Forward Sinking and Rooting

Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby DPasek » Tue Apr 04, 2017 4:57 pm

Audi,

Thanks for the detailed information.

Audi wrote:To do the stance correctly, I think it is important to understand the thrusting (蹬deng) role of one leg and the supporting (撑 cheng) role of the other leg. In a final stance, these roles become latent, but are still arguably aspects of the underlying equilibrium. Many people just rest on the ground like a chair and do not feel the "motion" of the energy in the stillness.

I try to explain that we are constantly resisting gravity when standing, and thus are pushing up against the ground. To maintain yin + yang in the legs, we are taught to add a downward component as if we are lowering ourselves downward into a chair. This gives our legs both up and down quality and should allow for greater changeability and smoother mobility when shifting or stepping.

While you are correct about having thrusting (蹬deng) predominately in one leg and supporting (撑 cheng) predominately in the other leg, I would say that you always have both in both legs and whichever energy predominates depends on the specifics of the situation. In a bow stance, both legs support the body (have up energy), although both should also have a sinking quality. Practitioners should be able to thrust or push with either or both legs in a bow stance, but this may be difficult to understand without in-person instruction.

As I interpret it, we want to have both flexors and extensors (muscles used for bending and straightening joints, respectively) always primed for action, even when not in action. To me, this is one of the reasons for not locking (or fully extending) our legs (or arms...). If we are primed for even opposite actions, then we maintain readiness for both yin and yang actions (absorbing/pulling, projecting/pushing, etc.); we do not get stuck in one direction without being able to change to the another.

It is also interesting that there is also a spiral potential in our legs (feet rotation towards our little toes), which not only aids in our stability, but also primes us for rotation/counter-rotation, even when “still” or “stationary.” So we can be primed vertically up and down as well as horizontally left and right.

We do not want our ability to move to be inhibited because we are still. We therefore try to maintain a constant potential for movement in any direction, even when not moving. The potential for moving in any direction should be maintained even when one energy or another becomes predominant.

The ideas of yin + yang, and the potential for moving in any direction (maintaining changeability), are frequent considerations in things that I have written for posting online. Those who are interested can read more in the following examples:
http://slantedflying.com/six-direction-force-in-taijiquan/
http://slantedflying.com/taijiquan-moving-through-molasses/

DP
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby Bob Ashmore » Tue Apr 04, 2017 6:06 pm

Everyone knows about the "spiraling potential" of the legs as Dpasek has described above; legs "spiraling" outwards towards the little toes. It also goes back the other way as well, but I think we all know that.
This "rounded" crotch/spiraling legs feeling is ubiquitous throughout the major branches.
Necessary, clear, well documented, done fairly universally.
However there is another "spiral" movement "in the legs" that I rarely, if ever, see addressed.
And that is the ACTUAL never ending spiral that occurs with every movement of the legs.
It is built into our bodies, is clearly a spiraling action, and we are all hopefully doing it but we should all also be thinking about it as it bears directly on how we move.
I present to those of you not familiar with them already, the acetabulum and the femur head.
These two things comprise the "joint" known as the hip.
The acetabulum is round.
The femur head is round.
The femur head fits inside the acetabulum.
Don't take my word for it, Google them and see for yourself.
The movements of the hip joint are circular, perforce, due to its shape.
It can circle in almost any direction, though in some directions there are limits to the range of motion while in others there are not.
Opening side to side, the hip joint has a finite limit on the distance it can travel. Once you reach the end of that rotational path that's as far as you can go, so you have to go back the other way again to continue that cycle.
This is similar to most of the joints in the human body and is the movement path for the leg that was discussed above. Since we all know that bit, I'll go no farther in describing it here.
Then there is the other way the hip joint rotates, round and round in a never ending circle.
This is how we step, walk, run, jump...
Well...
Pretty much EVERYTHING we do with our legs other than side to side stability is handled by utilizing this never ending spiraling of the hip joints.
Because the hip joints are round and travel in spirals this precludes the idea of "sinking straight down", instead sinking is a rotational movement based around the spiraling of the hip joints.
There is an element of upward and forward spiraling involved in "sinking" that I described briefly in an earlier post when I asked what you do when you sit down.
"Sitting down", or "sinking", is done with one quarter of the rotation of the hip joint. The "forward and upward" spiraling of the hip socket lowers the upper body down and settles it backwards a bit at the same time. This moves your structure in an optimal manner to "borrow" the "mysterious force from the center of earth" and utilize it along with your body movement to amplify energy.
In other words, you use this movement in conjunction with gravity as a "force multiplier" to add "oomph" to your movements.
"Standing up" is the flip side to this, the Yang to the Yin of sinking.
It uses the downward and backward moving quadrant of hip rotation to push you both forward and upwards at the same time. No "force multiplier" here, you are actively fighting gravity with this movement.
Sometimes you "stand up" then "sit down" one after the other, spiraling both hip sockets in the same direction and at the same time. Think about "Opening" here, parallel footwork.
Most of the time though you "sit down" on one hip socket and "stand up" with the other at the same time. This is what you do in both bow and empty stances.
When you do this you're balancing out these two movements without changing the level of your upper body at all (for those wondering how to keep your body level during TCC, this is how).
There are two more quadrants, I refer to them as "push" and "pull" and they are used for "changing the pole", or "shifting weight" between the legs.

