## It's just a step to the left...

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

### Re: It's just a step to the left...

oragami_itto wrote:Ideally there the opponent would counter by following the initial intention of the pull, join with the inertia of the moving body, and add some force vector to encourage a deficient posture.

So under my classification the desired response would be counter/look left/water. Video didn't really show any conclusion from the position

When you talk about "following the initial intention of the pull", I assume you are talking about "yield". IMO, both "yield/follow" and "resist" are not the proper respond.

- yields, you can borrow his yielding force.
- resists, you can borrow his resistance force.

So what should be the proper respond in this situation?

I'm still allergy to "push".
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

johnwang wrote:
oragami_itto wrote:Ideally there the opponent would counter by following the initial intention of the pull, join with the inertia of the moving body, and add some force vector to encourage a deficient posture.

So under my classification the desired response would be counter/look left/water. Video didn't really show any conclusion from the position

When you talk about "following the initial intention of the pull", I assume you are talking about "yield". IMO, both "yield/follow" and "resist" are not the proper respond.

- yields, you can borrow his yielding force.
- resists, you can borrow his resistance force.

So what should be the proper respond in this situation?

In each case, you're talking about closing the barn door after the cow is gone. Once you've got that arm it's pretty much over unless they're just better at sensing and responding and manage to reclaim the initiative.

Between closer peers I'd say that initial following to prevent giving you the mass and then shortcutting through the middle of the circle to get to where you're going ahead of you and meet you with a shoulder would be the preferred counter to the spiralling arm drag.

Ideally, they wouldn't fall for the provoking kick that sets up the wrist grab, but would advance into you in that space between and jam the attack knowing your strength and skill to prevent it from maturing, specifically advancing with interrupting/intercepting Jin
Last edited by oragami_itto on Fri Nov 10, 2017 5:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"This principle is very obvious and requires no further elaboration."
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

oragami_itto wrote:prevent giving you the mass and then shortcutting through the middle of the circle ...

You are right! Both resist and yield will put you in defense mode. You have to take the control back by cutting in front of your opponent and "interrupt" his circular running. The moment that your opponent can move your body, it's already too late.

Last edited by johnwang on Fri Nov 10, 2017 5:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I'm still allergy to "push".
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

johnwang wrote:
oragami_itto wrote:prevent giving you the mass and then shortcutting through the middle of the circle ...

You are right! Both resist and yield will put you in defense mode. You have to take the control back by cutting in front of your opponent and "interrupt" his circular running. The moment that your opponent can move your body, it's already too late.

Woot woot! I was sweating that one for a second there.

I think you're speaking to a common misconception among people that don't understand how to fight with Taijiquan. You don't just follow/yield forever or you might as well be one of your throwing dummies. You follow to lead. The yielding is to prevent giving the opponent anything for the force to land on as you join with them and then redirect.

It's the spirit of the cat catching the rat, waiting until the rat moves then pouncing, what's the proverb about dispatching the troops late to arrive early?

Yielding is even part of advance. Like say between the kick and your slap they manage to advance and get into a fully realized ward off right that attaches to your attacking arm at the peak of the upswing. As you apply your downward pressure, there's a slight yield to "catch" the force before redirecting it back through your structure at the point of contact (ti feng) or diverting it to the side (lu) and attacking the body (ji/an).

In either case, this is also a textbook example of taijiquan theory regarding the 8 gates and sides and corners. In this case the side technique (peng/lu) failed, so the corner technique (kao) has to be employed to cover the deficiency. Any given exchange is going to contain a blend of the 13 energies in varying degrees, it's just a matter of having the luxury of time and perception to analyze it.
"This principle is very obvious and requires no further elaboration."
-Yang Cheng Fu

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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

oragami_itto wrote:Five of the thirteen postures of the system being nothing more than forward backwards left right and center is very no nonsense and direct. You are correct.

Here is a further explanation. Excerpt from, Taiji Thirteen Postures, http://www.taiji-bg.com/articles/taijiquan/t75.htm:
Zhang Yun wrote:"The Explanation of Name of Taiji Quan" is one of the earliest Taiji Quan classics written by Wang Zongyue. According to the explanation, Taiji Quan is often called Taiji Shi San Shi (Taiji Thirteen Postures) or just Shi San Shi. Thirteen is the special number in Taiji Quan. Behind this number is the complete principle of Taiji Quan. This principle is respected and followed by all generations of Taiji groups for more than two hundred years. It is the foundation of Taiji Quan. Thus, to learn this principle is really important for Taiji Quan practice. Without understanding it well, one cannot reach high level Taiji Quan skills. . . .

