Long forms/short forms

Postby rvc_ve » Fri Apr 23, 2004 8:10 pm

Yangchengfu04,

You have no idea (maybe you do) how lucky you are having that pace at home where to practice. I wish to have that to someday.

The house I live in now actually has a large hallway in wich I can fit my xingyiquan forms perfectly. Its really narrow, but since these forma are linear and compact its perfect fot them.

For my taijiquan is a different story. The short forms are ok in that space but the long form does not fit at all! specially since we move in all 4 directions and this is a really narrow alley...so I do what I can. I sitll practice them though. But Im rusty as hell in my sword and sabre from because, unless I want to poke holes on the walls, its just impossible for me to do them in there. Plus, I dont whant my wife to stab me with my own sowrd when if she sees any damage on the walls! Image so I just go to the park when I can and the wheather lets me!

We do what we can and we adapt I guess, thats the way of nature and if our art is unable to adapt, then is contrary to nature, which means we are doing something wrong.
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Postby Wushuer » Fri Apr 23, 2004 10:17 pm

I have a huge basement, nice flat concrete floor, higher than usual ceiling for a basement, so I can do broadsword forms down there, even sword forms, which go higher, if I am careful. I can do anything down there but staff or spear routines.
I have a nice, big wooden deck outside my back door, and a nice big backyard with a privacy fence, too. I do all my forms there when weather permits.
Not luck, I wouldn't have bought the house if it didn't have amenities for TCC practice of all kinds.
But it's the first place I've ever owned that did have these things, so I know how that goes.
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Postby Wushuer » Tue May 04, 2004 7:48 pm

I've been thinking about this topic for a while, about long and short forms and how we got off into places to practice.
It's funny to me in a different way than what I've said before, because my need for a large practice area for hand forms really only came up in the last two years. Previous to that I was practicing the segmented forms of Wu Kwong Yu, Eddie.
Sifu was fond of telling us that it was possible to do his forms in the space of one of those old fashioned phone booths, the kind that Superman used to change in not the ones they have now.
His students, therefore, often strive to DO his forms in the space of an old fashioned phone book.
I can still do Wu Kwong Yu's form in a regular bathroom stall, no need to even sidestep the commode if I was lucky enough to get a handicap stall.
So the space requirements just weren't the same.
Now, I did get my house with all that room for TCC practice, because I was looking for someplace I could do spear/staff practice in, not for hand forms.
Just one more rambling thought on an otherwise totally boring day.
These YCF forms sure do take up a lot of real estate, don't they?
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Postby yangchengfu04 » Tue May 04, 2004 8:06 pm

They surely do. Unless I'm stepping wrong, I seem to need at least a 15x15 area for practice, maybe even 20x20. I'll have to measure my practice hall tonight, because it's "just" enough space to fit the form in. Even though my hand is almost on the wall at certain postures. I'm still trying to remember where the website that showed how to do the long form in a small space is......
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Postby Audi » Thu May 20, 2004 11:30 pm

Hi rvc_ve,

I think my own view of this is that the better forms are designed to embody multiple layers of principles that may not be immediately apparent to casual observers. For instance, postures may contain certain elements for mental, physical, and/or ethical reasons. They may contain tactical, strategic, and/or philosophical elements. Because of this depth, I think it is not easy to compare forms and practices across traditions at other than a casual level. This is one of the reasons I it is wise to exercise caution before mixing and matching, unless one is at a rather advanced level and can really chart one’s own course.

I have been exposed to about six different “short” forms. In my view, these forms embodied at least four different approaches to forms. I think that two of them were intended to accomplish the main things that the “long” Yang form is intended to accomplish, but I find the philosophies imbedded in these two other forms to be quite different and would never practice them as simple alternatives of the “long” form. The others have their appropriate niches, but do not seem intended to serve the same long-term purpose as the “long” form.

Rather than judge whether long or short forms are better or whether they are interchangeable, I always think it is best to put a specific question to your teacher(s). In this way, you can get an answer appropriate to the particular system you are studying. I have the same opinion about large vs. small circles, low stances vs. high stances, slow forms vs. fast forms, etc. These are all rather complex issues that are not easy to discuss in generalities and across traditions.

What I do think is easy to compare is the reason why teachers teach certain length forms within their own traditions and then to compare that reason with those of other traditions. For instance, the reasoning behind Cheng Man-Ch’ing’s short form, the Beijing 24, and the Yangs’ 49-move competition form are different, from what I understand. Simply calling them all “short” obscures the different roles they were intended to play.

Does this make sense?

Take care,
Audi
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Postby rvc_ve » Fri May 21, 2004 1:57 am

It sure does audi! grat posts. Thats is really something to consider!
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Postby yangchengfu04 » Fri May 21, 2004 2:32 pm

Well said Audi!
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Postby TaiChi_Student » Fri Jun 03, 2005 9:35 am

You guys are really into your art and that is a good thing. It's pretty funny thinking about you guys performing the Tai Chi Chuan sets at the job in the rest rooms and even in the stalls. :-)

Joe
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Postby Anderzander » Tue Jun 07, 2005 9:15 am

Over here in the UK our average house is much smaller than the average house's I've seen when in the US. Space is a real issue.

