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Chris Parkerson
02-05-2008, 01:58 PM
Hey folks,

Is anyone experimenting with drills like this? If so, I would love to hear about your experience.

This drill is designed to focus and improve upon the ability to irimi and attach to uke's center through the process of parrying. From there, you can (1) use the bokken to throw (or destabilize) and cut or (2) use your hand to throw (or destabilize) while cutting with your primary hand and the bokken.

Drill Objectives

The drill is done at 1/2 or 3/4 speed.
Cuts are made with control for safety (you go at the level of the least experienced).
You take turns feeding a few seconds of "ordered chaos" and then provide a "mistake" or "poorly constructed" attack that your partner can capitalize on.


Watch video below:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=CZS0jheCUcM

Kent Enfield
02-05-2008, 05:22 PM
Free-form sword drills? I don't think anyone has done that before, ever. ;)

Why use bokuto instead of just doing this empty handed, especially as in your goals you list throwing? Are you trying to develop something specifically in the context of sword work? I don't see much that's very swordy going on in the video.

At least get some eye and hand protection.

Chris Parkerson
02-05-2008, 06:24 PM
I don't see much that's very swordy going on in the video.

What you say is very interesting. Perhaps we are preconditioned about what is "swordy". My training partner in this video is a senior instructor in Kum Do (Korean Sword). He loved the drill.

So many things can change a practice. Assuming that all cuts must be down the torso seems to be in vogue for the larger amount of swordplay we see in Kendo and Samurai Movies. Using padding with shinai allows each practicioner to trade blows - something I just would not waant to do with a real sword and no armour.

In this drill we are using the longer battle swords and no tsuba. The length of the bokken changes things. The lack of a tsuba requires skill to avoid bashing knuckles. I suspect that without a tsuba on a sharp katana, cutting off a thumb, wrist or forearm will end a duel with real swords. It would seriously give advantage during battle.

But this drill is not about the initial strike. It is about capturing "in motion and an element of chaos" the moment when swords lock with force on force. This theme is seen in Japanese art quite often. But how often is it practiced in kata? How much is it practiced in Randori? Does anyone try to isolate the skill and find a way to focus on it under pressure so that a person's level of muscle memory can be tested?

What do you do when swords lock and someone begins to parry? Is your only weapon the sword? Can you instinctively take kuzushi through the sword. Angier Sensei and Okomoto Sensei do this all the time in their sword on sword demonstrations but it is in an ordered technique with an obvious attack that is prearranged. Men cut... etc.

It is also designed to assist the practicioner in working kuzushi through one side of the body and one hand while doing something complimentary with the other hand, i.e. one hand leads the throw and the other hand cuts with the blade in an aiki blend.

It also gives a practicioner permission to accept that kuzushi in itself is success in a fight and the throw is anti-climatic. In real fighting kuzushi alone can create an opening for a strike or cut to end the fight.

It teaches that if you irimi and parry, you need to do it with angles that cancel out the other person's blade on the inside fight. Noticed the time my buddy entered and we had a "mutual slay".

I am sure I could go on about what we learned but I would like to hear from other's experience.

Kent Enfield
02-05-2008, 08:53 PM
What you say is very interesting. Perhaps we are preconditioned about what is "swordy". My training partner in this video is a senior instructor in Kum Do (Korean Sword). He loved the drill.Without wanting to start a tangent, there's all sorts of stuff that gets labeled as kumdo. Everything from shinai kendo identical to that in Japan to stuff that you'd expect from Team Paul Mitchel.

What I mean about it not being swordy is that you're not using your bokuto as swords, at least not in what I call a "combatively rational" manner. There's lots of presenting huge suki (which aren't taken advantage of) and, conversely, lots of attacking without any real opportunity. There's also plenty of smacking the other guy's bokuto when you could have just cut him. You seem much more intent on getting body to body than on just dispatching the other.

I wasn't talking about the shape or manner of cuts so much.

Using padding with shinai allows each practicioner to trade blowsOn another tangent, if you're trading blows, you're not doing kendo (or any other legitimate weapon art that I know of), at least not doing it very well at all.

But this drill is not about the initial strike. It is about capturing "in motion and an element of chaos" the moment when swords lock with force on force.If you're locking swords with force on force, you're probably doing something wrong. Admittedly, it happens sometimes and it's a better situation than getting cut yourself, but your goal should not be to lock swords. You should striving to advantage yourself and disadvantage your opponent, rather than to get to a mutually disadvantageous situation.

Upyu
02-05-2008, 09:03 PM
What you say is very interesting. Perhaps we are preconditioned about what is "swordy". My training partner in this video is a senior instructor in Kum Do (Korean Sword). He loved the drill.
<snip>


Sword, Spear, Staff, its mostly the same.
Number one thing I'd criticize (and I see this in 99% of the vids where any kind of weapons work take place) is that the hands move independent of the body.

Before any work can be done on the "kewl" aspects of kuzushi, angles etc etc, you gottta have a connected body that's developed for weapons work. Angier, Okamoto and any other dude with skill definitely has this, on top of other stuff when they do other "tricks."

Bottom line?
Neither guys in the vid have physically connected/unified bodies.

Figure out what needs to be conditioned in the body, how it needs to be conditioned, work on it for a couple of years, then you might see some change in the way this "exercise" would be approached.:D

That being said, I'm pretty sure I could do some "kewl" demos where I just stand there, and you come at me with whatever sticking/trapping/entering techs and I'd be able to stuff it without moving much. (I think Kent knows what I'm talking about ;) )

Chris Parkerson
02-05-2008, 09:35 PM
Robert,

Soooo true, unification of motion is a lifelong goal. And when you put stress into a situation, we easily resort to strength rather than relaxation and disunity rather than unity, double weightedness rather than single weightedness. As the old proverb says, "Who can be calm until the first blow is thrown?"

This was our first attempt. We did get much better over time but I never filmed it again. As in all new venues, there is initial tension in newness.

One interesting part of this event was also the season - Springtime in Ohio. The grass is quite wet from the rains and the footwork was quite slippery. It makes for wider than desired stances and over-reach during technique.

But I really don't care so much about striking poses. Just looking to keep it real.

Chris Parkerson
02-05-2008, 09:44 PM
there's all sorts of stuff that gets labeled as kumdo.

Kent,

My partner is yudansha in Haedong Kumdo under direct tutelage of M.H. Cho, 7th Degree in Lancaster, OH.

Upyu
02-05-2008, 11:01 PM
Robert,


But I really don't care so much about striking poses. Just looking to keep it real.



Hi Chris,

First, I want to say that what I'm about to say isn't meant in a mean spirited way.

That being said, I think the "unity" you refer to is something that I consider "coordination" of the body.

The connection I mentioned in my previous post is a result of training in a specific manner, which conditions the body to move in a certain manner. Once you've conditioned it that way, it becomes "unnatural" for it to move in an unconnected fashion, under duress or otherwise.
Of course relaxation, being accustomed to the task or exercise at hand all enhance this "body connection", but even without, it should be visible.

Next, this is only from my own experience of course,
body unification/connection isn't really a "life long pursuit." If you know how to train it, it can be developed to a usable degree within 2-3 years, depending on how smart you train, and how hard you train.

The real "meat" of the training begins after you have a connected body...that's when things start to get really funky ;)

If you had this kind of connection (that's been discussed in other threads) it still would have been apparent in the video. That's my take on it...
but if we ever meet, and I'm wrong, the dinner for the night is on me :D

But,
I also have a lot of respect for you putting the video up, and trying to keep it real. ;)

Kent Enfield
02-05-2008, 11:55 PM
My partner is yudansha in Haedong Kumdo under direct tutelage of M.H. Cho, 7th Degree in Lancaster, OH.Rather than sidetrack this thread and end-up it sent to the other arts ghetto, I'll just suggest that people search for haedong kumdo on other arts sites and draw their own conclusions.

Chris Parkerson
02-05-2008, 11:59 PM
No offense taken Ron,

I can appreciate your honesty. I too am a fan of unified motion training. Been training it for 35 adult years in Tai Chi, Hsing-I, Chi Gung, Judo, Jujitsu and Aikijujitsu. I have accomplished amazing things with it. But you can lose it in an instant and it can also degrade over time from ligament and tendon tightness- especially in the shoulders and in the pelvic girdle.

When you buy me that lunch, I will show you how you can take it from an opponent during execution of technique.

Any thoughts how to set up my specific training objectives in this drill without losing the unpredictable element or reverting back into basic sword randori where the "clench" between swords is few and far between?

Upyu
02-06-2008, 12:33 AM
No offense taken Ron,

I can appreciate your honesty. I too am a fan of unified motion training. Been training it for 35 adult years in Tai Chi, Hsing-I, Chi Gung, Judo, Jujitsu and Aikijujitsu. I have accomplished amazing things with it. But you can lose it in an instant and it can also degrade over time from ligament and tendon tightness- especially in the shoulders and in the pelvic girdle.

When you buy me that lunch, I will show you how you can take it from an opponent during execution of technique.

Any thoughts how to set up my specific training objectives in this drill without losing the unpredictable element or reverting back into basic sword randori where the "clench" between swords is few and far between?

Gotcha, and I'll be true to my word :D

I haven't gotten up in age their like some of you guys, so who knows ^^;

That being said, there is an exercise you might want to consider as an extension to this training.

Take a 6foot staff, or longer (hard wood, with some flex, make sure its sturdy, no chinese wax wood).
Person A holds one end while Person B holds the other end.
Now both persons attempt to effect kuzushi on the other through the stick. (One person tries to throw down the other) You're free to pretty much use any means at all.
But basically if you screw up and start using disjointed means of manipulating the staff, you'll get thrown by the guy that's heavier or more powerful than yourself.

The stick basically helps to take out any "slack" from the body, if you want to manipulate it properly.

In the beginning it can turn into a wrestling match with lots of nasty blisters, bumps and scrapes, but body connection usage should become readily apparent, since it's the only way to control the guy on the other end of the stick.

Take the same feelings/skills and apply it to the sword drill, or empty hands for that matter.

roman naly
02-06-2008, 01:02 AM
Hi Chris

I always enjoy seeing and reading other ppls perspectives on training methods it opens up new ways. The only critism I could make, in my limited experience, is sword etiquette ie. both yourself and your partners handling of the bokken.

Respectfully Roman

Chris Parkerson
02-06-2008, 06:25 AM
Roman,

You are right. I am not much of a swordsman. My training comes mainly from Escrima with internal principles gleaned from arts like Yanagi. I am pretty hard to hit/cut however. Even approaching 60 with allot of old injuries talking to me.

I train very seldom with padding. In the late 1970's my Escrima teacher used to sponsor competitions in San Diego. No one respected the stick because they had padding on.

I prefer Dog Brother's style because they keep it real. No martial weapons or pugilist style looks the same when you take the padding off.

I look decent doing Men, Do, and Kesa cuts with my Katana and bokken. I also look pretty good at the shooting range in my back yard. But a two way shooting or cutting match is quite different and everyone's plan changes once the get hit or cut.

Many people's plan changes just with the thought of getting hit or cut without protective gear. Closing on a bokken without protection is a real blast and a small enlightenment.

Chris Parkerson
02-06-2008, 07:37 AM
Take a 6foot staff, or longer (hard wood, with some flex, make sure its sturdy, no chinese wax wood).
Person A holds one end while Person B holds the other end.
Now both persons attempt to effect kuzushi on the other through the stick. (One person tries to throw down the other) You're free to pretty much use any means at all.
But basically if you screw up and start using disjointed means of manipulating the staff, you'll get thrown by the guy that's heavier or more powerful than yourself.

I practice this method regularly. Renshi John Clodig (Yanagi Hara Ryu) taught it to me. It is great for building lower body momentum and sending it through an opponent using “small circle” kuzushi. When done properly, you do not perceive effort. You begin to trust that less is really more.

Funny how the pucker factor causes emotion to take over. When emotion takes over, the conscious mind hyper-engages. Then, your center rises. Once the center rises, a technique degrades. Your upper body compensates with physical effort that comes from the upper back and arms. Thus disunity builds like a snowball rolling downhill.

I enjoy creating drills. Most are fusions of multiple arts in an effort to challenge Yudansha who are used to one format in training. I am lucky in that I have plenty of Yudansha that hook up with me regularly to see what I will come up with next.

Some drills prove valuable, some do not. One thing I try to do is state the learning/training objectives first and then find ways to put some form of stress and chaos in the drill so that the practicioner cannot predetermine his action. Then I try to form the drill with minimal negative training. All drills have a negative training element. Traditional Randori, most of all. Most of the negative training elements in this drill were stated by our kenjutsu buddy who posted above. I would add that timidity was the biggest negative factor in the initial training. It is so easy to just cut off or break a man’s thumb or try to run pasthim and bonk him on the head like you would in kendo competition. Some of the large attacks we provided were to give our partner an opening to enter for the grapple and "aiki flow" practice, so that the objectives could be trained. Some of the big cuts we presented were aborted because the uke had angle advantage and the tendency to just proactively cut off the thumb or the forearm was on both of our minds. we even traded thumb cuts at one point, laughing at how simple it could be... Much like the surprise backfist in sparring.

Any ideas on how to maintain the specific learning objectives while minimizing negative training issues would be quite welcome. Go out and try the drill as I provided it if it interests you. I would love to see what you come up with to improve it.

Upyu
02-06-2008, 11:41 PM
But you can lose it in an instant and it can also degrade over time from ligament and tendon tightness- especially in the shoulders and in the pelvic girdle.


Hey Chris,

Well, I can't speak about the age factor exactly, since I'm not up there in years like some around here, :D
I realize you've got years of experience behind you, but would you consider that that maybe you're missing something in your training?

As far as I know, the tendon/ligament, and fascia shouldn't degrade too rapidly with age. If you have a proper solo training practice then it should be strengthening these facets with age (up to a point).

I've seen this in a fair number of guys with the goods across several different styles. Of course I won't know for myself for at least another 15 years or so...^^;

Anyways, getting back to the topic,
When you say small circle kuzushi/lower body momentum, do you care to elaborate a little more in terms of body mechanics? Just wondering if we're on the same page.

I definitely agree with you on the "more" is actually "less"

About your training ideas, we generally don't work out with swords.
Most of our weapons work is either based on spear or staff, and then translated over to free hands. That being said I'll give it a shot at some point. I used to do Kendo myself, but at this point it feels pretty ridiculous to train in that context...I strongly feel that the point of the exercises was largely lost ^^;

About any ideas to keep on the objective at hand...that's a toughie.
Its definitely the reason why you see so many different training methodologies out there...there's no one good answer.
It's really up to the individual though. I did find that once I "switched" over to this "rewired" way of movement, it would hold steady, even under pressure, and was generally the only thing that could save my ass when things went topsy turvy. (Full contact striking + grappling, no escrima, so you definitely have me one upped there ;) )

Oh and finally,

I rewatched the vid,
I was definitely too harsh about the whole body connection thing. At least with regards to you. Your partner definitely made me judge way too quickly ^^;
Nice use of the dang/pelvic girdle/lower body structure, I see you keeping it intact no matter how you move. (Your partner on the other hand....let's just say that maybe you shouldn't tank for him ^^;)

gdandscompserv
02-07-2008, 05:36 AM
As far as I know, the tendon/ligament, and fascia shouldn't degrade too rapidly with age.
Let me know about that in 40 years or so. Oops, I won't be around in 40 years.

phitruong
02-07-2008, 06:48 AM
Chris, are you powering your sword with your right arm, methink, it's your dominant arm? seemed to me you did, but I could be wrong. Looked a bit stiff holding the sword, the tip of the sword tends to point above your partner head. also, your sphere seemed to collapse (don't know if I explain that correctly) when you draw back for the cut. If you want to capture or connect, then, personally, I would use the taichi sword approach. if you hold something hard in your hands, then you need to be soft, and vice versa. When we locked sword in kenjutsu, our approach usually included "pop" the other guy, slide back and cut down at the same time. The "popping" action could be timed so that you hit the other guy with the back of his own blade. but then it's kenjutsu, at least what I learned, where the only rule is whatever sticks out you slice it off. interesting exercise though. food for thought. thanks.

