chi takes this further.

…because the primary purpose of Tai Chi is to be effective in advanced age.

So in Tai Chi the goal isn’t just to conserve energy.

The goal is to build energy.

Even when fighting, your alignments, internal principles, nei kung, etc. should all be correctly working for you to build energy. The same way they do in training.

Now here’s where most people get tripped up:

If you’re going to make this happen correctly under the extreme pressure of a life and death situation, then it absolutely must be happening in ALL your training practices.
Even in Push Hands.

A common problem in Tai Chi is that most types of push hands don’t do this automatically.

…and if you’re practicing push hands without the correct nei kung principles happening to build energy the entire time, then your body is learning bad habits that you will have to untrain later.

Clear’s Internal Push Hands is designed to make this happen automatically from day 1.

…any errors are highlighted by the method so you are forced to fix them right away.

And this forced error correction builds the essential foundation to make your other types of push hands, drills, sparring & forms correct.

Here’s Sigung Clear discussing this:


That clip is from the new Internal Push Hands Instructor Course.

The course is only on sale until tomorrow! So go check out the details now:

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The Secret of Advanced Dim Mak & Healing.

There is one skill you need.

It doesn’t matter if you’re after internal Dim Mak for self defense or trying to build advanced energy healing ability.

You must have this skill.

Without it you simply cannot get anywhere.

…but with this skill, everything is much much easier.

You’ll probably recognize this skill because we talk about it a lot and it forms a cornerstone of our training.

Here’s Sigung Clear talking about it in a video clip from the new Internal Push Hands Instructor Course available now:


The Push Hands Instructor course is only on sale for two more days.

Go check out the details here:


What kind of results can I expect from Internal Push Hands?

Last week I mentioned a Push Hands medalist. He went through the training for Clear’s Internal Push Hands before he entered the competition, and he came away with two Silvers.

His name is Harry Legg (yes, that is really his name!) and he is a Tai Chi instructor from New Jersey.

Harry was one of the first people to become a certified instructor in Clear’s Internal Push Hands. You’ll see him in the DVDs.

He is an accomplished Tai Chi player in his own right, so we asked him to write about his experiences with Push Hands. This is what he sent us:

“I play traditional push hands at meetups and in Tai Chi classes every week, and I continue to learn and gain substantial skill from this practice – it is absolutely necessary.

However, there are an abundance of skills and body states in Clear’s Internal Push Hands that are very difficult to achieve or to even realize exist through traditional Push Hands – be it stationary, restricted step or moving.

It is too easy to become skilled at the purely external/physical side of Push Hands if you are only playing the traditional methods.

The skills in Clear’s Internal Push Hands could fill a book. I’ll quickly touch on just a few here.

  • I have learned how to sense my partner’s root without physically touching them.
  • I have increased my root drop tremendously, which brings about the ability to bounce my partner out using root – and there are many other root-related skills.
  • I’ve learned to project Yi (Mind) and to feel my partner’s Yi in ways I never realized were possible.
  • I’ve learned to feel micro-movements in my partner and in my own body. You can lead your partner off balance by sensing those micro-movements.
  • I’ve learned how to “steal” my partners’ breath and use it against them.
  • One of the biggest revelations was in my misunderstanding of what it means to be double-weighted. This misunderstanding is common– even among many high-level teachers. Your Ting Jin
  • (listening/feeling) is greatly increased when you learn to properly eliminate double-weighting.
  • Clear’s Internal Push Hands also teaches very real and effective Fa Jin (Emitting Force).

Every element in this method has both a martial and a healing component. You do not learn this with traditional push hands.

The value to learning and playing Clear’s Internal Push Hands is immeasurable. It will improve your traditional Push Hands, your Tai Chi Form and your daily life.

If you are serious about Tai Chi, you will want to study and practice this method.”
– Harry LeggNew Jersey Tai Chi

I couldn’t have said it better myself. People in the know play Clear’s Internal Push Hands, and there is no better way to bring up your skill than our new Instructor Certification Package.

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The course contains nine DVDs with over 18 hours of teaching. It’s designed to give you all the benefits of real Tai Chi you’ve been looking for but can’t find anywhere else.

This program was put together with one goal in mind: to give our students the skills they need to become teachers.

We’ve laid it all out in simple, easy to follow instruction. Nothing is held back.
Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor Certification Package is available now!

