Single whip applications

Discussion in 'Tai chi' started by robert.t, Sep 22, 2016.

  1. Tom bayley

    Tom bayley Valued Member

    a variation on the theme of the application shown in the lower video. The defenders rear hand makes a soft bridge on the attackers striking arm and sticks as the arm is returned to chamber, then grips. The defenders lead hand pushes to the attackers head simultaneously the defender turns into single whip. This uses two arms against one (one push + one pull), body-weight, leg, waist and chest mechanic to extend the arm setting up the arm-lock.
  2. El Medico

    El Medico Valued Member

    No,it isn't. No Whip from any of the systems has the arms making practically a 180 angle,not even Chen and it's Wu/Li/Hao/Sun descendants. That's a major point of separation of these two "postures".
    That would depend on the level of the practitioner and if said practitioner is using the "additional mechanics" of the systems. then it is a matter of if said mechanics at practitioner's command do or don't contradict each other,and if the practitioner can easily shift twixt them-or if it's worth it to bother.

    Not clear to me.Whip is not "extreme". Now,the drunks and Diagonal flying-they're basically the same "posture",and would fit together in this "extreme" idea.

    Well, if your criteria of "extreme" is one hand forward and one hand back,irrespective of angles relating to the torso and the opposite limb,seems you make the term 'extreme" meaningless. I find nothing "extreme" in the "posture" SW,even in a big frame it is more contained than some systems' (again) Diagonal Flying,which is about the only thing I can think of in ANY of the TC I know or know of that one could consider an "extreme" extended posture. (Parting Horse's Mane varies from nearly identical to Diagonal to what looks like a larger version of P'eng,depending on the system).

    Most people learning Fu Hok have been around for couple years-or more.
    I guess,but I don't see it being any more work than Ng Ying,or even Gung Gee. Gung Gee was the first form we learned,and none of us took 2 years to be able to perform Gung Gee full throttle.It was a year to learn,and by the time you finished you could perform it properly.(Full speed,power, depth,etc).

    Seriously??? 3 years? Holy Mamas, I must've been a lot better than I ever thought. Or was that the 1st form you learned? Gung Gee takes 5 minutes or so at full tilt,so Fu Hok should not be a problem.3 years for Fu Hok would certainly have been considered extraordinary-even if it was the first form you learned.

    Your body does what your body knows,but as for as combining the 2 into one system? So many of the system specific training methods,theories,executions are in disagreement w/each other it seems a "why bother".

    "Similar" isn't "same". I don't really think they're all that similar at the top,tho' they could LOOK that way to an observer.As to gungs,There are different nei gungs,so unless you know the specifics of the individual system/subsystem's practices, "which makes sense given all the Hung gar techniques I'm comparing are Taoist Immortal or Iron Wire techniques associated with Nei Gong, like Tai Chi is)",doesn't really make sense.
  3. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    Is there a 3D picture that shows what you mean? It definitely looks 180 degrees from the 2D pictures, so maybe it's a perspective thing.

    I think this is a semantic issue, by "extreme" I simply mean the arms are extended in opposite directions, not really intending to say the body is stretched in two directions or anything like that. Maybe extreme was a bad choice of term?

    How about "Poled?" arms? "Supreme Poles" would fit right in to Tai Chi philosophy, being the literal translation of tai chi :D

    Gung Gi Fook Fu? Or just Gung Gi? The reason I ask is that in some schools these are split into 2 separate forms and taught separately and then combined, making it less than a year to really learn the first part (Gung Gi, maybe 6 months) and then maybe a total year to learn the entire set combined (and of course in some Lam family schools, there are other sets learned before Gung gi, unlike the Tang Fong school, where Gung Gi Fook Fu is first).

    In my opinion, Tiger Crane is harder than Gung Gi Fook Fu (which isn't easy of course, but the first half is far less intense than the last half). I honestly don't know the Ng Ying yet, but I have a book on it and a lot looks similar to Tiger Crane (esp. in the Tiger and Crane sections), quite frankly, but with added material for other animals/elements.

