Marta Wiley started studying Tai Chi & Martial Arts with Master SamTam in 2004.
Tai Chi Chuan: Master Sam Tams teacher was Zhang Qinlin-4th generation-Yang FamilyTai Chi Chuan. SamTam also studied with Dr. Chi Chiang Tao. Yi Chuan/ I Quan/ Dao De Cheng Sifu SamTam was a senior student with Master Han Xing Yuan of Wang Xiang Zhai's best known students. SamTam was also a senior of Lau Fat Mang( Eagle Claw Fame). He learned Shuai Chiao from Chang Dong Cheng and as a child Master SamTam began learning with General Zhang Xiang-WU, one of Grandmasters Liu Yun Qiao senior Baji desciples. General Zhang went on to teach Liu the old Yang Taiji style (as it was before Yang Cheng Fu standardized the form) and Kuen Wu sword form. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zhang_Qinlinhttp://www.grtc.org/art/yang-family-taiji-quan-the-hidden-tradition/
SAMTAMSamTam (1940-) was born in Mainland China and is out of a family that for generations has specialized in martial arts and/or medicine. From childhood he grew a strong character combining intelligence, passion, perseverance and competitiveness. He started learning martial arts alreday in the 1940´s and because of his fathers occupation as a doctor in the Chinese armed forces, he learned from high level military martial art instructors. He is a living encyclopedia of knowledge, theoretically and practically. Among many of the things and persons he has learned from was Eagle Claw (Lau Fat Mang), Yiquan (Han Xingyuan, Yu Pengxi), Taijiquan ( Zhang Xiang Wu, Qi Jiangtao), Xingyiquan ( Han Xingyuan, Zhang Xiang Wu), Baguazhang ( Han Xingyuan, Zhang Xiang Wu), Shuaijiao ( Chang Dongshen), and many others … He is very, very skillful and never hesitate to give clear demonstrations of his abilities in the internal martial arts. And in contrast to many other well know teachers who only let their own students touch them or do pushhands with them during workshops and demonstrations, he always allows everybody to touch and feel him. No staged performances here! Theory is backed up with clear practical demonstrations.
THE TEACHING LINEAGE OF WIND RIVER INTERNAL MARTIAL ARTS Sifu Jordan Misner is a long time student of Master SamTam (Tam Mann Yin) SamTam (1940-) was born in Mainland China and began his study of martial arts from childhood developing a strong foundation built upon upright character, self discipline, hard work and a passion for martial arts. His martial training began in the 1940s under the tutelage of very high level military martial art instructors that served with and knew his father (a physician) in Chiang Kai Shek’s Nationalist Army. Sifu Tam is a living encyclopedia of martial arts knowledge both in theory and application. As a result of his skills and aptitude for the martial arts Sifu has had the unique opportunity to learn from many of China’s highest level martial arts masters. His closest and most influential teachers include: Eagle Claw (Lau Fat Mang), Yiquan (Han Xingyuan, Yu Pengxi), Taijiquan ( Zhang Xiang Wu, Qi Jiangtao), Xingyiquan ( Han Xingyuan, Zhang Xiang Wu), Baguazhang ( Han Xingyuan, Zhang Xiang Wu), Shuaijiao ( Chang Dongshen), and many others I have been extremely fortunate to have learned from a master who is both as skilled at teaching as he is at his martial art. He teaches much like a mother bear teaching her cubs to hunt, very playful yet serious and practical. He has imparted his art, theory and feeling through form and function allowing me to feel in him and through him how the internal arts work. Without the direct transmission from teacher to student it is very difficult if not almost impossible to learn the internal martial and healing art of tai chi chuan. Sifu Tam is a living demonstration of how Tai Chi applied in your life can manifest in all areas of your being. What is taught at our school carries with it Master Tam’s signature of feeling and principles. It has been my very good fortune to have met and been invited to learn privately from Sifu Tam. I feel very fortunate have been given his trust and permission to teach his Internal Martial Arts to others for their health and enlightenment.
Teaching TAI CHI To Children
Marta's Kids' Classes
Marta realizes that children today are faced with many tough decisions at a younger age than when we were growing up. Drugs are more prevalent and easier to obtain today than ever before. There are gangs in every High School (Yes, even your local High School as small as it may be).
