Locked versus Flowing

One Finger Shooting Zen is the fundamental way method to train internal force in Shaolin Wahnam. It can be practiced in a variety of ways; hard, soft, consolidated, flowing, it's all there.

One Finger Shooting Zen, which happens to be my favorite exercise, is the fundamental method to train force in Shaolin Wahnam. It can be practiced in a variety of ways; hard, soft, consolidated, flowing, it’s all there. Image taken from shaolin.org.

Hi all! Decided on recommendation to see about making this a weekly or biweekly thread rather than a daily thread like before. It certainly saves me some time during the day, which of course, gets translated into more time for studying and killing time on Facebook. Go figure, haha.

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The cost of training?

Jackie Chan's character practicing "Golden Bridge." Yes, he has metal rings on his forearms and his master is making him "sit" there until the incense stick below is done burning. I'm glad my master didn't make me do that! Image taken from http://www.tumblr.com/

Jackie Chan’s character practicing “Golden Bridge,” one of the most famous variants of the Horse Riding stance. Yes, he has metal rings on his forearms and yes, his master is making him “sit” there until the incense stick below is done burning. I’m glad my master didn’t make me do that! Image taken from http://www.tumblr.com/

The question posed on LinkedIn back in early 2013 May was: What is the cost of your training and your skill? For some, it is monetary, for some it is time, and others it is blood, sweat, and tears.

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Goals inform training

It is important to have measurable goals in our training. One very useful goal for martial artists to achieve is to hold the Horse Riding stance with correct form and a relaxed mind for five minutes. Image taken from www.shaolin.org

The two pillars of kung fu are force and combat application. A useful goal for martial artists to reach in developing force is to hold the Horse Riding stance, with correct form and completely relaxed, for five minutes. Image taken from http://www.shaolin.org

Blind and haphazard training will get you no where. You have to know exactly what you want, why you want it, how you will get it, and when you plan to arrive at your goal so that you can be as time- and cost-effective as possible. Most of us aren’t exactly immortal; why not do the best we can to get what we want?

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A typical training session?

Hey folks,

Since I live pretty far away from my master (Illinois versus Florida), I can’t exactly pack my bags and take regular classes from him, so I learn what I can at regional or intensive seminars and take it back home to practice. My master’s regular classes oscillate between the two major structures I’ve seen in the martial arts schools I’ve attended:

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Training goals and philosophy

Sorry about the radio silence, folks! I’ve been a little busy with final projects, exams, and job interviews. But enough of that, let’s talk kung fu training.

Ever since becoming “serious” about my martial arts training a few years ago, I have been greatly inspired by the example of my grandmaster, whose training philosophy is “setting and attaining aims and objectives.” The philosophy of most other traditional kung fu schools is “attaining skill through sweat and toil” and take about ten to fifteen years to churn out a martial artist who is fit, powerful, agile, and capable of using his kung fu even against masters of other styles. Why does it take a decade and a half? Ignorance and haphazard training tend to be the major reasons.

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