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Weight Distribution in the Zheng Manqing Taijiquan 37 Posture Form
The weight distribution, what percent of your weight is on each foot, is important in all martial arts, but especially in taijiquan. We often talk about 70-30 (that is 70% of your weight on one foot and 30% of your weight in the other foot), 100-0, and very rarely 50-50 or close to it. These weight distributions need to be felt, but one can actually measure these. Simply do your taijiquan postures with each foot standing on a scale.
Consider the following table. I list all postures and "sub postures" I could think of as well as the percent of weight that is in the left and right foot. In every posture, the weight distribution obviously transitions through a range of %. However, I listed the weight distribution which I believe "defines" the posture. That is, the posture you'd make if someone asked you to hold the posture.
% weight in Left Foot
% weight in Right Foot
|3||ward off left||70||30|
|4||ward off right||30||70|
|11||white crane spreads wings||0||100|
|12||brush knee left||70||30|
|13||play the pipa||0||100|
|14||brush knee left||70||30|
|21||apparent closure, cross hands||51||49|
|22||embrace tiger, return to mountain||30||70|
|26||diagonal single whip||70||30|
|27||rely on fist, fist under elbow||0||100|
|28||retreating monkey, right||100||0|
|29||retreating monkey, left||0||100|
|30||retreating monkey, right||100||0|
|31||retreating monkey, left||0||100|
|32||retreating monkey, right||100||0|
|34||cloud hands, left||100||0|
|35||cloud hands, right||0||100|
|36||cloud hands, left||100||0|
|37||cloud hands, right||0||100|
|38||cloud hands, left||100||0|
|39||cloud hands, right||0||100|
|40||cloud hands, left||100||0|
|42||squatting single whip, snake creeps down||0||100|
|43||golden rooster stands on one leg, left||100||0|
|44||golden rooster stands on one leg, right||0||100|
|45||separate right foot||100||0|
|46||separate left foot||0||100|
|47||turn and strike with heel||0||100|
|48||brush knee left||70||30|
|49||brush knee right||30||70|
|51||ward off right||30||70|
|56||fair lady left||70||30|
|57||fair lady right||30||70|
|58||fair lady left||70||30|
|59||fair lady right||30||70|
|60||ward off left||70||30|
|61||ward off right||30||70|
|66||squatting single whip, snake creeps down||0||100|
|67||seven stars step forward||100||0|
|68||step back and ride tiger||0||100|
|69||turn body and sweep lotus with leg||100||0|
|70||bend bow, shoot tiger||30||70|
Here is a graph of the % weight in Left Foot vales.
Note the "up down" part in the middle, the many 0-100 changes. These correspond to the Rely on fist to Turn and strike with heel section.
It is interesting to look at some statistics of the % weight in left foot and the % weight in right foot numbers. The left foot has 0% weight in it about 27% of the time (this is 21 times out of 79 postures), and has 100% weight in it 16% of the time. The right foot, of course, has these same percentages but flipped. So we can say approximately 50% of the time (27% plus 20%), the left or right foot has either 0% or 100% weight in it. The average weight in the left foot is about 47% (and 53% for the right foot), and the median weight in the left foot is 30% (and 70% for the right foot).
Thanks for reading. Happy practice!
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