Chris Parkerson
02-07-2008, 09:15 AM
If you want to capture or connect, then, personally, I would use the taichi sword approach. if you hold something hard in your hands, then you need to be soft, and vice versa. When we locked sword in kenjutsu, our approach usually included "pop" the other guy, slide back and cut down at the same time. The "popping" action could be timed so that you hit the other guy with the back of his own blade. but then it's kenjutsu, at least what I learned, where the only rule is whatever sticks out you slice it off. interesting exercise though. food for thought. thanks.

I love the wrods you use: "capture and collect". That was the essence of the drill. I saw, I think it was Obata Sensei doing a "sticky sword" aiki-style performance on Youtube about a month ago. I cannot find it anymore. Capture and collect. YES.

In my opinion, "Poping is the tactical element you would add in real life". For instance, I used poping in this video as a tactical element to dislodge uke's hand from the handgun.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=96JQhiXRkw4

I also use small circle "poping" to create koppo (joint breaking) right before a throw occurs (at the point when kuzushi is at its highest point and the uke can not defend against it).

I totally agree, poping creates a space for the sword to cut better. The issue for me is how to train "floating" uke through the "capture and collect" phase until it reaches the highest point of Kuzushi?

I am attempting to reverse-engineer the blade on blade throw that Angier Sensei, and Okamoto Sensei do so wonderfully. I may not arrive, but the journey is the best part. There is allot of learning to be had in the exercise.

if you hold something hard in your hands, then you need to be soft, and vice versa.

Nice quote. I try to allow my feet to begin the cut, my hips to direct the cut and my hands follow with the fine tuning. Good insight on using the wrong hands for the final lever in one or two m of the cuts. I noticed that was when my feet could not move closer together, thus my effort drifted to the upper body and then to "primary" force (nearest the point of the cut) rather than secondary force (some place above or below the cut).

My sword cut is not a centripetal arc as is used in many styles. It is specifically a Yanagi cut that is centripetal in nature. My Kumdo partner is caught in between the two. His traditional arc cut was difficult to use on the longer swords. Notice how he tries to keep his hands close together as done with the smaller katana. perhaps mine are a bit wide even for the longer sword. But in cutting, it really works for me quite well. I get allot of juice in my men cut. Perhaps I will video it at some time with some form of audio or visual comparison that can be readily distinguished.

Chris Parkerson
02-07-2008, 03:40 PM
Well, I can't speak about the age factor exactly, since I'm not up there in years like some around here,
I realize you've got years of experience behind you, but would you consider that that maybe you're missing something in your training?
QUOTE]

I suspect that my biggest training failure was not to have regular visits with a sports physician and a professional Rolfer.

[QUOTE]As far as I know, the tendon/ligament, and fascia shouldn't degrade too rapidly with age. If you have a proper solo training practice then it should be strengthening these facets with age (up to a point).

I've seen this in a fair number of guys with the goods across several different styles. Of course I won't know for myself for at least another 15 years or so...^^;[/

Age leads to death. Oh yeay, that is a tautology as time leads to age and death is an inevitability. Nevertheless, while I am not a sports physician, here is my take on the "unity of motion" thing and sports/chronic aging injuries.

Shoulder issues like chronic biceps tendon injuries can be compensated since arm leverage is the last thing you need to use in a throw. You can bypass the shoulder and even the elbow for that matter and still make "unified motion" technique work. Body throwing (without the arms) is just a reduction of techniques that are taught by throwing through 3 joints (wrist, elbow and shoulder). You can even pin your elbow to your rib cage and complete the throw (isolating the shoulder all together). What Ledyard sensei is calling the "Ikkyo Curve" can also be seen as simply connecting the humerous with the clavicle and scapula so that you can find the center of gravity in the pelvic girdle through the spine and rib cage connections. thus, one torso can throw another torso as long as this connection is made.

Chronic knee injuries can be a bigger issue. The easiest way to drop weight in a "small circle" throwing technique is to bend the knees. What if you cannot? Bending at the waist tends disunify the throw, by taking pressure off the uke's center during the throw . You can still throw with big circles using two out of the three dimensions as long as you use the circle to take the yaw out of the thorax and make it hook up with the pelvis. You still have width and depth even though you lose the element of height during the throw. Many Aikido traditions teach what I would call "wide stances" as the basic curriculum. The throws that naturally occur from wide stances are projection throws and focus on this 2 dimensional force do accomplish the major part of the throw.. Little dropping on height is necessary. But small throwing requires a drop in height of some kind and from some part of the body.

There is a Tomiki instructor in Columbus, Ohio that teaches on crutches due to a medical challenge in his legs. He found another compensation when he cannot use pure projection due to his limitations.. He throws often with the use of aiki set ups and judo “coupling” actions using his crutch like a tripping foot.

The greatest degeneration in “unity of motion” has to do with hip/pelvic girdle problems. This is where your core strength is and where your primary center of gravity resides. If you have a muscle imbalance, for instance, you most likely cannot fully single weight on one foot. And if you get into a wide stance, you cannot minimize/reduce the stance smoothly. Either way, transferring momentum/force through "weight shift" and the connection with uke will likely be disconnected and easily read as primary force..

I suspect that there is a "real world reason" (among others) to be learned when asking why “old man” style has stances where the feet are almost next to each other. Old martial arts teachers had to figure out how to throw and strike without athletic stances, using one leg to support the other without becoming double weighted and losing momentum.

Oh well such a digression. Key lesson, don't let your injuries go untreated. They come back and haunt you when you get older.

Ron Tisdale
02-08-2008, 05:58 AM
Actually, I think that was one of your best posts, Chris.

Best,
Ron

Upyu
02-08-2008, 06:43 AM
But small throwing requires a drop in height of some kind and from some part of the body.

I agree, but specifically what parts of the body? :)
I'd say using the pelvis/hip girdle is only part of the equation.


And if you get into a wide stance, you cannot minimize/reduce the stance smoothly.
Do you mind clarifying what you mean by this?


I suspect that there is a "real world reason" (among others) to be learned when asking why "old man" style has stances where the feet are almost next to each other. Old martial arts teachers had to figure out how to throw and strike without athletic stances, using one leg to support the other without becoming double weighted and losing momentum.

I think there's a difference between using "athletic" stances, and doing lower/wider stances for training purposes (aka, lower basin training, which you'll find in most non-southern CMA)

Also, could you define what you mean by "double weighted".
So many people have their own definitions, (even among the chinese cma community) I just would like to understand your position better.


Oh well such a digression. Key lesson, don't let your injuries go untreated. They come back and haunt you when you get older.

I'll definitely take that to heart :D

On a different note, have you ever taken a look at statues like this, or similar? I'd love to know what your take on them would be (about their body, make, characteristics, anything that's jumped out at you about them etc)
http://www.koumatsuba.zansu.com/kongourikishi_as2.JPG
http://www.sendai-biyori.com/news/image/20050722083747.jpg

I realize it seems like an unrelated tangent, but I'd appreciate it if you humor me :)

Chris Parkerson
02-08-2008, 08:04 PM
I use "double weighted" in the sense that the term is used in the Tai Chi classics.

I do not think words can portray as well as video, where I move from. I have a couple of traditional techniques performed with a smaller circle than normal on Youtube at "wuweimonks". You can probably analyze the movement I am talking about there for what it is worth..

Look for:

Small Circle Gedan Ate
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IPYQrVeDWY

Sankyo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iQYjae0Uh5s

Small Circle Sumi Otoshi
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmaHSOpWTZc

Shiho
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yFgr7NgzM1Q

I have seen those figures but know nothing about them. The motions remind me of Ta Mo's 18 muscle change exercises but the faces look like warriors. What is the story you have on them?

Upyu
02-09-2008, 09:16 AM
I use "double weighted" in the sense that the term is used in the Tai Chi classics.


Which is up for debate by a lot of people and interpreted in different ways.
Some people consider it to be two feet on the ground, or force on force, or specifically "li" on "li" (as opposed to "jin" vs "li"), or the point where you are unable to adjust your body anymore.
Personally I don't really care about which one is right or wrong etc.
But I think it would help to establish a baseline of where you're coming from if you elaborated on your specific interpretation of "double weighting," with regards to body mechanics.


I do not think words can portray as well as video, where I move from. I have a couple of traditional techniques performed with a smaller circle than normal on Youtube at "wuweimonks". You can probably analyze the movement I am talking about there for what it is worth..


Erm ok... I watched. First off, props for putting video up there.

Before I do an "analysis" of what you do...(I got a good idea...but I'd rather not voice it just yet ^^; ) I think there's a lot that can be established verbally, since a lot of the basics with regards to connection/jin etc are common throughout jma and cma. Since you have a pretty extensive background in cma maybe we can establish a common ground.

Let's start with posture: Do you do any work on emphasizing six-opposing forces in the body in order to maintain equilibrium in the body?


I have seen those figures but know nothing about them. The motions remind me of Ta Mo's 18 muscle change exercises but the faces look like warriors. What is the story you have on them?

Well, honestly I think looking at these or the chinese versions of them are pretty self-explanatory.

Without going into the buddhist connotations, (which are linked to the body skills displayed in the statues) I'm going to kick it off with some quick physical descriptions:

To sum up, one is "A", one is "Un" ("ha" and "heng" in chines) -> these refer to the specific sounds.

One is the body opening, one is the body closing.
Both statues are actually a single entity, but showing different states.
Coiling throughout the body pretty obvious, and muscular development in certain areas are dead giveaways about the way that particular person trained.

That's for starters...if there's anything you'd like to add I'm all ears :)

gdandscompserv
02-09-2008, 11:00 AM
muscular development in certain areas are dead giveaways about the way that particular person trained.
The trapezius muscles seem pretty well developed. I'd like to look at their back.

Chris Parkerson
02-09-2008, 12:31 PM
I am familiar with the six harmonies
1. hand to foot
2. elbow with knee
3. hip with shoulder
4. (Yi) Mind
5. (Li) Body
6. (Chi) Energy

Yes I used to study how sounds, organs and movement were related. Not so much anymore.

Double weighted is real simple for me. 50% - 50% weight distribution on each foot. Put a plum bob under your perineum (inseam) and see where it falls. If it is in the middle of your stance, you are double weighted. Shift to one foot, if the plum bob is truly over the line of your ankle, your are close to being single weighted. 70% - 30% weight distribution is still double weighted. 90%-10% is functional enough but still not truly single weighted.

Below are a few ways I express unity of motion expressed in small circle and martial context. They will be up on Youtube for only 2 days.

Staff Drill
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KvLeESkA4OE

Sword Cuts
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-i9hTYOFbQ

Aiki Sword Drill Level 2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yf7NhfgQ3Y4

Small Circle Throw
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zV4PqupYOns

Small Circle Throwing with Empty Hand
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=prO3Xx4a9Y8

Upyu
02-09-2008, 06:55 PM
I am familiar with the six harmonies
1. hand to foot
2. elbow with knee
3. hip with shoulder
4. (Yi) Mind
5. (Li) Body
6. (Chi) Energy

Well, you posted two sets of "harmonies". The first three being the external requirements that help to create the bodies "frame" in the beginning, and the second being internal harmonies.

The first three are pretty straight forward.

The second three... 5. "Li" doesn't even mean "Body" -> it's "strength".
I think the version you were trying to shoot for was
Xin with Yi, Yi with Qi, and Qi with Li(actually "jin")
Some version of the harmonies will arbitrarily replace the parts with "blood/circulation" etc. Doesn't matter since they generally mean the same thing physically.

Alright...nit picking over.


Double weighted is real simple for me. 50% - 50% weight distribution on each foot.

Why would you say that 50-50 weight separation is a "bad thing"? I can think of one reason why it could be wrong, but again, it would only be due to the use of inefficient body mechanics being used. (specifically with how an incoming load settles in the body). If the load is distributed properly in the body, having 50-50 weight separation is the "same" as 70-30 or 90-10.

<snip video>
I'd say that while I see a lot of the first set of harmonies in your video, I don't see any from the second. You're using a coordination on the saggital plane, effected through the legs and hip girdle (on a smaller scale of course, I see why you call it small circle), but it's still fundamentally based on the first set of harmonies. It's weight transfer, small,compact weight transfer at that, but I still don't see any physical "connections" in the body being used.
I see harmonization/coordination, but no actual connection throughout the body, which is what has to be present, before the "internal harmonies" are even mentioned.

Another clue that we're talking about completely different things is "six directions".
I assume you've been doing lots of zhang zhuang, qi qong exercises etc...
Six directions (sometimes called eight directions), refers to 3 sets of opposing forces which cause the body to stay in constant equilibrium. Its a trained skill, and basic to all internals (there's definitely no "here's my take on it" for this one, either its there or its not).
You have up to down (everyone pretty much knows this one), extending through the head and relaxing down, front to back, and side to side. Basically a piano wire of relaxed "tension" holding the body together.

But then again, I could be wrong, video does lie :)

Here's an interesting thought problem. It looks like you're all about progressive resistance training, so I assume you've done some grappling/ground work as well.

Person A) mounts person B).
Person B) is under Person A), with his hips controlled. Very nasty position to be in (Every UFC jock's favorite GnP position).
Strictly from a "laboratory" view, do you think it's possible for Person B to effect Person A with a strike that has a respectable amount of power?
For the moment, let's disregard the fact that your face would STILL probably be rearranged even if you could land a couple of shots from the bottom of the mount :D

(Btw, all this will tie back into the statues, the development of their body etc etc)

Maybe Mike or Dan would like to comment later.

Chris Parkerson
02-09-2008, 07:53 PM
Like I said earlier in other posts, I really do not chase chi anymore. I have not read any of the new literature that is out on Nei Gung or other esoteric practices. I find that relaxing and using intent can just about do anything you need. If things get too complex, we often miss the simple essence of a thing. I do not have to talk about balancing organ energies, I just feel it naturally in meditation. My teachers in CMA were deep in results and, luckily, lighter on the chinese paradigms.

I do have several methods of punching from the ground that can seriously hurt internal organs. Some I learned from CMA teachers. Other I simply reverse engineered. They are, however, much worse when standing. They often scare me because the rheostat in my body is not quite sensitive enough to judge just how much Jing I am putting into someone. I am not into building bad karma for no reason.

What say you post some of your movement?