Cheng and Deng are roughly analogous, by the way, to what I'm describing here.
I just go into more detail with my bit.
I've written a paper on this and posted the link on this forum before, it was not universally popular. I can live with that.
I have changed the terminology since I wrote the paper, but haven't had the time to update it yet, because the terms I used were confusing at best.
But the idea is the same, nothing has changed except for the words I use to describe things.
If anyone is interested in pursuing this further, let me know.
Otherwise I'll just leave it here and we can move on to something else.
Hip rotations aren't exactly thrills a minute as a topic of discussion.
Vitally important... Yes.
Fun to talk about... Not really.
I get that.
Not everyone is going to be as tickled talking about hip sockets and greater trochanters as I am.
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby ChiDragon » Wed Apr 05, 2017 7:45 pm

Audi wrote:To do the (bow) stance correctly, I think it is important to understand the thrusting (蹬deng) role of one leg and the supporting (撑 cheng) role of the other leg. In a final stance, these roles become latent, but are still arguably aspects of the underlying equilibrium. Many people just rest on the ground like a chair and do not feel the "motion" of the energy in the stillness.


Hi, Audi
I am intrigued in the fine details of your subtle posts. Sometimes, I was compelled to make additional comments to enhance the meaning of an interesting subject. May I beg your pardon for my intrusion!

In the bow stance, we can express the acting forces with a triangle as in physics. The deng(蹬) force is the vertical force pressed downward which is perpendicular to the ground. The cheng(撑) force is a slanted force against the ground which is on the hypotenuse of the triangle. It is also the resultant force of the other two component forces.

I was puzzled in the last two statements. The latter I can understand by rephrasing it. I would rephrase it as:
Many people just rest on the ground like a chair and do not feel the potential energy in the stillness. For that being said, in the on guard position, the body is in the sung(松) mode. Thus there should not be any force felt. In combat, the body is in the fajin mode, all the kinetic energy should be felt within the body. In the former, I do not quite understand what do you mean by the "still arguably aspects of the underlying equilibrium"? Would you please shed some light on it to enlighten me? Thank you! :)
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby ChiDragon » Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:03 pm

DPasek wrote:I try to explain that we are constantly resisting gravity when standing, and thus are pushing up against the ground. To maintain yin + yang in the legs, we are taught to add a downward component as if we are lowering ourselves downward into a chair. This gives our legs both up and down quality and should allow for greater changeability and smoother mobility when shifting or stepping.

While you are correct about having thrusting (蹬deng) predominately in one leg and supporting (撑 cheng) predominately in the other leg, I would say that you always have both in both legs and whichever energy predominates depends on the specifics of the situation. In a bow stance, both legs support the body (have up energy), although both should also have a sinking quality. Practitioners should be able to thrust or push with either or both legs in a bow stance, but this may be difficult to understand without in-person instruction.

Hi, DPasek

I am having a little difficulty with your understanding about gravity. My understanding is when I am standing on the surface of the earth, I would have had been flew away if I was not pulled by gravity. This seems contradictory to your statement. Am I really pushing up against the ground when standing?
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby yslim » Thu Apr 06, 2017 5:21 am

ChiDragon wrote:
DPasek wrote:I try to explain that we are constantly resisting gravity when standing, and thus are pushing up against the ground. .


