First 100 Days Challenge for 2019

We will run the first SKD 100 days challenge for 2019 from 1 Jan to 10 Apr 2019.

The objective is to put in a serious, focused effort to master the first strike of SKD. Paul has already made good progress. All he needs now is one major push to master it.

You can see how Paul’s posture and body alignment has changed over a 9 month period below :-

The evolution of Paul’s body alignment – by using the same yellow line slant on each of the three photos we can see how his alignment progressed from totally out to just nice.

At the end of the 100 days we will make a 100 days video to see how members who take part have progressed.

To join the SKD learning group click here.

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SKD Training on Slack

As the end of 2018 draws to a close it is time to take stock of some of the things that have been achieved over the year and how to move ourselves forward in 2019. 

Over the past few months I have seen Paul for whom the art of SKD was created for make progress (if you are wondering what SKD is about read it here). He has applied himself diligently and made decent progress in his basics.

The Facebook SKD Learning Group has been fun but I find it a pain in the neck to search for topics or organize them particularly the video uploads. In the past I had looked at Google+ and Patreon so see if there was a better way to organize the information and disseminate the knowledge. 

After keeping the Facebook SKD Learning Group closed to the public in 2018 I am going to open it to the public in 2019 but will run it within Slack. I’ve used Slack before for work and I’m going to use it for the SKD Learning Group as of 1 Jan 2019. The Facebook group will still be there for current members to refer to the material that have been posted.

I have already set up the basic framebook for the Slack SKD Learning Group and still tinkling with it but anyone who is interested can sign up now. To join the Slack SKD Learning Group you just have to sign up here. On clicking the link you will see the window below – just follow the instructions to sign up. Slack is also available as an app for iOS and Android.

New members will join #general and #skdlevel1 where the learning takes place. Be sure to introduce yourself if you want to make friends with other members. You can also share your practice videos with members and discuss with each other on how to improve.

Three rules in this group :-

Rule 1 – do introduce yourself in the channel #general or #skdlevel1 on joining the group. Let members know your name, training background, reason why you want to learn SKD, and any other information of interest that you would like to share

Rule 2 – keep discussions cordial, offer constructive criticisms, do not engage in personal or racist attacks, do not threaten violence, and keep the politics out.  Everyone is here to learn so being wrong is part and parcel of learning. Members who violate Rule 2 will be deactivated without warning

Rule 3 – to keep the group vibrant we would rather have a small group with active members than a large group with many inactive members. An inactive member is defined as a member that shows no sign of activity, does not post training videos or take part in discussions within the last 30 days. We will periodically cull the group of inactive members by deactivating them

Members who need to have guidance and critiques can sign up for them in the group. Guidance is offered for those who want get a leg up in their training with a view to mastering the core basics of SKD. More information will be posted in #general in the coming weeks.

So that’s it for SKD. A Slack Tai Chi Learning Group is in the works if the SKD group works out. We’ll see how it goes.

SKD Meetup 17 Nov 2018 Part 2

All the clips for the SKD meetup on 17 Nov 2018 have been uploaded.

The later clips moved on to standing discussions such as the one below :-

You can also see examples of SKD partner practice for the first basic strike below :-

Then there’s monkey stealing peach – did you spot the peach being stolen in the clip below?

I also explained the front part of the 24-blocks form and its use including the biomechanics of power using swallow-spit and push-pull mechanics.

SKD Meetup 17 Nov 2018

I have begun uploading the clips from the meeting with SKD member, Melvin, on 17 Nov 2018.

Over the 2-hour meeting I shared info with Melvin on SKD and related topics. One topic is that of close range bridge arm which SKD Level 1 does not address. I used Hung Gar of which Melvin is a practitioner as an example to talk about the subject.

We also talked about the two strikes in SKD Level 1 and application :-

Of course, we also talked about power which is everybody’s favorite topic. Except in this case its the power developed from SKD Level 1 rope pulling exercise :-

In SKD the power needs to be functional in that it is integral to the use of the technique. In this case, this would be the Yum Chui where the exercise enhances the power and use of the technique.

Not to forget that all strikes must go with blocks. At the end of the clip below is a short demo of SKD’s 6-blocks.

For more information on SKD check out the page here.

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This clip actually comes before the clip in the earlier Release Arrow post.

The power generation showed here is an example of the 5 Bows model.

The 5 Bows model is normally practiced using Single Whip. The post here will explain a bit more.

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Foundation is the Key

When you learn a martial art you must always pay heed to the foundation. Which begs the question – what is the foundation?

Let’s take a simple example – BojiLite – my compact online learning for three basic strikes from the style of Pok Khek Kuen. In BojiLite we have three simple foundation which underlie the three strikes. They are :-

1) Basic posture (Siu Sei Ping Ma)

2) In-situ body turning (Leung Yi Ma)

3) Zigzag stepping (Leung Yi Bo)

The learning of the first strike, Yum Chui, involves all three of the above. We would begin with the simple basic posture to develop a static foundation.

This foundation is then rotated and shifted for the purpose of mobilizing the Yum Chui strike and generating the power required.

This learning is extended by studying how to strike as we step in a zigzag pattern.

When we study the second strike, Chau Chui, we use back the same basics which greatly simplifies the learning. The only difference now is how do we do the Chau Chui strike.

Now, the Yum Chui is a straight forward linear strike with a horizontal fist. It seems like a normal straight punch. However, we do have some differences, some might call these details the trade secrets of the style, yeah why not, in how we throw the fist out, small details to help us shoot the punch out real quick and powerful to boot using certain tricks of the mind and body. Without knowing the details you will end up doing Yum Chui like a normal punch sans the tricks that make it what it is.

Chau Chui is a different animal. It is not a longer range strike like Yum Chui. However, we can apply Chau Chui at a longer range, just not necessarily as long a range as Yum Chui. The second strike is better served as a medium to short range strike as shown below :-

Based on the principle a common foundation for all three strikes it should be straightforward to perform Chau Chui once you have studied Yum Chui for a while. What you need to pay heed to is how to hit the intended target precisely with power.

I know, I know, a circular movement is not easy to handle. If you are hitting a strike pad with Chau Chui its not too bad. Its when you are hitting air that you encounter the problem of how to stop the punch and quickly switch to strike with the other arm.

The difficulty with stopping the Chau Chui is due to the path the arm takes. Typically, we tend to view Chau Chui as an upward movement. So when you want to stop it you have to brake hard on your arm movement before you can switch to the other arm to strike. Now an arm moving with momentum is not easy to stop.

If you have driven a motorcycle fast and tried stopping within a shorter distance you would have to pump the brakes, let go and pump again a few more times before you can stop. If you depress the brakes really hard you would end up skidding. So trying to stop a power-laden and speeding Chau Chui is something similar to this.

So how do we solve this problem?

By thinking outside the box! Of course! Well, actually we don’t really have to do so. But when you can’t see the issue clearly then why not?

The word “Chau” is referring to an action that is akin to snatching an object and tossing it forcefully. Well, lucky for us there is a sport that comes with a movement that is similar to “Chau”. This would the sport of cornhole tossing. Take a look for yourself below :-

So there you have it. A solution to how to switch between the arms to strike hard and continuously. Hope you can see the key in the video on cornhole tossing.

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Sample BojiLite Corrective Video 3

The main topic of this video is the quality of the parries demonstrated by members of the Facebook BojiLite Learning Group.

In a nutshell – they lack the short and sharp quality that brings with it a shocking power when the parry slams into the opponent’s arm.

But then hold on, what if the opponent throws a fast jab. Can you still use the parries?

Good question – there is a secondary lesson here which I will reveal to members in the future about this point.

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