Sam Kuen Do (三拳道)

Introduction

三拳道 is our compact training program for those who are interested to pick up the basics of striking within a shorter time frame of 12 to 24 months. 三拳道 can be learned via private tuition or online guidance.

三拳道 can be translated to mean Way of Three Fists. In Cantonese it is pronounced as Sam Kuen Do. The name 三拳道 was chosen because the focus is on the use of three strikes (三拳).

三拳道 complements the learning of our Tai Chi Chuan by teaching students the mechanics and strategies of striking without having to learn another system. 三拳道 can sit on top of our push hands method as a plugged-in module to enhance their Tai Chi striking ability.

Background

三拳道 evolved from my attempts in 2018 to teach my friend Paul a practical art that he can learn online. Before this Paul has spent the better part of a decade trying to pick up Tai Chi on his own with very little result to show for it.

As of 2018 Paul has already passed the age of 60. At this later stage in life it would be difficult for him to try to learn a complex art like Tai Chi and actually master it. It is not impossible to do so but what good would the art do him if it takes another decade to master. What would he fall back on if he actually needs to defend himself before the decade is up?

With this in mind, I created the BojiLite training program for Paul so that he stands a higher chance of acquiring practical and functional skills within a very short time period which I expected to be about 12 months.

Experience

The BojiLite online training program began in Feb 2018 and to date it has 5 participants. The results from this teaching experiment has thrown up some interesting observations as follows :-

i) It is possible to teach simple techniques via video clips

ii) The more complex sub-movements of a strike are more difficult to teach and require extended explanations; more importantly, participants must be prepared to try out suggested learning methods

iii) The first technique which is a linear strike took longer to master than expected for various reasons. After 6 months participants are able to demonstrate a competent strike but mastery of the subtleties and nuances that render the strike more effective is still lacking for various reasons

The results and experiences of the past 6 months has led to the second upgrading and revision of the BojiLite training program from BojiLite —> BojiLite 2.0 —>三拳道.

Learning

Coming up with a program that can be learned with minimum guidance is not easy. To this end the aim is to learn more with less information.

By keeping the learning small you learn to do more with the little that you have. This will teach you to think, imagine and construct new possibilities, thus expanding and deepening your knowledge.

The techniques of 三拳道 are curated to enable students to pick up the learning more easily as they are movements everyone does instinctively whether they are trained or not. We just need to achieve a more controlled way of moving so that we can execute the techniques tighter, speedier and with more penetrating force whilst relying on lesser movements and power to enable them to be applied as efficient combat techniques.

Program

The study of 三拳道 covers the following contents (not necessarily in order of listing) :-

1) Basics 
a) Principles
b) Body structure
c) Turning & Facing

2) 3-step power generation
a) Shift
b) Turn
c) Thrust

3) Strikes
a) Linear strike (Yum Chui)
b) Upward strike (Chau Chui)
c) Sweeping strike (Sao Chui)

4) Blocks
a) Three palm parries
b) Three descending blocks
c) Three ascending blocks

5) Stepping
a) Zigzag
b) Linear & triangle
c) Twist & step

6) Strategies
a) Long range
b) Mid range
c) Short range

Note
For solo practice training implements can be used. You can also get a training partner to hold striking pads for you.

 

Path to Mastery

The contents of 三拳道 are easy and simple to learn. If you keep at it constantly and consistently you can soon complete the learning.

The real challenge of learning is to render your skill natural and responsive. A combination of solo and partner practice will help to achieve this.

Conclusion

Mastery is a function of how badly you want to master a skill. If you only read but never put into practice or hardly practice then you will forever be an armchair warrior.

With the study of 三拳道 you will have a compact program to guide your learning and progress. As long as you keep working on it you will be able to grasp the techniques soon enough.

SamKuenDo

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