Hi, DPasek

I am having a little difficulty with your understanding about gravity. My understanding is when I am standing on the surface of the earth, I would have had been flew away if I was not pulled by gravity. This seems contradictory to your statement. Am I really pushing up against the ground when standing?


Good Morning CD.
Last time I checked, Los Angeles, Ca it is in continent of America. This is what the native of the West taught to do. Even if you are the native of the East trying to get along with the Lao Fang while you are living in the West. You should not think twice about this; " Am I really pushing up against the ground when standing? Yes, you really have to, unless you are dead or something, but please do not die in any time soon.

DPasek was not contradictory to his statement. it is perhaps an Easterner and Westerner kind of thing. United We Are Standing And Alive!

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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby ChiDragon » Thu Apr 06, 2017 8:09 am

yslim wrote:Good Morning CD.
.....DPasek was not contradictory to his statement. it is perhaps an Easterner and Westerner kind of thing. United We Are Standing And Alive!

yslim


Good evening, yslim.
This is a friendly discussion forum. Only the issues are being attacked rather than the speakers. I don't know what had prompted the issue on "a Easterner and Westerner kind of thing." Anyway, your comments are well taken but please make it more relevant to the subject matter next time. I beg your pardon and forgiveness. :|
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby yslim » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:08 am

ChiDragon wrote:
yslim wrote:Good Morning CD.
.....DPasek was not contradictory to his statement. it is perhaps an Easterner and Westerner kind of thing. United We Are Standing And Alive!

yslim


Good evening, yslim.
This is a friendly discussion forum. Only the issues are being attacked rather than the speakers. I don't know what had prompted the issue on "a Easterner and Westerner kind of thing." Anyway, your comments are well taken but please make it more relevant to the subject matter next time. I beg your pardon and forgiveness. :|



"Hi CD,
I don't really have a bellyache. It was a tongue in cheek comment. However, thanks for the advice and I may use it when I really have a bellyache. :D
Take care,
Frank".

Good Morning CD,

I hope Mr. Frank's reply could help you to understand and answer your " I don't know what had prompted the issue on "a Easterner and Westerner kind of thing." So my 'tongue in cheek' is out of line. I lost my awareness on your "listening skill" are so highly trained. Sorry about that.

Thank You Mr.Frank. I was waiting for this to save the day....good hope come to those who waited?
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby ChiDragon » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:23 am

yslim,
That's all I can say is:
言者無心, 聽者有意
言者有意, 我也無心
:|

CD

Edited to add:
I believe Mr. Frank's comment was related to the sense of humor, in the post above, in another thread. I rest my case! Peace!


Wu Wei,
Let nature take its course.
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby DPasek » Mon Apr 10, 2017 5:37 pm

ChiDragon wrote:I am having a little difficulty with your understanding about gravity. My understanding is when I am standing on the surface of the earth, I would have had been flew away if I was not pulled by gravity. This seems contradictory to your statement. Am I really pushing up against the ground when standing?

CD,

The inability to understand, acknowledge or perceive force from the legs may contribute to differences in understanding force in Taijiquan. I do not know if this is culture, education, intellect, tradition, or something else, but I also suspect that there is something cultural about this. Numerous Taijiquan teachers that refer to and demonstrate using “no force” are clearly using force, at least as I understand it.

I gave up on explaining force in Taijiquan in a previous thread with you, but I will give it one more attempt.

Yes, the legs push against the ground (use force) in order for us to stand (countering the downward pull of gravity). While gravity keeps us attached to the Earth, our ability to stand upright depends on our ability to push up against the Earth. Laying down, like when sleeping, does not require us to push ourselves upward, but raising ourselves up from the ground does.

Adults are so used to this use of our legs to counter the force of gravity that our minds no longer need to devote attention to it, unless someone suffers an injury that requires them to relearn how to stand and walk.

If your legs were anesthetized so that the leg muscles stayed relaxed (incapable of producing force), then you would not be able to stand. Although healthy adults often do not perceive the work that the legs are doing, if one stands long enough, or does something else more demanding of the muscles (like running), then we eventually sense the fatigue in the legs.

Our perception of work done by the legs is much different than the perception of the work done by the arms. For many of us, bending our legs to lower ourselves into a squat, and then raising ourselves back up to standing upright, does not seem to require much effort, even though we are producing force with our legs in order to do so. If we were in a handstand instead, lowering ourselves down and back up with our arms would feel like a lot of effort. Since the weight of the body has not changed (the force of gravity stays constant), the amount of force used by either the legs or the arms in the above examples of lowering then raising the body is the same!