Why isn’t my Push Hands working?

Push Hands Drills at the 2015 Clear's Internal Push Hands Workshop

Push Hands Drills at the 2015 Clear’s Internal Push Hands Workshop

There are many different styles of Push Hands games, but they are not all created equal. The most common variations that are played today allow for a lot of external movement.

There are people who have played this kind of Push Hands for years, even decades, yet they are no closer to having real internal skills than when they began.

External movement is the enemy of internal skill.

If the goal is to develop true internal skill, then the internal elements need to be isolated.

It’s just like how a body builder isolates muscles to work, or how scientists isolate variables in an experiment.

Without isolation, results are murky and unreliable.

There is one Push Hands method that isolates internal power better than anything else out there. Developed by Master Ma Yeuh-Liang (one of China’s 100 Living Treasures of the martial arts), he called his Internal Push Hands game “No Style.”

The rules of this game are set up to get rid of every bit of external play that can possibly be eliminated.

There is simply no way to build internal power better or faster than this game.

Unfortunately, Master Ma’s method is no longer taught publicly by his lineage. In fact, the inheritor of the system (Master Liu Ji Fa) revealed that he only teaches this method to his two closest disciples.

The good news is that, before Master Ma died, he taught his game to Sigung Richard Clear.

That is very good news for anyone who wants to build internal skill, because Sigung Clear has a well-deserved reputation for teaching high-level Tai Chi secrets publicly.

Richard spent more than twenty years streamlining and refining the method, making it the most powerful (yet still the easiest to learn) system of internal training available.

Sigung Clear is not only committed to making those secrets available, he makes them truly accessible with proven training methods and step-by-step instructions that are,

…well… Clear!

Richard is committed to revitalizing the Tai Chi community by revolutionizing the standard of Tai Chi instruction.

With that goal in mind, Sigung Clear has not only agreed to teach the Internal Push Hands method, he is dedicated to spreading it far and wide by letting YOU teach it.

Most Tai Chi teachers would hoard a program like this. They would want to keep the secrets for themselves in order to keep the competition low.

Fortunately, Richard Clear is a little different.

He believes that we all benefit when real instruction is taught out in the open, and he is willing to prove it.

Until recently this program was only available through live personal instruction, but after a lot of hard work we are finally able to share it with our fans throughout the world.

The Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor Certification package is available now. Nine DVDs packed with over 18 hours of instruction have been carefully designed to get you up to speed quickly and easily.

Clear’s Internal Push Hands was crafted from top to bottom to deliver real, practical internal skills as fast as possible. It is such a reliable program that we have tested and certified dozens of new teachers with nothing more than the material in this package – including me!

Whether you are fairly new to Tai Chi like I was, or you’ve been practicing for decades, Clear’s Internal Push Hands will give you the solid foundation of real internal power that you’ve been seeking.

It covers methods for building a DEEP root that stands up to punishment, target your opponent’s root, and hide yours from them.

It will give you ways to keep your structure solid without adding tension.

It has loads of practical advice for staying soft, but still strong and stable, under serious pressure.

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There is even material on feeling inside your opponent to sense their structure (both where they are strong and where they are weak), their tensions, their organs, and even their intentions.

You read that right. There is a whole section on learning to sense where your partner is targeting inside of you – where they are THINKING about pushing to – before they push to it.

That is a very high-level Tai Chi secret called Dong Jin, which (roughly translated) means Understanding or Knowing Energy.

This is a skill that most Tai Chi players who have studied for decades have still not developed. There are other teachers out there who allude to Dong Jin in mystical terms, but this is the only place where it is really being taught (and that alone is easily worth more than the cost of the whole program).

This skill and many others are taught in detail throughout this course.

Best of all, unlike other most other internal training methods that are boring or tiresome, this is a game! It is actually fun to work on building internal power with this system.

If you already play some type of Push Hands, this will seriously step up your game. At least, that’s what our students say it did for them, and we have two national champions to prove it. One of our students took Silver in the first competition he ever entered, and he credits Clear’s Internal Push Hands for his success. (You’ll see more from him soon.)

Clear’s Internal Push Hands was created as a way to help people build internal skills fast. The Instructor Certification package will take those skills to an impressive level that qualifies you to teach it.