3. Wubu

Wubu are the five footwork skills. Wu means five. Bu means step. In fact it is more about Shenfa - body movement skills because footwork and body movement have a very tight relationship. They should be combined together. It is said "the body follows steps to move and steps follow the body to changed", "Body movement and footwork skills cannot be forgotten. If any of these is omitted, one does not need to waste his time practicing any more." The body movement skills and footwork skills are about how to move the body in fighting. Only when the body can move to the right position (distance and angle), can the hand skills work well. Thus, it is said Wubu is the foundation of Bafa. Wubu offers five basic skills which follow the idea of Wuxing. The five footwork skills are discussed below.

Five Footwork:
Jin (or Jinbu)
Tui (or Tuibu)
Gu (or Zuogu)
Pan (or Youpan)
Ding (or Zhongding)

Attribute:
Step forward
Step backward
Sideway step forward
Sideway step backward
Central equilibrium

Direction:
North
South
East
West
Center

Element:
Water
Fire
Wood
Metal
Earth

Acupoint:
Huiyin
Zuqiao
Jiaji
Tanzhong
Dantian

Jin (or Jinbu - step forward) means to go forward; this really means to close in to the opponent directly. The main idea is how to charge forward. It is water which is like a flood, soft but powerful. It belongs to Shenjin (Kidney Channel). When the key point Huiyin is focused on, the qi will automatically push the body forward.

Tui (or Tuibu - step backward) means to withdraw the body; this really means to open a distance from the opponent directly. The main idea is how to move away. It is fire which means hard outside and soft or empty inside. It belongs to Xinjin ( Heart Channel). When the key point Zhuqiao is focused on, the qi will automatically push the body backward.

Gu (or Zuogu - left look around) means to go forward sideways; that really means to close up to the opponent indirectly. Here Zuo (left) means sideway; Gu (look around) means look after or being careful. Usually in martial arts this term means defensiveness within attacking skills. So the main idea of Zuogu is how to rotate and advance forward from sideway with some defense skills. It is usually called rotate attack. It is wood which means straight and grow up continually. It belongs to Ganjin (Liver Channel). When the key point Jiaji is focused on, the qi will automatically urge the body to rotate and advance forward.

Pan (or Youpan - right look forward to) means to withdraw your body sideways; this really means to open a distance from the opponent indirectly. Here You (right) means sideway; Pan (look forward) in martial arts terms means defensive ideas in withdrawing skills. So the main idea is how to rotate and withdraw sideway with some defense skills. It is usually called rotate withdraw. It is metal which means springy and tenacious. It belongs to Feijin (Lung Channel). When the key point Tanzhong is focused on, the qi will automatically push the body to rotate backward.

Ding (or Zhongding – central equilibrium) means to keep balanced and stable; this really means to keep the central axis of your body stable. The main idea is how to keep the balance so that your body is ready to do anything. The common explanation of Zhongding is to keep Zhongqi – central qi quiet and stable. It refers to the internal component not physical movement. It is earth which means everything is generated from it. If the balance cannot be kept well, any other skill cannot be done well. It belongs to Pijin (Spleen Channel). When the Dantian is focused on, the qi will automatically adjust the balance.

To understand Wubu, first of all one should understand the relationship of Wuxing and Tian Gan. Wuxing means five elements which express five basic attributes or features of the universe. There is a generation - destruction cycle relationship between the elements. Tian Guan are ten characters which are used to record years and directions. Wuxing and Tian Guan have a mapping relationship. Jia and Yi are in the east and their attribute is wood. Geng and Xin are in the west and their attribute is metal. Ren and Gui are in the north and their attribute is water. Bing and Ding are in the south and their attribute is fire. Wu and Ji are in the center and their attribute is earth.