Upyu
02-09-2008, 08:42 PM
I have not read any of the new literature that is out on Nei Gung or other esoteric practices. I find that relaxing and using intent can just about do anything you need. If things get too complex, we often miss the simple essence of a thing. I do not have to talk about balancing organ energies, I just feel it naturally in meditation. My teachers in CMA were deep in results and, luckily, lighter on the chinese paradigms.

Um...it's not "new". It's pretty much standard stuff and doesn't take all that long to figure out.

I'm not talking about "balancing organ energies", but rather pure body mechanics, of an unusual nature. That's it. I'm not big on the chinese paradigms myself, but I do think one should at least be able to describe what goes on in the body.

Same goes for the problem I presented...
actually I've already outlined a lot of the basics that we work from here on aikiweb. If you do a search for "training for martial movement" you should be able to pull up the article. Granted those are only scratching the surface and a couple of years old.

Video:
I don't have any recent ones, and this is all stuff from almost 2 years ago: http://www.youtube.com/user/Upyu

if you subscribe there's other videos I can share that're in the private section.

If I get time I'll try and film some new stuff.

Feel free to critique what you see. (Only fair considering I've said a lot of smack about you)

Tom H.
02-09-2008, 09:53 PM
Coiling throughout the body pretty obvious, and muscular development in certain areas are dead giveaways about the way that particular person trained.

I'm also fascinated by the fact that he doesn't have the belly that older interal guys seem to grow, e.g. Chen Xian Wang (http://youtube.com/watch?v=zxxebP0u31g) (taiji) and Bo Jia Cong (http://youtube.com/watch?v=34TCAXfUrEE) (yi chuan). Not sure if it's different training approaches, conditioning over multiple decades, or just plain age.

And any videos you want to put up would be swell :-)

Chris Parkerson
02-09-2008, 10:28 PM
no, it is not new. But each generation puts their flare on it.
my readings came from Cheng Man Ching, William Chen, Hung I Shiang, Hsiu hong Shi, Robert Smith, Mantak Chia,Yang Jwing Ming, and Wai Fong Doo. Funny, Doo Wai used to call "the microcosmic orbit" the "microcosmetic orbit" but his stuff still worked.

I like my formula , The mind leads the body and chi follows. For me that translates Yi - li - chi. Another fellow a few posts ago wanted to used a different sequence, Yi - chi - li. I do not know how that would work unless he was chasing the chi hoping it would somehow make his body/strength move.

I also like your movement. I, too, am hard to throw if I choose not to get thrown and few strikes can set me up for a throw. In fact, few strikes hurt me. I think relaxation with good posture and remaining single weighted makes that work more than searching for some Tibetan construct. I like using terms from physics. So did William Chen.

Upyu
02-09-2008, 10:58 PM
I like my formula , The mind leads the body and chi follows. For me that translates Yi - li - chi. Another fellow a few posts ago wanted to used a different sequence, Yi - chi - li. I do not know how that would work unless he was chasing the chi hoping it would somehow make his body/strength move.


Are you referring some posts by Mike S.?
The sequence does make sense (personally), but we'd have to clarify what each means by Chi/qi whatever. In the latter case, Qi refers to a physical component in the body. Its an additive.

I'm glad you like your formula, but can I suggest that you at least change the word "li"? "Li" means strength ;) Look it up. (The character is 力)
No biggie, I understand what you're trying to say though.


I also like your movement. I, too, am hard to throw if I choose not to get thrown and few strikes can set me up for a throw. In fact, few strikes hurt me. I think relaxation with good posture and remaining single weighted makes that work more than searching for some Tibetan construct. I like using terms from physics. So did William Chen.
Well I should think few strikes hurt you! :) Especially with your experience.
Bouncing back strikes etc to the body can be fun, but its definitely more challenging for me since I have a smaller build than most. (Can't resort to the uber Dantien power :p at least yet, lol)

Several things though, you still haven't elaborated on why you think having a 50/50 weight distribution is "bad."
As far as I see it, as long as the incoming force is distributed in your frame, and you aren't "bracing" off of the ground, then where your weight is distributed doesn't matter as much. You're still free to move however you want. It only becomes a problem if you use the legs to brace yourself.

Do you mind explaining the mechanics of the "internal strikes" you deliver? I'm definitely all ears.

As far as the "mount" example goes, it's just a simple example of sourcing the power from the ground.
Hips can't move, but the feet are still free to add some stability/ power through the arch in the legs (to provide stability for the frame while you're on the ground), couple that with a path from the small of the pack out to the arm, and your arm punch should feel a lot heavier than it looks.
If you have a connection from opposite arm to leg conditioned in, that can be used to add some power as well.
(And that's not even adding adding torque between the upper and lower centers inside the body to the equation etc)


I like using terms from physics. So did William Chen

Actually I've found that trend in most CMA guys that can "do" it. They tend to have an innate grasp of statics, which is an easy way to describe some of this stuff.

To be honest, the only descriptions I've seen from you so far are "small circle", "double weighting" etc. Terms that are far from being descriptive from a "phyiscs" sense.
I saw you mention Centrepital vs Centrifugal in the videos, maybe you want to expound a little on that?

Tim Fong
02-10-2008, 01:44 AM
To sum up, one is "A", one is "Un" ("ha" and "heng" in chines) -> these refer to the specific sounds.



Rob,
Not to nitpick, but...

It's probably better romanized as "a1" and "hong1." Although, sometimes, the exhale is pronunced "e1" as in "em1mi2tuo2fo2", i.e. "Buddha preserve us." I was bored so I looked up hong1 in my 辭源 (Etymological Dictionary) [Beijing, 商务印书馆, 1996 (sorry, don't know the English name), 1996]and this is what it said:
梵文經咒中多用吽字。佛教密宗密言十七字之一。
Which I'm translating as: Many Sanskrit scriptures use the word hong1. This character is one of [the first?] 17 characters used by Buddhist esoteric sects [alt. secret religions/shingon] and secret speech.

My Chinese pretty much sucks so if someone has a better translation, please correct me.

Mike Sigman
02-10-2008, 01:53 PM
no, it is not new. But each generation puts their flare on it. Hmmmm.... not if they know what they're talking about. It's actually pretty solidly laid out. It's like trying to tell some professional acupuncturist that you don't need to use the same theory he does because everyone gets to put their own spin on it.... only someone who didn't know acupuncture would buy into it. my readings came from Cheng Man Ching, William Chen, Hung I Shiang, Hsiu hong Shi, Robert Smith, Mantak Chia,Yang Jwing Ming, and Wai Fong Doo. Funny, Doo Wai used to call "the microcosmic orbit" the "microcosmetic orbit" but his stuff still worked. Ah. Those are great names in American Tai Chi. I like my formula , The mind leads the body and chi follows. For me that translates Yi - li - chi. Another fellow a few posts ago wanted to used a different sequence, Yi - chi - li. I do not know how that would work unless he was chasing the chi hoping it would somehow make his body/strength move.This has got to be a leg pull, guys. Nobody is seriously this far off base. ;)

FWIW

Mike

Chris Parkerson
02-10-2008, 04:10 PM
John and Mike,

Lets avoid I Li Chi for a moment then and just call the sequence in simple English.

How about: The mind directs the body mechanics and mechanical force follows.

We will be talking about “dynamics”…. Not “statics”.

I have a multitude of ways to use intent and mechanical advantage to create maximum force. I will explain more deeply one of them.

Robert Smith wrote under the pen name of John Gilbey for a while. Two books… One was something like “Secret Fighting Arts of the World”. They were meant to be funny but each chapter had a kernel of real truth in them as well. One chapter was called the “dinky little punch”. It was a shortened version of Pi Chen, the first movement in Hsing-I. That chapter makes a great study (if you have some time to to read it) and is the one punch I will describe.

Maximizing Momentum

In Hsing-I it is almost impossible to do safe contact sparring without compromising (hindering) mechanical force/momentum. Unhindered momentum is like a freight train, or as the old song goes, I’m a steam roller baby, I’m gonna roll right over you. That freight train may hit you at only 4 miles an hour but it’s mass will still destroy just about every organ in your body. I think that is why internal (Tai Chi, Hsing-I and Paqua) Chinese boxers display their skill with the Tai Chi-style “uproot”. It displays mechanical force and momentum without injuring someone. When you strike with this uprooting force or whether you just uproot someone, the guy should go flying 10-20 feet…. Especially if you have an “uber dantien (hara)”. The strike is really anti-climatic except in a fight.

As already said, my distance is different than what you (john) are doing. They say fighting a man is like taking a walk. They also say you should walk through the person like he is not there. If you see the opponent as a barrier, momentum and mechanical force is stymied by your mind and different leverages occur within the body mechanics because your mind doubts its ability to blow through the object. Thus Hsing-I is often referred to as “mind-Form boxing”. From my experience, it uses the sequence I am referring to.

No Mental Barriers
There is no surface hitting when a freight train blows through you. To do the kind of sparring you are doing in the videos is to do “tappy-tappy” to each other in a boxing or medium range. Chen Tai Chi- style whipping might help at this range, but I personally prefer to close distance while gaining momentum with my lower body, then I place a lead hand on you to (1) destabilize your spine, (2) reduce your base and (3) place you at the edge of your balance. Then my punch follows, into the cavity I have created by destabilizing your spine. Watch Cheng Man Ching or Hung I Shiang uproot someone. There is no stoppng it. If you attached an imaginary plum bob to his inseem, Watch how it drifts from one leg, past the inseam through the other leg when they attack you by walking through you.

I like this method because it does not require speed. I can move at the pace of the attacker using Aikido-style irimi/blending with little over-commitment or degradation of force. Then my lead hand can do aikido while my rear hand does the Hsing-I punching. I can also change strategies and styles within ¼ second.

Direction of Force
Bruce Lee used to stress that Wing Chun (and JKD) had three angles of wrist direction at the moment the punch struck flesh. Driving upward would do less damage and uproot an opponent, Driving straight would do more damage, but driving down would penetrate and do the most damage. That is because the opponent’s legs cannot collapse fast enough. The resistance in the legs provided enough resistance for the punch to penetrate better. I use this format once I have an opponent in an unstable position. I can uproot, or down root the next push or punch. You hit the ground pretty hard once the force blows through the resistance in your legs. But the resistance and the instability provide a medium that has no iron vest. I do not care how much training you have done on the abdomen.

Ed Parker of American Kenpo fame had this type of punch. So do Brian Adams and Parker Linekin (Kenpo teachers and training buddies of mine). Both are over 60 years in age but don’t let that fool you. They can punch you on one side of your body and it feels like a shotgun blast went through you and came out as a gaping hole on the other side.

Grounded Momentum
Many fighters use the rear leg to push while transferring weight. It both raises their center of gravity (even if only by ¼ inch) and does not allow them to control the weight shift. You do not uproot much in your videos John. That is why I say you move well under pressure. You stay disciplined and grounded where the shoot fighter does not. By sinking or bending with the back knee, the front leg extends and is placed on the ground without any weight on it. No weight shift has occurred yet. Then, the front knee pulls your center forward. You can stop the weight shift at any time with complete control. Now you can change angles and direction at any time while entering into the fray.

Contention and Getting in The Way of the Forces in Physics

“Top of the Mountain”
In reviewing your sparring video against the Shoot fighter, you said yourself “I'm way to upright, which bites me in the ass a couple of times, but all in all its good to look back on what worked and what doesn’t.” When our legs are extended (no bend in them) you rightly diagnose that more momentum is hindered. Our leverage is stymied. When your legs are extended in a locked position, momentum really starts at the waist and is mainly an upper body thing. This is one of the curses of being 50%-50% or 70%-70% weighted.

Minimizing Oscillation
Here is a second curse. Let’s look at how momentum is directed with body mechanics. When we fight at the tappy-tappy distance, and have wide or double weighted stances, our lower body also creates a wide corridor when it moves forward. Momentum has a natural oscillation. When you shift weight, you create two invisible walls (a corridor) for momentum to travel through. Which would be better, a 1.5 foot corridor or a 6 inch corridor. Given equal water pressure, more force will come out the smaller water hose. Your punches have a decent corridor even though you have isolated much of your lower body’s forward momentum.

Spiral Leverage degenerates at the pelvis when the force of the two legs meet.

It seems that you are using the internal (Fa Ging) “whip” to compensate for not being up close and personal like the 1" style punching described in that "Dinky little punch". The guys at the old “Lair of the Green Dragon” used method this to break bricks. They hid their fa ging motion inside their spine and joints by making the circle very small. They intentionally did their brick breaks from about 3 feet distance do they could prove to “naysayers” that “closeness of centers” and “body drop” was not the force they used to break the bricks. I use this method for some limited purposes as well.

The whip begins at the feet, goes through the legs, is directed by the waist and ends up in the hand, elbow, shoulder or whatever you are hitting with. The problem is that with wide stances that are 50-50 or 70-30, two spirals of energy are started; one through both soles of the feet and going through each leg. Then the two momentums clash at the hips and lose much of their force when they travel up the spine. With a single weighted stance, one spiral of energy travels up the line all the way to the strike. There is little “contention” or conflict.

Many folks try to increase the momentum by whipping the spine at lumbars 4 and 5. This will ruin your back. It will tear the connective tissue at your fascettes, weaken the stabilizer muscles in your lower back, and may create rupture of a disk.

As far as mechanical advantage, the “two legged” fa ging whip is no comparison to “single weighted” freight train. It can sting, it can break a rib (or a brick). It may have some effect on an organ. The freight train can take out multiple organs. The double weighted whip is like a bullet the freight train is like a sledge hammer. Over time, either one can break a coconut suspended in the air in a net (nothing to support it with counterforce). (The suspended coconut break was Wai Fong Doo’s ultimate test of your power). The bullet needs speed where the sledgehammer can move slower because it has mass. Now when I was a cop, I responded to an irate guy who had been shot 3 times by a .32 caliber. He had adrenal dumped and some thought he was so mad he was unstoppable. If you usw the double weighted whip, make sure you have the force of a 9 mil or a .45.

John's1.5kicks have a wide corridor (about 3 feet). His pelvis and leg mass combined with the whip has some damaging capability. But look at the photo of Hung I Shiang doing a front thrust kick in Robert Smith’s “Chinese Boxers Master’s and Methods”. Imagine his torso coming at you and his foot connecting when his pelvis is about 1.5 feet from your pelvis. His extension will go about two feet past your spine….A steam roller baby…

His corridor is small even though he is a large man (compared to his height). He is doing a step through with his front thrust kick. His corridor is small because he remains grounded and single weighted.

Returning to My sequence (I-Li-Chi)

No manner of chi development or direction will travel effectively past poor body mechanics. Thus the mind has to direct the body. When the body moves efficiently and when the mind does not hesitate to go through the “barrier” that an opponent presents, all manner of chi is at your disposal. The universe will supply it without you having tgo over define it. In fact, if you try to over define it (chi), you might shackle or otherwise hinder it with the mental images that the words produce. Simple enough, do not chase the chi. Use the mind to direct the body and chi will follow.

On a sidebar note, since about five years ago, the acupuncture points in the human body are actually moving a bit. At least that is what I was told by some very sensitive practicioners.

Perhaps our disagreement is just about words. certainly no call to accuse someone of being a sham.