This course is available now.
Go check out the details here:

"I am thankful and grateful to my many teachers including the many push hands students and friends who have helped me train, develop and refine my Internal Push Hands method.  It is my pleasure to bring this method to you.  I hope that it will benefit you and future generations to come as much as it has me." -Richard

“I am thankful and grateful to my many teachers including the many push hands students and friends who have helped me train, develop and refine my Internal Push Hands method. It is my pleasure to bring this method to you. I hope that it will benefit you and future generations to come as much as it has me.” -Richard

How do you build internal skill?

Students practice push hands at the 2015 Clear's Internal Push Hands Instructor Workshop

Students practice push hands at the 2015 Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor Workshop

First you have to figure out what “internal skill” means.

By comparison, the external martial arts are easy to figure out. You practice the forms, you do drills and exercises, you build up your muscles, your stamina, and your reflexes.

It’s easy to figure out because it is intuitive. Bigger, stronger, faster guys should make better fighters. It’s just natural.

The Internal Arts can seem almost mystical by comparison. If you don’t know what you’re after, “internal skill” might as well be another way of saying “martial arts magic.”

It comes across as if you just need to feel a certain way, and suddenly you are imbued with extraordinary power…

…And in a sense, that isn’t wrong.

But unless you know which feelings are effective and which ones aren’t, you’ll never build any internal skill.

So how can you tell what’s effective?

That part is actually pretty simple. You need feedback.

The way Tai Chi gets that kind of feedback is with Push Hands.

There are many kinds of Push Hands games that are each designed to develop different skills. The most common variety is best played using internal power, but it still allows for a lot of external movement.

There is another style of Push Hands that minimizes external play in order to focus on internal development. It is appropriately called Internal Push Hands, and it is the fastest way to build real internal skill.

Internal Push Hands has mostly been a closed door, secret training method of a select few high-level Tai Chi disciples.

Fortunately, while studying from Masters in Shanghai, Sigung Richard Clear learned the secret.

Since then he has spent over 20 years developing and refining the techniques to streamline the results.

Until recently, the only way to get this instruction was with live personal training with Sigung Clear or one of his students.

All that is about to change.

After years of hard work and experimentation, Sigung Clear has been able to put the Internal Push Hands method into an easy to learn format for our long-distance students.
Even better, he is blowing open the “closed doors” of the Tai Chi world by making this an Instructor Certification course.

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Anyone who knows Richard understands that he is completely committed to fueling a Tai Chi revolution. He believes that Clear’s Internal Push Hands will play a vital role in making that happen.

With that in mind, this program was designed from the ground up to deliver high-level internal skill quickly.

The course covers both healing uses and martial applications of internal energy. The training is thorough and extensive, and like everything else Richard teaches it is easy to understand.

Even if you’ve had little or no previous training in the Internal Arts, this package will help you build internal power quickly and easily. If you’re already an experienced player, Clear’s Internal Push Hands will take you to a much higher level of play in a very short time.

This comprehensive course is available now.

Go check out all the details here:


Tai Chi Internal Wave

Training the Tai Chi Internal wave begins with an external wave and then is refined inwards.

Not only is it very martially powerful, this training is a great health exercise as well (like most Tai Chi skills.)

In fact it’s an exercise that’s so important Sigung Clear practices it everyday.

Check out this clip on the wave: https://youtu.be/Ejr8UgfDFyw

This wave is one requirement of a Clear’s Internal Push Hands instructor and it’s one of many important skills taught in push hands instructor course. (Available Tomorrow!)

The “Understanding Energy” of Tai Chi (dong Jin 懂勁)

The Understanding Skill of Tai Chi is closely related to the Listening skill (ting jin.)

In many ways it’s the next step in training.

It’s not enough to feel what’s going on inside you and your opponent, you must also understand.

An important use of this skill is knowing where you opponent is going to attack.

In push hands, for example, if the opponent wants to issue effectively they must first feel inside you and find a good target. Once they find a good target they can issue and you’re done for.

This is where Understanding skill comes in.

When you can feel them looking inside you and feel them trying to acquire that target, you can disrupt what their doing. or better yet attack it.

Here’s a clip of Sigung Clear demonstrating some of this at the 2015 Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor workshop:


This skill is one of the requirements to become a Level 1 Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor and it’s one of many things you will learn in the push hands instructor course available this Thursday Feb 18

Why there’s so much bad Tai Chi & How to fix it.