    Now, the bit of Iron Wire I know, seems the most like Tai Chi. It's slower, the tension seems similar. Breathing is so important.

    I'm trying to understand if there is anything like Carry Load/Single Whip in the more "internal" Hung training, something I can relate to. It seems like it's such a basic Tai Chi technique, there should be something like it in other arts?

    Or do you think Single Whip is more unique to Tai Chi variants?

    3 years total before I finally learned the full Fu Hok sequence AND was able to finish a run, but that 3 years includes learning the Gung Gi and Fu Fu forms too.

    I started learning Fu Hok at about year 1.5, if that helps clarify the timeline :D My sifu only gave a single new movement every other class or so...definitely did not rush things, the goal was to not cram the sequences down throats, but to make sure there was some reflection and repetition before going to the next phase. Not being a "forms collector" myself, I had no problem with that approach.

    Well my opinion on this is, even if the training methods "disagree", the final result can't. Whether you train Tai Chi slowly or Hung gar quickly, come time to apply in sparring or competition, you'll have to hit hard, take hits, and grapple powerfully.

    Well I don't think I'm arguing they are the same, just pointing out similarities and I'll admit, as far as Tai Chi it's mostly perception for me and things that have been explained to me by teachers who did both styles.

    So should we discuss specific Nei Gung sets? I'm game, I know a few different Nei Gung sets that aren't limited to Hung gar of course. What Nei Gung sets are common to Tai Chi? I thought this would be a core element of any of the Tai Chi variants...or is the Nei Gung "built-in" to the actual forms in the way it is with Iron Wire, and there are no standalone Nei Gung sets in Tai chi? Teach on, brother.
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2016
  4. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    Also sorry to ramble on but is there any video of this in "action" someone could post? The videos above were good examples of the concept but also all compliant videos, I was hoping for something a little more unscripted.

    For instance CLoudz videos esp the second one showed a slow version (that picked up) of the application, which seems a little similar to a technique learned in Gung Gi as well as some of the conditioning exercises in Hung gar. That video seems to show the same kind of leverage being used against the arm et cetera (Cloudz your description of that made a lot of sense, inside to out) to force someone to the ground or break their elbow. But again, I want to make sure I'm not missing something simply because of what my eyes see.

    I'm honestly having a hard time understanding how this is supposed to work or at least what it would look like in a "real" unscripted encounter...sparring, competition, or even playing around in class but with some resistance. Maybe that would help me relate it to stuff I know that the form postures themselves don't make clear...has to be something in common with things I've been taught at some point, but sadly I've got no time to go take a Tai Chi class :D I have videos of Tai Chi in San Shou and Lei Tei, but truthfully, I can't figure out what Tai Chi applications are being used in those at all (except if it's a Tai Chi student, I assume it's Tai Chi). So I do appreciate the help understanding more.
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2016
  5. huoxingyang

    huoxingyang Valued Member

    Not the greatest example of what appears to me to be a bit of casual "push hands", but I guess it's "non-compliant":

    Old guy does single whip about 7 seconds in? He does it quite proactively i.e. not in response to an attack, but I think that's fine.
  6. huoxingyang

    huoxingyang Valued Member

    It's not 180 degrees nor does it look like it to me in any pictures I have seen, but then I already know it isn't 180 degrees so maybe that's why I see it that way. If you can't tell how the movement is done from the pictures and videos out there (understandable - it's one reason why learning this kind of stuff from online resources is not highly recommended) maybe you should get yourself to a tai chi class to actually experience the movements we're talking about in this thread

    It doesn't take a year to learn the entire set "Gung Gi Fook Fu". It might take a few years to get really good at it, but to learn the movements and be able to get through it in reasonable fashion shouldn't take that long... but I guess that depends on the individual. I learnt it in about a month. I learnt the Yang long Tai Chi form in about 2 months, or 8 classes (though to be fair I already knew the 24 step form). There are also people in the same class who have spent well over two years to learn the same set and still haven't finished learning the movements.

