no greater force, the power of position

Discussion on the three big Chinese internals, Yiquan, Bajiquan, Piguazhang and other similar styles.

no greater force, the power of position

Postby rojcewiczj on Wed Jan 11, 2017 4:57 pm

Fitness, strength, greater force, how far can we go? Where do we find the factor which does not just make us a little stronger, a little faster? What is the factor which makes a greater difference than many others combined when confronted
with resistance, with antagonistic forces. I would argue such a factor of relatively greater significance can be found in positioning. At the moment of forces what are the positions of the bodies involved? Without the powerful effect of changing position, a boxing match would simply be two people punching each other until one of them gave up. If we reduce our forms, our movements, our practice to purely self centered mechanical actions, where the attention is purely on my own body, where then is the relationship? The purpose of the posture is to be applied in a certain relation to the opponents posture or position. The skill is to a come into a posture which misdirects the opponents force. If you aim to punch my face and its here, ill make sure its there instead. If you want to push me and I'm here, I'll make sure i'm there instead. Sometimes there is a big change in position, like a side step, sometimes there is a small change in position, like turning the hips to switch the angle. Big changes, small changes, all need to happen in the moment, at every moment, when the opponent uses forces and when I myself use force. What is a skillful punch? One in which you can punch the opponent while changing position to not be punched yourself. What is skillful grappling? One in which you control the opponent while changing position to not be controlled yourself. What alliterative is there? To use greater force? After ten years I feel I can not punch harder than a year after I started. Ten years later I do find that I can move my head away from an opponents punch while I punch them. Can I push harder? No. But I do find I can push while changing my position to redirect the opponents push towards the ground, sending them away while I'm left standing. I feel practicing traditional forms and movements have given me the coordination I need to change my position, even just by a turn, while exerting myself, More than that? I certainly do not feel that ten years of forms and exercise have made me capable of generating remarkably greater forces in any way.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby Tiga Pukul on Wed Jan 11, 2017 5:29 pm

Great post,

Exactly what we propagate in the style of pukulan Bukti Negara. Correct position is incredibly important, perhaps even more important than how to generate full body power (although that also is a big one). I like the saying : 'position before submission', but sane can be said of the hitting arts..
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby rojcewiczj on Tue Jan 17, 2017 2:19 pm

To me, whole body power is not the use of the whole body to generate a force, but rather the role of the whole body in any action. Generally force is generated which specific body parts in relation to the specific action. For example, the force of a punch is generated mostly in the shoulder rotation, the action of the arm. While the arm is generating the principle force the whole body can contribute its powers or presence through positioning, through coming into a certain space. It is especially important to realize that the whole body does not directly generate the force, even though there is a sort of optical illusion which makes it seems as though it does. This is why people struggle for years with obtaining "whole body power" and few truly possess it. Why? Because whole body power could be expressed as whole body presence or whole body position, where the position of the body during generation of force transforms the effect of that force.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby charles on Tue Jan 17, 2017 4:17 pm

rojcewiczj wrote: For example, the force of a punch is generated mostly in the shoulder rotation, the action of the arm... It is especially important to realize that the whole body does not directly generate the force, even though there is a sort of optical illusion which makes it seems as though it does.


I suggest to you that you are unfamiliar with the basic mechanics of "internal" martial arts, in which the antithesis of what you described is what happens. It is not some sort of "optical illusion" or wishful thinking.


This is why people struggle for years with obtaining "whole body power" and few truly possess it. Why? Because whole body power could be expressed as whole body presence or whole body position, where the position of the body during generation of force transforms the effect of that force.


I suggest that the reason "people struggle for years with obtaining "whole body power"" is due to being poorly taught and insufficient correct practice. The basics of it is not "rocket surgery". I think you are barking up the wrong forrest.

