Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby C.J.W. on Sun Dec 03, 2017 9:53 pm

The point he brings up about being "in a state" actually echoes what some of the high-level IMA guys have told me. The idea is that once you have developed an internally-connected and dantian-driven body with Peng-jin present at all times, fighting is just a matter of maintaining that state of dynamic balance while physically interacting with an opponent, who will be unbalanced by you on contact if he happens to have weaker structure.

But I guess since much of what we do in IMA has to do with intent and what goes on inside the body, every IMAist has their own way of explaining and describing things. So we really don't know what he means for sure unless we can get some hands-on with him.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Itten on Mon Dec 04, 2017 2:02 am

C.J.W. wrote:The point he brings up about being "in a state" actually echoes what some of the high-level IMA guys have told me. The idea is that once you have developed an internally-connected and dantian-driven body with Peng-jin present at all times, fighting is just a matter of maintaining that state of dynamic balance while physically interacting with an opponent, who will be unbalanced by you on contact if he happens to have weaker structure.

You are echoing what both Sam Chin and Dan Harden say in slightly different ways. Howeve, if you don’t know how to fight, have never fought, do not have the will to fight, then you will only unbalance people playing at push hands. It is clear that many people who practice “push”, which is an educative game, often expose their heads, knees , ankles and groin, whilst busily playing a stick and flow game. To my mind that will mean that even when you are “dynamically balanced” there is something missing in your wiring diagram. I have felt the intent in experienced fighters who sense and indicate all the openings whilst playing with upper body stickiness only. That wakes up awareness on a larger scale, even without actually attacking those openings. I believe that without that addition you will never develop a responsive body. Even Bruce Lee’s dictum, “ seek emptiness” can be seen as internal training in awareness and listening.in other words you attack where the opponents awareness is absent.
So. In a limited way, I agree with the idea that all parts must be free to move, but unless they are connected in an offensive/defensive manner(yin/yang balanced) those parts will be useless. The clip with the Ba Gua guy showed this painfully. His hands and feet were not dantien connected, nor were they filled with intent. The Muai Thai fighter had gained more internal power from his external training, he was more free, in reality, than the internal(!!??) guy.




But I guess since much of what we do in IMA has to do with intent and what goes on inside the body, every IMAist has their own way of explaining and describing things. So we really don't know what he means for sure unless we can get some hands-on with him.


Sure true enough, but that never stops anyone’s opinion, ;-)
Last edited by Itten on Mon Dec 04, 2017 2:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Bao on Mon Dec 04, 2017 8:25 am

oragami_itto wrote:After watching this I think I have some problems with it.
I don't believe internal skills are something you can "learn" so much as a state you achieve.
Like a circus strongman can bend a steel bar, there's no trick to it, he just made himself strong enough to do it. Anyone who hasn't gone through the necessary conditioning won't be able to duplicate the feat. .


To become a strongman you first need to know that you must make yourself strong. If you don’t, you can never achieve it. Who can give a better guidance than a strongman? I did like the vid very much, but I’ve problems with people who don’t want to teach a body method. Even if it's about not doing, don't you think there must be ways to achieve what he does ... or what he does not?

C.J.W. wrote:The idea is that once you have developed an internally-connected and dantian-driven body with Peng-jin present at all times, fighting is just a matter of maintaining that state of dynamic balance while physically interacting with an opponent, who will be unbalanced by you on contact if he happens to have weaker structure.


IMO, to develop a certain body and "maintaining that state" is one thing, to be able to bring it together anytime you want is another. "Just be" in it is also something else. It could be said that having a developed body method is already high skill. Bringing it into play anytime you want is an even higher level. But what he speaks about is to not "do" something, but to let go of everything you "do" and "just be". To reach this state, you must know your method so well that it has become the natural state that is just there when you don't do anything. You do nothing and it's there. This state is something I strive for myself, but I am not there yet. To "get into my body" I must remind myself that I am not perfectly relaxed, that my breath is shallow and that I "float". So I must remember myself to relax, sink, empty my mind and do this consciously. Sometimes it goes faster, sometimes I struggle to get there. It depends on what mood I'm in.

I don't believe that you can learn how to "just be" in a state if you haven't first been practicing the body method consciously and have got to know it and understand it well. It could be compared to learning to ride a bike or to play certain instruments. It takes time and conscious effort. But when you have learned it you just do it without thinking or bothering with the mechanics behind it. You just do it.
Last edited by Bao on Mon Dec 04, 2017 8:29 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby oragami_itto on Mon Dec 04, 2017 8:50 am

Bao wrote:
oragami_itto wrote:After watching this I think I have some problems with it.
I don't believe internal skills are something you can "learn" so much as a state you achieve.
Like a circus strongman can bend a steel bar, there's no trick to it, he just made himself strong enough to do it. Anyone who hasn't gone through the necessary conditioning won't be able to duplicate the feat. .


