Yan Yi is one of the more secret arts which I practice to compliment my Xing Yi. There is so much to this art that it can be considered an art form in itself.
Whilst this is an introduction, I barely scratch the surface of whats going on here and is an art I look forward to sharing more of to those who show real interest in what I teach.
Yan Yi 驗意 means to Examine or to Research Intention. This begins with examining your own Intention 意 but can extend to the intention of other people and ultimately the intention or path of nature, often known as the Dao 道.
It is particularly useful for examining body movement and dynamics and is best thought of as experimenting with the three internal harmonies (内三合) how the spirit/heart (Xin 心) connects to the intention (Yi意), how the intention connects to energy and movement (Qi 氣) and how the energy connects to structure and strength (Li力). Although emphasis is not placed upon Li within the practice of Yan Yi.
Yan Yi is non-martial and there are no fixed rules other than the movement should be connected to the Zhongwan (中脘), the middle cavity area (around the solar plexus) in the centre of the torso and you attempt to keep the flow of movement or energy continuous.
There are no specific rules for structural alignment though a certain level of relaxation helps maintain the flow, other than this movements can be exaggerated, performed slowly or at speed, and you may experiment with movement which may not be specific to Xing Yi Quan at all.
Enjoy and comments welcome! 🙂