To practice Wubu, some ideas should be always included. They are Teng, Shan, Chou, Nian, Shuo, Qi, Zuan, Wen, Huo, Kong and etc. Although they are used in many other styles as common martial arts terms, in Taiji Quan some of them have different meaning. Usually in Taiji Quan, to focus on qi and the mind when these are practiced is more than on physical movements. Teng (or Tengnuo) means up and down moving. Most of the time, in their practice people just think qi should be sink down. In this way they can develop their stability well but usually are not nimble enough. Thus, their steps will be slow. The Teng idea can help people to get nimbleness from the stable steps. Use this word to raise up the qi and make the qi balanced. It is said: "Qi in the body must be Teng always." Shan (or Shanzhan) means side to side dodging. It also means internal qi’s moving but not only physical movement. Chou means withdraw. It is about how one can get away from the opponent’s control. Nian means stick to. It is about how one can keep the advantage when he has a good position. Shuo means lock and control. It is about how to lock the opponent’s step and get control of him. Qi (or Qishen) means to close to. Because fighting in close is much better for Taiji skills, how to get close to the opponent is important. Zuan (or Zuanhuan) means Yin and Yang exchanging. It is about how to change steps (footwork) smoothly, quickly, nimbly and stably. Wen means stable or rooted. It is said "stable like a mountain" or "root like a big tree". How to keep stable when stepping is important. Huo means lively and nimble. It is said "moving like a river". One should always feel excited inside the body and mind. Kong means empty. In Taiji empty does not mean suddenly leave (as done in most other styles). It is done by the mind not by physical body. It is said "let your opponent see and feel that something is there but cannot really get control of you there." Although the ten words are separate words, there is some overlap in meaning among them. In fact they cannot be explained in complete separation from each other. They all should be applied together in Taji Quan practice.

It is said "the origin of Bagua is Wuxing", that is Wuxing is the foundation of Bagua. In the very beginning, Bagua and Wuxing were two separate philosophical systems, and then they were combined together in Taoism and were developed to a complete system. Taiji Quan skills were designed under this Taoist principle. Footwork or body movement skills are the foundation of hand skills. To understand this is the key point of application. People always say "hands like a door, fighting depends on footwork", "thirty percent in hands and seventy percent in step". It is a very common situation for many people, that maybe they can do fixed step push hands well but they cannot transfer their skills to real fighting. The most important reason is they cannot do footwork and body movement well.
Last edited by marvin8 on Sun Nov 12, 2017 11:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

Who is Zhang Yun
Don't put power into the form let it naturally arise from the form
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

Yeah, well, the whole concept of 13 postures doesn't make sense, anyways. If there are 8 hand methods, you have 8 options for the right hand and eight options for the left hand, which means 64 options. Same with the feet, so there are 25 options there (assume no double weighting, so that means "central equilibrium" can be right footed or left footed. Similarly, any of the steps can be done with either foot, if we assume that a step in a non-cardinal direction is categorized broadly as forward, back, left or right). 64 options up top, times 25 options with the feets, means there really should be 1,600 potential static postures.

If you put those into a three move sequence (because we want our fights to be over in three moves or less), you have 1600 options for the first move, times 1599 for the second move (because you can't repeat the exact same move you're in, or else it's not moving), times 1599 for the third, which means you have over 4 billion options for kicking ass with the Wu Bu and Ba Fa, in just 3 moves!

As the great Taoist classics say "First there was Wuji, and from Wuji came Taiji, and from Taiji springs the 4.09 billion things. And from the 4.09 billion things springs the notion that maybe some of y'all take this shit way too literally."
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

I think that is why the "abstract" is preferred. No one can memorize 4 billion situations.

The kao as counter is already super specific. Perhaps you "feel" it more abstractly: you feel the "pull" of the arm drag and "follow" it in with your "kao". The directions thing is also a bit specific. You want to kao across their weak line between their feet. You can "feel" that and you can "see" it. I am somewhat arguing against my earlier argument that the footwork training is not really specific. Becuase this "magic" of taijiquan isn't really about super specific footwork. The magic is whether you can feel this energy and follow it in the way that oragami and john explained for this situation, but in a more generalized way. Is your "ooda" loop more sensitive and fast because your observe-orient was superior? It's not step here, then step there. You beat them in the oo part already.
Last edited by everything on Sun Nov 12, 2017 7:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

Should you "yield" when your opponent pushes/pulls you? How can you prevent your opponent from borrowing your "yielding" force?
I'm still allergy to "push".
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

johnwang wrote:Should you "yield" when your opponent pushes/pulls you? How can you prevent your opponent from borrowing your "yielding" force?

Yes but not JUST yield.
By yield I mean not let them get a hold of my mass.

If done properly they don't feel it, the mass they're trying to affect is simply not there so they usually keep trying to do what they're doing or they do realize it's a trap and reverse themselves. Either situation works to our advantage in theory, So that's essentially the same situation as borrowing the yielding and resisting force as you describe it.

The winner there is whoever can hide their force better. The yield/lu hides the mass you can affect, so if it's effective then there's no chance of them borrowing force because we give them no force and nothing to land on.

