People often ask me why they can't use Tai Chi Chuan for self-defense. One reason is that, in their studies, they are not given all of the pieces of the puzzle we call Tai Chi Chuan. One of those valuable pieces is the San Shou or Two Person Form. This unique form utilizes the moves from the Yang Solo Form and applies them against an opponent. One person attacks, the other person defends; then the defender attacks and the other person defends. Thus both people are practicing moves taken from the Yang Solo Form, combined in a new and beautiful form simulating a fight between two Tai Chi experts.
The form itself takes about 4 minutes to do, but can be done either slowly or quickly. It should be learned slowly at first and then one should try to build speed while retaining strong posture, balance and power. As the student performs this form he or she is learning and studying actual applications which are important for defense.
The form is performed by John Amira and myself. John and I studied this form together in private classes with Master T.T. Liang, the first disciple of Grand Master Cheng Man-ch'ing. This 12-minute DVD shows us performing the form quickly, then going through it slowly, each of us in turn explaining the moves and counters as we are executing them, an approach that makes learning this form particularly easy. People who have studied from this tape have commented on what a goldmine of information it is. A must for serious Tai Chi Chuan students!!!