To become a strongman you first need to know that you must make yourself strong. If you don’t, you can never achieve it. Who can give a better guidance than a strongman? I did like the vid very much, but I’ve problems with people who don’t want to teach a body method. Even if it's about not doing, don't you think there must be ways to achieve what he does ... or what he does not?


Sure, the way to achieve it is the training methods that properly condition the mind and body to perform it.

Like he said of his teacher in the other video, do the drills with no force for years and it develops. You can learn the exercises in a seminar but you can't pick up the authentic skill in any way other than practice, IMHO
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby C.J.W. on Mon Dec 04, 2017 4:19 pm

Itten wrote:You are echoing what both Sam Chin and Dan Harden say in slightly different ways. Howeve, if you don’t know how to fight, have never fought, do not have the will to fight, then you will only unbalance people playing at push hands. It is clear that many people who practice “push”, which is an educative game, often expose their heads, knees , ankles and groin, whilst busily playing a stick and flow game. To my mind that will mean that even when you are “dynamically balanced” there is something missing in your wiring diagram. I have felt the intent in experienced fighters who sense and indicate all the openings whilst playing with upper body stickiness only. That wakes up awareness on a larger scale, even without actually attacking those openings. I believe that without that addition you will never develop a responsive body. Even Bruce Lee’s dictum, “ seek emptiness” can be seen as internal training in awareness and listening.in other words you attack where the opponents awareness is absent.
So. In a limited way, I agree with the idea that all parts must be free to move, but unless they are connected in an offensive/defensive manner(yin/yang balanced) those parts will be useless. The clip with the Ba Gua guy showed this painfully. His hands and feet were not dantien connected, nor were they filled with intent. The Muai Thai fighter had gained more internal power from his external training, he was more free, in reality, than the internal(!!??) guy.


Actually, it was my Taiwanese Bagua teacher who first introduced the idea to me. He grew up practicing a HARD internal system (yes, you read it right) southern Chinese system and is fanatical about developing dantian and structure. Believe it or not, he actually hates Taiji and doesn't care for any of that limp-noodle PH neutralizing training. In his Bagua system, beginners focus on "immovability" first in order to develop connections. Once that is acquired, then you gradually learn how to free up and move more joints while maintaining those connections by practicing various moving Bagua drills and pair work. At higher levels, however, we actually seek to develop "disconnection" skills which teach you how to disconnect and connect limbs from/to dantien at will in fighting.

And of course, I don't think anyone can disagree with the fact that internal skills gained through cooperative training will get you nowhere without actual fighting/sparring experience.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Bao on Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:00 am

C.J.W. wrote:Actually, it was my Taiwanese Bagua teacher who first introduced the idea to me. He grew up practicing a HARD internal system (yes, you read it right) southern Chinese system and is fanatical about developing dantian and structure. ... In his Bagua system, beginners focus on "immovability" first in order to develop connections. Once that is acquired, then you gradually learn how to free up and move more joints while maintaining those connections by practicing various moving Bagua drills and pair work. At higher levels, however, we actually seek to develop "disconnection" skills which teach you how to disconnect and connect limbs from/to dantien at will in fighting. .


Interesting. Sounds like He Jinbao's Yin Bagua. I encountered very well connected structure from Bagua and some southern stylists. They do have a very solid, dense structure from the beginning to the end, deep roots and however they move, they have iron-like connection down from the feet all the way up to the fingertips. People from other styles might "connect" upon contact only, or while "issuing energy," but these always carry the same connectedness. Most Tai Chi people would have a problem with a good practitioner from any of these schools. So I can very well understand why he hates "soft" tai chi or if he laughs at it. There are also some Tai Chi branches that focus on developing a similar connection. Some of them start their practice as well as developing a very strong posture and solid structure first. Still, the best ones of the "connected schools" I've personally met were those who were very light and didn't let you feel that they had this connection. I think it's a great quality these people have, yet relying too much on structure can be just as deceiving as relying too much on softness. I do admire those who can balance it to a higher level, developing a completely dense and very strong, solid structure, and yet have a very quick footwork as well as having a very light and sensitive touch.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby windwalker on Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:53 am

interesting info Bao, CJW.

I think the real point is whole body, what this means and how its used. The feeling of anything derives from ones self.
What one can feel is their own central equilibrium or lack of.

The point being that the Conditions for Equilibrium. An object is in equilibrium if ; The resultant force acting on the object is zero. The sum of the moments acting on an object must be zero. What this means is that any force felt or lack of, is from ones self.

Image

If one is good they should feel no force and still be balanced, and yet by adding or subtracting a little, say 4oz ;) they can affect the rest of a structur of someone.
If one still feels force this their own, if one does can not feel any force it means they'er unable to release their own force both are mistakes.