It seems as though our children have more opportunities for failure than success these days. Marta wants to do everything possible to change that and to provide opportunities for children to succeed in all areas of their lives.
Martial Arts training helps children to concentrate and stay focused and helps children with ADHD. Increasing focus on schoolwork, homework, and any project start to finish. Marta helps children set goals for themselves and to follow-through and complete them, then to immediately set new ones. With less idle and less trouble to get into.Always motivating children to be the best they can be and to never settle for the mediocre.
Marta's Tiger Cubs (7-12 yrs.) are strong both inside and out. She teaches them to say NO to drugs and strangers, when to fight and when to run. Most importantly, we re-enforce the morals that their parents teach them at home. We have NEVER had students who bully others and NEVER had any student who was unable to defend him/herself in a physical confrontation.
Mindfully, the values and skills our kids learn now will remain with them for the rest of their lives. In 2004 Marta pursued a Martial Arts training inspired by Sam Tam and begun a lifelong journey "I am thrilled to be able to effect and change young hearts and lives the way my teachers changed mine." - Marta Wiley
*Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder.
I intend to develop myself in a positive manner, and to avoid anything that would reduce my mental growth or my physical health.
I intend to develop self-discipline, in order to bring out the best in myself and others.
I intend to use what I learn in class constructively and defensively, to help myself and my fellow man, and never to be abusive or defensive.
Demonstrating at Tucson Confucius Institute’s Health Day FestivalTaiji* Quan, Zhan Zhuang standing meditation and Qi Gong are time-tested holistic disciplines for cultivating and increasing the flow of Qi through the body’s meridians, at the same time, Taiji quan also has serious applicability for self-defense. In China, the practice of combining the principles of movement with breath and mindfulness has been used to maintain health, cure chronic conditions and develop the practitioner’s overall physical and mental well-being even into advanced old age. The two primary practices used are Tai Chi Chuan and Qi Gong, both of which extend back in time 100s and even 1000s of years, with Qi Gong being the oldest of the practices. In recent years, a substantial body of evidence-based research has been published regarding the benefits of meditative movement. One study reviewed over 70 published articles on studies that demonstrated positive outcomes in nine (9) categories:
Increases Bone density
Improves Cardiopulmonary effects
Improves Physical functions
Reduces Falls and related risk factors
Increases Quality of life
Improved Patient reported outcomes
Improvements of Psychological symptoms
Enhanced Immune functions
Paul McIlrath Demonstrating Tai Chi FanAccording to a University of Florida study, Tai Chi Chuan practice appears to be beneficial in lowering blood glucose levels in Type II diabetics, allowing people with diabetes to better control their disease. In adults with type 2 diabetes, the study found that participants in a supervised tai chi exercise program two days per week with three days of home practice lowered their fasting blood glucose levels, better managed their disease, and improved their overall quality of life compared to those who participated at a lower level of intervention. The study demonstrated that tai chi chuan provided benefits similar to other more strenuous aerobic exercises, like walking or jogging. Tai chi chuan and Qi Gong are low impact meditative exercises, which makes them appropriate for individuals of any age or fitness level. Truly practicing Tai Chi Chuan and Qi Gong is much like taking a mini vacation from stress and our typically hectic lifestyles each day. Chinese Internal martial and health practice can be a cornerstone for a healthy and more enjoyable way of living. Unlike some other types of exercise, Tai Chi is accessible to people of any age and condition–children, senior citizens, and even those with walkers. Some modified forms of Tai Chi can be practiced by those with limited mobility. In fact, Tai Chi is particularly beneficial to the elderly and those with impaired motor skills. Since Tai Chi emphasizes correct posture and balance, the exercise may be a safer exercise alternative for people with frail bones. Moreover, you need no special clothes or equipment and you can practice at home.
Medical science remains unclear about how Tai Chi works. While several studies have documented the benefits of Tai Chi, none has completely explained why or how–at least in the context of Western medicine. But there are theories. While traditional practitioners might attribute the health benefits to the free flow of chi, Western-world scientific research into Tai Chi is finding other possible explanations for its salutary effects.
