Other Yang family descendants?

Postby Wushuer » Thu Feb 19, 2004 3:14 pm

Great!
Glad that's cleared up.
I, too, originally felt that the pictures were out of sequence. Then I realized that the form may be different.
That's all I was trying to say!
I do like the pictures, very clear.
And, as I said, the press pictures answered a form question I didn't even know I had.
For that alone the book would be worth the money.
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Postby Louis Swaim » Thu Feb 19, 2004 6:42 pm

Hi Wushuer,

Re: "the press pictures answered a form question I didn't even know I had."

Now I'm curious about what your question was, and how it was answered. Maybe it would be a good discussion topic for a new thread?

Take care,
Louis
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Postby JerryKarin » Thu Feb 19, 2004 6:51 pm

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Postby Wushuer » Thu Feb 19, 2004 8:34 pm

Louis,
Happy to oblige with an answer.
My question had to do with the placement of the left hand onto the right forearm during Press, additionally with how the left hand was held once placed.
I had been putting my left palm closer to my right wrist than in these excellent photos, and letting my fingers drape forward slightly more, almost like they were covering the top of my arm instead of being up and full of spirit like the Masters have in these pictures.
I tried it like it's supposed to be and found a great deal more Press in my press.
Before anyone asks, my instructor clearly taught me this correct positioning, many, many times and I keep slipping back into this really bad habit over and over.
I said, "A question I didn't know I had" because if someone were to ask me if they were doing Press correctly and did it just as I have been doing it, I would clearly have told them they were doing it wrong and known exactly why. So I knew the correct way, but was just not doing it that way.
Seeing Yang Zhenguo's black and white picture doing the form so correctly made a nearly audible "click" in my head and brought me some much needed enlightenment.
Again, this a product of my Wu style training coming over unbidden into YCF's forms.
No reason to go into specifics, it's just done differntly in Wu style.
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Postby Louis Swaim » Fri Feb 20, 2004 7:56 pm

Greetings Wushuer,

As you suggest, the placement of the palm in Ji can make a world of difference in how effective the form feels. I liked your “more press in my press” remark. For years, I performed Ji as my first sifu had taught me, which was to place only the knife-edge of the palm against the wrist. Later I learned to place the entire palm lightly against the wrist-to maximize the surface area, as it were-but with intent focused through the end of the ulna in the edge of the palm. From Yang Zhenduo, I learned further refinements along this line. In fact, I’ve found Yang Zhenduo’s emphasis on seating the wrists and his detailed insights on the overall shape and disposition of the palms to be some of the most valuable taiji information I’ve encountered.

In application and in push hands, the palm placement in Ji can vary greatly, and the focus of pressure in the palm can vary according to situation. Some practitioners at times place the palm very close to the elbow on the forearm. One master whose push hands skills I greatly admire advocates a palm-to-palm placement for press in four hands push hands drills. This seems to place greater emphasis on focus and sensitivity rather than on strength and leverage.

In any case, I think that the Ji posture in Grasp Sparrow’s Tail in the context of form practice has a particular training objective, and the placement evidenced in Yang Zhenguo's and Yang Zhenduo's photos perhaps represents a “best case scenario” to provide a foundation for the inevitable variations in application. I’m curious what others think about this.

Take care,
Louis
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Postby Polaris » Fri Feb 20, 2004 8:29 pm

Greetings All,

As an (I hope) interesting aside, I've seen Ji performed well in forms and pushing hands much as in the photos above; also fingertips to wrist, palm to palm, and even without the other hand at all! I've been told that if the other hand isn't available, one still has to open both sides of the back when applying energy to the press, however.

Cheers,
P.
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Postby psalchemist » Sat Feb 21, 2004 12:00 am

Greetings Polaris,

Thanks for that interesting input.

