Monday, June 12, 2006

The Yang 13 Sword Form

In two weeks I'm going to attend a seminar by Scott Rodell, a Tai Chi teacher who teaches practical Tai Chi Sword. To prepare, I've decided to learn the whole form this weekend so I have some context to learn from during the seminar.

Last night I popped in a DVD of the Yang form I have and plan to watch the whole form every morning and evening to get a feel for it before the weekend when I try to physicaly learn it.

Getting my head around the Yang form is tough. It's really, really long. Depending on how you count it, it might be around 60 stances, but each of those stances might have two or three steps in them. Comparatively, the Mantis form I know is about 35 moves, and the Wing Chun wooden man form I know is like 150. It took a year and a half of classes to learn the whole wooden man form, and now I'm going to try to learn the whole Yang sword form in one day.



David said...

150 moves? That seems huge, you must have to break it up into sections and learn each one and then stitch them together? The idea is to get it into muscle memory so you don't have to think -- can that be done in such a short span?

Charlie said...

One of the DVDs I have breaks the form into four sections. There are also lots of move lists available to aid memory.

I think approaching the form like you don't have muscle memory of the moves can help you understand the possibilities for application. Playing with the timing, the weight shifts, and the body mechanics involved to produce different effects from the same general movement can really open the mind.

That said, I'm sure all my dendrites will be bleeding by the end of Sunday when I will try to learn the whole thing.