Comparative Taijiquan (T'ai Chi Chuan)

Here are some videos of different systems of Taijiquan. They are presented in order of the school's historical development. Chen Style is the original and oldest system of Taiji. After that Yang system was developed by Yang Lu Chan, followed in order by Wu 武 (Hao) , Wu 吳 and Sun. These videos offer an interesting glimpse into how different Taiji schools prioritize movement concepts and strategies.

Chen Style 陳氏

This is Feng Zhi Qiang demonstrating Chen Style Taijiquan at the Tian Tan (Temple of Heaven, Beijing) in the early 1980s. Feng was a direct disciple of Chen Fa Ke and thus a 10th generation inheritor of Chen Taiji. Feng developed Hunyuan Taiji as his personal interpretation of traditional Chen Style Taijiquan.

Wang Feng Ming performing the same 48 movement form as done by Feng Zhi Qiang above. Wang is a direct lineage disciple of Feng's, and an 11th generation inheritor of Chen Style Taiji and the 2nd generation inheritor of Hunyuan Chen Style Taiji.

Yang Style 楊氏

This is rare footage of Yáng Shǒuzhōng (in Cantonese, Yang, Sau Chung) (1910-1985), the eldest son of Yang Cheng Fu. He was one of the greatest practitioners of Yang Taijiquan in the 20th century, and a 4th generation inheritor of Yang family Taiji.

Yang Family Taiji performed by Vincent Chu. Chu is a 6th generation inheritor and direct lineage disciple of Yang Taiji. For more information on Sifu (Shifu) Chu visit

Wu (Hao) Style 武

Jimmy K Wong (Wang Guo Qiang 王国强) is the 6th generation practitioner of Wu (Hao) Taiji, demonstrating form.

Wu Style 吳

Traditional Wu Style Taiji performed by Lin Jianquan 林鉴权.

Sun Style 孫氏

Sun Style Taijiquan performed by Wang Yanji. Master Wang was a senior student of Grandmaster Li Tianji.

Sun Jiayun, the daughter of Sun Lutang (the founder of Sun Style Taiji), performing Sun Style Taijiquan.

Possibly the earliest Wu style Taijiquan video with Chu Minyi, disciple of Wu Jianquan, recorded in 1937 in Shanghai. The video shows the Wu style set, tuishou and even Chu's 'modern and scientific' approach including his 'stick' and 'ball' system. A piece of history


In addition to the classical 5 main systems of Taijiquan listed above, there are other offshoots and modern variations. Here are some of those.

Demonstration of Zhao Bao Taiji. Zhao Bao Taiji is a modern offshoot of Chen Taiji.

Demonstration of Wudang Taiji by Cheng Tin Hung. Wudang Taiji is a modern form of Taiji, possibly influenced by Wu Taiji. It was developed by Cheng in the 20th century.

Cheng Man-ch'ing (Zheng Man Qing) performing his 37 form. Cheng Man Ch'ing was a student of Yang family Taiji. He eventually modified the system to create a short form that he taught widely. Cheng was very well known as a Taiji teacher in the United States.

Dong Yingjie (Tung Yingchieh), founder of Dong (Tung) Style Taiji. Dong was a student of Yang Chengfu. Dong Style is clearly an offshoot of classical Yang Family Taiji. The first part was filmed in 1950 and the second was filmed in 1945.

Cannon Fist Forms and Fast Forms

Most people associate the term Taiji (T'ai Chi) only with slow moving forms practice. However, the word Taiji itself means the union of Yin and Yang. In movement, this means the combination of fast and slow. In the oldest system of Taiji, the Chen family system, there are two main empty hand forms, Yi Lu (first form) and Er Lu (second form). Yi Lu is mostly slow, but with faster powerful moved interspersed throughout. Er Lu, also known as the Cannon Fist, is mostly fast with slow moves interspersed throughout. Only this way do we really practice both Yin and Yang together. Only slow is not real Taiji. 

Today it is mostly within the Chen system and Chen variants that we see the faster forms still being taught. However, even in other systems that are associated mostly with slow forms (such as Yang family), there are fast forms that were original and integral parts of the systems. Here are some videos of authentic Taiji Cannon Fist or other fast forms.

Chen Hunyuan Taiji 32 Cannon Fist  by Master Wang Fengming. This is a short version of the traditional Chen style Er Lu (Cannon Fist).

This is rare footage of traditional Chen Taijiquan Er Lu (Cannon First) by Grandmaster Feng Zhiqiang. Feng was a top disciple of the great Chen Fa Ke.

Yang style fast form performed by Vincent Chu, 6th generation inheritor of Yang Style Taijiquan. This form was taught by Yang Chengfu and transmitted first to his son Yang Shouzhong, and then to Ginsoon Chu (Vincent Chu's father).

Traditional Wu Style fast form performed by Ma Yueh Liang.