Gilman Studio On-Line Lessons



Yang Style

Tai Chi Dao/Saber/Broadsword


This Lesson Contains:

Movement # 36 – Spinning Horizontal Press

This is one of the fun, spinning movements of the saber form. The opponent pokes towards the center. I neutralize to the right, spin in and around her, and cut across her mid section. The pictures do not do justice to the action, yet I hope they help you to figure out how to perform this movement. Keep in mind that this is a fluid spin.


The opponent pokes towards my center.










1) I sit back and join with her thrust.

2) Sticking, I start to spin in and to her right.









1) Still sticking, I continue to spin.

2) Having gotten inside her defenses, I cut across her waist.









Sitting back and joining.

Shift the weight back onto the right foot and pull in the left foot into empty stance on toe. The torso starts to turn to the right, but still faces halfway between north and east.

The saber changes angle as it withdraws slightly and joins. This happens by the right hand pivoting counterclockwise and the left hand lowering.

Focus on the joining with the side of the blade.





Still sticking, I start to spin.

The body is going to spin around to the right, slightly in and around the opponent. For the first part of the spin, lift up the left foot and swing or step it around to the right, ending in, or close to, a T step. The right toe faces west. The torso is not leading this turn. It has to stay back a bit in order to allow the saber to stick with the opponent. At this point it faces about south. If you loose contact, the opponent is free to cut you fairly easily. You need to pass her defenses before you break contact.

The hands remain in the same relationship and move slightly to the right, but don’t let the hands lead the body. They must stay a bit behind for sticking.

Focus on sticking and starting the spin.





Continuing the spin and getting ready for the cut.

The body now turns more to the right as the right foot is released to get ready to step.  The torso faces slightly more to the right of south.

The two hands remain in the same position for pressing, but now the blade is starting to move to a more parallel to the ground level. The saber hand is in front of the upper center.

Focus on the opponent behind the body.





Stepping out for the cut.

Continuing to turn the body right, step out with the right foot to the right. The right toe faces north, This position looks a bit off balance, but when done in a smooth, spinning motion, it works. The right foot is going to be the brake for the strong twisting cut to the right. Also, when done more quickly, the left foot would pivot toe in as one moves right.

The two hands follow the body and are slightly behind the body so the torque released by the final part of the movement can be transmitted into the saber.

Focus on the target.





The slashing cut is complete.

The weight is shifted onto the right foot and the left toe is pivoted in to face north. The torso has turned to face almost to east. Sink deeply into the right Kua to stop the torque from throwing you off balance.

The two hands have cut around on a horizontal plane to have the saber blade end up facing east. The cut was mostly accomplished by the torso pulling the two hands to the right. This is a very strong movement.

Focus on the cutting edge.





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