Locks Training

When we do push hands training we do not just shove each other around. Instead, we strive for a semblance of techniques which can range from strikes to locks.

Below is an example of how we can apply a lock in push hands :-

We try not to learn too many locks at the same time. The preference is on working with one lock and examining its various facets. For example, in the clip below we flow into the lock under study after failing to apply an elbow lock :-

Another part involves studying how to overcome the opponent’s resistance through the use of breathing method. I normally do not have to use breathing method but it can be useful under some circumstances so why not?

The study of locks can help you to understand how to ramp up your power by relaxing. Sometimes you find that you are unable to exert power and you try to move more to get power, except you can’t move much without losing control of your opponent. So what do you do?

The video below shows you how you can increase power by letting go of your own muscular resistance :-

Other ways of getting power includes using a rotary motion similar to turning a wheel as shown below :-

It goes without saying that this rotary motion will only work if you apply the principles of leverage properly. This means you have to fix the fulcrum which in this case if your left hand and use the right arm to apply the lever.

Finally, an essential key to being able to apply a lock is familiarity with grabbing as shown below :-

How to grab can be a study by itself. You can focus on the following areas :-

a) How to place your hand in the position to get a firm grip

b) Where to position the fingers

c) How to bend and twist the hand into a locked position

d) Where to position the captured hand

e) How to apply pain and amplify it

There are a few other things you can focus on but the above are the areas we normally examine.



The Secret

When Sun Lutang was lying on his deathbed his daughter asked him the secret to master his style and was told “Practice”.

Life is unpredictable and I will use today’s technology to leave videos for my students to help accelerate their learning. They should not have to ask me one day what the secret is when I am waiting for the Grim Reaper. If my students still have to ask me then I would have been a selfish teacher and unworthy to be their guide.

A living art involves 1-to-1 transmission. This means not just telling you what to do but guide you by teaching and providing the feeling.

Some parts of what we do will not be on video for various reasons. These are the parts the student must remember in his mind.

For example, at the end of today’s 9 videos on learning how to apply Wild Horse Parts Mane we have an additional teaching to amplify and broaden what was learned in the videos.

What I teach in these parts of the lesson is unique to the student. Of course, I hope that everyone will get exactly the same information but this is not possible since no one is exactly the same.

However, everyone learns the same principles and most of the techniques. When students view the videos they will know this is the truth. This is the least I can do in terms of transmitting the art if we are fated to have a relationship.


Musical Intention

CG learning how to use the Play Pipa application to learn about fajing.

As its his first attempt it is only natural that he moved more than necessary. But its a good attempt.

Below is example of how to do the Play Pipa fajing :-

The key point is where to put the intention so that you can minimize the effort and outer movements.


Geyser Force

When you fajing do you truly connect to the ground and let it does its job?

Or do you use leg muscle to push against the ground to generate the power?

Below is a video showing how we train to connect to the ground without having to straighten the back leg to thrust against the ground to generate power.

Our rationale for this is that when you push your leg against the ground you are trying to use a stronger strength against a weaker strength. This does not fit the profile of Tai Chi as an art of using the soft to overcome hard.

Our reading of the principles of the Tai Chi Classics require us to let the opponent apply pressure on us so that we can borrow his power.

We then allow his power to connect to the ground at which point Newton’s 3rd Law of Motion comes into play, causing the opponent’s power to rebound back at him.

To allow this to happen we must relax so that the rebound force can move through our body swiftly with minimal impediment and maximum flow.

In this way when the force comes out it will be strong like a geyser discharging water forcefully into the air.


Fajing Glimpse 2

How much time do you need to set up before you can fajing?

This question is important if you are playing with someone who does not stay still.

We approach the problem by learning how to fajing with minimal set up and shown below :-

This method relies on the use of intention because you can set up the conditions for fajing in your mind faster than if you actually need to get your body into position.


Fajing Glimpse

Here’s a clip from a training session on 17 Sep 2018.

The question here is what do you do when your opponent relaxes his arms so that you cannot use his resistance against him.

You will find that its not easy to use the common method of fajing such an opponent unless you can get close enough to push his body instead of his arms.