Dec 28, 2010

Shaolin Xinyiba Applications

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In our previous post, we saw Northern Shaolin monk Shi Dejian practicing Xingyiba forms precipitously on a rooftop at the edge of a cliff. In this clip - the finest example of Northern Shaolin combat application we have came across - Shi Dejian shows a Western visitor how Xingyiba could be used for self defence. Note the fluidity and spontaneity of the moves and the precise body control, of both Shi Dejian and him of his opponent - a sign of long practice and high level kung fu achievement. Also notable is combat at multiple latitudes and the use of long stances in both attack and defence.

Southern Shaolin enthusiasts who might consider that their art to be more effective because it deploys smaller circles, more handiwork and lower kicks might like to take note that Northern Shaolin is not deficient in these areas in this example.  Xinyiba would have been lost if it had not be taught to a lay monk who kept the art alive outside the temple when the Shaolin temple itself was destroyed during the Chinese Civil War. This interesting tale in a subsequent post.

Related Post: Monk Shi Dejian and Shaolin Xingyiba

Dec 26, 2010

Monk Shi Dejian and Shaolin Xingyiba

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Towards the end of the twentieth century, knowledgeable observers expressed reservations whether traditional kung fu could still be found in the Northern Shaolin temple. What these observers saw when they visited the temple and its surroundings were modern acrobatic wushu, and they wondered if genuine Shaolin kung fu had survived the Cultural Revolution and other tumultuous events that befell China.

Perhaps in response, the temple showcased monk Shi Dejian, an adept in the rare art of Xinyiba. Xinyiba is said to be a distantly related to the more well known art of Xingyiquan (or Hsing-I Chuan). In this first of a three part series, Shi Dejian demonstrates breath taking balance while practicing on a temple rooftop perched on a steep cliff-face at the Songshan Mountains. Seen also in the video is Shi Yongxin, the current Abbot of the Northern Shaolin temple.

Related Post: The Avian Techniques of Xingyi

Dec 25, 2010

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

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For this festive break, here's White Christmas sung by The Drifters, with animation by Joshua Held. Even songs sound better with a touch of Yin/Yang, with lead bass Bill Pinkney (the low pitched lead), supported by tenor Clyde McPhatter (the high pitched accompaniment).

Dec 18, 2010

Application of Wing Chun's Wooden Dummy Footwork

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In this ground breaking video, Sifu Jin Young demonstrates the secrets of the triangular footwork found in Wing Chun's wooden dummy form. See how this seemingly simple footwork can be used to advantageously face an opponent, neutralize an opponent's centre line, escape from tight situations and be used as a supplement exercise to Chi Sao.

Related Post: Wing Chun Punching Basics

Dec 15, 2010

Wing Chun Punching Basics

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Punching is not just simply throwing out a closed fist. In traditional martial arts, there is a lot of technology behind the execution of a punch and it is normally a closely guarded secret of a school. In this clip, Sifu Jin Young discusses some of the technicalities of the Wing Chun punch including distancing, elbow positioning, knuckle placement, the trademark Wing Chun wrist snap and the hammer-and-nail analogy. Together with Brook, his deceptively demure assistant.

Related Post: Tan Sau: The Dispersing Hand

Dec 12, 2010

Tan Sau: The Dispersing Hand

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In this second video from Sifu Jin Young, the Wing Chun Tan Sau or dispersing hand is introduced. Though this block seems to be similar to Karate's Chudan Uke and Shuto Uke, its technical execution is quite different. Watch as Sifu Jin points out the key fine points of the Wing Chun Tan Sau, including the positioning of the elbow, not chasing hands, drilling into and attacking the center.

Note: There may be some small talk at the beginning of Sifu's Jin vidoes, don't get turned away - the action comes thick and fast soon enough.

Related Post: Introduction to Wing Chun: Pak Sau

Dec 9, 2010

Introduction to Wing Chun: Pak Sau

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Sifu Jin Young has produced an excellent series of videos on the principles of Wing Chun kung fu. As a tribute to his work, we will be running a 'best of' picks of these videos here at Daily Kungfu. Sifu Jin's Wing Chun lineage is via Hawkins Cheung and Gary Lam. In addition, he has trained in Jeet Kune Do, Brazilian JiuJitsu, Muay Thai and other martial arts. If you like his videos, you can chip in here. Sifu Jin does not run a school at the moment and teaches privately only to friends. His website is here.

For martial arts readers, these videos are an excellent introduction to Chinese martial arts in general, and Wing Chun in particular. In this first clip, Sifu Jin (aka chinaboxer) discusses Pak Sau or Slapping Hand. Details covered include keeping the fingers up, using the palm not the fingers, not over extending the hand and attacking the centre.

Dec 7, 2010

Blast From The Past: So Close

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This clip was scheduled for posting over the weekend but got held over. But here it is, better late than never. Instead of the usual testosterone fueled combat action, we have some feminine kick ass for a change. From the Hong Kong movie So Close, with English subtitles.

Dec 4, 2010

Motivational Kung Fu

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Is kung fu, or martial arts in general, all grim fisticuffs? Check out this video, a marvel of story telling and animation, which goes into our books as 'modern kung fu'. Beyond the technical virtuosity in its production, the clip covers areas which are not obvious yet not alien to martial arts. More on this in another article.