Mike Sigman
02-10-2008, 06:24 PM
Lets avoid I Li Chi for a moment then and just call the sequence in simple English. Actually, Chris, exactly what the chi is in relation to strength is fairly straightforward, but it appears to not be what you think it is... hence the confusion. You've basically made the statement that the chi is what follows and I have a problem understanding any other way you could arrive at that point unless you have the wrong idea about what chi is. However, *you're* the one that made the statement. You're either making a joke, you don't understand what chi is, or you need to clarify exactly what you mean. Something along those lines. Because you're the one that made the statement; not anyone else. How about: The mind directs the body mechanics and mechanical force follows. That's not what qi is, though, so your statement is still hanging out there.
Robert Smith wrote under the pen name of John Gilbey for a while. Two books… One was something like "Secret Fighting Arts of the World". They were meant to be funny but each chapter had a kernel of real truth in them as well. This is even worse. Robert Smith was a writer. He didn't know what qi was and he pretty much broadcast that by what he wrote. He certainly was no expert in Xingyi. He was only on Taiwan between 2 and 3 years... his pronouncements on various Chinese martial arts don't make him an expert. The point being that when you pull up a source like some of the ones that you have mentioned (I'm assuming as some sort of appeal-to-authority argument), it doesn't do a lot for your debate points. Why not argue the issue that you made rather than go off on tangents? On a sidebar note, since about five years ago, the acupuncture points in the human body are actually moving a bit. At least that is what I was told by some very sensitive practicioners. More experts, but sensitive ones! Perhaps our disagreement is just about words. certainly no call to accuse someone of being a sham.I just looked.... can't find where anyone called anyone a "sham". But maybe by making such a point we can get off the issue and get into personalities? I'm basically not interested. Why not just say you were making a joke, talking about something you didn't really know about, or some approach like that, rather than try to deflect the responsibility to someone else? The bit about the mind, qi, strength is very straightforward, easy to demonstrate, and is also found in numerous classical writings. It's not a matter of "here's my take on it". ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Upyu
02-10-2008, 06:29 PM
John and Mike,

Lets avoid I Li Chi for a moment then and just call the sequence in simple English.

How about: The mind directs the body mechanics and mechanical force follows.


Woot! That's the kind of talk I was going for. Thanks Chris :)
We will be talking about "dynamics"…. Not "statics".

I have a multitude of ways to use intent and mechanical advantage to create maximum force. I will explain more deeply one of them.


Robert Smith wrote under the pen name of John Gilbey for a while. Two books… One was something like "Secret Fighting Arts of the World". They were meant to be funny but each chapter had a kernel of real truth in them as well. One chapter was called the "dinky little punch". It was a shortened version of Pi Chen, the first movement in Hsing-I. That chapter makes a great study (if you have some time to to read it) and is the one punch I will describe.

I used to love that book! :)
Couple of quibbles I have about Robert Smith is that while he was a great documenter of boxing styles...I definitely never gave what he wrote much thought with regards to his analysis/description of "how-to's".
Actually we do Pi-chuan here in Tokyo...actually more like all we practice from Hsing-i is Pi...which can be a "#$"# and a half if you've been doing it for 30 min straight.


I think that is why internal (Tai Chi, Hsing-I and Paqua) Chinese boxers display their skill with the Tai Chi-style "uproot". It displays mechanical force and momentum without injuring someone. When you strike with this uprooting force or whether you just uproot someone, the guy should go flying 10-20 feet…. Especially if you have an "uber dantien (hara)". The strike is really anti-climatic except in a fight.

I agree


As already said, my distance is different than what you (john) are doing. They say fighting a man is like taking a walk. They also say you should walk through the person like he is not there. If you see the opponent as a barrier, momentum and mechanical force is stymied by your mind and different leverages occur within the body mechanics because your mind doubts its ability to blow through the object. Thus Hsing-I is often referred to as "mind-Form boxing". From my experience, it uses the sequence I am referring to.

But there's a catch to that kind of thought.
Most boxers will tell you to "blow through" the other side. Muay thai trainers will tell you to kick 6 inches through the other side.
Problem with that is that you end up disconnecting the body in an effort to overcommit.
Instead of that, for training purposes anyways, I always have an equal amount "pulling me back" as I commit my weight forward.
Never seen you strike so I can't comment. But I remember seeing you overcommit your weight in the forward direction in one of your videos (during a throw I think), Which resulted you in temporarily losing your balance. Assuming you always have an equal "tension" in your body pulling you back, you're always in an equalized state. (Fully committed without being commited).


No Mental Barriers
There is no surface hitting when a freight train blows through you. To do the kind of sparring you are doing in the videos is to do "tappy-tappy" to each other in a boxing or medium range.

I understand where you're getting at. I think I mentioned it in one of my videos, but my partner complained I was hitting "way to hard", even though the strikes only look like their "tappy tappy". Actually at one point, in a seperate sparring session I added just a bit of connection from the rear leg to my lead jab, nailing my sparring partner (amateur kickboxin champ) in the eye. Went down like a sack, the back of his eye(inside) hurt for over a week.
In these sessions I'm pretty much only looking for movement, alignment, and working on balance. Nothing more.


Chen Tai Chi- style whipping might help at this range, but I personally prefer to close distance while gaining momentum with my lower body, then I place a lead hand on you to (1) destabilize your spine, (2) reduce your base and (3) place you at the edge of your balance. Then my punch follows, into the cavity I have created by destabilizing your spine. Watch Cheng Man Ching or Hung I Shiang uproot someone.

Er Cheng Man Ching...? I dunno, he's got some great lower body connection that he uses from the push...but if you ask me its still pretty sloppy. Look at the over commitment he does in a couple of vids against rank beginners. Hung I Shiang is a different story ;)
That aside...the think you describe pretty much only works against someone that doesn't have a connected body I think.
You're describing lower body weight transfer, pure and simple.

I think there's a lot more that could be done with the legs to generate more effecient force. One way is using the front leg, pass it in a saggital circle to the rear, to execute a cross ( since the rear hand is already hooked up to the front foot).


but driving down would penetrate and do the most damage. That is because the opponent's legs cannot collapse fast enough. The resistance in the legs provided enough resistance for the punch to penetrate better. I use this format once I have an opponent in an unstable position. I can uproot, or down root the next push or punch.

Right but how? If you ask me, there's more than a couple ways to do it "simply", while there's another way that can't really be seen on the outside



The whip begins at the feet, goes through the legs, is directed by the waist and ends up in the hand, elbow, shoulder or whatever you are hitting with. The problem is that with wide stances that are 50-50 or 70-30, two spirals of energy are started; one through both soles of the feet and going through each leg.

But only if they're disjointed/unconnected. If both legs are connected, say like a bridge, then this is definitely not the case.


Many folks try to increase the momentum by whipping the spine at lumbars 4 and 5. This will ruin your back. It will tear the connective tissue at your fascettes, weaken the stabilizer muscles in your lower back, and may create rupture of a disk.

That's just dumb, and shows no understanding of connection ;)
(People that whip their spine I mean)


John's kicks have a wide corridor (about 3 feet). His pelvis and leg mass combined with the whip has some damaging capability. But look at the photo of Hung I Shiang doing a front thrust kick in Robert Smith's "Chinese Boxers Master's and Methods". Imagine his torso coming at you and his foot connecting when his pelvis is about 1.5 feet from your pelvis. His extension will go about two feet past your spine….A steam roller baby…

Are you referring to these kicks?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nk-HLVl9LNo
Man I should update those vids.... soo oold ^^;
Anyways, I'm definitely not whipping anything in these vids. All I'm doing is maintaining a connection to the sole of my supporting leg and directing it forward. Walking forward if you will. (Especially in the front kick)

There's a lot I could add to it, slamming the middle down into my supporting leg as I kick, open/close of the body, etc, but it was just an illustration of "equllibrium", and what "true mass" really is.


No manner of chi development or direction will travel effectively past poor body mechanics. Thus the mind has to direct the body. When the body moves efficiently and when the mind does not hesitate to go through the "barrier" that an opponent presents, all manner of chi is at your disposal. The universe will supply it without you having tgo over define it. In fact, if you try to over define it (chi), you might shackle or otherwise hinder it with the mental images that the words produce. Simple enough, do not chase the chi. Use the mind to direct the body and chi will follow.

Ok...
I could be wrong, but I *think* I have a good grasp on where you're coming from.
And I'd say with 90% certainty from your statement above that you're missing a huge portion in terms of body mechanics.
You got a good frame, good weight transfer, even connection on the saggital plane to a certain degree.

But nothing you've described (in words or the video) shows that you know how to manipulate your middle (particularly with regards to slamming the middle down into the feet), or using the open/close of the body to effect a hit. If you could find someone that knows how to do these things I think you could add a substantial amount of power to your strikes.
The way you described the "whipping" pretty much shows, I think, that you don't understand the "open/close" of the body. It's this sudden open/close that gives "Pi", and actually almost all strikes in CMA its power.

And that's without getting into actual whole body connection in a "store/release" fashion.

This relates directly to "Chi". It is "definable", since you have to be using something in the human body. Plain and simple. Since you can't define it, you don't use it. No shame in it. Personally I can't make much use of it since it isn't strong enough yet, but it does have the potential to be a huge additive down the line. (Assuming I persist in breath training ^^; )


Perhaps our disagreement is just about words. certainly no call to accuse someone of being a sham.
Well, disagreement is one thing, but you are "wrong" about the words, lol
Seriously, I'd at least get the wording straight.
There's iron clad physiological logic behind why it's Yi->Qi->Jin/Li (Li as in strength) is the way it is.

Oh and "Jing" is sperm essence....definitely use "Jin" ;)

Chris Parkerson
02-10-2008, 09:08 PM
I have to admit that I am a bit saddened by your statement, Mr. Sigman, regarding Robert Smith. It seems that there is just "No Country for Old Men"... especially the pioneers that opened the world of Asian martial arts that you now benefit from.

In McMurtry's Book, "Streets of Laredo", I believe, Captain Call meets the new generation of Texans who did not know him and had no idea what the Comanche wars were like.

Then I remembered arguing with Doo Wai about how he defined things in contrast to Mantak Chia. After all I had paid good money to train with both of these guys. Why couldn't they use common terms? Why is it Noi Gung in Hung's world and Nei Gung in another? Why is Jing called Ging in two different writings by two different masters? Why did the microcosmic orbit mean nothing to tai Chi Master Liang? Why did one guy insist that I tie weights to my scrotum and breate where the other guy said meditation can benefit better? Why did Doo use P-rock suspended in a net while Hsiu and Hung used a bathtub filled with water and a cinder block with a wet towel over it?

Doo Wai told me not to chase the Chi. I would not listen. Mike Patterson Sr. told me the same thing. I was lucky to train with him (and his son) since he had lived in Taiwan and trained with Hsiu Hong Chi for 10 years while building bridges there. I did not listen.

Old Man Liang in San Diego said the same thing when he taught us Tai Chi in the park. William Chen also said it when I asked him a form of the same question in New York in 1990.

None of them would define Chi for me. They called it "intrinsic energy", "life force". Nevertheless, all of them, including Robert Smith could do things that defied the average martial artist's expression of power.

I must have really tried their patience. I chased chi for about 10 years. In that time, 1970-1980, I never saw a good definition of Chi from these guys. But I did learn how to develop the power.... Not from dissecting and defining chi, rather from employing good body mechanics.

Well, I left out a key factor in my explanation of body mechanics my last post. I did it on purpose. The question I offer you is, "What mechanical function causes someone to get uprooted"? "Can it be done without touch?" "Can it be done with little force when you do touch?"

So if you two guys can define chi so concretely, please now offer me something allot more concrete. Explain how the uproot occurs.
Or better still, show me a video of it and support it with your explanation.

Mr. Sigman, we have not seen you move. Would you take on this challenge and enlighten this old man?

"The Tao that can be defined is no longer the Tao."

Kevin Leavitt
02-10-2008, 10:05 PM
Chris, Mike Sigman can speak for himself.

However, I cannot resist interjecting as I just spent yesterday and today working with him.

I don't know the first thing about Chinese martial arts, but I will tell you that Mr Sigman is the first person I have ever trained with that could not only talk about what I have seen him talk about here on aikiweb and elsewhere, but also demonstrate it, not just a little, but very well.

I have seen him move and I have felt him move, it is very enlightening.

Upyu
02-10-2008, 10:09 PM
So if you two guys can define chi so concretely, please now offer me something allot more concrete.

Mike is more qualified to answer that question since I mainly deal with developing Jin. Suffice to say that it involves developing use of fascia, and gaining control of some regions that you'd otherwise have a hard time controling. Hence the breathing exercises. It exercises the fascia running through the entire body. Later you can abandon the breathing and control it seperately.
The feeling is like being wrapped in saran wrap. There's something that "tugs" across your entire body.
Funnily enough, my own teacher mentioned this development separately from Mike.

One thing you might want to consider is that while a lot of the people mentioned were able to demonstrate some of the things used in Internals...its quite possible they just didn't have skill or understanding in the other part.

Mike Patterson's record is impressive, he definitely had some skills, but watching the vids, its pretty apparent he's missing some stuff.
Fighting skill and body skills are separate. So it's possible to have a guy that has a full repetoire of qi/jin skills but can't fight worth crap :D
Doesn't mean that there's nothing to learn.


Explain how the uproot occurs.
Or better still, show me a video of it and support it with your explanation.

Actually Mike's already posted numerous diagrams on this, so see if you can't look at his post history and dig something up?
You'll probably want to look at the "Baseline skillset thread"


Mr. Sigman, we have not seen you move. Would you take on this challenge and enlighten this old man?

Um...
If you ever get the chance, just go and meet the guy. Video does not do this "old timer's" power release any justice at all :D

Chris Parkerson
02-10-2008, 10:27 PM
I thank you for your attempt John.

Personally, when I was 25 years old, I thought similar. I also thought it would take me many years to achieve a good uproot.

These days I have learned how to teach the uproot in about 10-15 minutes. I must be doing something right.

Chris Parkerson
02-10-2008, 10:36 PM
Thanks kevin,

There is little in his profile to go by.

Robert Smith is a hero of mine. He paid his dues in the CIA as a Asian specialist. He paled around with Don Drager. And in his old age, he still teaches Tai Chi. He's got allot of years on the mats.

For those who have not read, "Martial Musings", Robert Smith reviews his life with aplomb. He never loses his respect for others but you can see how sad he is about how commercial Tai Chi has degraded that which he has devoted his life to. One of my favorite examples is when he says, "In order to teach Tai Chi you gotta have a neon sign." Perhaps that was Gilbey talking. He is definitely the "old school" kind of guy that I have seeked out throughout my career as a student.

Upyu
02-11-2008, 02:09 AM
I thank you for your attempt John.

Personally, when I was 25 years old, I thought similar. I also thought it would take me many years to achieve a good uproot.

These days I have learned how to teach the uproot in about 10-15 minutes. I must be doing something right.

Hi Chris,

I agree it doesn't take many years to do uprooting.
I can show people how to "uproot" in about the same amount of time ;) There's a lot to be done to most people in terms of basic alignment, body posture, and basic body mechanics.