    Most like Tai Chi in pace perhaps, but not much else really. They are two very different beasts, Iron Wire and Tai Chi, not necessarily in what they set out to achieve but in the paths they take to get there. I think you need to know more of both than you currently do, if you want to explore where they are similar and different.

    Don't entirely disagree here, but maybe there would be differences in the final result... Not in substantial terms but maybe in terms of the kinds of techniques practitioners of each style might favour in a given situation.

    Maybe in another thread? This is a topic about Single Whip and it is an important and interesting one as far as I am concerned, since versions of it appear multiple times in many Tai Chi forms, yet understandings of it vary quite wildly across practitioners in my experience.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  7. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    No offense brother, but that's not possible. The Gung Gi Fook Fu is an EXTREMELY LONG form, perhaps one of the longest of all extant Chinese forms.

    There is no way you learned the entire Gung Fi Fook Fu in one month, so now I'm going to really look at anything you post with suspicion.

    I'll prove it, too. Post the approximate number of individual movements in the Gung Gi Fook Fu. Lam or Tang family is fine. Keep in mind the number you post, even if it's ballpark accurate, will prove to everyone on this thread you didn't learn it in a month.

    Then you should have no problem posting the approximate number of individual movements in the Yang long tai chi form either. Go ahead.

    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  8. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    No I've definitely experienced the "kind of movement" being talked about. Just not via Tai Chi practice. I don't think I need any Tai Chi lessons to have a frank discussion, but you should be able to plainly discuss kung fu without suggesting I 'go train', correct?

    I'm not kidding huoxingyang based on your casual claim of learning the entire Taming the Tiger in Pattern 'I' form in ONE MONTH, you're suspect, whether we're talking Hung gar, or Tai chi.

    The amount of time it took me to learn the entire Gung Gi Fook Fu is not only STANDARD (one year of CONSTANT training), it's taught that way in both Lam and Tang family schools for a reason.

    Of all the things you chose to be casual about, that was a big mistake.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  9. cloudz

    cloudz Valued Member

    The only picture I can recall that looks quite straight (180 degrees) on the arms is the old photo of YCF when he is younger man. But it could be deceiving. In his later posture photos there's a front side one of the posture and it's very clear the rear hand is angled off to the side. The guys are right that that is fairly standard for there to be a curve/ angle.

    The move I reference in the Wu style clip is 180 degrees. And depending on the form low posture/ snake creeps down/ squatting single whip could be. It's like that in the CPL form I practice and also has the hook hand 'upside down' as it rotates back from underside and is vertical (rotation) in direction.

    But I would point out that for single whip it plays into the (horizontal) rotational nature of it, so the arm pulls out to the side.

    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  10. cloudz

    cloudz Valued Member

    I found this later YCF photo of it taken from the front.

    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  11. Tom bayley

    Tom bayley Valued Member

    Have to disagree. It really depends where you start from and how quick you are at picking up forms.

    If for example you really know Hung Lau gar. Which contains all the stances and hands used in kung si fook fu and much of the body mechanics, learning the movements of kung si fook fu could easily be done in four weeks.

    Of coarse understanding what you have learned. That takes years of practice against actively resisting training partners. But a capable student can memorize and perform the movements of a form to a reasonable standard in very short order.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  12. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    No Tom. Easily?? It is outright deceptive to claim anyone has EVER learned Gung Gi Fook Fu in four weeks. You'd be better off telling me you read War and Peace in one day. I understand you're trying to be diplomatic, but no. Not unless what they learn is NOT the Gung Gi Fook Fu, or is some extremely abbreviated version. More than likely, it's just a deceptive claim made because someone assumes the first Hung Kuen set is an easier/short one, when in fact it's one of the longest and hardest.

