I am going to tell you the straight goods about this thing called Chi. It is easy to understand, but you are going to have to give up any thoughts of mysticism. No matter if you study wudan or Shaolin, you are going to have to accept a more logical way of thinking.
In the first place, this mysterious thing we have been calling chi is nothing more than a catch basket. Don't get me wrong, chi is real, chi exists and can be used, but everybody confuses it by calling whatever they don't understand chi. If somebody blows out a candle at twelve feet with a strike, it is the chi, but if somebody makes all the green lights, it is also the chi, so the subject of chi has been thrown around until is a confusion.
To create this thing called chi one must discipline their body so it acts as a coordinated unit, I call this Coordinated Body Motion. In olden times instructors would tell their students to use the body as one unit, but that doesn't really tell the story of what one is actually doing. One must break the body down and understand all the pieces, if he is going to use it as a whole unit.
All motion must start at the same time. The fist and the foot move forward at the same time. There is no backward push to give forward movement, the movement is merely forward, and at the same time.
All motion of the body must halt at the same instant in time. The fist and the foot end all motion at the same, exact moment. There is no staggering or swaying of the body, the weight simply drives into the ground at the point of focus.
All of the parts of the body must move relative to their size and weight. The hips, weighing more than the foot, must still achieve a smooth arc of motion that begins and ends simultaneous with the foot. The fist having a longer arc than an elbow, or a shoulder, must still start motion and stop motion at the same time as the elbow or shoulder.
When the body starts and stops in this manner, and all the body parts are properly evaluated for the range they must move and the amount of weight that must be moved, then you will achieve CBM. Coordinated Body Motion, you see, is the key to it all. CBM achieved, there will be a release of Chi.
When you move with CBM your attention will be off the body and on the target, and then intention will flow. It is Intention that is Chi. Intention will fill up the body with energy, and enable you to have those amazing abilities that true martial arts possess. Of course, this is just the first step, a simple little step, and to make your way to the end of the Martial Arts, and to find the True Martial Art, no matter whether you study Aikido or Karate or whatever, you must find the remaining steps of the Martial Arts.
Al Case has practiced martial arts for 40+ years. A writer for the magazines, he wrote the column 'Case Histories' in Inside Karate. He is the developer of Matrix Martial Arts, which you can find out about by getting his free ebook at