Jeff and Polaris,
Sorry it took me a couple of days to get back to this subject. For some reason my little light bulbs haven't been lighting up for "new posts" to let me know when they are there. I got dependant on those little light bulbs to let me know when to read new posts and so haven't checked back here until now.
I have to mostly agree with your posts here. I found a link yesterday to a webpage with lots of quotes from Yang Zhenji and he says very much the same thing regarding "frames" as you both did.
That the "frames" or circles being large or small is dependant on what you train for, what you are trying to do and your particular body style.
So far, I'm more used to Wu Chien Chuan's smaller circles and am comfortable with this though I am getting more "large frame" as I practice YCF style. I'm a middle sized kind of guy though, 5'7" tall and about 165 lbs., so I have been wondering if "middle frame" and more medium circles might not be more advantageous for me to practice.
I think it was Polaris who pointed out how the size of the circles used are applied to different things for different reasons? And I agree, generally. However, I'm not so sure that smaller means you can't throw someone for a goodly distance or that larger can't be used explosively.
I have tossed some of my former cohorts for a good distance using Wu style White Crane Spreads Wings, which has an over the shoulder throw built in, with a forward bow from the waist after the arms reach the end of their movements (WCSW's in Wu style is similar to YCF style and at the same time very different, your legs are right next to each other not seperated, you are evenly weighted between your legs in this form, your arms start in front of you touching left fingers (seated palm facing forward) to right palm (palm facing you), you turn right palm up and over to make a seated palm and then split the arms apart similar to YCF style only the left arm goes lower and ends up naturally straight next to your left thigh fingers pointing straight ahead palm flat, your right arm goes up but does not arc over your head, it stops straight up and down from a seated bent elbow and the fingertips do not exceed forehead height, you then bow forward from the waist keeping your back straight and letting your left arm hang naturally down with the movement, you turn your tan tien to the left and straighten up when you reach the end of the turn bringing your left hand up to shoulder height with you, then turn your tan tien back right to center, it's a great throw) and this is a very small circle move. The circle is in your waist and it's small comparing it to a lot of the YCF style waist turns.
Wu Kwong Yu once tossed me about six feet across the room with this move, and to this day I feel he was being kind in aiming me at the floor mats. It was the first time I asked a question at one of his seminars. I was a beginner student, had only been studying for about six months and this was my second seminar, I had attended one very early on and so didn't really get much more than form refinements at that one. This time I was through the form and was doing well on push hands so Sifu thought I was ready for some application training and asked me specifically what form I wanted to learn applications for. I was flattered so decided to choose the form that I was most mystified by.
I spoke up and asked what possible application you could come up with for WCSW's.
I remember to this day that several of his long standing students and disciples, and even Wu Tai Sin, laughed and exchanged "those" looks when I asked this of Sifu Eddie. I would too, if I witnessed the same thing now!
Sifu Eddie had me approach him from behind and wrap my arms around him like I was grabbing him and the next thing I knew my feet were over my head and I was sailing through the air, to land what I later measured was approx. six feet away on the matts.
He then showed me, and everyone else, how to do that with WCSW's and we spent the rest of the afternoon working on this move with each other while Sifu and Sifa went among us and corrected us.
This may be one of the larger "small circle" moves, but it is still small and is quite powerful when used this way as a throw. It also works very well for just breaking a grab from behind if you don't get your opponents center with your right hip to throw him, or if throwing him is not your intention.
I think I will do what Yang Zhenji recommends in the article I read yesterday and try to do these forms in all three "frames", altering the size of the circular motions and my body positions accordingly.
I have been thinking about experimenting by doing YCF style smaller and Wu style larger, just to see what kind of energy I find and how it's different when I do this.
I think I will.
I'll let you know what happens when I do this. I'm not an expert by any stretch, but I've been in the game long enough and now back to practicing long enough that I feel a bit of experimentation might be in order.
At the very least, I'll have some fun.