Since our legs contain more muscles than the arms, and because we are used to the effort needed to use our legs to maintain ourselves upright, we perceive the force production as requiring very little effort. Using the arms to do the work of pushing our body upright in a headstand, however, feels like a lot of effort is being used to raise the equivalent body mass (i.e. using the same amount of force).

If we push something heavy for a distance across a tabletop using only our arms (keeping the body stationary and extending our arms to generate the force), it will be perceived as requiring more effort than the equivalent force produced by moving the same heavy object the same distance using our legs to generate the force (the arms held in place in relation to the body, not flexing or extending). But the amount of force produced to move the heavy object is the same; the difference is just where the force is generated from (primarily the arms vs. primarily the legs), and our perception of the effort required.

In Taijiquan, if we are using “whole-body power” we are using primarily our legs to generate the force. This would be perceived as using less effort (less force) than if we instead used primarily our arms to generate an equivalent amount of force. If you feel little force production in the arms because you are using your legs to generate the force, then it would be perceived as using less force; but it is actually the same amount of force, just perceived as being less effort.

There is another factor in our perception of effort. Weber’s Law of Just Noticeable Differences states that our ability to sense changes (differences in magnitude) in force is proportional to the magnitude of the initial stimulus.

Image

Since our legs are already using a significant amount of force to keep our body upright, unlike our arms which can be relatively relaxed, a greater change in the amount of force from our legs would need to occur before we notice it; we would notice a change much quicker for changes in force produced from our arms.

So, if Taijiquan teachers were saying to generate the force from the legs, rather than from the arms, then I would agree. But when they state that they are using “no” force, then I would suspect that they are using the wrong terminology. They are still using force; it is just their perception of effort that is different. Force generated from different parts of the body will be perceived differently, even when the amount of force used is the same.

If someone is not aware of the force being generated by the legs, then they may not be perceiving the force that they are actually using during Taijiquan.

For those that are interested, the following article discusses Weber’s Law and Taijiquan:
http://slantedflying.com/softness-sensitivity-and-science-in-taijiquan/
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby ChiDragon » Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:33 pm

DPasek wrote:CD,
The inability to understand, acknowledge or perceive force from the legs may contribute to differences in understanding force in Taijiquan. I do not know if this is culture, education, intellect, tradition, or something else, but I also suspect that there is something cultural about this. Numerous Taijiquan teachers that refer to and demonstrate using “no force” are clearly using force, at least as I understand it.

I gave up on explaining force in Taijiquan in a previous thread with you, but I will give it one more attempt.

Yes, the legs push against the ground (use force) in order for us to stand (countering the downward pull of gravity). While gravity keeps us attached to the Earth, our ability to stand upright depends on our ability to push up against the Earth. Laying down, like when sleeping, does not require us to push ourselves upward, but raising ourselves up from the ground does.


Hi, DPasek
Welcome back! My response to the first paragraph is all of the above in blue. :D

Numerous Taijiquan teachers that refer to and demonstrate using “no force” are clearly using force. Of course, from a point of view of a physicist. You know most Tai Chi teachers are not scientifically oriented. I am guessing that your job is related to physics or you are a physicist yourself. I knew I should not argue about anything with a physicist. I know a physicist will use the finest physical theory to win the argument.

Unfortunately, the Chinese language are not restricted to use precise words, as in English, to describe exactly what was being said. There are lots of ideas require interpretation or guessing work. For instance, in the "no force" concept, it was understood to be song(松) or "用意不用力"(use the mind but not force). The students only knew that all the muscles are to be relaxed while the movements are being executed with the mind. To any unscientifically oriented person, do they ever care that they were applying force or not. I don't think anyone would be concerned with the physical aspect of it like you and I. They just took it for granted.