Bad Tai Chi is a favorite topic of discussion among many Tai Chi folks.

Unfortunately the blame often falls on other students and their laziness, impatience, lack of dedication or misguided goals.

The truth is no one intentionally studies bad Tai Chi.

Whatever their motivation or goals may be, every single student is trying to learn something effective and useful.

There problem is many folks don’t know what to look for.

Skill and achievement in Tai Chi are often talked about in very nebulous ways.

It can be difficult to know the quality of what you’re studying if you don’t know exactly what skills you should be learning and what you should be able to do with them.

In theory certifications and titles would help but they rarely come with a clear definition of what it means to earn them and they often represent how long someone has been part of an organization more than what skills they have acquired.

The solution is simple.

No, we don’t need some grand Tai Chi governing body. We don’t even need to agree on what the standards for Tai Chi should be. Or what skills should be studied or what benchmarks you should use for progress.

All we have to do is start talking about it.

The more Tai Chi folks talk about the skills they are learning and the benchmarks they use to measure progress, the better off all Tai Chi will be.

This will create the expectation that if you study Tai Chi you should be acquiring a catalogue of skills and that you should be measuring and testing those skill to make sure you are progressing adequately.

There are far too many people who practice Tai Chi by rote, with only vague notions of what they want to get out of their practice.

The more we, as a community, can educate people on the idea that Tai Chi produces results,

…and that they should expect a clear road map from their teachers on how to get to those results and how to measure their progress along the way, the better off all Tai Chi will be.

Because when students expect results, teachers will have to deliver. Or be replaced by teachers who deliver.

When teachers teach well, they create skill students. Skilled students set the example of what Tai Chi can be and what new students should expect. and Tai Chi as a whole gets better.

Of course goals & standards will vary between teachers and systems. That’s ok. Not everyone studies for the same reasons.

Here is what it takes to become a Level 1 Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor:

If you have some previous Tai Chi experience you should be able to meet these requirements within a year. Possibly much less than that if you work hard.

All this and more are taught in the push hands Instructor course coming Thursday Feb 18.


…and that DVD package is an excellent way to prepare for the Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor Certification Workshop coming at the end of August.

Details on the workshop soon.

Tai Chi Error of Double Weightedness (The truth behind the myth)


Students and teachers training at the 2015 Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor Workshop

Don’t let this Tai Chi BS hold back your development.

Many of you have met long term Tai Chi practitioners who cannot use their art.

…and these aren’t just your “health only” Tai Chi hobbyists. Many folks who study seriously and have skilled teachers find that their hard work is not developing the level of skill and effectiveness they where looking for.

There can be many reasons for this.

…but there’s one problem that is outlined directly in the Tai Chi classics.

According to Wang Tsung Yueh’s text “Tai-Chi Chuan Ching” (18th Century)

“Many persons who have studied Tai-Chi for a number of years have not developed properly and continue to be subdued by others because they have not realized the error in double weightedness.”

Translated by Jou Tsung Hwa in his book “The Tao of Tai-Chi Chuan.”

Basically, If you make the double weighted error you cannot reach an intermediate level of skill in Tai Chi.

Unfortunately, the classics are cryptically vague in their language on what exactly “double weightedness” means and so there is a lot of BS out there on how to address this problem.

So first, let’s clear up some of the BS about “the error of double weighted:”

It has nothing to do with the pull of gravity.

Weighted in this context has to do with emphasis. It’s using the meaning of “attach value to” or “assign a handicap.” As in “not evenly distributed” or a “weighted statistic.”

It has nothing to do with your stance.

You can be double weighted while standing on one leg just as easily as when standing on two. It’s often easier to be double weighted when on one leg than when on two.

It has nothing to do with your opponent.

You can be double weighted when you’re all by yourself just as easily as when you’re pushing with an opponent. If you respond poorly to their force it can magnify the problems of the double weighted error, but this is merely a magnification of the symptom. Not the problem itself.

caption caption

Solving the error of double weightedness is a key part of overcoming larger opponents.

Now, to be fair, some of the above can crop up as symptoms of the double weighted error.

Symptoms can be useful in helping you know when the error is occuring.

…but do not mistake the symptom for the problem.

This is the most common error in the information out there about double weightedness.

Folks take a problem that can be a symptom of the error and mistake it for the error itself.

Unfortunately this won’t help you solve the problem. It only covers up one of many potential symptoms.