Certainly, position is important, but position is not the same thing as the mechanics or "engine" that drives motion or generates force.
Last edited by charles on Tue Jan 17, 2017 4:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby yeniseri on Tue Jan 17, 2017 7:19 pm

The power of position is wonderful!
No greater position than to see Asian, African and indigenous women carrying their wares to and from their home without the fancy tools of fitness technology.

Pure unadulterated movement that is majestically kept in position by their wonderful hips adjusting to the external world!
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby Tiga Pukul on Wed Jan 18, 2017 9:22 am

I read a lot of discussion on using internal power, and or whole body power, but not too much about correct positioning. And with that i mean to have a positional advantage against your opponent or even multiple opponents.
To be honest i've never seen too much sophisticated positioning footwork over here, perhaps someone can link me a couple of videos that indicate with what they call footwork.

Sometimes people also call using the legs for kicking footwork, but that's not what i mean.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby rojcewiczj on Wed Jan 18, 2017 10:55 am

This is the essence of fluidity and, through it, efficiency, to remain capable of moving the body into new positions, regardless of exertion or resistance. If I punch so "hard" as to keep my own body from being capable of changing position, when my fist meets ressistance, then I am punching too "hard".
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby charles on Wed Jan 18, 2017 11:17 am

In Taijiquan the inability to change what one is doing in response to what an opponent does is called being "double heavy" or "double weighted". It sounds like that is the principle to which you are referring.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby rojcewiczj on Wed Jan 18, 2017 2:23 pm

“Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves.

Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”
― Bruce Lee

Indeed, but, practically, how is it done? This becoming like water; if you can throw a kick and end closer to your opponent after contact then before, if you push with both hands but end with your chest closer to your hands then when you made contact. I see this as Yin becoming Yang, at your softest, within your ability to stay within your space, formless, you flow and fill. How to exert yourself out of this "softness"? "water can flow or it can crash", simply flow faster, fill in with more immediacy and overflowing yourself will be a force not equivalent to muscles pressure, for what force you looked for in exertion will arrive through presence.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby Tiga Pukul on Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:46 am

Hmmm rojcewiczj this is all too vague for me, can you perhaps show some video that shows this idea?
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby RobP3 on Thu Jan 19, 2017 10:09 am

rojcewiczj wrote:“Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves.

Indeed, but, practically, how is it done? This becoming like water; if you can throw a kick and end closer to your opponent after contact then before, if you push with both hands but end with your chest closer to your hands then when you made contact. I see this as Yin becoming Yang, at your softest, within your ability to stay within your space, formless, you flow and fill.


If you want to be like water, don't kick, punch, or grab, don't attack or defend, just move.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby Steve James on Thu Jan 19, 2017 12:55 pm

If you want to be like water, don't kick, punch, or grab, don't attack or defend, just move.


Fill the cracks.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby C.J.W. on Thu Jan 19, 2017 2:17 pm

Bruce Lee was a philosophy major at the University of Washington, so playing with words was something that he was also good at besides martial arts. His approach to MA, IMO, relies heavily on athleticism and lacks the subtleties or TCMA. That's why I wouldn't go overboard when it comes to analyzing what he wrote; chances are you are reading too much into it already.
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby marvin8 on Thu Jan 19, 2017 2:54 pm

Tiga Pukul wrote:Hmmm rojcewiczj this is all too vague for me, can you perhaps show some video that shows this idea?

Not, rojcewiczj. However, one way to "be like water" may be to stick, adhere, neutralize, follow (zhan, nian, lian, sui) or "go with the flow," transition from defense to offense like water.

I couldn't readily find any IMA video showing this idea, applied in a fight. :( However, I found these.

Here's a boxer that keeps his feet in place, softens his back hip transferring weight to back leg, moving his center offline avoiding the attack, then shifts his weight forward finishing opponent: :)
Image

Here's the video in real time:


Here a MMA fighter takes a step back with his right leg blending with attack, then finishes with forward, left corner momentum.
Image
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Re: no greater force, the power of position

Postby oragami_itto on Thu Jan 19, 2017 9:55 pm

Soft is hard.
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