In the case of our misunderstand in communication, thank you for citing the Weber's Law. The Weber's Law is about detecting a change or deviation in pressure. As far as detecting the change in pressure, let say a constant force of one kg is at the point of contact for both push hands partners. Since our concern is detecting a change in pressure, the one kg force is really insignificant. It is only a point of reference. Hence, our reference point of change is at zero at the initial force of one kg. For that said, is it fair to say that there was no additional force or zero force applied above the initial one kg force?
Last edited by ChiDragon on Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby Audi » Tue Apr 11, 2017 2:14 am

Greetings all,

DP,

The ideas of yin + yang, and the potential for moving in any direction (maintaining changeability), are frequent considerations in things that I have written for posting online. Those who are interested can read more in the following examples:
http://slantedflying.com/six-direction- ... taijiquan/
http://slantedflying.com/taijiquan-movi ... -molasses/


I was initially thrown off by some of your terminology, but ended up liking both posts. I think we have a very similar internal feeling and similar understanding about it, even though we stress different concepts and have different terminology. I also found some of your comments about standing practice useful.

I am having a little difficulty with your understanding about gravity. My understanding is when I am standing on the surface of the earth, I would have had been flew away if I was not pulled by gravity. This seems contradictory to your statement. Am I really pushing up against the ground when standing?


ChiDragon,

I wonder if you may have misunderstood DP’s somewhat casual phrasing. I think in this case, “pushing up against the ground” and “pushing down against the ground” are meant to mean almost the same thing, but just stress different aspects of the action. I think he meant “pushing down against the ground so that our bodies stand up” or “pushing our bodies up by pressing down against the ground.” In both cases, gravity is pulling us down, and we are holding ourselves up. The two action create an equilibrium where we neither jump up nor fall down.

As I interpret it, we want to have both flexors and extensors (muscles used for bending and straightening joints, respectively) always primed for action, even when not in action. To me, this is one of the reasons for not locking (or fully extending) our legs (or arms...). If we are primed for even opposite actions, then we maintain readiness for both yin and yang actions (absorbing/pulling, projecting/pushing, etc.); we do not get stuck in one direction without being able to change to the another.


We may or may not have the same feeling, but I use a different theoretical approach. You seem to stress awareness of opposites and doing two things. For my understanding and the way I teach, it is important for me to stress the oneness of the taiji in addition to its composition of two aspects and to guard against a feeling of choosing or alternating between two possibilities.

In my mind, Taiji energy is basically about expansion. I pay attention only to expansion and rarely or ever have a feeling of contraction. However, the expansion inherently includes contraction within it. Within yin, there is always yang. As we expand against our soft tissue, our soft tissue pulls back in contraction. By modulating our expansion, we can actually produce contraction in this way. Yin and yang control each other.

As an analogy, consider the ocean floating a ball on its waves. When we say “floating,” we are talking about an action that includes only an upward force. In reality, however, the process of “floating” as it occurs in our daily experience, unlike in outer space, is always a dance between floating and gravity. Without the action of gravity, a ball would not float on the surface of a mass of water. This means that the ocean, merely by changing the energy of its floating action, can make a ball float up or down through the “dance” with gravity.

In my feeling, deng and cheng are actually the same force and part of the same taiji. Both merely involve thrusting against the ground. The difference involves the “dance” with gravity. With deng, thrusting is yang and gravity is yin. The result is a type of issuing energy. With cheng, thrusting is yin and gravity is yang. The result is a type of receiving energy.

I suppose one could say that you should be ready to alternate between deng and cheng. This is probably good from a pedagogical standpoint, but to me, it's a little like saying a basketball ball needs to be able to bounce both up and down. While true, it is stating something that is simply part of the nature of a true basketball.

To me, whether a leg should do deng or cheng is controlled by the intent (意 yi4), and this is a somewhat different conversation from the fundamental mechanics of deng or cheng themselves.

It is also interesting that there is also a spiral potential in our legs (feet rotation towards our little toes), which not only aids in our stability, but also primes us for rotation/counter-rotation, even when “still” or “stationary.” So we can be primed vertically up and down as well as horizontally left and right.


Everyone knows about the "spiraling potential" of the legs as Dpasek has described above; legs "spiraling" outwards towards the little toes. It also goes back the other way as well, but I think we all know that.
This "rounded" crotch/spiraling legs feeling is ubiquitous throughout the major branches.


I am aware of the spiraling the Chen family teaches, but do not know much of anything about that from a Yang family perspective, at least with respect to the legs. To me, rounding the crotch seems a little bit like a different concept. Also, I think of rotation more from the perspective of the waist than of the legs and would be wary of introducing a rotational feeling in my feet, ankles, or knees.

