Tai Chi Books and Videos
Looking for a different sort of gift for a friend or loved one or even for yourself? While no book can replace learning tai chi in person from a teacher, reading about tai chi can be inspiring, and pictures can help you practice. Books on philosophy can increase your self-awareness. We also include a few videos that facilitate learning tai chi.
Books on Tai Chi
Master Cheng’s New Method of Taichi Ch’uan Self-Cultivation
By Cheng Man-Ch’ing, translated by Mark Hennessy
Photos of Grandmaster Cheng whose short Yang style we practice.
Has an easy-to-comprehend intro, mentioning the key role of relaxation.
Excellent reminders for the student learning the form.
Master Cheng’s Thirteen Chapters on T’ai-Chi Ch’uan
By Cheng Man-Ch’ing, translated by Douglas Wile
Advanced concepts for our development of tai chi
Alternate text: Master Cheng’s Thirteen Treatises, trans. Ben Lo
T’ai-Chi Touchstones: Yang Family Secret Transmissions. Compiled and translated by Douglas Wile. 1983 Sweet Chi Press.
Cheng Man-Ch’ing’s Advanced T’ai-Chi Form Instructions. With Selected Writings on meditation, the Iching, Medicine and the Arts. Compiled and translated by Douglas Wile. 1985 Sweet Ch’i Press.
There Are No Secrets: Prof. Cheng Man-Ch’ing and his Tai Chi Chuan
By Wolfe Lowenthal
Anecdotes and stories about studying with Prof. Cheng in the 1960-70’s told with humor and humility.
Gateway to the Miraculous: Further Explorations in the Tao of Cheng Man-Ch’ing
By Wolfe Lowenthal
Short articulate chapters that convey the subtle yet powerful concepts of tai chi and how they were experienced in the Professor’s presence.
Like a Long River. Wolfe Lowenthal.
Harvard Medical School Guide to Tai Chi
12 Weeks to a Healthy Body, Strong Heart & Sharp Mind
By Peter M. Wayne*, with Mark L. Fuerst
Essence of T’ai Chi Chuan. Lo, Benjamin.
T’ai Chi Ch’uan Ta Wen, Questions and Answers on T’ai Chi Ch’uan. by Chen Wei-Ming. Translated by Benjamin Pang Jeng Lo and Robert Smith. 1985 North Atlantic Books.
The Taijiquan Classics An Annotated Translation Including a commentary by Chen Weiming. by Barbara Davis.
T’ai Chi Classics. by Waysun Liao. 1990 Shambhala.
Master of Five Excellences, by Cheng Man-ch’ing and Mark Hennessy.
T’ai Chi Ch’uan & Meditation. By Da Liu. 1986 Schocken Books
Zheng Manqing’s Uncollected Writings on Taijiquan, Qigong, and Health, with New Biographical Notes. Douglas Wile. 2007 Sweet Ch’i Press.
The Theoretical Basis of T’ai Chi Ch’uan. by Robert Amacker.
Recommended for those with advanced t’ui-shou experience.
Tao Teh King (Interpreted as Nature and Intelligence)
By Lao Tzu, trans. Archie Bahm
The essence of Taoism, Tao Teh King is one of the simplest yet most profound interpretations of man and nature.
The Book of Joy
By His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu with Douglas Abrams
Interviews in which they discuss, with great humor and much teasing, the principles of joy and compassion.
Awareness Alone is Not Enough. Questions and Answers with Ashin Tejaniya. 2008. Available on the internet.
Lao Tzu (2006) Tao Teh Ching. Trans. John C.H. Wu. Massachusetts: Shambhala Press. Paperback. ISBN 978-1590304051.
Lao Tzu (2007) Tao Teh Ching. Trans. Stephen Addis and Stanley Lombardo: Shambhala Press.
Cheng Man-Ching. (1993) Lao Tzu: My Words Are Very Easy to Understand: Lectures on the Tao Teh Ching. Trans. Tam C. Gibbs. North Atlantic Books. ISBN 978-0913028919.
This is Professor Cheng’s own commentary and Tam Gibb’s translation.
Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching. A Book About the Way and the Power of the Way. Ursula K. Le Guin. 1998. Shambala Publications.
Lao Tsu, Tao Te Ching. Translated by Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English. 2011. Vintage Books.
Chuang Tsu, Inner Chapters. Translated by Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English. 1974. Vintage Books.
The Way of Chuang Tzu. Translated by Thomas Merton. 1965. Penguin Books. Introduction by the Dalai Lama.
Cheng Hsin, The Principles of Effortless Power. by Peter Ralston. 1999. Blue Snake Books.
The Taoist I Ching. Translated by Thomas Cleary. Shambala Classics.
Immortal Sisters, Secret Teachings of Taoist Women. Translated by Thomas Cleary. 1996 North Atlantic Books.
The Art of War. Translated by Gary Gagliardi. 2003 Clearbridge Publishing.
Opening the Energy Gates of Your Body. B.K. Frantzis. 1993 North Atlantic Books.
Relaxing Into Your Being, The Water Method of Taoist Meditation Series, Volume I. B.K. Frantzis. 1998 Clarity Press.
The Great Stillness, The Water Method of Taoist Meditation Series, Volume II. B.K. Frantzis. 1999 Clarity Press.
Books on the Sword
Tai Chi Sword. by Kenneth Van Sickle. 2014 Taiji Europa.
The Demon’s Sermon on the Martial Arts, And other Tales. By Issai Chozanshi. Translated by William Scott Wilson. 2006 Shambhala.
The Swordsman’s Handbook, Samurai Teachings on the Path of the Sword. Translated and edited by William Scott Wilson. 2014 Shambhala.
Taiji Sword and other Writings. By Chen Weiming. Translated by Barbara Davis. 2000 North Atlantic Books.
Chinese Swordsmanship, the Yang Family Taiji Jian Tradition. By Scott M. Rodell. 2005 Seven Stars Books and Videos.
The Sword & The Mind. Translated by Hiroaki Sato. 1986 Overlook Press.
E. Weinberger (ed.) 2003. The New Directions Anthology of Classical Chinese Poetry. New Directions Publishing Company.
Poems of the Masters: China’s Classic Anthology of T’ang and Sung Dynasty Verse (Mandarin Chinese and English Edition). 2003. Red Pine.
Here are two YouTube videos of Professor Cheng Man-ching doing the tai chi form.
Principles and Practice of Tai Chi Chuan
Here is a teaching video from our school, The Tai Chi Foundation, that helps you practice the form.
The Professor: Tai Chi’s Journey West. A film by Barry Strugatz about Professor Cheng Man-Ching.
Judge Dee mysteries by Robert van Gulik. The series is set in Tang Dynasty China and deals with criminal cases solved by the upright and shrewd Judge Dee, who as county magistrate in the Chinese imperial legal system was both the investigating magistrate and the judge.
Essential Anatomy for Healing & Martial Arts. by Marc Tedeschi. 2000 Weatherhill.