Book Title: Handbook of T’ai Chi Ch’uan Exercises
Author: Zhang Fuxing
This book has a couple of nice chapters covering the basic characteristics of T'ai Chi Ch'uan and the key points of practice. It then has separate chapters on the short 24-form, the standard 88-form, and push hands. Since I do not practice the standard 88-form or push hands, I cannot comment on those chapters. The chapter on the short 24-form is excellent. Each motion is covered in great detail, both with written instructions and diagrams. The written instructions are quite detailed, yet easy to follow and there are notes at the end of each motion that provide additional focus and emphasis. The diagrams are also very well done.
Book Title: Tai Chi Chuan - 24 & 48 Postures with Martial Applications
Author: Master Liang, Shou-Yu & Wu, Wen-Ching
I purchased this book primarily for the martial applications information. It is important to know that the book only provides the martial applications for the 24 Postures, not the 48. My comments on this book will not include the 48 Postures as our group does not practice that form. The 24 Postures chapter is very well done. There are a lot of photographs (with directional arrows) for each motion as well as detailed written instructions with breathing cues and key points of focus. That information is followed by more photographs of the actual martial applications, including written explanations of the martial applications. The book also includes some general information on Taijiquan, guidelines for practice, warm up exercises, and Qigong. This book is an excellent reference for both the beginner and the more experienced student.
DVD Title: Tai Chi The 24 Forms
Instructor: Dr. Paul Lam
This DVD contains two segments (Six Qigong Exercises and Seven Single Movements) that I do not use because they are so different from what we practice with our group. The segment that I find to be very helpful is the one with detailed instructions of the 24 form. It is very well done and Dr. Lam goes into a lot of detail about each motion. He verbally describes what is happening while one of his students demonstrates the motion. He will have the student pause part way through a motion to point out correct body positioning and other details. The final segment shows Dr. Lam performing the 24 form in its entirety with views from the front and the back.
Title: Tai Chi Qigong Shibashi (18 Movements)
This website has information on the 18 Motion Tai Chi Qigong that our group practices. The site provides information about the creation of the form as well as tips for practice. Their an online YouTube video of Tai Chi Qigong Shibashi (1 of 2) is similar to the Qigong practiced by our group. They also offer a free instruction manual that can be downloaded. Keep in mind that their video is just a tool for learning the movements. It is shown at a much faster pace than one would actually practice the form. Also note that our group practices some additional motions that are not included on the video and some of the breathing patterns are different. See http://www.umsl.edu/~lgatson/taichi/qigong.htm for a complete list of the motions we use.
Book Title: Tai Chi Qigong For Stress Control and Relaxation
Author: Gary Khor
This book has a lot of useful information about Tai Chi in general and Qigong specifically. It includes instructions (including illustrations) of the 18 Motion Tai Chi Qigong that our group practices. The instructions include focus and imagery used for each motion. As mentioned above, you will need to keep in mind that our group practices some additional motions that are not included in this book and some of the breathing patterns are different. All in all this is a very nice book on the subject.