The autumn leaves are falling like rain. Although my neighbors are all barbarians and you, you are a thousand miles away, there are always two cups at my table.

T’ang Dynasty poem

Ten thousand flowers in spring, the moon in autumn, a cool breeze in summer, snow in winter. If your mind isn't clouded by unnecessary things, this is the best season of your life.

~ Wu-men ~


Monday, September 25, 2017

The Dimensions of Kung Fu

Below is a post from Tambuli Media. The full article may be read here.

At some point in our sojourn in learning martial arts (武术/wǔshù) we come across an awkward scenario: the instructor or master demonstrates a particular technique (技/jì) or method (法/fǎ) for a particular posture (架子/jiàzǐ) that you are learning; they may state that the technique they are demonstrating is a secret, which is supposed to leave you in awe. He goes on to extended his arm outwardly with a clenched hand and he ecstatically tells you it is a strike; wow! But in reality he simply demonstrated something that is obvious to any child raised on Power Rangers.

Indeed, this is an exaggeration; or is it? You go on to learn the whole sequence (路/lù) and that is the only technique you are ever taught for that particular posture even after being at the training hall (馆/guǎn) for years. However, without you realizing: each posture you are taught within a sequence possesses multiple techniques. We should take into account that each posture will consist of five possible alternatives, which is referred to as the “five attacks” (wǔjī/五击), which are: striking (dǎ/打), kicking (tī/踢), seizing (ná/拿), throwing (shuāi/摔), and bumping (zhuàng/撞). However, not all of these actions are obvious; therefore, how does one extract these methods out of a posture without the guidance of an instructor or master?

Every physical activity we engage in is governed by the principles of physics; therefore, within physics we encounter the theory of spatial dimensions, which consist of: one-dimensional, two-dimensional, three-dimensional, etc., which can be used to explain the properties of postures within a sequence.



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