Single weightedness?

Postby tai1chi » Wed Jan 29, 2003 8:09 pm

Hi Wushuer, Michael, Audi,

pardon me that I come into the conversation midway, but some of the issues have been addressed before and not put together quite the way they have. Anyway, Wushuer's post sets out his position pretty well.

"Question the first:

>I was trained that your supporting leg is >your yang leg."

Imho, it makes very little difference whether one describes a particular leg as yang or yin at any given time. Imo, yin and yang are not (ideally never?) static. Your description seems reasonable, but is there a difference between a "yang" leg that is resting and a "yang" leg that is kicking? When one kicks, can both leg be yang, or are kicks "yin"? Btw, the same can be applied to simple walking: even the stable leg must move.

>Question the second:
>"Rooting" is a word with too many >definitions.
>In this case, it means "sending energy to >the ground that you will not use for >anything else".

Again, all these are just mhos, and won't get anyone a taxi ride. I don't think that "rooting" is an energy that is sent down. I believe it is something that is allowed to happen, and would happen naturally if we didn't hve the tendency to tense "up." The "downward" energy is produced by gravity, not by any mechanical force generated from the body. It's like imagining a rock moving to try to stabilize itself.

>Question the third:
>Upper and lower body are completely >seperate, and completely together. It's >Yin/Yang all over again.
>So are your legs....
>There are way, way too many combinations of yin/yang to cover in one post,...
>Your upper/lower body can and often will be >yin-right/yin-left and vice versa. Equally >valid is yang-right/yang-right and so on.

Gee, I guess we may have come to similar conclusions Image Anyway, I agree.

>"Question the fourth:
>The idea of when to step is really quite >simple, when your center moves or is moved >to such a degree that it is no >longer "centered" for you, you need to step.
>Hope that makes sense?

It makes sense to me.

Can't address number five.

>"Question the sixth:
>The way I learned NAWS is just the same. >You need to transition smoothly and quickly >between your "weighted" leg.

Do you mean "between your weighted legS"? Personally, I like the approach of really being "single weighted" (literally) as much as possible. But, as you say, sometimes it is necessary to move the center --so the single weight has to move with it.

>Question the seventh:
>Back to the "coiled springs" theory.
>You do NOT "commit" to your yin leg until >you have FELT and are sure of the root.

Well, once you've "committed" to your "yin" leg, it becomes "yang" or no?

>You "coil" the energy in your yang leg, as >you "spring" it to your other leg, there is >a moment of transition where you "feel" our >your root. If you don't have it, you >don't "spring". You reseat or move your yin >leg, test, then "spring" onto it.

This is a little harder for me to get. But, you're running out of time.

>So the idea is the same, you "feel" >or "sense" the root before you commit.

OK, makes sense.

>Again, the idea of "lean" comes into play >in ways I cannot, for all the above reasons >and more, easily explain.

Well, I don't know if it's necessary to turn "lean" into a quality and "not leaning" into a fault.

Best,
Steve James
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Postby tai1chi » Wed Jan 29, 2003 8:10 pm

Hi Joseph,

have you done a search on the web for tcc practitioners or Chinese medical doctors who have treated someone with Parkinson's?

Can you stand for any period of time? Can you walk stably? If you can, you might just want to try a normal tcc class.

I don't know that much about Qigong, but some of those exercises might be helpful.

I think one thing that's very important is for you to keep a positive attitude. I'm not a doctor, but as a tcc practitioner, I will say that mental attitude, calmness and relaxation are critical to the art. And, I suppose that some people say that they are conducive to health.

I really don't have any answers for you. But I sincerely wish you the best of luck.

regards,
Steve James

[This message has been edited by tai1chi (edited 08-29-2005).]
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Postby Wushuer » Wed Jan 29, 2003 11:19 pm

Tai1chi,
It was not my intention to make "lean" a quality and lack of it a fault. Not at all.
The idea of "lean" is in the YCF forms, most noticeable in Fist Under Elbow and Slanting (Diagonal) Flying that I have seen so far, Needles At Sea Bottom has the upper body lean that comes into play in NAWS forms as well. These leans are very much the same as the ones is NAWS so there's not a "lack" of them in YCFS.
Rather the lean is incorporated into NAWS quite a bit more than in YCFS.
That lean is used for many other reasons though in NAWS as I learned it. It is a means of power generation, a way to move your body, a way to initiate a turn, a way to gain a "magic inch" if needed, all kinds of weird and wonderful things come from that lean.
The lack of lean is something that suprised me about this style, that's all. I wouldn't say "better", only different.
I feel quite sure that since the forms all originated with Yang Luchan, then they all have legitimate applications.
After all, Wu style is really Yang style small frame, modified. If the Yang family had not given the Wu family the basics, they would not have a form. The core is the same, just the application is different.

Yes, it looks like we have much the same idea on yin/yang. I hate saying Yin and Yang like they are two seperate things, as they are not. They are one and the same.