    No. Nobody can learn the entire Gung Gi Fook Fu sequence in four weeks, EVEN if you know the stances and hand positions. There's simply too much material and individual motions. I don't care if you already had a black belt in something. Even if you knew the other four family styles, and even if you recognized techniques, there's no way to fit learning this fist set into one month. Cannot be done, plain and simple.

    In fact, if you learned a new movement every single day of the month (30) you'd NOT EVEN COME close to completing the first serif of the Gung pattern 工. I counted again last night and reached over 100 before I even got to the Thousand Character Fist sequence, which isn't even halfway through the first half of this fist set. And, you'd never retain it if you tried cramming, which is why you typically learn 2-3 new sequences per week, at most, and that's assuming your Sifu knows what they're teaching. So again, unless you can stop time, you're not learning the hundreds and hundreds of individual movements in the full pattern, UNLESS what you learned is not the actual Gung Gi Fook Fu Kuen. Maybe he learned something someone told him was the Gung Gi? But something's just not right and I can't sit here and listen to this.

    If it's the last thing I ever do on this website, it'll be to expose this kind of bullshidoka deception. If you talk to anyone in an actual Lam or Tang family Hung gar school and tell them you can learn the entire Gung Gi Fook Fu in FOUR WEEKS you would get laughed at, and everyone would agree you're full of it. Learning the Gung Gi Fook Fu takes AT LEAST several times longer than one month, and that's assuming you learn new material every single day.

    In fact since the site does have a resident Hung gar sifu, maybe I should go ask Sifu Onassis to weigh in, so we can see him laugh. If he says 4 weeks, I'll quit MAP forever. If I told Sigung Frank Yee this "4 week" claim, he'd definitely dismiss it completely. It goes against the entire teaching history of the fist set.

    It's too bad someone would derail a good discussion like this about an with such an outlandish claim, but I just can't stand for this, and neither should anyone else. I'd move this to another thread, but I have no interest in playing detective. I just want it know that mainstream Hung gar leadership today, pick one, they would categorically deny that learning this particular form is possible in a single month. So why should you or I?
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  13. Tom bayley

    Tom bayley Valued Member

    I learnt the movements of the five animal, five element in four weeks. That's about as long as Kung si fook fu. Its true that my brain was fried after every lesson but I did it.

    Its true that all I knew was the movements not the applications. But learning the corigraphy of forms even long forms need not be time consuming. Particularly in Hung ga were there is a lot of repetition both within forms and between forms.

    Note. one can forget a form as quickly as one learns it. If you don't practice it will go.
  14. icefield

    icefield Valued Member

    why is it so hard for someone to get the above, you can pick a long form up in a month or two its not that hard, the difference is you wont know what the movements are for but if you have any prior experience in Chinese arts, but the choreographed form can be learned easily and remembered if you practice outside of class, the main parts are as tom says repeated and its not rocket science its just a form.
  15. icefield

    icefield Valued Member

    again how anyone cant agree with the above is beyond me, unless all you are doing is studying pictures and haven't actually done both positions

    the intent, body position tension etc are all different
  16. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    I don't disagree with that, Tom.

    You can learn the Ng Ying or Sup Ying or many other advanced forms faster AFTER you've learned the Gung Gi Fook Fu and Tiger Crane, because as we both should know (assuming you know, even if you're playing devil's advocate) that the first two forms contain most of the style, and the last 2 pillars indeed repeat a lot, and contain advanced tweaking of the fundamental forms.

    For example, there are Ten Tigers in the Tiger Crane. There are Ten Tigers in the Five Animal Fist that are built on the first ten. And all of those Tiger movements build on Tiger movements first learned in Gung Gi Fook Fu.

