Books and DVDs

The Chinese martial arts books and DVDs reviewed on this page are the best I've found for training in Chinese swordsmanship and taijiquan. Since I don't have the time to read widely outside my own areas of training, this page is open for submissions from students of other tai chi lineages or styles of swordsmanship who are more familiar with the best in their area. I would also like to see the best available books on Chinese Martial History, reviewed here.


Chinese Swordsmanship - The Yang Family
Taiji Jian Tradition by Scott M. Rodell

chinese-martial arts book swordsmanshipThis is a "must have" for anyone studying either the Yangjia MiChuan or Yangshi Taiji Jian systems.

As well as the history and other valuable information on swordsmanship both the Michuan Jian and Public Jian forms are explained movement by movement with photographs and applications.

Click here for a full review of this Chinese martial arts book

Taiji Notebook For Martial Artists by Scott M. Rodell

chinese martial arts book taiji notebookThis book will give you a true picture of what taijiquan is about. It is recommended for anyone training in this art.

I read it regularly - sometimes from cover to cover and sometimes just to concentrate on the gems in a single chapter. it was written by my teacher who gathered thoughts over the years and expressed them in this book. Sometimes, when he is away overseas for a long time, I read it, and it is like having him there to tell me how to practice.

The principles in it are for all students of tai chi (taijiquan). This is a Chinese martial arts book no student should be without.

A Practical Guide to Test Cutting For Historical Swordsmanship by Scott M. Rodell

chinese martial arts book test cuttingSwordsmith Paul Champagne died a few days ago, so I am using his review of this book from the back cover:

"Teacher Rodell is a swordsman In Yang style taiji jian swordsmanship who almost

single-handedly is keeping this branch of historical swordsmanship alive and vital into the future. This guide is a must-have for anyone who wants to develop his or her skill with the jian or dao. This guide is also for the emerging schools of swordsmanship, European and Japanese, or other, that are rediscovering the true nature of the sword and the swordsman. If you are searching to better understand your sword or bladed weapon art through test cutting practice, this guide will be an invaluable starting point. Click here for a full review of this Chinese martial arts book."


Taiji Sword Festival Estonia Summer 2002

Chinese martial arts DVD Michuan sword

This DVD contains demonstrations of the Michuan and Public forms, Jian form with a tassel, Michuan Spear form, Miaodao form, and much more. There are interviews with Scott M. Rodell giving insight into the practice of taijiquan and Chinese swordsmanship. As this DVD is no longer in print, it is only available to students who are learning the jian form through GRTC in Australia, or have begun studying this form at one of Rodell Laoshi's seminars. I have a few copies to help our students learn since they are so far away from our teacher and see him so rarely. My copies are in a different cover to the one pictured.

Yang Family Michuan Taiji Sword Martial Applications

chinese martial arts DVD sword applicationScott Rodell demonstrates martial applications from each of the eight sections of the Michuan form. This is an excellent study resource for students training in Chinese swordsmanship. There is clear teaching on the application of the eight basic cuts, and multi faceted demonstrations of each.

We often use the Chinese martial arts sword applications on this DVD as training exercises. Our students take the part of either the aggressor or the defender and practice until they have the application working well. Then I make them swap places and they have to learn it all over again. It's great training. The more students practice these little scenaria, the more instant use Chinese martial arts skills are built into their bodies and minds. These skills come out during free swordplay.

TCSL Inaugural Full Contact Tournament

Chinese martial arts sword tournamentThis video was fast paced and exciting. It shows real Chinese swordsmanship at its best. The competitors are using real weight wooden swords at high speed. There is no time for thinking, just whatever reactions are already trained in. Watching it was the next best thing to being there. A teenager viewing it with me said I was behaving like her Dad when he watches football. Well ... it was exciting.

The production begins with Scott Rodell explaining to the audience how the judging will proceed. This is followed by every pools match. You soon get to know the participants by their different coloured gear. You see all the action without any of the waiting time while people prepare for their bouts. You get to see it all and make your own judgments of who is winning, confirmed or negated by the slow action replays of controversial strikes.

Then come the direct elimination matches. One by one the now familiar competitors are eliminated. It comes down to the last two and the nail biting match goes on and on with more than one close call. This is followed by presentation of a very nice sword to the winner.

The DVD ends with competitors commenting on their preparation, their matches, and what they have learnt. It makes you want to be in the next tournament.

Net Auction Masters CourseHere's a free e-book for those who want to make more profit from their Ebay sales.

Note: As you can see, the links to these Chinese martial arts books and DVDs are still to come. I'll work on that over the next few days. Australians will be able to buy the items already pictured here, from me, in Australia. If you are in a hurry to do that before the links and shopping cart go up, just use the contact form and I'll communicate with you by email.

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