Open the Kua

Tim's Discussion Board: Tai Ji Quan : Open the Kua
   By Peter Schmitt (Unregistered Guest) on Saturday, November 29, 2003 - 10:34 am: Edit Post

Hi All,

what does "open the kua" mean and how is it done? What ist the exact english word for "kua"?

Thanks for your help,


   By Bob #2 on Saturday, November 29, 2003 - 01:43 pm: Edit Post

Kua is a mysterious organ between a chicken's mouth and stomach. They usually keep tiny stones in them which help with digestion as chicken's dont have teeth or lips.

Opening and closing the Kua refers to not swallowing incorrectly- which can lead to getting choked and subsequently beaten during a fight.
In higher levels of IMA practicioners can feel a normal swallow flow from the tip of the tongue all the way down the upper thigh.

The exact English translation would be 'craw'. Older generation folks will often refer to choking on a bit of food or even getting very angry as having something "stuck in their craw".

   By Garold Marion (Unregistered Guest) on Saturday, November 29, 2003 - 04:27 pm: Edit Post


Before you accept Bob #2's explanation and run out to the side of the road to gobble some gravel, you may wish to consider an alternative definition.

Some people think the kua refers to the muscles in front of the hip joints, those on each side of the crease formed where the leg meets the torso. When shifting weight from one leg to another, one kua opens and while the other closes... least that's what some people think.


   By Michael Andre Babin on Saturday, November 29, 2003 - 05:49 pm: Edit Post

Of course, some people also believe that the earth rotates around the sun...

   By Garold Marion (Unregistered Guest) on Sunday, November 30, 2003 - 11:21 am: Edit Post

Sure...that's a problem, Michael, but what ya gonna do?

People believe the craziest things.

Ancient Egyptians believed the kua, or spirit, of a dead person was transported to the afterlife on a barge rowed by the grateful dead.

Tennesse Jed (using Garold Marion's PC)

   By Tim on Sunday, November 30, 2003 - 01:38 pm: Edit Post

Like Garold said above, the Kua is the area at the front of the hips where the head of the femur inserts into the pelvis.

"Opening" the kua refers to extension of the hip (increasing the angle between the thigh and trunk).

   By Peter Schmitt (Unregistered Guest) on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 04:01 am: Edit Post

Hi Tim and Garold,

thanks for your help!

Bob #2 I like your humor :-)


   By Bob #2 on Monday, December 01, 2003 - 12:07 pm: Edit Post

you guys'd make lousy chicken ranchers.

   By ryan on Saturday, July 10, 2004 - 08:05 pm: Edit Post

In Erle Montaigue's video he also says that opening your armpits (in the preparation part of the form) is 'opening the kua' and later on he goes to say that in a bow stance with your left leg forward that your hips should be facing forward so that you feel a slight pull on your right leg and he refers to it as the 'right kua'.

Does this mean theres an upper and lower kua? And thus lower left, lower right, upper left and upper right kuas?

   By Michael Andre Babin on Sunday, July 11, 2004 - 11:03 am: Edit Post

Some teachers describe it the way that you have; others say that their is an upper kua and a lower kua; others don't talk about it at all.

Using the kua is a subtle aspect of a whole package of physical movements and structural alignments that make up good taiji.

   By Buddy (Unregistered Guest) on Sunday, July 11, 2004 - 02:20 pm: Edit Post

I think of kua as fold

   By Tim on Sunday, July 11, 2004 - 03:07 pm: Edit Post

"Kua" is the juncture of the femur and pelvis.

The armpits are never referred to as "kua" in Chinese. Armpits are "yi xia."

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