Sun Baguazhang

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Sun Baguazhang

Postby spring on Sun Jul 06, 2008 11:38 pm

Greetings Emptyflower folk! :D

Does anyone else here pratice Sun Lutang Baguazhang ? Care to share some ideas of to why this branch uses different guard posturing, and extreme simplification of forms ? What other experience you have with this style ?


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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby DeusTrismegistus on Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:13 am

Well I want to learn all the Sun style arts, but no teachers near me. My friend may be starting some sun style taiji soon and I can have her show me some stuff once she learns it.
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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby spring on Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:49 am

Ok, well my grandteacher learned all three, my teacher did Xingyi and Bagua, and I know the Bagua only.

Our Bagua has basic exercises like spring backwards, turning palm, three piercing palms, dragon twisting on Yinyang. Then we do the five element Taiji-Bagua form, posture by posture , then moving postures, then creative postures. After this preparation a student can begin the circle walking form with single and double changing palms and so on, again posture by posture, moving, and finally creative practice on the circle which needs a lot of work in neigong and meditation. Partner methods come along with each stage, first is eight attacks, then eight evasions, then free form circling drills. Finally is practice with jien.

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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby JAB on Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:44 am

Spring,
I have no experience with other styles of Bagua, but the guard does not look that different to me. As to "why" Sun simplified forms... we can only speculate, but it has been written (by Sun) and heard by many of his students, that he basically took the meat and potatoes of his arts (again I can only speak of Bagua and Taiji, as though are the only ones I have learned) because that was all that was needed to learn to fight productively. He managed to minimize all the extra curricular BS, and focus solely on what worked and why it worked. If it was useless, or the application was questionable, he tossed it.

Both the Sun Taiji and Bagua I train I find great! Really enjoy it the longer I do it. Direct. To the point. No none sense with extra forms etc.

Hope this helps. Not sure what else you were looking for.
Cheers
Jake -joint-
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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby spring on Mon Jul 07, 2008 8:43 am

Jake, well its the positioning of the inside hand when circling, Sun changed it to face down by abdomen wheras most Bagua styles have their hand near the outer arms elbow or at least by the ribs. Ok thats one small thing, but my teacher said it was down to his Xingyi expertise and body habit.

I agree that Sun distilled the essence into the changes, our method teaches that each change has one big principle that can become countless numbers of fighting applications.

So - what about basic exercises ? These are the most important part of any art, do you practice the ones i mention before or similar ?



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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby JAB on Mon Jul 07, 2008 9:21 am

Spring (is that actually your name?),
Hmmm, from the sounds of it your teacher has had other influences. The way I was taught to hold the hand is not palm down. Both hands have fingers up. Same as can be seen in Sun's book on Bagua.
Same with the list of some of your exercises and techniques. We have none of that.
As it has been explained to me.... Sun primarily taught already high level practitioners. So by the time someone came to him to train they were already grounded in basics from whatever style they came from. For instance some of my brothers have asked Tim about footwork in Sun Bagua, and why other styles had various "mud stepping" and what not type of drills, and basics. Tim said he once asked Sun Jian Yun about this, and her basic reply was (or what her dad told her) "This is how the footwork is done. If they cannot figure it out without a bunch of drills working up to the proper footwork, then maybe Bagua is too hard for them to train."
May I ask who your teacher is?
Thanks
Jake -sumo-
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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby spring on Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:10 am

Jake

Yes its a (kind of) translation of my Chinese name, like water gushing up, and I am called this by my friends in England. Ok my teacher was Mike Gillespie, a 6th Generation disciple of He Shen Ting who lived the latter part of his life in Taiwan. I think he was in America a couple of times by invitation , but his only disciple from outside ROC was Mike Gillespie who spent eight years with him. I dont think many would have known Mike as he was totally against teaching his stuff publicly, but he had solid and fluid Bagua skill. There were only a few of us in the training in different parts of the country as he travelled all over a lot, few years ago he got involved with some kind of intelligence work due to his linguistic skills (when I knew him he spoke seven languages) and last we heard he died in Asia. So, I keep circling............

Well I respect your teachers exprience but it sounds unusual for China, in China and Taiwan any teacher willing to teach real gongfu will have you doing basics for at least a year or three, ESPECIALLY if you come from another system and need to 'wipe the slate clean'. Sun Bagua does not have mud steppin anyway, but it must have basic drills. Circling is already advanced as my teacher said. The teachers who put you straight into forms are because they dont want to give you the real stuff which is the basics. Who is Tim your teacher, and which generation is he in the lineage ? How many years was he with Madam Sun ? Did he learn the Tao-Gong which was GM Sun's high level teaching? Thanks.