One way of showing the uproot (which honestly I don't focus too much on, since I don't think it has too much martial useage), involves
a) stabilizing the upper cross/middle dantien (the point in the chest and in the middle behind the scapula)

b) creating an "arch" in the legs to connect the lower body

c) get the person to understand how to have a load "settle" in to the body, and have the frame of the body suspend the load. This includes working the middle/dantin/illial psoa regions

d) finally, get them to understand the concept of creating a "groundpath" from the foot to the point of contact, taking the load into the rear foot, store it, then bounce it back into the person giving you the "load"/pushing you. (<- the easy way to learn this I stole from Mike :D )
There's a couple of tricks you can add to this, like bouncing your middle into your rear leg to create a rebound effect.

Anyways, my point is that, teaching the uproot is more a "mechanic" than a true "skill" persay. The stuff Mike is getting at requires specific conditioning, and only gets stronger with age.
Think of it as an "additive" to stuff you already know, and can also allow you to do even funkier stuff once it's stronger.
The only reason I feel I'm qualified to say this is because I'm starting to get access to mechanics that I could never do 4 years ago, simply do to inadequate conditioning. It's not a "a kinda sorta feel it" type of thing but rather "damn...that "#$t actually can move in the body, kewl!":)

Mike Sigman
02-11-2008, 10:38 PM
I have to admit that I am a bit saddened by your statement, Mr. Sigman, regarding Robert Smith. It seems that there is just "No Country for Old Men"... especially the pioneers that opened the world of Asian martial arts that you now benefit from.

In McMurtry's Book, "Streets of Laredo", I believe, Captain Call meets the new generation of Texans who did not know him and had no idea what the Comanche wars were like.

Then I remembered arguing with Doo Wai about how he defined things in contrast to Mantak Chia. After all I had paid good money to train with both of these guys. Why couldn't they use common terms? Why is it Noi Gung in Hung's world and Nei Gung in another? Why is Jing called Ging in two different writings by two different masters? Why did the microcosmic orbit mean nothing to tai Chi Master Liang? Why did one guy insist that I tie weights to my scrotum and breate where the other guy said meditation can benefit better? Why did Doo use P-rock suspended in a net while Hsiu and Hung used a bathtub filled with water and a cinder block with a wet towel over it?

Doo Wai told me not to chase the Chi. I would not listen. Mike Patterson Sr. told me the same thing. I was lucky to train with him (and his son) since he had lived in Taiwan and trained with Hsiu Hong Chi for 10 years while building bridges there. I did not listen.

Old Man Liang in San Diego said the same thing when he taught us Tai Chi in the park. William Chen also said it when I asked him a form of the same question in New York in 1990.

None of them would define Chi for me. They called it "intrinsic energy", "life force". Nevertheless, all of them, including Robert Smith could do things that defied the average martial artist's expression of power.

I must have really tried their patience. I chased chi for about 10 years. In that time, 1970-1980, I never saw a good definition of Chi from these guys. But I did learn how to develop the power.... Not from dissecting and defining chi, rather from employing good body mechanics.

Well, I left out a key factor in my explanation of body mechanics my last post. I did it on purpose. The question I offer you is, "What mechanical function causes someone to get uprooted"? "Can it be done without touch?" "Can it be done with little force when you do touch?"

So if you two guys can define chi so concretely, please now offer me something allot more concrete. Explain how the uproot occurs.
Or better still, show me a video of it and support it with your explanation.

Mr. Sigman, we have not seen you move. Would you take on this challenge and enlighten this old man?

"The Tao that can be defined is no longer the Tao."I dunno, Chris... we seem to be ships passing in the night here. I asked for specifics about "chi" and I keep seeing names being dropped as some sort of badge. Frankly, I'm open to discussing facts, how, when, and where, but our cracker-barrel opinions of various "names" probably won't resolve much of anything. At least I tried.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Chris Parkerson
02-12-2008, 07:50 AM
mike I will be happy to dust off my old volumes and check my language in relation to the what was written on chi, ging, Jin and all of the other stuff you want to challenge me on.

Right now I am 2000 miles from my library working on a project.

The point of this string of conversations was originally about methods of training aikido flow. I have a simple point to make. Everything I do includes an uproot. The basic Tai Chi Uproot can be done without hands or with a light touch. It ain't theory to me.
it makes my aikido as well as my pugilism most effective. I use it so that I do not have to escalate things when handling low intensity confrontation. It is a vary humane strategy to lightly disrupt someone's balance and stability while you whisper in their ear.

I do not chase the Chi. To me, chi is everywhere, always has been and always will be. Highland Scotts warriors used it as easily as Chinese warriors. It is available to everyone without special language or paradigm.

If you use a method that is specific, good for you. Follow your bliss.

Mike Sigman
02-12-2008, 07:56 AM
Highland Scotts warriors used it as easily as Chinese warriors. It is available to everyone without special language or paradigm.:rolleyes:

Chris Parkerson
02-16-2008, 11:46 PM
Mike,

I returned home and this evening reviewed my library to answer the issues you presented. First, allow me to say:

Irenics is always better than polemics when sharing ideas and speaking about things that span history and many cultures. Words simply get in the way and exegetes can go on forever without building positive bridges in communication. As a trained theologian (Princeton Theological Seminary, 1984), I have tried to avoid hair-splitting conversations that generate more heat than light.

Having read some of your interviews on the internet, I can understand (1) that you do not care for teachers who “oversimplify” a subject. In your interview with In Young, for instance, you say:

Actually, one of my teachers uses terms that I don't like because they're too reductionist: where I will refer to Peng strength, a lot of times when he and I are doing things, he will say "Oh, yes, bring the leg strength here," and I balk at just "leg strength": he's more simplistic than I am!

http://www.iay.org.uk/internal-strength/related/interview.htm

If Robert John wanted to critique me for using the word “body” instead of “strength” for Li, my indiscretion is probably the result of teaching movement for the last 7 years at zoos, water works, fire departments, police departments, university science labs, parks, hotel and university housekeeping and landscape departments. If I use the word “strength” with these non CMA folks, they would try to employ muscle (strength) rather than efficient body mechanics.

Thus I am guilty of over simplification and the exegetes are technically correct. But my end product is to be able to teach sophisticated concepts in a very short time. That is a win in my book. All teachers should try to shorten the learning curve.

Regarding the critique and challenge of my sequence Yi – Li – Chi, here was my exact source:

The mind (i) commands, strength (li) goes along, and internal energy (chi) follows.

Michael Minick, The Wisdom of Kung Fu (Warner Paperback Library, NY, NY 1974), page 129.

I fully understand how Tai Chi and Chi Gung practitioners attempt to develop human chi Ren Chi) with a variety of exercises spanning from the purely mental exercises that Cheng Man- Ch’ing preferred through the mental/physical fusions that Mantak Chia’s system teaches.

My Hsing-I, on the other hand uses my simple formula. The mind directs the body and energy follows. You can be specific and call it Jen or what Mike Patterson used to call Geng, but these are just specific expressions of Chi (energy).

According to Dr. Yang Jwing-Ming, Hsing-I is an internal style of Gongfu in which the mind or thinking determines the shape or movement of the body”

Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming, The Roots of Chinese Qigong (YMAA Publication Center, Roslindale, MA) p.301.

And Yang-Style Tai Chi Mastert Wu Yu-seong (1812-1880), student of Yang Lu-Chan (1799-1872), stated, “PERMEATE THE BODY with Chi so that it may be pliable, AND THUS FOLLOW THE DIRECTION OF THE MIND. Minick, p.129

Surely this part of our disagreement is just semantics.

Mike, you took exception to my statement, “it is not new. But each generation puts their flare on it.”

You replied, “Hmmmm.... not if they know what they're talking about. It's actually pretty solidly laid out…… This has got to be a leg pull, guys. Nobody is seriously this far off base.”

I suspect that we could both agree that Yang Jwing-Ming has developed a systematic approach to studying (1) the history, (2) traditions and (3) scientific analysis of Chi. He understands Mandarin and Cantonese. He has trained in Chi Gung, Kung Fu and Tai Chi since he was a teenager. He has an earned degree in engineering. He has a PhD. In physics. He has devoted himself full-time to building bridges between Qigong practice and scientific analysis. Regarding the definition of Chi, he says :

…so far, there is no one scientific definition of Qi which is accepted generally by Qigong practitioners and Chinese medical society. The way people define Qi varies, depending upon their individual background and experience. The way people define Qi varies, depending upon their individual background and experience. Some people think Qi is an electrical energy, others believe that it is a magnetic energy, and many others believe that Qi is heat or some other type of energy. However, anyone who has carefully researched the historical background of Qi would not define it by any one of these narrow definitions.

Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming, The Roots of Chinese Qigong, p.6.

And later:

“At this time, there is no clear explanation of the relationship between all of the circulatory systems and the Qi circulatory system.”

Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming, The Roots of Chinese Qigong, p,24

In his glossary, he defines Qi like this: universal energy including heat, light, and electromagnetic energy. A narrower definition of Qi refers to the energy circulating in human and animal bodies. A current popular model is that the Qin circulating in the human body is bioelectric in nature.

Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming, The Roots of Chinese Qigong, p,293.

So, you took issue with my statement that different generations put a different flare on it. But to me, Chi is like the Big elephant. Several blind men are touching it. Each touches a different part. Thus they get a different experience. Such is the nature of Hermeneutics (how we understand meaning in language) and Semiotics (how we en-space ourselves and define the en-spacement with signs, symbols, and metaphors, i.e. the building blocks of language.

In Yang’s history of Qi, (Chapter Two) he acknowledges that even Chinese history of Chi development has three distinct periods. The first period approached it as a medical issue. (1122 BC to 206 BC), religious development of Qi practice (206 BC to 502 AD) and finally martial practice using Qi (502 AD to 1911 AD). Each period had its own fusions with Indian and Tibetan practices. Each period had limited distribution of written documents explaining the practices. Each period had the practices limited to aristocracy and monasteries. I am sure that both standard terminologies and practices were far from homogeneous.

Yang himself states , “...a large portion of the knowledge was kept secret until the last twenty years.” Ibid. P. 10.

Yang even accepts that other cultures develop Chi. He says:
“Many people believe that Qigong is a product only of China, India or other oriental countries. As a matter of fact, internal energy cultivation has also been common in the western world, usually within the context of religion…. The practice of such disciplines allows the energy in the body to become balanced, bringing health and strength to some and even in some cases, seemingly supernatural powers.” Ibid. p.5

I have personally lived in a Hindu Ashram (age 14-16), studied and even emulated the lives of the desert fathers and the Celtic Saints, and found my own form of mystic faith through various meditations – all of which employed Chi.

As I said, I know something of the Ren Chi that you speak about that resides in the body. I understand how this Chi can be manipulated by the mind and by using various physical yoga’s. But Yang even admits that Chi naturally seeks its own balance if we just relax our bodies and calm our minds. Ibid. p.4

The calm mind-relaxed body method is my bliss. Yours is the Chinese Qigong method. Go you! Follow your bliss. One size does not fit all.

Mike, I respect you for muddling through all the "secrets" that were held so tightly in both Chinese as well as Japanese societies. Few people have that tenacity and courage. But you are not the first one to do it. And there are many folks who have done it that you may not know by name.

Parker Linekin, my training partner, is one of them. Much more than I as I left the complex Qigong systems in the 1980's while I decided to study what some Chinese would call, “Ren Shi” or the study of how energy can be used to understand universal connections between heaven, earth and humans (past, present and future). Besides martial arts, therein lays my avocation.

In closing, just a word from Chuang Tzu since Taoism is so integrally linked to the experience of Qi in China:

…..the manifestation of right and wrong is what diminishes the Way… the sage endeavors to get rid of bewildering flamboyance. For this reason, he does not use things for himself, but lodges in commonality. This is called using lucidity.

Victor H. Mair, Wanderings Along the Way, (Bantam Books, NY, NY, 1994) pp. 18,19

Let’s all get along and focus on irenics rather than polemics.

Cordially,

Chris Parkerson

Mike Sigman
02-17-2008, 08:04 AM
You consistently use a form of "argument by authority", Chis. You like to name "names" as an example of why you are right, instead of simply laying out the facts of your argument and any functional support for those facts.
If Robert John wanted to critique me for using the word "body" instead of "strength" for Li, my indiscretion is probably the result of teaching movement for the last 7 years at zoos, water works, fire departments, police departments, university science labs, parks, hotel and university housekeeping and landscape departments. If I use the word "strength" with these non CMA folks, they would try to employ muscle (strength) rather than efficient body mechanics. [not to mention grand references to yourself and what you've done. Regarding the critique and challenge of my sequence Yi -- Li -- Chi, here was my exact source:

The mind (i) commands, strength (li) goes along, and internal energy (chi) follows.

Michael Minick, The Wisdom of Kung Fu (Warner Paperback Library, NY, NY 1974), page 129. Who is Michael Minick? The famous saying is "The heart leads the mind, the mind leads the qi, the qi leads li (or jin)". If you understood what chi was, you'd realize that Minick's statement is absurd; it's not a matter of anyone's opinion, it's how things work and it can be shown very easily. So your opinining about how qi works, "chasing the chi", etc., all came from something you read in a book????????

I fully understand how Tai Chi and Chi Gung practitioners attempt to develop human chi Ren Chi) with a variety of exercises spanning from the purely mental exercises that Cheng Man- Ch'ing preferred through the mental/physical fusions that Mantak Chia's system teaches. You think Mantak Chia and CMC used different methods? Why do you think that? Give me an example.

My Hsing-I, on the other hand uses my simple formula. The mind directs the body and energy follows. You can be specific and call it Jen or what Mike Patterson used to call Geng, but these are just specific expressions of Chi (energy). JIn and Ging are the same thing: Mandarin vs Cantonese. According to Dr. Yang Jwing-Ming, Hsing-I is an internal style of Gongfu in which the mind or thinking determines the shape or movement of the body"

Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming, The Roots of Chinese Qigong (YMAA Publication Center, Roslindale, MA) p.301. So? What does that mean? You tell me, since you claim to do Xingyi. How does the mind use the chi in a strike like Beng Chuan?

My point is that if you're going to set out these sorts of pronouncements, you need to be careful, particularly if you spend a lot of time trying to establish yourself in the eyes of the list as an expert. So far you've made a very bad error about how things work and rather than learn from it, you're still trying to argue it .... but only by authority. Why not try to explain how it works?????? If you really know these things, how it works should be simpler than "well, I read it in a book".
And Yang-Style Tai Chi Mastert Wu Yu-seong (1812-1880), student of Yang Lu-Chan (1799-1872), stated, "PERMEATE THE BODY with Chi so that it may be pliable, AND THUS FOLLOW THE DIRECTION OF THE MIND. Minick, p.129 That's still "mind leads qi", though, and not the strength leads the qi.
I suspect that we could both agree that Yang Jwing-Ming has developed a systematic approach to studying (1) the history, (2) traditions and (3) scientific analysis of Chi. He understands Mandarin and Cantonese. He has trained in Chi Gung, Kung Fu and Tai Chi since he was a teenager. He has an earned degree in engineering. He has a PhD. In physics. He has devoted himself full-time to building bridges between Qigong practice and scientific analysis. Regarding the definition of Chi, he says :I'm not sure why you're jumping into more argument by authority, again. I know Jimmy Yang. Met him in 1982/83. I also know guys like Ming Der Lu and George Hu who studied with Yang when he was a kid on Taiwan. Why do you think Yang Jwing Ming is an expert? Because he wrote some books? Do you know what he studied and how long he studied? I do. Why don't you just debate me with the functional part of how these things that "you know" actually work?

