Zhan zhuang


Zhan zhuang

Zhan zhuang (站桩) lit. "standing like a post" , sometimes called "standing like a tree" or "post standing" is a method of training in many Chinese martial arts in which static postures are used for meditationFact|date=April 2007, to develop patience, strength (particularly of the legs) and stamina; most often among the internal styles.

Contrary to the most common notion of cardiovascular exercise necessitating vigorous movement, Western students may be surprised by the physical conditioning that zhan zhuang may provideFact|date=April 2007. Postures used vary between martial arts and styles, with many schools using postures found within their own forms (though the basic structure and principles of zhan zhuang practice largely do not vary)Fact|date=April 2007.

Those unfamiliar to zhan zhuang can experience severe muscle fatigue and subsequent trembling at first. Later, once sufficient stamina and strength have been achieved the practicioner can use zhan zhuang to work on developing "zhong ding" or central equilibrium as well as sensitivity to specific areas of tension in the body. Some schools also use the practice as a way of purportedly removing blockages in Qi flowFact|date=April 2007.

Perhaps the most well-known variety of zhan zhuang training is the "horse stance" or "ma bu" 馬步Fact|date=April 2007.

Many styles, especially the internal styles, combine post standing with breathing training to develop whole body coordination for martial purposesFact|date=April 2007. There are also said to be health benefits from such practiceFact|date=April 2007.

Yiquan is known for having discarded adherence to form as found in its parent art, Xingyiquan, in favour of what are claimed to be formless methods, including zhan zhuang. Most Yiquan teachers place emphasis on zhan zhuang as the penultimate neigong exerciseFact|date=April 2007, and divide it into two distinct categories: jianshen zhuang (health stances) and jiji zhuang (combat stances)Fact|date=April 2007.

ee also

*Neigong
*Neijia
*Qigong

Books

* J.P.C. Moffett, Wang Xuanjie (1994), "Traditional Chinese Therapeutic Exercises: Standing Pole".
* Lam Kam Chuen, Gaia Books Ltd, 2005 ISBN 1-85675-215-1, "Chi Kung: The Way of Energy".

External links

* [http://www.egreenway.com/taichichuan/wuji.htm Michael P. Garofalo's Zhan Zhuang internet/bibliographic reference for practitioners]
* [http://www.martrix.org/zhan_zhuang1.html Yiquan Zhan zhuang]
* [http://neigong.net/ neigong.net - a simple reference]
* [http://www.martialdevelopment.com/blog/do-you-make-this-zhan-zhuang-mistake/ Do You Make This Zhan Zhuang Mistake?]
* [http://www.yiquan.org.uk/art-zz.html Zhan Zhuang - foundation of Internal Martial Arts]
* [http://www.qigonghealer.com/zhan_zhuang.html A Testimonial from a Zhan Zhuang Qigong Practitioner]


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