Without a full understanding of the double weighted error and all it’s symptoms, you can’t properly troubleshoot and solve the problem.

I’ll try to keep it as simple and practical as possible but the answer requires a bit of explanation.

One reason there’s so much misinformation out there is that this topic is difficult to understand and explain. Especially in a practical, down to earth way. (Of course, the teachers who deliberately hide information compound this problem.)

What does double weighted really mean?

In the Tai Chi classics the term “double weighted” pops up in this context:

“Many persons who have studied Tai-Chi for a number of years have not developed properly and continue to be subdued by others because they have not realized the error in double weightedness.”

The above translation of Wang Tsung Yueh’s text “Tai-Chi Chuan Ching” is from The Tao of Tai-Chi Chuan by Jou, Tsung Hwa.

Master Jou goes on to describe this to mean that Tai Chi practitioners fail to follow the basic principles of Tai Chi.

The key basic principle that is being violated here is described in “The theory of Tai-Chi Chuan” Attributed to Chang San-feng (est. 1279 -1386)

“One must distinguish substantial from insubstantiality. Where there is substantial, there must be insubstantiality. In all ways, one has to distinguish one from the other.”

…and you’ll find this idea crops up in various forms in many of the classic writings on Tai Chi.

You must differentiate between substantial & insubstantial.

…a failure to make this distinction is to make the error of double weightedness.

It’s interesting to note that the character often translated as “weighted” 重, is also associated with meanings like repetition, iteration, a layer, emphasis.

If we talk about a statistic or a test being weighted, we mean that it’s artificially skewed towards a specific result.

So to be doubly weighted is to over emphasize something or make an over commitment in some way.

A better translation within the context of Tai Chi Chuan is:

Students practicing Internal Push Hands at the 2015 Clear's Internal Push Hands Instructor Workshop

Students practicing Internal Push Hands at the 2015 Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor Workshop

“The error of paired repetition”
or “the error of double layers”
or, even better:

“the error of double emphasis.”

…and you do see some teachers talk about making the error of “double yang” or “double yin.”

Which is another way of talking about this idea.

But what the hell does all this mean in practical terms?!

It’s easy to throw these terms around and quote the classics all day without giving anyone something useful that they can take home & implement in their own practice.

..and unfortunately many teachers do this, whether it’s to hide their ignorance or to withhold information and knowledge from their students. I don’t know.

How to prevent the error of double weightedness.

Double Weighted Error is the Failure to Distinguish  Between substantial & Insubstantial

Double Weighted Error is the Failure to Distinguish Between substantial & Insubstantial

So, what does this mean in practical terms?

Think about your spine.

It’s made up of layers, and these layers alternate between somewhat solid and somewhat less solid.

These alternating layers of tissues are an example of a distinction between substantial and insubstantial.

If some of these vertebrae become fused together it causes problems.

Another example of this, is that to move you must both contract and relax muscles in the body. If you fail to relax the proper muscles or contract the wrong muscles, you can’t move properly or with full power.

…because you failed to create a distinction between substantial and insubstantial in your body.

Of course it’s not quite that simple.

Tai Chi is internal so we’re not just talking about the physical anatomy, we must also make sure we’re not double weighted in the energies and body states we use.

A basic way to do this is to sink the chi into the lower body so that it becomes heavy while the upper body becomes light.

You are now distinguishing between substantial in the lower body and insubstantial in the upper body.

This is a good start (for a day one beginner) but we need to go much further.

…because at this point you’ve essentially divided the body in half with a single distinction.

There are varying degrees of double weightedness

There are varying degrees of double weightedness

If you go up against someone who can separate heavy and light in the upper body and do it again in the lower body you will lose.

…because they are creating a much more refined distinction between heavy and light in their body than you are.

You are double weighted compared to them.

…of course they will be double weighted when compared to someone who can refine this even further.

Unfortunately, the above example does not paint a complete picture but it’s a good start.

At a more advanced level you can be all light or all heavy and still not be double weighted.

Our best 2 dimensional representation of the distinction between substantial and insubstantial while also distinguishing between the substantial qualities of insubstantiality and the insubstantial qualities of substantiality.

Our best 2 dimensional representation of the distinction between substantial and insubstantial while also distinguishing between the substantial qualities of insubstantiality and the insubstantial qualities of substantiality.