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Chris Parkerson
02-17-2008, 12:44 PM
Better still, talk goes nowhere.
lets just get some coconuts and break them together in a spirit of friendship.

Chris

Mike Sigman
02-17-2008, 09:22 PM
Better still, talk goes nowhere.
I've noticed. What you've gotta learn to do is simply go silent when there's an awkward question; pretend you never heard it and don't post for a few weeks. Then come back up like nothing ever happened. If you're really good, you can convince yourself that no one has ever noticed this odd sort of behavior. I've seen it done on this very forum, so don't think it's a ridiculous strategy!!! ;)

Regards,

Mike

Chris Parkerson
02-18-2008, 08:40 PM
Mike, You have said:

What you've gotta learn to do is simply go silent when there's an awkward question;

Mike, it is certainly not my style to duck or hide and your questions are simply not awkward. Funny, though, you have gone silent on two of my questions…

(1) So if you two guys can define chi so concretely, please now offer me something allot more concrete. Explain how the uproot occurs. Or better still, show me a video of it and support it with your explanation. Mr. Sigman, we have not seen you move. Would you take on this challenge and enlighten this old man?

(2) Lets just get some coconuts and break them together in a spirit of friendship.

You also said:
My point is that if you're going to set out these sorts of pronouncements, you need to be careful, particularly if you spend a lot of time trying to establish yourself in the eyes of the list as an expert.

I hfeel no need to establish myself. I am completely happy as I am. If a few people wish to join me in training, it is done without hierarchy, it is done with joy and laughter, it is done for free. It is done, I hope with a sophisticated simplicity where both myself and my partner develop the lesson and the learning together.. My payment is the fellowship. Perhaps some of these judgments you pronounce against me are merely a Jungian mirror, i.e. you are projecting onto me what your own image shows you.

Secondly, It would seem that if this is truly a discussion, parity would be part of the deal. But, somehow, I think this is more like an inquisition and you are the Pope. It reeks of insincerity.

You seem to want to debate yet you will not accept appeals to (1) my personal experience, (2) appeals to my teacher’s authority and what they taught me or (3) appeals to written authorities that agree with me. Even if I cared to debate, it seems I would not know where to go to begin a discussion. debating breeds contention. I much prefer harmony. Irenics rather than polemics.

Nevertheless, to show you that your questions are not awkward for me, I will answer the following one:

You think Mantak Chia and CMC used different methods? Why do you think that? Give me an example.

I will use my own verbose style and spell Chinese terms as I remember them.

Mantak Chia, CMC (via Bill Funsion, student in the CMC tradition), Mike Patterson, Doo Wai) all used different methods.

I will approach these experiences as a timeline to press the point on how I came to following my specific path.

Bill Funsion (CMC-Style Tai Chi) 1974-1986

My training in CMC-style Tai Chi (37 movements) was at the hands of Bill Funcion. He was a federal agent who had recently been moved to Southern California. He was a student of one of CMC’s top students. Bill brought his teacher to our dojo in my second year of training (1975) at Parker Linekin’s Academy of the Martial Arts. I was 21 years old and in great shape from surfing about 6 hours a day. I was the first to volunteer to be “bounced” by the this Tai Chi Master. He hardly moved at all. His two forefingers were all that touched me. I was in a wai-gong-style Kenpo forward bow. I remember the feeling of a light electrical shock. Then I was airborne and on my rear. I had travelled about three feet off the ground and about 15 feet backwards. I remember afterwards that my neck must have been tight because I got a whiplash out of it.

Though I had trained with Master Liang and Parker Linekin in Yang and Wu styles for a year, I began also learning from Bill privately at his home. The only payment was for me to take his son places when he was on TDY. Our training in Nei Gung consisted of a very Taoist approach to moving Chi. The idea was to let nature do most of the work. We used primarily mental imagery, light perineum puckering (reminded me of “Kegel exercises”), and no forced breath or gut-wrenching muscle constrictions. Kind of weird for a 21year old guy that surfed, pumped weights and managed a health spa in the summer. We concentrated on how energies felt and debriefed them regularly. He never told me how it was supposed to feel. He just had me concentrate on (1) the soles of my feet, my legs, my spine, my arms, and the palms of my hands. Sometimes we traced the lines with our fingers to gently lead the path.

Mike Patterson, Sr. (Hsu Hong Chi’s Hsing-I) 1976-1978??

I began training under Mike Patterson Sr. somewhere around 1976 if I remember correctly. A buddy who had lived in Taiwan and trained with Hung I Shiang had taken me to him. A case of Corona in hand and a willing spirit, I was accepted into his garage-dojo. Mike Patterson used aggressive perineum puckering to literally drive (or suck) sexual energy, earth energy and heavenly energy through the microscopic orbit. It was a blending of hard and soft. We focused on Fa Ging as developed through Tien Kan (Heavenly Stem Linear Pa Kua) exercises, White Crane exercises, bouncing ourselves off a vertical post to feel the coordinations needed for fa Ging, and doing a strange form of Pi Chen by pulling a karate belt that was tied to a large spring and suspended in his garage’s ceiling. We breath packing ( 2 directions) and mental imagery to guide our chi up and out the hands with each movement in our linear forml. We would pucker the perineum before and after each move. Often, we would train our “Iron Vest” by striking our solar plexus while advancing in a Hsing-I stance while exhaling and doing the perineum pucker. We used mental imagery to attack the attacking fist with our torso. A real Tuff-guy training method. I can still take a pretty good shot in the solar plexus. Of course, cleansing meditations followed these kind of practices.

I also did iron palm with him using a bathtub, a cinderblock and a wet towel. We used our internal breathing as meditation before, during and after the iron palm. We did our training at the same time of morning every day and used sexual abstinence to assist.
I was told how to perform a Nei Gung that included hanging weights around my scrotum while performing my breathing exercises. I was warned not to do it longer than 4 months at a time and do it at the same time of day in the early mornings (4:00 am). The weights would swing as I breathed. Slippage was painful, but the internal pulling, stresses and stretching was certainly good Nei Gung and more aligned to the young testosterone-driven ways of youth. Of course, celibacy was mandatory. I was a fan of Patterson’s Chi development style as late as 1986.

Mantak Chia (1984-1987)

Mantak Chia’s was the most elaborate and I can only suspect that is because, by his own words, it was Tibetan as much as it was Chinese…. a fusion of the two that I am sure was not systematized as you claim, until he fused them.

We began with relaxing the body and the internal organs through breath and mental imagery. He allowed us to sit with an erect spine and a curved arch as long as our scrotum was free of any pressure. His system used the puckering of the perineum to literally drive or suck (depending on the imagery you used) sexual energy, earth energy and heavenly energy through the microscopic orbit and settling them into the Dantien. From there, we used the “six healing sounds” and “fusion of the five elements” (five major organ systems) to further “balance organ energies” by using vibration and more mental imagery. Aside from the health benefits, the martial purpose of this exercise was to create layers of Chi around the walls of the organs so that they had protection against blunt trauma. (IMO Patterson’s weight were just a harsher method of obtaining the same results.)

The feeling was, however different than Patterson’s method. I would describe my experience of this as having a balloon blown up around an organ and then another balloon blown up around the first balloon. Perhaps a little like getting a collagen shot in the lips. (A buddy in the Department of Justice who was a Tibetan White Crane Master had done a similar Tibetan with his iron palm training. His hands had actual chi bumps in them that acted as buffers when he hit things….and boy could he hit things.)

Pong energy was developed by lightly pushing against your training partner on all parts of his torso, legs and arms. Iron shirt was developed with breath and muscle pressures and light dit bu sam performed with bamboo and hand slapping. That is as far as I went with him.

Wai Fong Doo (1985-1987)

I began getting cross currents in training method once I met Doo Wai. Parker Linekin and Brian Adams, (and yes, the notorious Jim Lacey) had been training with him for some time. He has better credentials than anyone I had met in the internal arts. His family was a prominent medical family for centuries. His ancestor, Doo Tin Yin assisted Fung Do Duk when the Shaolin Temple in Fukien was destroyed. During his stay with Doo Tin Yin, he taught his kung Fu to the family. The Doo family method as taught by Doo Wai was simple and quite Taoist. It was primarily a form of breath packing. The videos he has on YouTube show me that he has not changed his percentages or sequences since I trained with him. But the Fa Ging he displays in these newer video streams do not do him justice. In his prime, he was a Fa Ging “machine gun” popping every punch with quick, never-ending whipping and thrusting motions. I remember making a joke to one of my friends saying, “Now that is truly the sound of one hand clapping”.

But why was his system so simple? I suspect that real Taoists just allow nature to do most of the work. He taught a similar Dit Bu Sam to me using bamboo to tap the chi. We used P-rocks suspended in a cloth sack to train iron palm....no hot water to aid the chi flow as the patterson's did. I used herbs like Dot Da Jow and Dai Chi Jow to work their magic in bringing Chi to the bones as well as healing and toughening the bones.

As I have stated before, Doo’s test was to break coconuts. I never was able to bust a suspended one. Jim Lacey was able to do this. I think Vincent Peppers did as well. But I could and often have broken coconuts with my heel-of-palm and a backstop.

I began to prefer the simplicity of the Taoist systems as taught by Doo Wai and as I remembered them from my young training under Bill Funsion's CMC. Nowdays, I do the simple way as I really prefer to allow natural forces do what they naturally do….without contention and without chasing chi. I had come full circle.

Now you have said,

So? What does that mean? You tell me, since you claim to do Xingyi. How does the mind use the chi in a strike like Beng Chuan?

Be nice. There are many people who do Hsing-I and I do not just “claim” to do it. You said earlier that you were not calling me a "fraud". Then why say such a thing? What form of fear so motivates you to be so disingenuous?

In conclusion: I am convinced that trying to explain how the mind uses Chi is your path… not mine. Any explanation are based on traditions and theory unless you can use a “scientific method”, In other words,

(1) isolate it “in-vitro”,
(2) measure it with scientific equipment,
(3) reproduce the experiment at will and upon demand
(4) write an APA style hypothesis
(5) and present it for peer review.

Of course, there is another way. Simply demonstrate it. Doo Wai’s method was to break the coconut. You accuse me of being silent, well, you were interestingly silent on this question. Can you break the coconut? If defeating Nikkyo and bouncing someone with pong is your test, so be it. I can do that. Can you do it with Sankyo? Isn't that much harder? Now there is a test. How about Shiho?

One final question… If the mind leads chi, are we talking about the conscious mind or the sub-conscious mind? If the body can draw Chi subconsciously in order to perform what the person needs and wants, why can’t Chi Gung be done without all the pomp and circumstance?

If a construction worker handles a jack hammer for two years, can his hands be permeated with chi just like in Iron Palm? I think so. Definitely so.

If you must have an immediate “healing” under duress, can your body do it? Yes.

Can a woman lift a car under the stress of saving her child? Yes.

My path is to simply allow Chi to do its thing. I affirm you in your path. Will you affirm me in mine?

Mike Sigman
02-18-2008, 09:19 PM
(1) So if you two guys can define chi so concretely, please now offer me something allot more concrete. Explain how the uproot occurs. Or better still, show me a video of it and support it with your explanation. Mr. Sigman, we have not seen you move. Would you take on this challenge and enlighten this old man? I'm going to let that one go, Chris. It's like asking me if I can tie my shoes. ;)
(2) Lets just get some coconuts and break them together in a spirit of friendship. Or bricks. Or river-rocks. Shades of Jim Lacey. Why learn to break exotic things like coconuts? I haven't spoken to him in many years. You bring back memories. But you're talking in merit-badges/names again.
Secondly, It would seem that if this is truly a discussion, parity would be part of the deal. But, somehow, I think this is more like an inquisition and you are the Pope. It reeks of insincerity. Seriously. Go back and look. You made a public assertion. I questioned it. I have never gotten a straight answer to my question and that's all I got into the discussion for. You seem to want to debate yet you will not accept appeals to (1) my personal experience, (2) appeals to my teacher's authority and what they taught me or (3) appeals to written authorities that agree with me. Even if I cared to debate, it seems I would not know where to go to begin a discussion. debating breeds contention. I much prefer harmony. Irenics rather than polemics. That was pretty good. In a debate, Chris, the point is that one argues the points, not various unsupported appeals to authority. Think about it for a sec. ;)
I will use my own verbose style and spell Chinese terms as I remember them.[[snip]]

My path is to simply allow Chi to do its thing. I affirm you in your path. Will you affirm me in mine?Chris, I admit all this is fun to read, but it's pretty much beside the point. You've convinced me that you read a lot. I'll bet you can break things, too. Your descriptions of chi and the way you mix in guys like CMC, Mantak Chia, Mike Patterson, etc., are rather, er, "innovative", to say the least.... but you still never answered a question. You name-dropped and told mixed/confused anecdotes in a way I've never heard a real expert do... and you appealed to the harp-strings of my finer side. Next thing you know we'll be telling each other ghost stories or fish stories, not just chi stories! :D

Affirmatively,

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
02-18-2008, 09:52 PM
You know, it's not really about me, but more about newbies (because I've been one so many times) that I think I'm going to add something, against my better judgement:

I will use my own verbose style and spell Chinese terms as I remember them.

Mantak Chia, CMC (via Bill Funsion, student in the CMC tradition), Mike Patterson, Doo Wai) all used different methods.

I will approach these experiences as a timeline to press the point on how I came to following my specific path.

Bill Funsion (CMC-Style Tai Chi) 1974-1986

My training in CMC-style Tai Chi (37 movements) was at the hands of Bill Funcion. He was a federal agent who had recently been moved to Southern California. He was a student of one of CMC's top students. Bill brought his teacher to our dojo in my second year of training (1975) at Parker Linekin's Academy of the Martial Arts. I was 21 years old and in great shape from surfing about 6 hours a day. I was the first to volunteer to be "bounced" by the this Tai Chi Master. He hardly moved at all. His two forefingers were all that touched me. I was in a wai-gong-style Kenpo forward bow. I remember the feeling of a light electrical shock. Then I was airborne and on my rear. I had travelled about three feet off the ground and about 15 feet backwards. I remember afterwards that my neck must have been tight because I got a whiplash out of it.

Though I had trained with Master Liang and Parker Linekin in Yang and Wu styles for a year, I began also learning from Bill privately at his home. The only payment was for me to take his son places when he was on TDY. Our training in Nei Gung consisted of a very Taoist approach to moving Chi. The idea was to let nature do most of the work. We used primarily mental imagery, light perineum puckering (reminded me of "Kegel exercises"), and no forced breath or gut-wrenching muscle constrictions. Kind of weird for a 21year old guy that surfed, pumped weights and managed a health spa in the summer. We concentrated on how energies felt and debriefed them regularly. He never told me how it was supposed to feel. He just had me concentrate on (1) the soles of my feet, my legs, my spine, my arms, and the palms of my hands. Sometimes we traced the lines with our fingers to gently lead the path.

Mike Patterson, Sr. (Hsu Hong Chi's Hsing-I) 1976-1978??

