Fa jin is a strange topic because it is quite hard to explain to someone who doesn’t practice one of the internal arts such as Tai Chi, Bagua , or Hsing I fa jin is not a mystical force it is a natural physical force but to achieve it there are some basic principals that should be followed, some styles of Tai Chi in particular use fa jin , the main style that is known for using fa jin is the Chen style of Tai Chi, master Chen Xiowang who is the gatekeeper of the Chen style of Tai Chi, in this video we can clearly see that he is sort of exploding with each strike. What he is doing is not limited to the Chen style of Tai Chi the explosive force belongs to no style in particular, it is a method of body connection which can just as easily be gained from standing still, the secret to it is being able to feel or sense each part of your body as a whole and not as separate and disconnected the aim of the standing exercises is for you to 1 feel grounded and connected to the earth and your surroundings and 2 to maintain this feeling in any position that you may find yourself in.
Bruce Lee was famous for doing the inch punch which is a fa jin strike Bruce Lee wowed the world when he gave this demonstration of fa jin at an exhibition here, you will notice that he also does a fa jin kick, the punch if you watch careful is not like the type of punch that a boxer may THROW and this is the main difference between a fa jin strike and a boxing style punch. If you watch closely you will notice that Bruce Lee uses the WHOLE of his body to send power to his fist or to his foot, as you can see Bruce Lee is not saying this is a Tai Chi fa jin strike he is just striking with fa jin. The power doesn’t come from weight training and it has particular connection to technique or style, the power is issued from within, it is a feeling you get from relaxed concentration.
I have found a way of feeling what fa jin is supposed to feel like and look like, I have made this video below and I will explain how to do fa jin. If ou have been practicing Tai Chi for a while and feel that your strikes lack a feeling of power or force connection then doing th standing exercises for for a few minutes each day will give you the connected feeling that you need to do the fa jin strike or inch punch if you prefer.
After you have been standing for a while ask a friend or your partner to hold a ball in front of them against their body, explain to them that they me feel a slight jolt in the body, place your fist against the ball and imagine that all of your body is one unit and at first do a slow gentle push on tha ball, you will notice that they move back at the same time that you strike at the ball, this will help you to realize that your force moving forwards has a direct influence on them moving backwards, I say use a ball because as the ball gives it helps you to know that the force you generate is real and direct. You can track the energy that you expel and this is the safest way to slowly build up the short power in your strikes. In this video I have done it in slow motion and you can see that as soon as I strike without much effort it has an immediate effect on my opponent, although my opponent if offering resistance it hard for them to stay put the strike is very penetrative in nature, having the ball there helps to show what is happening. This strike goes beyond the surface and deep into your opponents body and this is why it is such a useful toll in a martial artists arsenal.