For instance: deep breathing promotes relaxation, stress reduction and concentration.
focused attention not only relaxes the body and mind, it helps cultivate mental alertness.
the exercises strengthen muscles and bones (for instance, as a weight-bearing exercise that requires you to support your weight while standing, Tai Chi is a good preventive measure for osteoporosis),
and since most of the movements involve alternating weight-bearing in the legs, Tai Chi helps you cultivate better balance by improving coordination and control of the body during movements.
What are some of the key principles that set tai chi Chuan apart from other martial arts and what is important in our practice of the art?
Demonstrating Push HandsOur practice evolves from a core principle of body integration. Many martial arts and artists espouse this principle but few actually follow or accomplish it. By whole body integration we mean that if the little finger moves it is moved by the whole body not just the muscles in the hand or forearm. When we step the whole body is involved not just the muscles of the legs, hips, and torso. How do we achieve this integration?The core of our practice revolves around Zhan Zhuang standing meditation. Through this practice we learn to stand using our whole body rather than just the external muscles of the legs, etc. The muscles that stabilize us and propel us become an integrated whole, and we begin to obtain conscious control of this aspect of the body. We are also learning to sink our chi and gain control over the concept that Yi (heart mind) leads the Qi. Through standing we learn to exercise, develop, store, sink, raise and use our chi. Standing in stillness makes this development easier and more conscious. How do we know we are achieving integration?The guideposts for this are fairly recognizable. Initially standing is a chore that requires effort to hold the arms up, hold the posture, relax the body, etc. The more we stand the more we begin to recognize a feeling of ease and fullness, usually beginning with the hands and then arms. Eventually, there should be no effort in the standing, no one muscle should be tense and the standing should feel like the Qi is doing everything. In other words I am no longer holding myself with effort, my muscles are completely relaxed and my Qi is holding me in the posture. How long should I stand?
Jamie ConleyAs my Sifu told me, it is more important how correctly you stand. One minute of correct standing is enough. In my case it used to take 15 minutes or more to get a good correct minute of standing, however now it occurs almost instantly. An easy way to determine your time is to stand until you are uncomfortable, then see if you can relax through the discomfort, if you can’t stop. If you can then stand until you become uncomfortable again and then stop. 5 minutes at a time a few times a day is is another way to approach your goal. What about forms, after all it is a tai chi school?
Karin Blank, Jordan Misner and Jason Hurford as the PandaWe practice a yang style form that is similar in sequence to the Cheng Man Ching form, but the execution is much more detailed and precise. What else is unique about tai chi as practice by Wind River Tai Chi?Our tai chi is taught with a goal of understanding gaining skill of application as this is critical in obtaining the most benefit from our practice. Many do the form for health only and our class structure allows students to focus on health and/or application. All are taught each movement and posture with application in mind. This is because each movement of the form requires full integration of body. We also do other drills and practice that allows us to test our body integration and develop it further.
About TaijiquanTaijiquan (Tai Chi Chuan) is an ancient Chinese martial art well known for its superior health benefits and high level of effectiveness in combat.
At WuDang Martial Arts we are fortunate to be able to offer authentic Yang Family Taijiquan. We offer the "Large Frame" and the "Medium Frame" form of Yang Jian Hou.
Taijiquan forms are performed slowly and in a relaxed manner, which has the benefit of calming the mind and releasing the mental and physical tensions that our modern stressful lifestyles can produce. Studies have shown that the daily practice of Taijiquann helps to prevent stress-related diseases such as high blood pressure, digestive problems and heart disease. It is also commonly recognized as an excellent form of moving meditation.
Most know Taijiquan for it's benefits as a health exercise and there are many teachers who only know taijiquan in this way. This is due to the government of China outlawing the practice of martial arts during the cultural revolution. The Yang family began hiding the martial aspects of their taijiquan and tauting only the health benefits. As a result many students never knew that taijiquan was a martial art. These students began teaching another generation of students and the process repeated. Fortunately there were a few "inner door" students who received the full transmission of the martial art of taijiquan. As a martial art, Taijiquan is unsurpassed; using the theory of "four ounces of strength defeating one ton of force," one can repel an opponent without resorting to force against force. The opponent's own strength is used against him, while the Taiji practitioner uses only his internal energy or Qi.
* In the May 1996 issue of The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society a study confirmed that "the practice of Taijiquan produces measurable benefits in reducing frailty and falls in older persons and helps in maintaining balance and strength."