You wrote,
<<I've seen Ji performed well in forms and pushing hands much as in the photos above; also fingertips to wrist, palm to palm, and even without the other hand at all! I've been told that if the other hand isn't available, one still has to open both sides of the back when applying energy to the press, however.>> Polaris

I had not yet stretched my mind to encompass single-handed postures...
I wonder how applicable this concept would be for other stances in the form...

While a single handed An, for example, would probably work quite well, some other postures seem(to my unqualified eye) to require or encompass more fully the need for the dual efficiency of the co-operative yin-yang union.

In the case of Ji, as you explained, can I assume that the back is replacing the lost, missing arm in this interaction...as the supporting yin force?

Also, if reduced to single handed...Is it still considered Taijiquan technique?

It is definitely an interesting point you have addressed...Something I will definitely ponder and look for while involved in the mechanics of the form.

I've seen a palm-palm "Ji" myself somewhere before.

My personal instruction, experience has been the Yang style forearm Press as in the photo of Master Yang Zhen Duo above.

It is fascinating, however, to observe the different possibilities.

Thank you,
Best regards,
Psalchemist.
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Postby JerryKarin » Sat Feb 21, 2004 6:59 pm

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[This message has been edited by JerryKarin (edited 02-21-2004).]
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Postby JerryKarin » Sat Feb 21, 2004 7:10 pm

Wang Yongquan performing Ji:

Image

[This message has been edited by JerryKarin (edited 02-21-2004).]
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Postby JerryKarin » Sat Feb 21, 2004 7:30 pm

Ti shou shang shi:

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Postby JerryKarin » Sat Feb 21, 2004 7:39 pm

A few more while I've got the scanner fired up:

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image
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Postby Polaris » Sun Feb 22, 2004 7:09 am

Superb! Many thanks, Jerry...
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Postby DavidJ » Tue Feb 24, 2004 1:32 am

Hi Jerry,

I noticed that the first photo is the one of YCF performing 'Ward Off,' That's the one that was accidently inserted in the place of 'Press' in the sequence that was used for FZW's drawings.

They all are very cool photos.

Regards,

David J

[This message has been edited by DavidJ (edited 02-23-2004).]
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Postby Louis Swaim » Tue Feb 24, 2004 3:49 am

Greetings David,

Interestingly, there is no photo of Yang Chengfu doing Ward Off Right, at least that I’m aware of. The photo Jerry posted above is one of the series that appears in Yang’s book, Taijiquan Tiyong Quanshu, and it appears under the name and description for Ji (press). The Zhou Yuanlong drawing in Fu Zhongwen’s book for Ji (Fig. 14) is traced directly from this photo, whereas the drawing for Ward Off Right (Fig. 9) is not a tracing, and the posture it shows is slightly different. When I stare at the photo, it seems to me that it could well be Ward Off Right or Ji, but it seems rather more extended that Ward Off Right. Yang Zhenji suggests in his book that there are some problems in a few of these YCF photos, perhaps resulting from the photographer not quite capturing the ending postures of some forms.

They’re splendid, nonetheless!

Take care,
Louis


[This message has been edited by Louis Swaim (edited 02-23-2004).]
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Postby JerryKarin » Tue Feb 24, 2004 5:10 am

Yang Zhenduo mentions in seminars that the shape of the right arm in the ending point of Ji is pretty much the same as that of the right arm in You Peng. One thing I noted in looking at these blown up a bit is that Yang Chengfu's legs are slightly wider apart in the empty steps than Yang Zhenduo teaches these days, rather more like the wider empty stances taught by Fu Zhongwen. Also in the ending position of An, his hands are shaped as though holding a basketball (this is how Fu taught) while Yang Zhenduo suggests the hands should be closer to square to the front. I think that Yang Chengfu may have changed the way he taught some moves near the end of his life. It is also noteworthy that Yang Zhenduo and Yang Zhenji were trained extensively in their youth by Yang Banhou's son, Yang Zhaopeng, so there may be some other influences in the way Yang Zhenduo shows some of the moves today.

[This message has been edited by JerryKarin (edited 02-24-2004).]
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