I began training under Mike Patterson Sr. somewhere around 1976 if I remember correctly. A buddy who had lived in Taiwan and trained with Hung I Shiang had taken me to him. A case of Corona in hand and a willing spirit, I was accepted into his garage-dojo. Mike Patterson used aggressive perineum puckering to literally drive (or suck) sexual energy, earth energy and heavenly energy through the microscopic orbit. It was a blending of hard and soft. We focused on Fa Ging as developed through Tien Kan (Heavenly Stem Linear Pa Kua) exercises, White Crane exercises, bouncing ourselves off a vertical post to feel the coordinations needed for fa Ging, and doing a strange form of Pi Chen by pulling a karate belt that was tied to a large spring and suspended in his garage's ceiling. We breath packing ( 2 directions) and mental imagery to guide our chi up and out the hands with each movement in our linear forml. We would pucker the perineum before and after each move. Often, we would train our "Iron Vest" by striking our solar plexus while advancing in a Hsing-I stance while exhaling and doing the perineum pucker. We used mental imagery to attack the attacking fist with our torso. A real Tuff-guy training method. I can still take a pretty good shot in the solar plexus. Of course, cleansing meditations followed these kind of practices.

I also did iron palm with him using a bathtub, a cinderblock and a wet towel. We used our internal breathing as meditation before, during and after the iron palm. We did our training at the same time of morning every day and used sexual abstinence to assist.
I was told how to perform a Nei Gung that included hanging weights around my scrotum while performing my breathing exercises. I was warned not to do it longer than 4 months at a time and do it at the same time of day in the early mornings (4:00 am). The weights would swing as I breathed. Slippage was painful, but the internal pulling, stresses and stretching was certainly good Nei Gung and more aligned to the young testosterone-driven ways of youth. Of course, celibacy was mandatory. I was a fan of Patterson's Chi development style as late as 1986.

Mantak Chia (1984-1987)

Mantak Chia's was the most elaborate and I can only suspect that is because, by his own words, it was Tibetan as much as it was Chinese…. a fusion of the two that I am sure was not systematized as you claim, until he fused them.

We began with relaxing the body and the internal organs through breath and mental imagery. He allowed us to sit with an erect spine and a curved arch as long as our scrotum was free of any pressure. His system used the puckering of the perineum to literally drive or suck (depending on the imagery you used) sexual energy, earth energy and heavenly energy through the microscopic orbit and settling them into the Dantien. From there, we used the "six healing sounds" and "fusion of the five elements" (five major organ systems) to further "balance organ energies" by using vibration and more mental imagery. Aside from the health benefits, the martial purpose of this exercise was to create layers of Chi around the walls of the organs so that they had protection against blunt trauma. (IMO Patterson's weight were just a harsher method of obtaining the same results.)

The feeling was, however different than Patterson's method. I would describe my experience of this as having a balloon blown up around an organ and then another balloon blown up around the first balloon. Perhaps a little like getting a collagen shot in the lips. (A buddy in the Department of Justice who was a Tibetan White Crane Master had done a similar Tibetan with his iron palm training. His hands had actual chi bumps in them that acted as buffers when he hit things….and boy could he hit things.)

Pong energy was developed by lightly pushing against your training partner on all parts of his torso, legs and arms. Iron shirt was developed with breath and muscle pressures and light dit bu sam performed with bamboo and hand slapping. That is as far as I went with him.

Wai Fong Doo (1985-1987)

I began getting cross currents in training method once I met Doo Wai. Parker Linekin and Brian Adams, (and yes, the notorious Jim Lacey) had been training with him for some time. He has better credentials than anyone I had met in the internal arts. His family was a prominent medical family for centuries. His ancestor, Doo Tin Yin assisted Fung Do Duk when the Shaolin Temple in Fukien was destroyed. During his stay with Doo Tin Yin, he taught his kung Fu to the family. The Doo family method as taught by Doo Wai was simple and quite Taoist. It was primarily a form of breath packing. The videos he has on YouTube show me that he has not changed his percentages or sequences since I trained with him. But the Fa Ging he displays in these newer video streams do not do him justice. In his prime, he was a Fa Ging "machine gun" popping every punch with quick, never-ending whipping and thrusting motions. I remember making a joke to one of my friends saying, "Now that is truly the sound of one hand clapping".

But why was his system so simple? I suspect that real Taoists just allow nature to do most of the work. He taught a similar Dit Bu Sam to me using bamboo to tap the chi. We used P-rocks suspended in a cloth sack to train iron palm....no hot water to aid the chi flow as the patterson's did. I used herbs like Dot Da Jow and Dai Chi Jow to work their magic in bringing Chi to the bones as well as healing and toughening the bones.

As I have stated before, Doo's test was to break coconuts. I never was able to bust a suspended one. Jim Lacey was able to do this. I think Vincent Peppers did as well. But I could and often have broken coconuts with my heel-of-palm and a backstop.

I began to prefer the simplicity of the Taoist systems as taught by Doo Wai and as I remembered them from my young training under Bill Funsion's CMC. Nowdays, I do the simple way as I really prefer to allow natural forces do what they naturally do….without contention and without chasing chi. I had come full circle.
All that stuff you wrote is strikes me like in a funny way, and the closest I can come to an apt analogy is this:

Let's say that I know something about computers... not on the level of a guy with a computer-science major or even a good computer tech down at Circuit City, but I wanted to try and leave the impression that I was a computer expert. So I write this post to some discussion board and I mix together words like "packets", ISP's, "email", Borland C++, etc., thinking that people will buy it as informed. People who don't know anymore about computers than me might well buy it. But run that kind of stuff by someone that's knowledgeable and all you'll get is an eyeroll. Problem is that some kid wanting to be start out in the computer field might buy into it and waste a few years of time.

:rolleyes:

Mike

Chris Parkerson
02-18-2008, 09:52 PM
I guess it is your way or the Highway.
Sayonara.

DH
02-19-2008, 06:16 AM
Chris
How about there is a different way to move and/or cause movement than that which you describe and demonstrate here? And that it isn't about who is right or wrong.
I will say after watching you move and reading your explanations that I do not move the way you do, would not describe double weighted the way you do, wouldn't get caught "weighted" in the way you are trying to avoid because I don't carry my weight the same or move my body the way you do.
How about for me double-weighted would be to get "caught" carrying my body...the way you are striving for!.
Thus your single-side mode is my view of weakness. The way you move is a characteristic, Japanese model (one could say classical model- except for extent koryu weapons movement that don't move that way either) for receiving and getting thrown!
In about 5 minutes I or twenty other guys I know could show you why. You seem a very practical guy so I think you would NEVER go back to the way you move now. FWIW Chris every, single, guy I have shown these things to dumps what they knew, and wants to strive to move this way instead- within their own arts. That includes an extremely wide ranging span of arts and some very experienced folks.
What does that say? That says to me is that we-not me, Chris-WE stand together...facing a superior way to move that our Asian founders discovered or embraced.
So, maybe no one is striving to be right over others, but rather to show or point to a way that is superior movement, over what many are doing. Maybe some smart asian Johnie who invented this stuff can get all puffed up about his invention-all the rest of us are-as Meik Skoss is want to say-just bums on the budo bus. It's a process of discovery for us all.

Chris Parkerson
02-19-2008, 09:54 PM
love your style of talking.
let's talk off line.

Regards,

Fellow bum

Jim Sorrentino
02-20-2008, 09:31 PM
Dan,I will say after watching you [Chris Parkerson] move and reading your explanations that I do not move the way you do, would not describe double weighted the way you do, wouldn't get caught "weighted" in the way you are trying to avoid because I don't carry my weight the same or move my body the way you do.Why don't you post a video showing the way you move? Then Chris can re-post his video, and we can compare the two side-by-side. Of course, if you're shy, perhaps Stan Baker and Cady could demonstrate --- after all, they've been studying with you long enough to get it, haven't they? :D

Jim

Blake Holtzen
02-21-2008, 09:10 AM
You know, it's not really about me, but more about newbies (because I've been one so many times) that I think I'm going to add something, against my better judgement:

All that stuff you wrote is strikes me like in a funny way, and the closest I can come to an apt analogy is this:

Let's say that I know something about computers... not on the level of a guy with a computer-science major or even a good computer tech down at Circuit City, but I wanted to try and leave the impression that I was a computer expert. So I write this post to some discussion board and I mix together words like "packets", ISP's, "email", Borland C++, etc., thinking that people will buy it as informed. People who don't know anymore about computers than me might well buy it. But run that kind of stuff by someone that's knowledgeable and all you'll get is an eyeroll. Problem is that some kid wanting to be start out in the computer field might buy into it and waste a few years of time.

:rolleyes:

Mike

Mr Sigman

I must say I am very disappointed in your recent behavior to Mr Parkerson. Apparently you fashion yourself the ki/chi police and whoever does not fall into your dogmatic perception of reality is confused and must be called out as a charlaton.

If you think you have a better way of movement, great, say it, post it, and argue for that. But, arguing that a person's experiences are wrong (from your limited perspective) is ridiculous and self-serving.

Whats next? If I want to share something that doesnt perfectly line up with your view, perhaps I should email you first so you could okay it? Come on Mike. I think you are a better person that that.

Mr Parkerson

I must say very even handed posts for the most part. Whether I agree completely or not with your views, I enjoy reading about them. Dont mind Sigman too much, he likes to post. ;)

-Blake

Chris Parkerson
02-21-2008, 10:26 AM
Pong and Apple Pie

I was at the Mojo last night to film some hsing-I. My camera was broke so we had dinner instead. Then we said, Oh what the hey"

I present to you "Fat Man does Hsing-I with a happy "opu" (Opu is Technical Internal Hawaiian Lua term for stomach). But ya gotta say it right or it don't mean nothing.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sweQTGOviNM

Mike Sigman
02-21-2008, 10:34 AM
I must say I am very disappointed in your recent behavior to Mr Parkerson. Apparently you fashion yourself the ki/chi police and whoever does not fall into your dogmatic perception of reality is confused and must be called out as a charlaton.I don't "fashion" myself as anything, Blake. I stated an opinion, which started out, as you remember, with me asking Mr. Parkerson to clarify an assertion that *he* made. He never did so. He regaled us with the largest single sessions of name-dropping and confused references that I've ever seen on a non-fantasy web-forum. My comment was along the lines that I don't subscribe to the Baron Munchausen School of Martial Arts. If you yourself have something substantive to add, to defend the stories that Mr. Parkerson told, etc., why don't you do so? As far as I can tell, your post actually was nothing other than a vague personal opinion about other people posting. I'd suggest that if you like Mr. Parkerson's approach and you're sure it's correct, you should go study with him.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

DH
02-21-2008, 10:35 AM
Dan,Why don't you post a video showing the way you move? Then Chris can re-post his video, and we can compare the two side-by-side. Of course, if you're shy, perhaps Stan Baker and Cady could demonstrate --- after all, they've been studying with you long enough to get it, haven't they? :D Jim
Sigh...
Video would not help you, Jim. You wouldn't know the difference and be able to discuss it with me anyway. I could show you and teach the difference to you, but I don't want to. As for my movement. Those who truly want to know, ask. If I like them they come to train, as many have and I help as best I can.

Since you want to talk about people getting it, I'd offer that "Getting it" by training a long time with certain teachers seems to offer no guarantee does it? I was just talking about this with guys from down your way who are looking for real teaching, now that they have encountered real skill. Up here...people are learning and improving, and always have.
Sadly though others-even after being exposed to what amounts to simple basics in aiki power a few years ago and decades into their careers- remain stiff as boards. From what I hear-some of these guys better keep attending these seminars whenever they can, It's clear some of them are not doing the work, and their juniors are passing them by. They... are clearly not "getting it."
Good luck in your training

DH
02-21-2008, 10:59 AM
Chris
There is too much to get into. Pause at 1:32 in. The way you carry your weight and "launch" with your punches, is the same way you use a sword. If you freeze frame right there with your right hand punch- you can imagine someone walking in and destabilizing you on your right side. You are open to a rear throw or forward throw, and have gone along way to setting up your own Kuzushi. Its a classic Japanese Ukemi set-up to throw people. I'd say "Thanks!" Of course you can "do" a waza, reversal or hit to stop them blah, blah, blah, but all that is doing is compensating for the problem and inherent weakness in the way you move.
.
For starters you are using a far lower percentage of your weight in what you do. Were you to learn how to manage the arch in your legs to your spine, then the upper center to your spine you could manage to turn at the waist while drawing power from the gorund in both feet and remaining live on them instead of dead. This was what I was trying to tell you about your notion of double weighting being different from what I do. My idea of double weighting is havng my weight and power in my hand and feet on one side.
For starters if you moved the way I was advocating you would
1. Bring power across your body line and hit with a far greater percentage of mass
2. This would allow you to hit harder and more relaxed
3. Would make you far more able to turn the strike into a throw
4. Would all but eliminate or at least significantly reduce your notion of double weighing (being caught dead weighted between your feet
5. Would enable you to ghost one side while causing a huge power surge on the other. Dividing anyone’s power input into you, while you remain relaxed, sensitive and mobile.
6. Were someone to grab you on that side you can move with that same leg since your wouldn't be weighted there anymore and you can do all manner of set-ups.
7. Your weapons work as shown in the previous videos here on this thread demonstrated much the same thing. IMO the video and the explanation is a dissertation on what NOT to do in classical Koryu weapon work, YMMV.
That is just a very, small, intro what you can benefit by learning to carry and support your weight differently,
Last, I probably wouldn’t rush to *do* more videos. I know very little about the Chinese arts. I do know that the lack of structure you display is not what they are trying to convey.
Anyway Its damn difficult to show it, Bud, but I could have you doing it in short order and I'd betcha dinner you would NEVER go back to the way you are currently moving.

Chris Parkerson
02-21-2008, 11:01 AM
You are right as rain. I am stiff. My back has too much scar tissue to play hard/soft fa Ging much anymore.

That is why I returned to the Cheng Man Ching way of soft power.
The hard/soft is for the athletic, young buggers, and a few lucky old men who do not have a lifetime of scar tissue. I have played quite hard in my lifetime.

True art adapts to the physical frame you are given by Kartma at birth or acquire from the follies of life. That is why one size does not fit all.

DH
02-21-2008, 11:09 AM
You are right as rain. I am stiff. My back has too much scar tissue to play hard/soft fa Ging much anymore.

That is why I returned to the Cheng Man Ching way of soft power.
The hard/soft is for the athletic, young buggers, and a few lucky old men who do not have a lifetime of scar tissue. I have played quite hard in my lifetime.

True art adapts to the physical frame you are given by Kartma at birth or acquire from the follies of life. That is why one size does not fit all.

Naw thats not it bud. Its not just sitffness, not even close. I'm an old fart too.
Its far more involved than that and your back would do what I am talking about far easier than what you are trying to do now, and you power would go waaaay up.
If you wanted to know what I mean or really wanted to understand it we'd have to get together. So lets wait till you think you'de like to explore something different that the way you move now. I'd hate to let the disagreement separate us with anger or contention, but Like I said "Dinner is on me if you don't say"
"DAMN! what the hell is that?"
"How do I do that?"
And we'd have fun.