Years ago I remember a woman in class consistently doing a couple of steps different - I asked her about it and she said the first was when she stepped around the sofa and the second was when she changed angle to move into the hall...... she went on to say that she really should stop doing it in our training hall :-)

It made me laugh becuase I expected some martial explanation at the time.

On a different note, do any of you find that as the years go by the intensity of the practice goes up and that affects the length of your practice?

Sometime ago I had a long period of doing the CMC form and it taking *about* 30 minutes - but when I stood up out of the final posture, and the internal processes shut down, my legs would give way. I couldn't have done it again.

Similarly now, I don't practice anywhere near as much as I have in the past. I'm in a cycle of light practice. The longest practice I get in is 2 hours once a week. It's a pretty solid two hours. However I have such a deep ache in the bones for the following two days that I have to factor it in to my plans. No Digging the garden on monday!

My initial thoughts would be that I simply had less stamina than I used to - but that doesn't seem the case - and the intensity of release I now experience is far far in advance if what I used to get.

Thoughts anyone?

[This message has been edited by Anderzander (edited 06-07-2005).]
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Postby bkavanaugh » Thu Sep 29, 2005 3:53 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Wushuer:

...

I don't know who put together the 13 posture form, but I think they did a good job. It is, now that I know the difference, definitely a "simplified" form, in that it doesn't have any of the kicks or Diagonal Flying or Fair Lady kind of moves in it that so tax most players. However, the postures it does encompass seem to have all the principals intact.
Again, I use it for times when all I have is four or five minutes and a very small space. I figure it's better than the nothing that is my alternative.
I do the 13 posture form as a warm up, before I do the entire long form. I find it gets my mind and body into a more relaxed state before I start the long forms.

...

</font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

You're referring to the 13-movement form listed on the yangfamilytaichi.com site, correct? Is there any video anywhere demonstrating this short form? I would like to learn this one so I have a form to do when I'm someplace without much room (which is often the case). I know how to do each of the movements, but I would like to see the transitions between them.
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Postby Bob Ashmore » Thu Sep 29, 2005 6:03 pm

bkavanaugh,
I understand this discussion to have been about the 13 Posture form listed on this website, yes.
This form was created, as I understand it and I might be wrong, by Grand Master Yang Zhen Duo. I don't believe I've ever seen a video or DVD of this form made by either the GM or by Master Yang Jun. There may be, but I've never seen or heard of it if there is.
There is, however, a video of this form. It was made by Han Hoong Wang, Disciple of our Grand Master, Yang Zhen Duo.
The video was made available to my class by Bill Wojasinski, Center Director of the Louisville Yang Cheng Fu Center, when he taught us this form but I don't know any other way to get ahold of it.
I just visited Han Hoon Wang's website, www.michigantaichi.com, and I don't see a "products" section or anything like that where you can order it. Maybe I am missing it though. She has her e-mail address posted there, you could ask her directly how to obtain the video.
It is an excellent, excellent video. She is very easy to follow and her forms are flawless. I hope one day to get up to Michigan and at least observe one of her classes.
I made the mistake of packing my Han Hoon Wang videos away when I started renovations on my house, I have her videos of Section 1, Section 2 and Section 3 of the long form as well as the 13 Posture form, and I've sorely missed them for a few months now. Since they are in my storage unit, in a box on the very, very bottom of the pile (of course) I haven't been able to retrieve them yet.
When I want to eek a more accurate performance of the 13 Posture form now, I have found that most of it is from Section 2 of the Yang long form, and so I am able to use Master Yang Juns absolutely amazing DVD of the 103 Posture long form to get the details I am looking for by just viewing the relevant posture from there.
Anyway, I hope this was helpful to you in answering your question.

Bob
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Postby bkavanaugh » Thu Sep 29, 2005 6:27 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Bob Ashmore:

...

There is, however, a video of this form. It was made by Han Hoong Wang, Disciple of our Grand Master, Yang Zhen Duo.
The video was made available to my class by Bill Wojasinski, Center Director of the Louisville Yang Cheng Fu Center, when he taught us this form but I don't know any other way to get ahold of it.
I just visited Han Hoon Wang's website, www.michigantaichi.com, and I don't see a "products" section or anything like that where you can order it. Maybe I am missing it though. She has her e-mail address posted there, you could ask her directly how to obtain the video.
It is an excellent, excellent video. She is very easy to follow and her forms are flawless. I hope one day to get up to Michigan and at least observe one of her classes.

...


When I want to eek a more accurate performance of the 13 Posture form now, I have found that most of it is from Section 2 of the Yang long form, and so I am able to use Master Yang Juns absolutely amazing DVD of the 103 Posture long form to get the details I am looking for by just viewing the relevant posture from there.
Anyway, I hope this was helpful to you in answering your question.