Yes, I meant rooted "legS". Sorry, I was in quite a press for time and did not spell check before I exited. I see quite a few glaring errors now I re-read my post, now you know why I double check as often as possible! I type slowly and very inaccurately so I try to keep an eye on it.
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Postby DavidJ » Thu Jan 30, 2003 12:43 am

Hi Audi, All,

At first I thought that the weight-bearing leg sould be yang because it is in use, but I realized that *everything* is in use in some way. I finally realized that the I Ching might be the guide.

The weighted leg, in it's weight-bearing role, is yin because it is receptive - supporting, and other leg is yang because it's creative - active.

This is not to say anything about other aspects, though.

In another post you wrote about pivoting in grass. I think it's important to look at the problem and to try things, and settle on what works well without injuring yourself. You never know what kind of surface you'll find. Once at a motel in the desert I had only a parking lot to practice in, and it had so much grip that in order to pivot I had to pick the foot up and reposition it!

I think that the expression, ?to have the intent of going forward, you must first have the intent of going backward,? means that at all times one must be aware of the other direction, and be prepared to move that way. As in: how do I get out of this if I commit to it?

You wrote, > Interestingly, I believe I recall seeing video performances of either Fu Zhongwen or Fu Shengyuan or both performing the named Ward Off Left with an orientation to the southwest that made a pivot between Ward Off Left and Ward Off Right unnecessary. <

This is how it is done in Tung/Yang style, stepping out 65 degrees.

Regards,

David J
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Postby Wushuer » Thu Jan 30, 2003 2:56 pm

DavidJ,
You want to talk about a hard place to transition?
The floor in the room where I take YCF classes seems to have sand embedded in it, or some other kind of grit, then it was painted over. I think it's for aerobics classes to have good grip or something, the room is used primarily for aerobics classes.
My foot just plain old STICKS to that floor like it was glue. I feel like my foot was nailed down sometimes.
BUT, I can still do fully weighted pivots on that floor. It takes time and practice, but the trick is to "lean" onto the back of your foot first. If you're on a hard to pivot on surface we trained to "lean" back onto the rear of your foot, pick your toe up off the floor if necessary and then pivot. This puts your weight only on one very small section of your foot and allows the rest to move quite easily.
I have yet to find a surface I couldn't do that on. Some are harder than others to do this on, naturally, the idea is that you practice on as many as you can find.
In YCFS this floor doesn't really make that much difference. You "give back" some weight to the other leg, so you're free to move the one that needs to.
These weighted pivots are just faster for me and feel more natural. I must admit that I don't allways "give back" a whole lot of weight during YCF forms. I only "give back" intent to that other leg. I don't do on this purspose, it usually occurs when I am concentrating on other aspects of the forms.
I still find it faster and easier to weight my pivots, however I am going to do my best to learn the martial applications for non or less weighted moves. After I know the why, I may actually like it better. I'm leaving my mind open on the subject.
At this time, I'm still a big believer in making my transitions as smooth and effortless as possible. That doesn't mean there's a single thing wrong with the other way, it's just not what I know at this point.
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Postby Michael » Thu Jan 30, 2003 3:32 pm

Wuahuer,

Weighted/unweighted pivots--a big issue here a while back. The "non" weighted variety seem to be primarily "defensive"(at first glance) in nature. Both methods have advantages in different situations.
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Postby DavidJ » Thu Jan 30, 2003 8:34 pm

Hi Wushuer, Michael,

Image

The motel parking lot surface was like steel velcro, and even pivotting as suggested was not possible.

For me, the major consideration between the weighted pivot and the unweighted pivot, in the same move, is the difference in timing. If you are free to use both at your discretion, you are afforded the opportunity to advance, stay, or retreat according to how you want to deal with a situation.

Regards,

David J
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Postby Wushuer » Thu Jan 30, 2003 8:57 pm

I have allways felt that the more options you have, the better off you're going to be. So I'm practicing these un or less weighted pivots with an eye towards incorporating them into my martial style.
As an associate of mine (a Tung stylist) pointed out to me so adroitly a while back,
"If it works, do it, if it doesn't, don't".
I've been doing my best to make that my mantra.
Steel velcro?! OUCH!
Like I said, at that point having the ability to pivot in multiple ways would be a major bonus.
Like stepping back to your toe or to your heel. Both have martial apps, both are valid, but if you can only do one of them, then you are limiting yourself. But I think that particular discussion is going on on another thread here, so won't carry on about it in this one.

"I'm not good yet, I need more practice."
Yang Chengfu
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Postby Wushuer » Mon Feb 03, 2003 10:45 pm

Can anyone stand one more stab at this?
From the book, Yang Style Taijiquan, by Yang Zhenduo:
"Take note of the difference in stance between the two legs which move as gently as those of a cat. When one foot is planted firmly on the ground,the other is in an empty stance. When you shift the weight on to the left leg, then the left foot is firmly on the ground, while the right foot is in an empty stance, and vice versa. though the foot is in an empty stance it is always ready to move. When the foot is firmly on the ground, it does not not mean that you should exert too much force on that leg, for if you do so, your body will incline forward and you will lose your balance."