When you understand both the insubstantial and substantial aspects of lightness AND you distinguish between them then you can use lightness effectively.

If you don’t distinguish between the substantial and insubstantial aspects of lightness than you will find lightness to be very weak and your structure will collapse or you’ll be forced to retreat or run into other problems

Of course, light is just one of the many energies of Tai Chi.

There’s light, heavy, empty, full, open, closed, expanding, contracting, spiralling, magnetic, electric, and so on…

The classics say:

“In all ways, one has to distinguish one from the other.”

The key is the first part: “in ALL ways”

Any time you fail to make this distinction, in any way, you are committing the error of “double weightedness.”

As you can see this problem has a massive potential to crop up in all sorts of ways.

…and this distinction between substantial and insubstantial is an ongoing process that you can always refine and get better at.

How to spot double weighted errors and fix them.

Here’s the problem with fixing double weighted errors.

To fix errors you must be able to find them. In Tai Chi we typically do this by feel with the ‘Ting’ skill.

However, a symptom of the double weighted error is that it limits your ability to feel what’s going on inside yourself (and in someone else.)

…and so it’s a bit of a catch 22.

You must differentiate between substantial & insubstantial in order to perceive areas where you are failing to distinguish between substantial and insubstantial.

Excess tension is one example of this. The more tense you are the less you can feel (and the more you are double weighted.)

As you relax, you can feel more and more. However, there are often deep seated areas of habitual tension that are very difficult to find and deal with unless they are pointed out in some way.

So, here’s what you do:

1 Build Ting

Sensitivity drills are of the utmost importance. The more you work on building your Ting the better off you are. But this alone isn’t enough.

2 Look for Symptoms

Use the symptoms of double weightedness to spot and troubleshoot the error.

Some common symptoms include: an inability to instantly shift weight or intention, difficulty perceiving substantial and insubstantial, and excess tension is a common sign of the double weighted error. (though whether tension is the cause or the result of the double weightedness depends on the situation.)

IMPORTANT: Remember that the symptoms are NOT the problem and just because you’ve fixed a couple of the symptoms does not mean that the problem has been solved. So keep working.

3 Internal Push Hands

By far the most effective way to find and fix the error of double weightedness is doing internal push hands with a partner.

A partner will help you find errors you didn’t know you had and rapidly speed up your progress.

A key part of becoming a Clear’s Push Hands instructor is learning to distinguish substantial and insubstantial and learning how to find and prevent the double weighted error.

The Push Hands Instructor Training Course contains in depth training that will teach you to identify and fix the error of double weightedness and how to use the benefits of proper weighting including:

Become a Clear's Internal Push Hands Instructor

Become a Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor

  • internally manipulating your own internal energy
    • filling & emptying
    • expanding & condensing
    • targeting inside the body
  • advanced ting including…
    • capitalizing on someone else’s double weighted errors
    • feeling and following an opponent’s internal changes
    • internally hiding from an opponent so that they cannot feel inside you
  • neutralizing force
  • redirecting your opponent’s force back into them
  • higher level fa jin
  • much, much more

Details on the Push Hands Instructor Course are here:


How to measure root depth.

Subject: How to measure root depth.

To get better at any skill you must find a way to measure it.

How else can you know if the training methods you use are producing results?

Yesterday we talked about some of the benchmarks you can use to track the progress of your root development.

…but how do you measure root?

This all comes down to your sensitivity / ting jing skill.

The better your ability to feel root the more accurately you’ll be able to measure it.

In the beginning this will be vague and nebulous.

You may not be able to measure root or get a sense of depth at all.

…but what you can do is measure its effect on someone else. By using this drill you can measure whether you are lower than someone else or not.

…and by going back and forth you can get deeper and deeper.

To get more precise with your measurements you’ll need to work this drill along with the other sensitivity and rooting drills in Clear’s Tai Chi level 1.


As you work the level 1 drills you’ll gain a sense of the depth of your root relative to yourself.

Once you can do this it’s a simple matter of comparing your root depth to your height.

If you’re 6 feet tall and you can drop your root 1 body length into the ground, then you can root 6 feet down.

One requirement of becoming a Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor is building your ting to the point where you can feel (and target) your partner’s root up to at least 3 body lengths down (18 – 20 feet.)

Details on becoming a Clear’s Internal Push Hands Instructor will be available February 18th

Clear's Internal Push Hands