The Yang Short Form: A Popular and Effective Tai Chi Form

Yang Tai Chi Short Form. The Yang short form is the entry point for most into the world of tai chi and its internal energetics. There are over 20 variations of the Yang style, with corresponding variations in the short form.
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The Beijing Short Form. One of the more, if not the most well-known and most practiced short forms derived from the Yang family style is the Beijing or Peking form.

The Beijing form was developed by the Chinese government in 1956 to standardize tai chi and is based on traditional Yang style moves. This was partly for use in official competitions—putting an end to making up a personal style on the spot—but also to make tai chi and its health benefits more accessible for beginners.

The Beijing short form consists of 24 movements from the Yang style. Excluded are a number of difficult Yang style movements as well as long series of repeated moves.

Moves of the Beijing Short Form. The movements of the Beijing form are listed below.

1. Commencement

2. Parting the Wild Horse’s Mane (3x)

3. White Crane Spreads its Wings

4. Brush Knee (3x)

5. Hand Strums the Lute

6. Step Back and Repulse Monkey (4x)

7. Grasp the Sparrows’s Tail (left)

8. Grasp the Sparrows’s Tail (right)

9. Single Whip

10. Cloud Hands (3x)

11. Single Whip

12. High Pat on the Horse

13. Heel Kick (right)

14. Strike Tiger’s Ears

15. Heel Kick (left)

16. Snake Creeps Through Grass, Rooster Stands On One Leg(left)

17. Snake Creeps Through Grass, Rooster Stands On One Leg (right)

18. Fair Lady Works the Shuttles (right & left)

19. Needle at the Sea Bottom

20. Fan through the Back

21. Turn, Deflect, Parry and Punch

22. Apparent Close-up

23. Cross Hands

24. Closing

Once learned, this short form takes about 3-20 minutes to complete.

Next: Read about the Wu Short Form.