I was puzzled in the last two statements. The latter I can understand by rephrasing it. I would rephrase it as:
Many people just rest on the ground like a chair and do not feel the potential energy in the stillness. For that being said, in the on guard position, the body is in the sung(松) mode. Thus there should not be any force felt. In combat, the body is in the fajin mode, all the kinetic energy should be felt within the body. In the former, I do not quite understand what do you mean by the "still arguably aspects of the underlying equilibrium"? Would you please shed some light on it to enlighten me? Thank you! :)


A chair interacts with gravity only through rigid geometry. A human can do this as well; however, our geometry on two feet is nowhere near as stable as a chair on four legs. We have three other choices.

If a human is standing and suddenly loses consciousness, their limbs become completely slack or loose and end up in a disorganized heap on the ground. Because of this meaning of loose and relaxed, or of "song" 松, I do not like stressing mere relaxation as an alternative to a rigid structure.

A third possibility for a human is to keep a somewhat rigid structure, but continually make adjustments to stay balanced. In effect, such a person simply creates a succession of rigid geometries to adjust their balance as needed from moment to moment.

The fourth possibility is to use a structure that actually incorporates the force of gravity into its stability, like a roman arch. I cannot come up with an item in daily life that illustrates my meaning in terms of the mechanics of standing, but consider an umbrella. The force of your arm extending the ribs of an umbrella actually gives the right umbrella shape, despite the fact that the fabric of the umbrella is not rigid. In fact, the shape of the umbrella is directly dependent on how much you push on the mechanism. In the same way, the angle of the shins, knees, and thighs in a bow stance can be determined indirectly by how you push against the ground. It is a system that can find different equilibriums depending on the input forces. The energy provides the shape, not a rigid structure.

My point was that many people feel only rigid structure in the placement of their legs that they externally adjust according to what they think is useful. This is different from feeling the relationship between the various forces that can produce a variety of outcomes with only a simple variation in input. When you open an umbrella, you don't have to give much thought as to how hard or how far to push. You just focus on the end result you want and automatically adjust your force depending on your tactile feedback. In the same way, I just focus on generating energy through my legs and automatically adjust all the angles based on my feeling in the bubbling wellspring of both legs. I give no thought to my front knee bending too far or to my rear leg becoming too straight. These results are not normally possible based on the intent and "procedure" I use, just like I normally don't have to worry about opening my umbrella too far or not far enough.

By the way, I should make clear that although we might talk about using both legs to shift weight, we ultimately do not want to do deng and cheng simultaneously and to have a feeling of resisting our own energy. It should be sequential. In one sense, it is exactly the same process in the legs that we use during a jump in takeoff and landing, except that neither foot leaves the ground and the pelvis does not change in height. When we jump, we give no thought to how straight our knees are when we leave the ground or how bent they are after landing. The adjustment is natural, based on our intent. For me, this is the same as in shifting weight into a bow stance.

The other thing I should make clear is that in doing form practice, the weight shifts are all pretty much the same, because of the constant speed. During fajin, however, you will automatically adjust the degree to which you bend the front knee and how much you straighten the back knee to accommodate how strong and how short your energy is, in the same way that you automatically adjust how you take off or land on your legs for a jump, depending on the height of the jump.

Take care,
Audi
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby DPasek » Tue Apr 11, 2017 2:46 pm

Audi,

Thanks for your post. I especially like it that we have such different approaches to similar topics. Even though we state things differently, I rarely find anything of yours that I actually disagree with. I believe that it is important to hear different approaches to topics since those differences help our own understanding, as well as our ability to convey information to our students. This is why I enjoy this forum, even though I am not an Association member and practice a Yang style variant (among other things) rather than the Yang style that the Association teaches.

CD,

I am at a loss. Your comments and questions indicate that you have not received training in analytical thought. While I am not a physicist, I am a scientist (biochemist), and so my thinking looks for analytical accuracy and consistency. It is difficult to respond to you when you totally miss the point of Weber’s Law, and it seems like you do not even have a basic understanding of gravity. Not understanding gravity, it would be difficult for you to understand how humans interact with the Earth, how we move, how we use force, etc.

Your questions seem like someone, who learning that the Sun is much more massive than the Earth thinks that, because the gravitational force of the Sun is so much greater than the Earth we can disregard Earth’s gravity. You do not understand Weber’s Law – it is precisely because of Weber’s Law that you cannot set whatever the initial level of force is to zero. The effect of the initial level of force on our ability to detect changes in force is one aspect of change that Weber’s Law addresses (it applies to perceptions of many types of change, not just force or pressure).