Mike Sigman
02-21-2008, 11:13 AM
From what I hear-some of these guys better keep attending these seminars whenever they can, It's clear some of them are not doing the work, and their juniors are passing them by. They... are clearly not "getting it."
Good luck in your trainingDan, you keep making references to talking to people who have "trained with Ark, Mike" etc., and comparisons from the people who you've talked to. You've done this a number of times and I haven't commented, but I hope you understand that you're essentially putting the very few people *I* know who have done the cross-training in a position where they may not be allowed into other training. Because there's only a few of them and they're easy to pick out. Maybe instead of making the veiled references in the way you're doing, you should just drop it? If they're pals of yours, you're certainly not doing them any favors.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Chris Parkerson
02-21-2008, 11:17 AM
Hey Dan,

I would still love to talk off line with you if you are interested.

You wrote:

Last, I probably wouldn't rush to *do* more videos. I know very little about the Chinese arts. I do know that the lack of structure you display is not what they are trying to convey.

Do you remember Jim kelley in Enter The Dragon??

Han asked him what would happen the day he loses a fight. Kelley said, "I'll be too busy lookin' good." Well, he lost his life at the hands of Han.

I am not really worried about what my old torn up body looks like when I move. I AM interested in how superior body mechanics effects my training partner when I perform technique. Let's talk off-line.

Perhaps I'll post a Tai Chi Press next week. That way it is not just a form done in the air.

Just keepin' it real.

Mike Sigman
02-21-2008, 11:21 AM
That is why I returned to the Cheng Man Ching way of soft power.I'm not sure what the "Cheng Man Ching way of soft power" is because the Yang-style Taiji, which CMC patterned his style on, also uses many of the power release exercises from the Old Frame Er Lu that the Chen style uses. The Chen-style usage is more or less the same type of power generation that Xingyi uses, so we come full circle. Unless you're talking about the Shil Lum Pai stuff that Jim Lacey does.

My comment about your body motions, Chris, would be there's a lot more to it than can be tossed off in a paragraph or two, but what Dan's getting at has a lot to do with jin/ging/kokyu-power and that would be a good start. But if you do get interested in that stuff, you'll find that the qi does indeed lead the strength/jin. ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Ron Tisdale
02-21-2008, 11:28 AM
Hi Mike and Dan,

Having been to see both of you, and having great respect for both of you (only partly because either of you could kick my butt while eating lunch), please...

Don't put me between you. Squash like grape! :eek:

Seriously, I think I've been complimentary to you both, and do my best to maintain my relationships. If'n either of you have an issue with me...call me. Don't sort out any stuff with me on the web.

Best,
Ron

Chris Parkerson
02-21-2008, 11:36 AM
Folks,

I am a curious sort by nature. I am also open to training with anyone who has

(1) a theory, concept or principle that they have wroked hard to prove

(2) and who is neither a bully or a god.

Real simple prerequisites. I come without guile and open my arms in abrazo to anyone who feels the same way.

MM
02-21-2008, 12:05 PM
Folks,

I am a curious sort by nature. I am also open to training with anyone who has

(1) a theory, concept or principle that they have wroked hard to prove

(2) and who is neither a bully or a god.

Real simple prerequisites. I come without guile and open my arms in abrazo to anyone who feels the same way.

Chris,
You would come away with a whole lot of stuff working with either Mike or Dan. They both have #1 and #2. (There are a lot of people who might post differently, but those are probably the people who haven't met either of them.)

Like Ron, I sometimes find myself in the middle of both of them. Not an easy place to be. So, if you're trying to find a difference in them, the only one I've found so far (from a beginner's perspective) is this:

If you lean more towards Chinese Martial Arts, go with Mike.
If you lean more towards Japanese Martial Arts, go with Dan.

IMO anyway,
Mark

DH
02-21-2008, 12:24 PM
If you lean more towards Chinese Martial Arts, go with Mike.
If you lean more towards Japanese Martial Arts, go with Dan.

IMO anyway,
Mark

Maybe I would say
"If you lean more towards- learning some applications in-Chinese Martial Arts, go with Mike."
"If you lean more towards- learning some applications in-Japanese Martial Arts, go with Dan. "
But training does not need to incorporate fighting if that is not your interest.
I know Chinese artists who see the things I do directly relating to what they do. I would say there are more things in common in body skills, just not in waza and approach to fighting with them.
How would intent and breath-power simply HAVE to relate to fighting?
It doesn't. It just happens to relate to everything Including shoveling, lifting, working and...fighting.

Mike Sigman
02-21-2008, 12:27 PM
Chris,
You would come away with a whole lot of stuff working with either Mike or Dan. They both have #1 and #2. (There are a lot of people who might post differently, but those are probably the people who haven't met either of them.)

Like Ron, I sometimes find myself in the middle of both of them. Not an easy place to be. So, if you're trying to find a difference in them, the only one I've found so far (from a beginner's perspective) is this:

If you lean more towards Chinese Martial Arts, go with Mike.
If you lean more towards Japanese Martial Arts, go with Dan.

IMO anyway,
MarkBefore this gets out of hand, Mark, let me point out that I only reacted to Dan's making veiled references to people who talk to him about comparisons. Dan's been the only one that brings up that topic in the last year or so and my comment was that he's basically ensuring that no one who trains with him is going to get much at a few other peoples' workshops. That's one topic.

The topic about who to train with, please leave me out of it. Dan is the one who meets people to make friends and all that. I'm basically trying to keep the playing field level and working on my own project of finding the simplest, most effective way to train these sorts of skills. And that is only tangentially related to Aikido, since most Asian martial arts have these skills in one form or another. My "project" is all that really motivates me; not side issues. When I meet the occasional rare individual who is narrowly focused on just the clinical mechanics of the martial arts and these skills, I'm happy to meet him and get into discussions. But until I feel like someone is really interested in these sorts of things, I don't have a compulsion to "meet and share" for more social reasons. I.e., I've been in martial arts too long to think that the majority of martial artists are there for non-social reasons. ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

MM
02-21-2008, 12:28 PM
Maybe I would say
If you lean more towards- learning some application in-Chinese Martial Arts, go with Mike.
If you lean more towards- learning some application in-Japanese Martial Arts, go with Dan.

I know a few Chinese artists who see the things I do driectly trelating to what they do

Isn't that what I just said? :D

Okay, okay, if you want to get technical. :hypno:

Jim Sorrentino
02-21-2008, 01:56 PM
Dan,Sigh...
Video would not help you, Jim. You wouldn't know the difference and be able to discuss it with me anyway.You have never even met me, so how do you know this? And further, how do you know that others reading this thread may not have the ability to see the differences between your movement and someone else's? These are sincere questions, which you inspired when you made the statement that you could evaluate Chris Parkerson's movement (as shown in his video), and compare it with your own movement. If I were to say to you that I have looked at some of your building designs, and they don't compare well with mine, it would be quite appropriate for you to ask to see my designs.

Jim

Blake Holtzen
02-21-2008, 03:49 PM
Before this gets out of hand, Mark, let me point out that I only reacted to Dan's making veiled references to people who talk to him about comparisons. Dan's been the only one that brings up that topic in the last year or so and my comment was that he's basically ensuring that no one who trains with him is going to get much at a few other peoples' workshops. That's one topic.

The topic about who to train with, please leave me out of it. Dan is the one who meets people to make friends and all that. I'm basically trying to keep the playing field level and working on my own project of finding the simplest, most effective way to train these sorts of skills. And that is only tangentially related to Aikido, since most Asian martial arts have these skills in one form or another. My "project" is all that really motivates me; not side issues. When I meet the occasional rare individual who is narrowly focused on just the clinical mechanics of the martial arts and these skills, I'm happy to meet him and get into discussions. But until I feel like someone is really interested in these sorts of things, I don't have a compulsion to "meet and share" for more social reasons. I.e., I've been in martial arts too long to think that the majority of martial artists are there for non-social reasons. ;)

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Ah, this is getting ridiculous!
Look at my checklist:

1) Talk to Sigman - No longer wants to teach people - crap (Thanks Mike :p )

2) Talk to Harden - Doesn't return emails or pm's - crap (Thanks Dan :p )

3) Talk to John - Lives in Tokyo, I wont be going there anytime soon - crap (Thanks Rob :p )

Ah, What is the world coming to! Is no-one willing to share with a young, eager, hard-working student?

*sigh* Iowa sucks.

-Blake

Mike Sigman
02-21-2008, 03:57 PM
Ah, What is the world coming to! Is no-one willing to share with a young, eager, hard-working student?Well.... I'll bet Chris Parkerson will teach you! Now you're set!

Best.

Mike Sigman

HL1978
02-21-2008, 05:03 PM
3) Talk to John - Lives in Tokyo, I wont be going there anytime soon - crap (Thanks Rob :p )

Ah, What is the world coming to! Is no-one willing to share with a young, eager, hard-working student?

*sigh* Iowa sucks.

-Blake

Well, this is a bit of a shameless plug, but Akuzawa is doing a seminar in the DC area May 31-June 1, and he is Robert John's teacher.

http://aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=13962

Chris Parkerson
02-21-2008, 08:42 PM
I welcome anyone who wants to train with us.
it is free. I am not exclusive. We will laugh and have fun. I will let you be the judge of whether you want to return. Nothing but good vibes either way.

And please, test my stuff and question it. Make it yours, adapt it to your way, or throw it out. Your martial path is yours and no one else's.

Mike Sigman
02-21-2008, 08:52 PM
I welcome anyone who wants to train with us.
it is free. I am not exclusive. We will laugh and have fun. I will let you be the judge of whether you want to return. Nothing but good vibes either way. This is a great discussion, Chris. "Good vibes", particularly to a newbie, should have been listed in traditional Asian martial arts as an indicator. Goes to show what they didn't know back then.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Chris Parkerson
02-22-2008, 05:33 AM
yes, Mike.
You are invited too.

phitruong
02-22-2008, 07:54 AM
Ah, What is the world coming to! Is no-one willing to share with a young, eager, hard-working student?

*sigh* Iowa sucks.

-Blake

I spent 9 years in Ames, Iowa. I learned lots of good martial arts there. Swine jujitsu bailed me out some very nasty places. corn-plucking-fu taught me to be very good a blocking. snow-shoveling-do shown me the way of freezing my breath in mid-air.

learned ballroom dancing there too which helped my aikido greatly. :)

Chris Parkerson
02-22-2008, 08:19 AM
snow-shoveling-do shown me the way of freezing my breath in mid-air

That is my morning Misogi right now.

By the way, I think great folks come from Ames, Iowa. I was there last year (-17 degrees) supporting the USDA new buildings.

Chris Parkerson
02-22-2008, 08:29 AM
snow-shoveling-do shown me the way of freezing my breath in mid-air

I am using snow shovelling as my morning Misogi right now.

I loved Ames Iowa when I was there last year in -17 degree snowstorm. Great folks. Great wrestlers come from Iowa...Kinda like in the country of Georgia (near the Black Sea).

Blake Holtzen
02-22-2008, 08:39 AM
I am using snow shovelling as my morning Misogi right now.

I loved Ames Iowa when I was there last year in -17 degree snowstorm. Great folks. Great wrestlers come from Iowa...Kinda like in the country of Georgia (near the Black Sea).

Yeah, we got some good wrestlers, some okay karate, and a boat-load of taekwondo *shudder* We are the TKD capitol of the world, I think. :yuck:

Ah well, At least I get to practice my rooting skill on charging hogs and practice my fajin on sleeping cows. :D

Maybe life is good... :cool:

-Blake

Chris Parkerson
02-22-2008, 09:10 AM
I always wondered why someone would want to train in a system that does not take easily to a given area?

Kind of like using exotic herbs..

The vibrational energy of an area attracts certain things. It seems to repell others. Why contend with such a Tao? The wrestlers in Iowa make great Judo make players. I bet the Judo there is exquisite.

My Judo teacher, Hal von Luebbert, was from Iowa. He is one of the few folks that can document that he fought over 1,000 organized bouts by the age of 55. He's now 72. When he was 66, he won his 3rd national championship. Tough critters live in Iowa.

phitruong
02-22-2008, 09:12 AM
Yeah, we got some good wrestlers, some okay karate, and a boat-load of taekwondo *shudder* We are the TKD capitol of the world, I think. :yuck:

Ah well, At least I get to practice my rooting skill on charging hogs and practice my fajin on sleeping cows. :D

Maybe life is good... :cool:

-Blake

I hate those NCAA wrestlers. half of the team were taking Judo. They were relentless. I was tired of losing to them so I switched over and studied TKD and Hapkido. of course, in TKD I ran into the twin brothers who can throw axe kicks faster than I can throw a jab. Kept running into freaks of nature.

sleeping cows in Iowa? didn't remember seeing those. *scratching head* hmmmmm

I remembered getting kicks by dairy cows in Minnesota which taught me quite a bit about ukemi on the prairie. Ellis Amdur said that you should not slap the floor when you take ukemi. Very sensible advice, especially when you in a barn full with manure.

Chris Parkerson
02-22-2008, 09:21 AM
During the turn of the century and up until about 1920, (i belive) we had a big upsurge in catch-as-catch-can wrestling events in the U.S. Those events were real and much like the floavor of this decade (MMA).

But the guys were a different breed. They were sinewey, lean, weighing about 165-175 pounds. They could fight for hours.

Many were farmboys. Makes you wonder if their tendon and ligament strength came from using a horse and plow?

Boy have we as city-boy machnie- addicted humans changed since then...

But not Iowans

phitruong
02-22-2008, 09:32 AM
That is my morning Misogi right now.

By the way, I think great folks come from Ames, Iowa. I was there last year (-17 degrees) supporting the USDA new buildings.

you called that misogi? I viewed that as nature sense of humor. you shovel, it dumps more on, you shovel, it dumps more on, .....

Cady Goldfield
02-22-2008, 09:47 AM
I was in Bettendorf, Iowa, once! Saw a fabulous John Deere showroom there. And I buy my chickens from Murray McMurray, another Iowa institution. Iowa is one of America's last, great hopes for an agrarian society -- a way of life that is underrated and even treated derisively by today's urbanites and Metrosexuals, but which is our nation's backbone and root to the ground ;). No ability to support ourselves without it.

Oh, and there's a town in Iowa called Goldfield. How could I not love a state with a town named Goldfield? :D
Back to shoveling snow here in New England, where the storm is just hitting.

Chris Parkerson
02-22-2008, 10:51 AM
you called that misogi? I viewed that as nature sense of humor. you shovel, it dumps more on, you shovel, it dumps more on,

OK, we'll call it the wheel of Karma.

akiy
03-10-2008, 10:58 AM
I have moved the discussion between Mike Patterson and Chris Parkerson to the below thread:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14107

-- Jun

akiy
03-10-2008, 12:07 PM
Further discussions between Mike Patterson and Chris Parkerson have been moved here:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14107

-- Jun

Russell Davis
09-04-2009, 04:51 PM
Hi Chris,
Read your article, yes I do the same type of thing for stick, knife, sword and staff, I begin with a basic sequence of cuts and blocks, 1 to 6. then progress using combinations of 3 (1,2,3. 4,5,6)
then begin random attacks, quickly followed by a counter of 2/3 cuts/strikes/thrust.
in addition to the sword V sword, I also use;
Sword V Double stick (or machete, machete and knife)
Sword V Long staff or (spear)
Just to keep you occupied, when you get bored with this, you can throw in multiple opponents with various weapons.

Happy training.

PS I developed this type of training from 1985-94 as part of my own syllabus