Bob
</font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Bob,

Thanks for the information. I'll try contacting her and see what I can get.

I don't yet have Yang Jun DVD set, but I do have the older Yang Zhenduo DVD three-disk set advertised on chinavoc.com. I'll need to take a closer look at it again and see if that will be helpful for learning the 13-form set. I've been primarily using recently it for working on the start of the 103-form start.

--Brian
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Postby Bob Ashmore » Thu Sep 29, 2005 8:26 pm

bkavanaugh,
Oh, yes, they would be very helpful for this. I can help you with that, I go to the long form tapes all the time for these moves so I'm familiar with which ones to look at.
The Preperation form and Beginning should be VERY easy to get, they are identical in all respects to the 103 posture form except you don't turn your right toe out to the corner at the end.
The move into Cloud Hands from Beginning is a tad problematic as I know of nothing to compare it with. From the end of Beginning form you turn both of your arms with your waist turn to the right, right palm ends at about shoulder level with palm set, left arm to ward off posture, then you do Cloud Hands as you normally would. The form as I learned it has three reps of Cloud Hands, I see on the website that only one is listed though. Han Hoong Wangs tape has three so that's how I do it but I don't think it matters.
Cloud Hands transitions to Single Whip just like in Section 2 of the Long Form.
Single Whip to Fist Under Elbow is done just as at the end of Embrace Tiger Return to Mountain from Section 2 of the long form, only with the hook hand on the right as opposed to a set palm. Other than that, same thing.
The movement from Fist Under Elbow to White Crane Spreads Its Wings is unique as far as I know, but elegantly simple. Move back your weight sitting on your right leg, lift your left leg and go from heel down empty stance to toe down empty stance. Open your right palm, drop your left palm down behind your right forearm, ward off upwards with the right arm and continue just like you do any other White Crane Spreads Wings from there.
White Crane to Left Brush Knee is just the same as in Sections 1 or 2 or 3.
Left Brush Knee to Hands Strum the Lute is the same also.
HSTL to High Pat On Horse is also quite easy. Move back your weight sitting on your right leg, lift your left leg and go from heel down empty stance to toe down empty stance. Now, left palm turns up, right plam turns down. Move weight forward into High Pat Horse With Palm Thrust just like from the long forms Section 3 from there.
The transition from High Pat On Horse With Palm Thrust to Turn Body Chop With Fist is done very similarly to how TBCWF is done in Section 2 from Step Forward and Punch Down after the transition though if you watch forms # 28, 29 and 30 from Section 2 of the long form, which are TBCWF, SFPBP and Step Up to Grasp the Birds Tail, then you will be seeing the same sequence as appears in the 13 posture form.
After Push from GTBT you do Cross Hands just as at the end of Section 1, only you go the left instead of to the right. Other than that, same thing.
There you go, as clearly as I can give the sequence anyway.
If anyone sees anything wrong with this description, please speak up. I'm going from memory here and I think we all know by now that my memory isn't infallible.

Bob
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Postby bkavanaugh » Fri Sep 30, 2005 1:45 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Bob Ashmore:
bkavanaugh,
Oh, yes, they would be very helpful for this. I can help you with that, I go to the long form tapes all the time for these moves so I'm familiar with which ones to look at....
</font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Bob,

Thanks for the information. That very first transition was one I was curious about in particular. Most of the rest of it I thought I could cobble together from the other two forms. Your explanations will definitely be helpful!

I heard back from Han Hoon Wang. She hasn't taught the 13-move form in a while doesn't have any videos available at the moment. If she makes more, she said she'll let me know.

Thanks again,

--Brian
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Postby Bob Ashmore » Fri Sep 30, 2005 2:20 pm

b,
I'm sorry to hear she isn't still releasing that tape. I'm very glad I allready have it.
The tape is really very good. She's definitely got a fan club here at our Center. We use her tape as the standard for our 13 posture form.
Bill teaches this form twice a week that I know of. He teaches it on Thursday nights at the Kentucky Horse Park in Georgetown, and again on Saturday mornings at a place called the Yuko-En on the Elkhorn, also in Georgetown. I can't make it to the Thursday night classes, but I go to every one of the Saturday morning classes I can. He is truly the best teacher anyone could ask for, his love of the art of Yang style TCC is a great inspiration to us all.

Glad I could help with the form. I've re-read my weak attempt at coreographing it for you, and I think it's fairly accurate. The only place I would say may be a tad off is the transition from Single Whip to Fist Under Elbow. The angles are off from the long form. In the long form, you come out of Embrace Tiger at an angle and step with your right foot into FUE, but in the 13 posture form you are allready facing in the right direction. So while it's very similar, it's a little bit different.
Similar enough, I hope, for viewing the tape to still convey at least the idea of the transition.

Bob
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