Saturday, March 25, 2017

Pleasantly surprised by my student's notes

http://practicalmethod.com/2017/03/push-hands-north-york-taiji-class/

Master Chen has always emphasized the importance in writing notes. We should write two sets of notes: one for recording exactly what the teacher said, and one for our understanding at the time. When I read Suz' notes, I was impressed by her ability to remember the points. For the last point:

  • There are always 3 points, if you gave one point to your opponent, then lock/control the other two points

It was definitely something that Master Chen had said before, but I couldn't quite remember what I did and when I said it during the class, and yet she wrote it down. Transmission happened without knowing.

Reading my students' notes helped me understand what they got out of the lesson, and allowed me to make teaching improvements.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Using a stick to understand lever

I saw one of Master Chen Zhonghua's videos how he used to points to hold up an opponent at first, and later added his waist to the middle of the two points to get the opponent to fall. Since I didn't have any one to work with at the time. I took a long stick to pretend it to be the opponent. I put my right hand at one end, my right thigh behind the middle, and the left foot at the other end. This allowed the stick to stay slanted. I tested the amount of power applied on the stick by releasing the hold from the left foot. When I put my waist at a point between the high end and the middle of the stick, there was more power on the stick than otherwise. A point to note is that when putting the waist on the stick, I do not collapse the right (front) kua.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Brennan Toh's review on pushing hands with Kelvin Ho

Kelvin has gotten a lot stronger. Recently (past year?) he's gotten stronger than me, more clearly able to define a set line and consistently move along that line. Structure is more self contained, much less reliant on the opponent. Starting to feel a lot more like Chen Xu with a defined pole as centre. Good understanding of when the other person has over extended or is light on their front foot (quick switching move). Improvement at taking up space on the bottom by putting pressure on with the knees, also preventing opponent from moving their feet. Still lots of downward application of force, but rather than hanging off the other person as he used to it is now more relevant to keeping them locked and allowing him freedom of movement. Lacks mobility in feet (still primarily uses open stance), might be unable to move feet. Vulnerable to feints as he reacts very quickly to each movement (able to differentiate between empty and dangerous moves?). Better at sustaining single lines, but dependent on that line overpowering to prevent the opponent from holding that line while finding others.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Morning practice - Don't skip it

It is important for me to have a morning taiji practice session. I practice a certain number of yilus, they count towards a goal that I set.  The latest goal is 50,000 yilus.  Getting a few yilus done in the morning (currently 5) though is only 0.5% towards the goal, it is quantifiable and real. It gives me a sense of accomplishment right at the beginning of each day, and equips me to face the challenges for the rest of the day.  This is a reminder for me not to skip the morning practice.