In martial-arts two-person practice, such as push hands, you look for your opponent’s weakness then attack there. My teacher, Master Xu, looks for where the other person lacks qi. It’s actually a location in or around the body.
In solo practice you can look for your own weakness. You’re doing that in both settings, but not in the same way. In two-person, you’re asking a friendly, fellow practitioner to point out your weaknesses, or empty places.
In both cases, you’re learning how to look (powers of observation), what to feel for, make connections, and become aware of what your body is telling you, or making evident—to see where you are now, have been, and could go.
Silk Reeling (Chan Shi Jing) is a good practice for doing all of that. Master Xu offers a good start to two components of chan shi jing in his latest video: follow along moves for daily practice and martial applications of the movements. So how do you do that?
Firstly, build a practice of doing movement. It forms a framework for feeling and recognizing what you’re doing and where you lack qi. Secondly, test with a fellow practitioner to identify what you are doing and what you could be. It’s that simple.
Master Xu is adept at getting his point across and if you want to practice and know how to apply many of the single basics he leads in this two-part, two-hour video, then I encourage you to download it today.