Kung Fu Techniques from the Dragon
Kung Fu Theory
This Kung Fu Techniques article is part two of a two part article.
Last month I talked about the Tiger Kung Fu Techniques. If you read that martial arts article closely you probably have an inkling of what I am going to say this month.
To bring you up to speed let me open with this brief recap from the Tiger Kung Fu article…
The tiger is a kung fu animal that deals with Force. To make his techniques work the Tiger will usually charge forwards. He is interested only in delivering force with his kung fu techniques.
On the other hand, the Dragon is a sly fellow who is not interested in bashing forearms, breaking bones, or otherwise delivering destruction while placing himself in the path of destruction.
This is the crux of the matter.
The Tiger wishes to deliver a Force and isn’t always careful about recieving a Force.
The Dragon, on the other hand, wishes to deliver a Force while not receiving any force himself.
Do you see how much smarter he is? Do you see what an advantage it is to do your fighting without getting hit?
Intelligence can come with age. Looking at politicians does tend to refiute this, but in the Martial Arts it tends to be a truth.
Simply, experience, especially that experience tempered on the real world of the kung fu training hall, does breed wisdom.
One learns what works.
So the Dragon, through bruises and contuses, learns to step aside while doing his punching and hitting and such.
But also, if the Martial Art the person is studying has any depth, the person learns, through the study of the correct kung fu technique, how to become wise.
As I said last month, good kung fu techniques will teach one how to handle Force, and then move into Flow.
Which brings us to the subject of the Dragon techniques in The Perfect Art.
In Shaolin Kung Fu the Dragon must grow out of the Tiger.
For this to happen the blocks must proceed from hard to soft. The collapsation of distance must occur and the student must be willing to move in and learn not to rely on just hard blocks, but to use soft blocks.
The Inward Middle Block of Tiger Kung Fu goes out from the Tan Tien.
The same block, done in Dragon Kung Fu, involves the body moving towards the opponent while the hand moves back.
Thus, the kung fu techniques don’t rely on forcing, but develop into flowing.
Guide, instead of break.
And the Inward Middle Block has become a ‘Brush Block.’
The Brush block is done with the palms or backs of the hands, and the intent is to apply mere ounces instead of hundreds of pounds.
But if you don’t understand where it came from, and the geometric progression of the gradient techniques growin from the Inward Middle Block, chances are you won’t understand how Tiger kung fu techniques change into the techniques of the Dragon: how Hard becomes the Soft.
Kung Fu Techniques
Left Back Stance with a right Inward Middle Block. Pull the Attacking wrist with the left hand as you execute a right Elbow Spike to the armpit. Step forward with the left leg as you spiral the Attacker’s arm up and around to a Vertical Wrist Pin.
To understand this kung fu move, lets consider it by pieces.
In the tiger, the first move, the inward block is hard. A bash. In the Dragon, one has learned how to angle the body and align it so that all the weight goes into the forearm. Thus, it becomes effortless.
In the tiger, the second move is the elbow spike. In the Dragon the second move is a shock, and is setting up a lock or throw.
In the tiger, the third move will be a simple punch to the body with the rear hand. In the dragon the kung fu technique morphs into a spiral takedown similar to an Aikido technique.
So what is happening is that the Kung Fu student first learns the hard method, so he can handle force and protect himself. He learns to fight.
The second phase of kung fu training, however, is when the student learns to translate the hard movement into a soft movement, an effortless takedown or throw.
Beyond that, there are philosophical questions.
Kung Fu Philosophy
Kung Fu Techniques such as the one i just described lead through a realm of philsophy.
The Martial Arts footwork develops to explore the points of the compass, and the various concepts of the various Arts, but it does not leave the concept of the hand motion of the Inward Middle Block.
The geometric vectors of the defense change from disagreeing to agreeing, or from contention to harmony.
It’s funny, the concept of harmony as a philosophy is not necessary, but is a contrivance of a man interested in religious implications.
Do you need to study Christianity to build a bridge? I think not. Physics are just not effected by today’s religions.
Will a better bridge be built by a Christian? Maybe. If discipline and principle play a part in developing a better character, and better character is necessary to adhering to the physics of the Universe.
But religion is not necessary to the building of a Martial Art.
In fact, the person who can strip himself of philosophy, as man understands it today, actually stands a better chance of understanding the truths of the Universe.
Bear in mind, please, that though what I have said may appear contentious, it really only ‘Opens the door,’ much as the Tiger opens the door for the Dragon. It is really only contentious if you refuse to go through the door.
Thus, Kung fu Techniques reveal a truth of the Martial Arts and of the Universe. The only way out of chaos is to march right through it.
Yes, you could run, but eventually that chaos will catch you. Some other time, some other situation, same chaos.
Chaos is not order.
The solution to chaos is to go through it, understand it, and order it.
Thus…there will be no chaos. This is a truth recognized only by the Martial Arts Dragons among us.
And the truth revealed through a study of Martial Art technique is true through all kung fu techniques.
What I have shown you here, for one block, good Kung Fu instruction does for all blocks, and this is a truly incredible phenomena.
And yet it is only knowledge…’Understanding’ something.
I said it before and I’ll say it again. If you understand something before you do your speed of learning will be increased ten times. Heck! A hundred times.
You think not?
Try doing what I have shown you in this article and then make up your mind.
Learn Kung Fu Techniques well and you just might find your Tiger changing into a Dragon.
Here is the bible of Kung Fu techniques.
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I like your artical about Dragon style Kung Fu. My comments are a bit of a rant please excuse me for this. This style I believe is taking the next step into using chi power the way it is supposed to be used. While practicing Chi Kung every day with the Dragon bone power techniques and stretching my muscles and tendons to the max, I do feel the essence of how the Dragon feels, thinks and moves. Having studied and practiced many of the traditional hard/soft , internal/external styles. I firmly believe the Dragon style is through logical progression is the ultimate stage of an altered state type of Martial Art. (If there is anything beyond Dragon style which I’m sure there is) I for one is thankful for discovering something very special and happy in knowing I get the point about the Martial Art Dragon. I feel no need for knowing or practicing the other animal styles. I’m still discoving the multitude of Dragon virtues. I feel as if the Dragon style has always been there inside me and all I’m doing now is enhancing what I’ve been and growing more confident with it. I have had very serious health issues and now I don’t due to practicing Chi Kung. Pondering on what a Dragon would do in situations also gives a new perspective on things. I feel for example that the Dragon style can give a person a hyper awareness sense. People tend to look and move slower from the Dragon’s perspective also. Noticing Dragon attributes in others is interesting also; especially apparent in dancers. Modern dance dancers that stretch and move in a fluid and flexible way have the Dragon virtue. Could explain why David Carradine was chosen for the leading role as Caine in the hit TV program ‘Kung Fu’ He always said “I am a dancer not a martial artist” Maybe he was a Dragon!