ChiDragon wrote:Unfortunately, the Chinese language are not restricted to use precise words, as in English, to describe exactly what was being said. There are lots of ideas require interpretation or guessing work. For instance, in the "no force" concept, it was understood to be song(松) or "用意不用力"(use the mind but not force). The students only knew that all the muscles are to be relaxed while the movements are being executed with the mind. To any unscientifically oriented person, do they ever care that they were applying force or not. I don't think anyone would be concerned with the physical aspect of it like you and I. They just took it for granted.

“All the muscles are to be relaxed” is a totally incorrect statement from a scientific perspective. From my perspective, this is self-delusion rather than reality. The mind directs the muscles to make the movements. If you were under general anesthesia but where you remained conscious, your mind would be incapable of making your body move since your muscles would be totally relaxed and incapable of producing force.
DPasek
 
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby ChiDragon » Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:49 pm

DPasek wrote:This is why I enjoy this forum, even though I am not an Association member and practice a Yang style variant (among other things) rather than the Yang style that the Association teaches.
I am a scientist (biochemist), and so my thinking looks for analytical accuracy and consistency.

Hi, Dpasek
Since you are a biochemist and a practitioner of Tai Chi, based on your analytical skill, I would like to hear from you to explain how did the energy(or jin) develop in the body from the exercise? How did Tai Chi affect your body biologically?Thanks!
A deep discussion requires explicit details for a good comprehension of a complex subject.
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby DPasek » Tue Apr 11, 2017 6:23 pm

ChiDragon wrote:Hi, Dpasek
Since you are a biochemist and a practitioner of Tai Chi, based on your analytical skill, I would like to hear from you to explain how did the energy(or jin) develop in the body from the exercise? How did Tai Chi affect your body biologically?Thanks!

CD,

I am not certain what you are asking for, but my knowledge from being a researcher in biochemistry (researching the Ryanodine receptor calcium release channel) is insufficient to give an explanation for how jin training changes the body. For my article on moving through molasses (linked to in an earlier post) I had to consult with a professor of anatomy and physiology (a former student who now teaches out of state) to make certain that my article did not contain obvious (to him) errors, as well as a physical therapist who also teaches martial arts. That article is a simplistic and brief attempt to explain some changes that may occur in our physiology due to our training.

As to earlier posts on this thread, I tried to point out that our perception of force can be influenced by several factors, and that even when we are generating an equivalent amount of force, our perception of the amount of force (effort, etc.) that we used can be different depending on factors like what parts of the body are being used to generate the force, what the initial level of force is, etc. I think that the idea that we are using less force is often inaccurate, but it is very likely that our PERCEPTION of the amount of force we use is what the early writing on Taijiquan are really addressing.

Your perspective is likely closer to the common unscientific understanding from an earlier time that has been passed down to us in Taijiquan literature. But modern understanding reveals inaccuracies that, in our modern times, would be better to clarify. When perceptions do not reflect reality, at least for our current level of scientific understanding and the modern usage of terminology and their meanings, then misunderstandings can occur.
DPasek
 
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Re: Forward Sinking and Rooting

Postby ChiDragon » Tue Apr 11, 2017 6:59 pm

Hi, DPasek

my knowledge from being a researcher in biochemistry (researching the Ryanodine receptor calcium release channel) is insufficient to give an explanation for how jin training changes the body.

Ryanodine receptor calcium release channel only explain what takes place inside the body. It has nothing to do with the development of jin in the body.

Most people talk about the energy in the human body. The health of the body depends on the amount of energy in the body. The practice of Tai Chi Quan helps the body to increase the energy level tremendously. Do you have any idea how Tai Chi is affecting the human body physically and biologically? As a biochemist, do you have any idea what has been taken place inside the body to have this biological change? I was hoping that you would have mentioned something like ATP for the explanation.

Terminology is not a problem as long as we can define it for the others to understand and accept. Unfortunately, there is a big linguistic gap between languages due the cultural and philological differences. Anyway, this is all immaterial for now. Someday, we will be ironed out all our major differences.


Wu Wei,
Let nature take its course.
A deep discussion requires explicit details for a good comprehension of a complex subject.
ChiDragon
 
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