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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby JAB on Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:20 am

Spring,
Tim Cartmell http://www.shenwu.com
His lineage can be found on my site under the respective arts/styles. http://www.threeharmonies.com
As for the "highest teaching" BS I have no energy to enter into another argument about speculation on everyones part. Tim is no nonsense, and so he also picked his teachers with such attitude. I can only speak of his experiences vicariously obviously, but I can tell you in my limited 17 years of martial experience that indeed there is tons of BS out there, and it is hard to sift through.
As for your comment on any teacher teaching basics for 1-3 years...... again there is lots of shit out there, and lots of teachers who drag out your learning. I cannot speak for your experiences, but with me I have found many like that, and the overwhelming majority of those like minded individuals had little to nothing to offer an aspiring student other than a drained bank account, and time spent that can never be earned back. I trained with many of these type people prior to meeting my current two teachers (Tim and Hu Xi Lin), and when I first met Tim he taught me more about Xing Yi in one hour than I had learned in years of practice with my former instructors! I asked why he was so open, response was "I was taken advantage of both with money and time too often in Asia, why would I want to do that to my students."
Needless to say I have been dedicated to Tim and his teachings for over 6 years now! I hope you can find someone as kind and willing to share as I have.
I think if you look at the translations of Sun's works you will notice some stark differences in what you were taught, and what is originally taught by Sun. This is not to say your teacher is not good, nor did he teach you wrong! Just differently I suppose.
Hope that helps.
Jake 8-)
Last edited by JAB on Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby spring on Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:33 am

Jake

Thanks for the info on Tim Cartmell, ok I see he does many styles but there is no info on his lineage, generation or how long he trained under Madam Sun? He seems to be senior student of Luo De Xiu of Taiwan in Ga style which is very different to Sun Bagua.

Now please notice I said high level teaching NOT highest level . Tao-Gong was the heart and soul of GM Sun's teaching as it still is for us in the lineage, it makes the art what it is and why its different to other branches. If you like description of this I can give it .

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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby shawnsegler on Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:49 am

S- kicks back feet and cracks beer.
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You behind the wheel
And me the passenger
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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby spring on Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:53 am

Hey Jake just saw your edit

No, no those years of basics...especially dragging it out...are the key to depth.

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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby strawdog on Mon Jul 07, 2008 12:13 pm

Sun Style Ba Gua is so simple it is idiot proof and can be learned in a short amount of time. You can learn it and fight with it by the second week. That's how I learned it and I don't know why others take say it takes years.

I just don't get how something that was simplified can be turned around and be complicated and dragged out by some teachers.
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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby DeusTrismegistus on Mon Jul 07, 2008 1:45 pm

Spring,

The hand positioning difference sounds similar to the change Sun Lutang made in his Santi stance. He turned the front palm inward. Sun Jian Yun explains in the intro to his book, (the english tranlsation by Tim Cartmell), that he changed the hand position for better qi cultivation but for fighting the traditional hand pointed forward was more effective.

Basics are very important, but if you wait to master the basics before moving on to the advanced material you will never learn anything but basics. The more advanced teachings will often shed light onto why the basics are important and new ways to train the basics and what you may need more work on. The basics are what you always return to but they should be improved concurrently with learning new things. People tend to take things to extreme and either practice basics too long or pass over basics too quickly and never return to them. Like most things the best path is right down the middle.
Last edited by DeusTrismegistus on Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby JAB on Mon Jul 07, 2008 2:59 pm

Spring,
You need to read my post a bit better. The lineage is on my page, not Tim's. Tim spent over 10 years in Taiwan and China, and trained with Sun for a handful of those.
I understand Gao is different than Sun, hence us talking about Sun, not Gao.

I am very happy for you and your lineage, and what you do. There are rumors abound about the "highest form" of this, that, and the other. Frankly I have no time for the silliness. As Meynard stated the way I have been taught is damn near fool proof (though I am testing those limitations on a daily basis). If you wish to make something more than what it is, fine. But really stick with your original question in asking us about the style. If this is going to turn into another thread where someone baits others to chime in, then systematically tears them down with statements about "my teacher/lieage/style was taught more complete / better / the REAL......" then I have nothing to offer you.
Cheers
Jake
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Re: Sun Baguazhang

Postby spring on Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:02 pm

Jake , relax a little my friend . Its just a discussion.

- There are rumors abound about the "highest form" -

no, for second time I said HIGHER form...there is a difference.

- The lineage is on my page, not Tim's. -

It opens a blank box on my screen, not a big deal anyway.


- If this is going to turn into another thread where someone baits others to chime in,-

No, check the thread...YOU asked about my teacher, I never asked your lineage before that nor intended to.


- Tim spent over 10 years in Taiwan and China, and trained with Sun for a handful of those -

Ok, just checked with my friends in China who have been with Madam Sun for twenty years before her passing, they recall your teacher visiting her for a short period, shorter than two months. He is not a lineage holder, he visited and was shown only the basic outer form which explains what you have learned as the whole system. Thats fine, no big deal, but no need to exagerate. A visiting researcher is not a lineage holder, and will not learn the same things.




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