Step Forward, Pull Up, Block Punch

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Linda Heenan
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Step Forward, Pull Up, Block Punch

Post by Linda Heenan » Fri Feb 17, 2006 11:09 pm

This question is from the part of Section 1 Michuan empty hand form pictured in the red book volume 1 from pictures 116 - 135.



Some questions arose in our practise group today about the hand movements and applications. A couple of members of the group thought they recalled seeing an application involving pushing the duifang's right elbow horizontally with the left hand, while holding the forearm in an upright position with the right hand. If this is true, it would make the movement of the hands in the form (pics 117-118) horizontal rather than vertical. I'm pretty sure the hands pass each other in vertical movements. What then, is the application?



Also, I've just noticed that the step forward accompanying these movements looks different in the book from the way we've all been doing it. I thought it was on the heel, with a twist of the body as the hands pass but the book says ball of the foot. However, when I watch the DVD, I would say Master Wang was also doing it on the heel. It's a bit difficult to see clearly. Are there different ways of doing this. If not, is it heel or ball of the foot, and why?

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Post by Linda Heenan » Mon Feb 20, 2006 4:36 am

Okay, I have an answer, for those of the Blue Mountains group that are watching this thread this week.



I was talking to Hendrik about this and he reminded me about the basic application for that part of the form. We move into this section after the brush knee/pipa trio. That goes into a deflection and a forward moving pulldown.



Next is the part we were asking about. The confusion about the hand movements came from thinking the duifang's arm was in a rollback type position. It isn't. He has used peng against the pulldown. Now that the duifang's arm is in a horizontal position, it makes it easy to understand why your hand movements are vertical. A good answer to the peng is to catch his elbow with your left hand and cover the arm a bit up from the wrist with your right hand. That's where the twist comes in. The duifang's elbow is pushed up as his forearm is pulled down.



If anyone knows other applications, we'd love to hear them, but I'm fairly sure that is the one Laoshi showed us at the seminar.



It would also be good to hear an answer to that question about the foot position.

Roland Tepp
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Re: Step Forward, Pull Up, Block Punch

Post by Roland Tepp » Wed Feb 22, 2006 3:21 am

Linda Heenan wrote:
Also, I've just noticed that the step forward accompanying these movements looks different in the book from the way we've all been doing it. I thought it was on the heel, with a twist of the body as the hands pass but the book says ball of the foot. However, when I watch the DVD, I would say Master Wang was also doing it on the heel. It's a bit difficult to see clearly. Are there different ways of doing this. If not, is it heel or ball of the foot, and why?


Sorry I didn't answer your question earlier - I did not have the "red book" at hand to respond in time. However from your own answer I now see what is the problem.



About the footwork - I've always mean turning on the ball of the foot. You must remember that in this position, although the foot is touching the ground in front of you, it should have no weight on it as You've not actually stepped on it yet. Also - when turning the foot on the heel your foot will turn away from the duifang whereas your principal movement should be towards the duifang as you are twisting his arm. When You turn on the ball of the foot, you do exactly that.



There are basically 2 reasons why the forward leg dould be light.

First is that to twist an arm you need to put the entire weight of your body into that movement, so when you are leaning even a little on the forward leg you might easily hurt your knee, as the forward leg is not turning as easily as it should.

The other is a strategial reason - and something that does not apply only to this movement alone. The reason is that when You are twisting duifang's arm - (s)he will usually not be standing and waiting while you do that and with little enough skill, the twisting can be easily neutralized by just straightening the arm and following in by a shoulder strike (for an example). To be able to neutralize that, You should not be commited too much to moving in any particular direction. Thus the foot in front of you should not get any weight on it until You actually move forward...



All this applies to the "classic application". Any and all of the details may change significantly if you have another application in mind. You should always remember that when you see a master like Wang Laoshi practice a form they always have some application or the other in mind. It might be the "classic" one or it might be a whole another situation they are playing through. And depending on the situation or application many details may change that don't seem to fit into the application you know. As Scott Laoshi has many times reminded us - we should look at those details and see if we can find an application to fit them. If we can we should remember it, if not, well... then maybe there is none, or maybe we are not ready to understand it just yet. Do what you know, but don't be dogmatic about it.
Roland

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Post by Linda Heenan » Sat Feb 25, 2006 3:26 pm

Roland, thank you for taking the time to answer the question so well. It helps to have some practical reasons like those. I enjoy seeing how much skill has been put into constructing a form. Every little part of it counts and this is a good reason for getting it exactly right.


All this applies to the "classic application". Any and all of the details may change significantly if you have another application in mind. You should always remember that when you see a master like Wang Laoshi practice a form they always have some application or the other in mind. It might be the "classic" one or it might be a whole another situation they are playing through. And depending on the situation or application many details may change that don't seem to fit into the application you know. As Scott Laoshi has many times reminded us - we should look at those details and see if we can find an application to fit them. If we can we should remember it, if not, well... then maybe there is none, or maybe


This clears up a lot of questions in my mind. I learnt section one by watching Master Wang do it on a DVD. When Laoshi came to Australia, I had a lot of it wrong. I watched the DVD again after our seminar, and it wasn't all wrong. I even woke Laoshi up early one morning to come and watch the DVD with me and explain things :lol: I had taken subtle differences that I believed were all there was, and, as beginners do, made them bigger, or more obvious, so that they came out as different movements. The things I learnt were mostly there. I had just overemphasised what indicated something other than the intent of the "classic" movement, missing the basic movement altogether. Then of course, there are the steps put in for staying in camera range :) ....

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