Right from the Big Kahuna's own book...
This seems contradictory to what has been said here about the idea of 70/30 splits.
Or am I missing something?
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Postby Michael » Tue Feb 04, 2003 9:17 am

Wushuer,

Don't know if this will help, because it is so late and I am so tired, I don't even know if this applies to your question, but here goes. I'll take another look tomorrow if I can.

"When the foot is firmly on the ground, it does not not mean that you should exert too much force on that leg, for if you do so, your body will incline forward and you will lose your balance."

No contradiction with the previous statements that I am aware of. I tried to read through it all but but the only differencs I could see were one's of language. What YZD describes here is simple movement. the simplest movement, walking, is in and out of empty stances.

Stance and performance of a technique often take on a slightly "different appearance" and "feeling" but still basically it is the same. If one has ones weight in a 70/30 stance (Bow stance in this example) with the weight on the front leg and one continues to load that leg from the rear, one will topple forward. In such a position or "condition" one would be able to move forward but not be able to move rearward. However, if one has the rear foot/leg exerting 70% of the pressure towards the front leg--making it loaded with 70%, one needs at the same time for the front leg to be pushing back (30%) towards the forward pressure or energy. Now there is no problem of falling forward. With this opposing "energy" one can flow as one desires by addition or subtraction. If you find that the heel of your rear foot comes up it is because there is not enough pressure coming back towards that foot from the front leg. Note that this same condition of opposing forces allowing for the energy to flow from the feet/ground up to the waist and beyond.




[This message has been edited by Michael (edited 02-04-2003).]
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Postby Wushuer » Tue Feb 04, 2003 2:55 pm

I am still not understanding how to move gracefully, like a cat, with 30% of my weight on my "negative" leg. It is most likely the product of over a decade of conditioning in another styles theory, but when I do this I feel very double weighted and seem to have no grace whatsoever.
Ask my YCFS instructor! I tend to fall all about the place when I try to do this. I can do peerless single weighted forms, (100/0 weight distributed) but when I attempt these 70/30 splits, even 90/10 splits, I just about fall on my face when I go to step.
I do not feel light and nimble this way, rather I feel double weighted and stuck down hard.
The only way I can take steps is to shoot that weight back into my positive leg, lift my leg, then step.
This is NOT my idea of "single weighted", at least until I go to take that step. Once I shoot that weight back to my positive leg, THEN I feel light and agile, ready to go in any direction, but moving that weight back takes time, time I was trained that you don't have when in combat.
The words of YZD quoted above seem to mirror the learning I received in that your steps should be light, agile and graceful. You should be able to move your negative leg in any direction at any time without effort.
Maybe I haven't given it enough time or effort yet, but I am not getting how a 70/30 split allows me to be ready to move my negative leg to any position without effort. If I have to move my weight out of that leg to step, that is effort.

However, I will continue to practice and also continue to ask the questions until I do understand. One thing I am, is stubborn. There is an answer here that will make sense for me, I just have to find it.
I believe there is a seminar coming up in my town this year. If so, then I can ask the Big Guy, YZD, himself. Certainly he will have some insight that will prove invaluable in my quest for knowledge.

Remember: The more you know, the more you know you don't know.



[This message has been edited by Wushuer (edited 02-04-2003).]
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Postby tai1chi » Tue Feb 04, 2003 6:53 pm

Hi Wushuer,

oh well, fwiw, I don't think one can "move" (read "walk") with a 70/30 weight distribution. Though, I do think one will go through the 70/30 distribution (frequently Image) when one walks. As far as 70/30 being "double-weighted", then I feel the terminology is being corrupted somewhere along the line. Anyway, imho, if one's style contains a forward stance, then its just a uestion of how one chooses to describe the numbers (80/20. 70/30, 60/40). How about standing in the said stance while on two scales, and see how the weight distribution works out. Finally, I think that the numbers are there "for training purposes." A beginner might need the numbers just to learn the proper sequences and transitions. When doing the form slowly, the distinctions can be seen/felt more easily. Personally, I don't think there's even really an argument, except about the terms.

Best,
Steve James
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Postby Michael » Tue Feb 04, 2003 7:47 pm

I agree with everything above. I would also add that "moving" "walking" is what is between "stances" or individual forms. And as Steve says, numbers are just a guide.

When I move from a "stance" to the rear I lessen the forward pressure and I step back with the "energy" transfer as the opposing (rearward) takes over. the same with moving forward. Nothing can be easier. But not so easy to get used to maybe. I guess it is how you look at it. True , if I am in a low stance (like in the set)stepping forward with the front foot needs to be emptied first. But in real situations this is less of a factor as I will tend to be more upright.
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Postby Wushuer » Wed Feb 05, 2003 4:58 pm

Tai1chi,
I thought I was familiar with most shorthand statements online, but FWIW is not one I can interpret. What does this mean?
Most likely I am displaying my ignorance of internet chat shorthand, because I have never gone to a "chat room".
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Postby tai1chi » Wed Feb 05, 2003 6:55 pm

Hi Wushuer,

I don't recall why I use tai1chi. I should change it FWIW (for what it's worth").

Respects,
Steve James
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