As with all of the many different styles of taijiquan that are currently being taught and practiced by thousands of people from all around the world. Many advocate the study and practice of the Standing Post Work (Zhan Zhuang Qigong) usually taught separately on its own alongside the more popular moving (Dong) practices of taijiquan. Within the Li Style (Lishi) taijiquan as taught by the LFIAA we to also advocate the practice of Standing Post Exercises, which are taken from the square yard taijiquan form to develop each individuals ability to cultivate their Qi through the ‘Still’ (Jing) practice of (Zhan Zhuang Qigong).
We start our students on the journey of learning the Standing Post Work. By using the first few postures of the Li Style taijiquan square yard form, the first posture is the “Emptiness Posture” (Wuji Shi) which is were the student stands with their feet apart in the Bear Stance (Xiong Shi), both knees pointing in the same direction as the big toe of each foot, the knees are slightly bent with the bodyweight passing through the centre of each foot, the hips (Kua), gluteus and stomach naturally sink, the arms are held away from the body with the armpits open and the elbows sinking downwards, the chest sunk and the back rounded, the chin is slightly tucked in to stretch the cervical spine and the crown of the head pushed upwards. The students would then concentrate on their breathing and making sure to push their body in the six directions of upwards, downwards, left, right, front and back.
Obviously the Standing Post Work (Zhan Zhuang Qigong) is were the body remains as still as possible. Each student can hold each posture for a few minutes before changing to a new posture, learning to stand longer in various positions will strengthen the tendons, making them thicken as each individual progresses in their practice. Standing still develops our Qi (Vitality) and our physical strength (Li), hence Qi nourishes our Li. But our Qi is directed by our intention (Yi) and our intention (Yi) is directed by our Will (Zhi), making the over-al practice of the Standing Post Work (Zhan Zhuang Qigong) a deeper practice that connects both the external (Wai Gong) with the Internal (Nei Gong), strengthening our mind, body & spirit through the many practices of the Li Style (Lishi taijiquan.