Some call this treading on the knifes edge
Last edited by windwalker on Tue Dec 05, 2017 7:09 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Itten on Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:10 am

So Bao and Windwalker, you are both essentially saying the same thing. If you are neutral at the point of contact yin and yang are both equally available, you are on the cusp of the tai chi symbol. Not utilizing mechanical shifts between defensive or offensive techniques, just freely responding to the appearance of holes or weaknesses in the opponent. A higher level of sophistication of what good judoka, wrestlers,and boxers, learn to do through interaction in a relatively unstructured process.
Sure, “one part moves, all parts move”, but the amount of theory generated seems to immensely exceed the skill levels manifested.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby marvin8 on Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:56 am

Bao wrote:Still, the best ones of the "connected schools" I've personally met were those who were very light and didn't let you feel that they had this connection. I think it's a great quality these people have, yet relying too much on structure can be just as deceiving as relying too much on softness. I do admire those who can balance it to a higher level, developing a completely dense and very strong, solid structure, and yet have a very quick footwork as well as having a very light and sensitive touch.

Good fighters draw their opponent to attack, defend, or bridge and slip (yield), etc., without any contact and collide with the opponent's force with a counter to the opponent's center.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Itten on Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:16 am

Good fighters draw their opponent to attack and slip (yield), etc., without any contact and collide with the opponent's force with a counter to the opponent's center.[/quote]

That may be one of the attributes of a”good fighter”.How about just hit “the firstest with the mostest” worked for Jack Dempsey ;D
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Bodywork on Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:03 am

Itten wrote:Sure, “one part moves, all parts move”, but the amount of theory generated seems to immensely exceed the skill levels manifested.

Excellent. Priceless.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Bodywork on Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:11 am

Itten wrote:Good fighters draw their opponent to attack and slip (yield), etc., without any contact and collide with the opponent's force with a counter to the opponent's center.


That may be one of the attributes of a”good fighter”.How about just hit “the firstest with the mostest” worked for Jack Dempsey ;D[/quote]
I agree. except!
Pure aggression? Not really. Reasoned, seasoned, tactical aggression with a calm neutrality? All day long.
Your comment about yin yang played out ant any contact point is very true, but rarely seen. Finding those with internal skills who can actually fight and do this at full speed while attacking and moving instead of play tme, rarer still. The concept of yin/yang (in/yo) during aggression or defense is played out in the older Japanese weapons arts; Kobo Itchi, attack and defense, as one.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Itten on Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:39 am

Bodywork wrote:
Itten wrote:Good fighters draw their opponent to attack and slip (yield), etc., without any contact and collide with the opponent's force with a counter to the opponent's center.


That may be one of the attributes of a”good fighter”.How about just hit “the firstest with the mostest” worked for Jack Dempsey ;D

I agree. except!
Pure aggression? Not really. Reasoned, seasoned, tactical aggression with a calm neutrality? All day long.
Your comment about yin yang played out ant any contact point is very true, but rarely seen. Finding those with internal skills who can actually fight and do this at full speed while attacking and moving instead of play tme, rarer still. The concept of yin/yang (in/yo) during aggression or defense is played out in the older Japanese weapons arts; Kobo Itchi, attack and defense, as one.[/quote]

Greetings brother, I didn't know you still lurked here.
I think you know i am not advocating pure aggression, that was simply a response to the idea of tactics as the definition of a good fighter. And yes, finding anyone out there is very difficult. Without stirring up a shitstorm you are one of the exceptions in my personal experience of 40+ years.

Respect,
Alec
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby Bodywork on Wed Dec 06, 2017 8:57 pm

Itten wrote:Greetings brother, I didn't know you still lurked here.
I think you know i am not advocating pure aggression, that was simply a response to the idea of tactics as the definition of a good fighter. And yes, finding anyone out there is very difficult. Without stirring up a shitstorm you are one of the exceptions in my personal experience of 40+ years.

Respect,
Alec

Hi Alec
Good to see your still trying to communicate. I gave up and walked away from just about everything. I'm just too busy. The seminars are sell outs with waiting lists, I'm renovating the house, plus an addition, plus personal training. Now add in personal life!
I show up here mostly when I'm waiting on a plane or I'm tired and hanging out.

The thread:
I got what your were saying, I was responding to the overall tenor of the thread is all. Its a difficult topic. Most can't address it with any real experience, hence the conjecture and opinion.
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Re: Internal Seminar: All must be free to move — John Kaufman

Postby windwalker on Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:08 pm

Itten wrote:Sure, “one part moves, all parts move”, but the amount of theory generated seems to immensely exceed the skill levels manifested.


Its not a theory, for those that can do it.

As far as manifesting lots of clips showing this BTDT
many seem to not understand what they'er looking at hence
all the questions about clips showing this in use...
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