    So yes, if you know Gung Gi Fook Fu AND the full Tiger Crane fist (a HUGE amount of material), you practically already know many of the Five Animal form or the Sup Ying Kuen sequences (and I know this for three reasons: 1) I have the Tang family book and the Lam family sequence in writing, 2) and been literally told this by instructors, 3) observed the full fist set in action).

    If you were a master of Mok Gar, or some other southern style, and then began learning Gung Gi, I'd say it might take a normal human being at least a few months of learning movements before you could get through the entire choreograph, simply on volume alone, if we assume difficulty was not an issue. That's what I'm hanging my hat on. 3-6 months at a month is such an extraordinary claim, like I said, I can probably find an army of Hung gar sifus that would gasp at a claim like that, before calling it shenanigans. I know at least one on MAP who, if they comment on this, will cast doubt on the claim that I'm not capable of.

    Maybe I'm wrong, maybe like I said, he was taught something different and thinks it's the Gung gi fook fu. Or maybe someone taught him the "quickie" version. One thing is for sure, if I start a thread on the Gung Gi Fook fu, it will be detailed and contain a lot of information that isn't available online, or even in Lam family schools, and maybe once we get into that, it'll help dismiss this notion that such a lengthy, difficult form is a single month effort just to learn the basics. I'm a pretty smart guy and I trained Hung gar 3x a week for a year, and finished the Fook Fu about 11 months in and that was considered 'average'.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  17. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    No, you can't learn a form as long as the full Gung Gi Fook Fu in a month or two. It's several times longer than the longest Tai Chi form.

    It might make more sense to you if you knew just how many movements and nuances are in this form, but it's several hundred, icefield. Even in full boot camp mode, doing nothing but practicing the form for 4-8 weeks, you'd barely get through the first half. And maybe that's the issue here, maybe he knows only a part of the full set and thinks he learned the full form. The only other explanation is he fibbed, and while I understand your need to be diplomatic, as a Hung gar student of the Tang Fong lineage...I can't stand for this type of nonsense claim. Tell me you wrestled a real tiger, or learned to read minds, I'd believe you sooner.

    Practicing outside of class is necessary, but again, Hung gar sifus will NOT teach you Gung Gi Fook Fu in "firehose" mode, which is the other reason why the claim is absurd. Even if you are Wong Fei Hung and learning the fist set brand new, no Hung gar sifu is going to teach the whole thing to you that quickly. Simply not done.

    Again, simple test folks to prove me wrong, and I challenge you to do so: Find a single Hung gar sifu that will agree the Gung Gi Fook Fu sequence can be learned in one month. You won't. It's not just a long form. It's a loooooong form.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  18. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    Mods I apologize for the derail, maybe this should all be moved to a new thread, but I can't sit here and listen to people online claim to learn the foundational form of Hung gar in one month, when I know any Hung gar sifu worth their salt would be aghast at such a claim, and would NEVER teach (or be able to teach) all of it so quickly. Learning the GGFF is considered a great achievement (if only the first of many in the system), so the 1 month claim is basically an insult to the style, and all lineages.

    The Gung Gi Fook Fu is taught in small doses, bits and pieces, over a length of time, for two reasons: it's HUGE, and it's difficult.

    While I commend folks like Tom or Icefield for trying to come up with a logical explanation and argue the point, I already know I can prove this is not only impossible to do in just 4 weeks, I know I can get Hung gar teachers to contribute to the thread to prove it is never even taught that way. And if I have to start going into the gory details of Gung Gi Fook Fu, from the Tang Fong choreography, it'll be evident to every reasonable person here why 1 month is

    I just think this is not the thread to do it in, and want to follow the TOS. I'm definitely not intending to troll anyone, merely standing up for my school and lineage. It's not right, what's been said here.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016
  19. Tom bayley

    Tom bayley Valued Member

    Yes please!!!!!!.
  20. Tom bayley

    Tom bayley Valued Member

    Literally reached into my head extracted my thoughts and put them down in a way more coherent way.

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