Again though, you don't just yield and call it a day, yielding with kao, for example, the yielding is the advance towards their center.
"This principle is very obvious and requires no further elaboration."
-Yang Cheng Fu

oragami_itto
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

wayne hansen wrote:Who is Zhang Yun

Northern Wu style under Wang Peisheng, as well as bagua and hsingyi etc. He shares some nice information through his website and authored a book on the major IMA.
The old man calmly said: “Among the mighty are those who are mightier. In martial arts, no one presumes to praise his own ability. But because you are young, you don't know the scale of the world, and are unaware of how ridiculous you are. Why be upset?”
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

johnwang wrote:
oragami_itto wrote:prevent giving you the mass and then shortcutting through the middle of the circle ...

You are right! Both resist and yield will put you in defense mode. You have to take the control back by cutting in front of your opponent and "interrupt" his circular running. The moment that your opponent can move your body, it's already too late.

oragami_itto wrote:
johnwang wrote:Should you "yield" when your opponent pushes/pulls you? How can you prevent your opponent from borrowing your "yielding" force?

Yes but not JUST yield.
By yield I mean not let them get a hold of my mass.

If done properly they don't feel it, the mass they're trying to affect is simply not there so they usually keep trying to do what they're doing or they do realize it's a trap and reverse themselves. Either situation works to our advantage in theory, So that's essentially the same situation as borrowing the yielding and resisting force as you describe it.

The winner there is whoever can hide their force better. The yield/lu hides the mass you can affect, so if it's effective then there's no chance of them borrowing force because we give them no force and nothing to land on.

Again though, you don't just yield and call it a day, yielding with kao, for example, the yielding is the advance towards their center.

Yes, that video shows him yielding in the same direction as the pull, first. Then, changing direction.

This video shows more yielding by stepping and continuing in the direction of the drag; using the opponent's momentum.

Joe Scioli
Published on Dec 20, 2013:

marvin8
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

wayne hansen wrote:Who is Zhang Yun

Probably one of the best internal martial artist out there today. Strider Clark's teacher (who is also one of the best out there today). He has written several important books. I have studied with him and attest to these facts.
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

marvin8 wrote:
johnwang wrote:
oragami_itto wrote:prevent giving you the mass and then shortcutting through the middle of the circle ...

You are right! Both resist and yield will put you in defense mode. You have to take the control back by cutting in front of your opponent and "interrupt" his circular running. The moment that your opponent can move your body, it's already too late.

oragami_itto wrote:
johnwang wrote:Should you "yield" when your opponent pushes/pulls you? How can you prevent your opponent from borrowing your "yielding" force?

Yes but not JUST yield.
By yield I mean not let them get a hold of my mass.

If done properly they don't feel it, the mass they're trying to affect is simply not there so they usually keep trying to do what they're doing or they do realize it's a trap and reverse themselves. Either situation works to our advantage in theory, So that's essentially the same situation as borrowing the yielding and resisting force as you describe it.

The winner there is whoever can hide their force better. The yield/lu hides the mass you can affect, so if it's effective then there's no chance of them borrowing force because we give them no force and nothing to land on.

Again though, you don't just yield and call it a day, yielding with kao, for example, the yielding is the advance towards their center.

Yes, that video shows him yielding in the same direction as the pull, first. Then, changing direction.

This video shows more yielding by stepping and continuing in the direction of the drag; using the opponent's momentum.

Joe Scioli
Published on Dec 20, 2013:

Your showing how to counter the arm drag! I was gonna post about it but I delayed.

Bravo...as a wrestler this falls in line to what I've been preaching for years:. " The way into danger, is The way out...and vice versa".

This works in wrestling mode, but there are ways to achieve the same thing via swimming through it (ala more tiaji esque). Also a big key that nobody is mentioning is weather you allow a 2 on 1 grabb to exist...or do you change that scenario?

Lastly,
Of course the previously mentioned method of pressing the shoulder into a person's center is a perfectly viable response as well.
Last edited by Subitai on Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:30 am, edited 2 times in total.
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### Re: It's just a step to the left...

Subitai wrote:pressing the shoulder into a person's center is a perfectly viable response as well.

To press your opponent's dragging arm at his elbow joint across his chest and in front of him will be the best solution.

johnwang wrote:Should you "yield" when your opponent pushes/pulls you? How can you prevent your opponent from borrowing your "yielding" force?

IMO, both resist and yield are bad solution. The best solution is to "jam" your opponent's force. Your opponent tries to drag you toward NW direction, you jam his dragging arm toward NE direction.

1. Resist: Your opponent applies N vector force, you counter with S vector force.
2. Yield: Your opponent applies N vector force, you counter with N vector force.
3. Jam: Your opponent applies N vector force, you counter with E (or W) vector force.
Last edited by johnwang on Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.
I'm still allergy to "push".
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