|Form pattern: versions|
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Each pattern involves distinct alterations to both the appearance and the functionality of the form itself:
Lines of force
Round (5 bows)
Unite upper & lower
Opening & closing
Moving with stillness
Moving from centre
The empty form is the combat form. It is not a crowd pleaser. The movements are compact, crisp and minimalist.
Is the empty form slow?
As slow as you want it to be. Unless you are training jing.
The empty form is about agility, nimbleness, jing, power generation and kinetic energy emission. It requires a high degree of softness, sensitivity and lightness.
Expertise with form application, shuai jiao, chin na and the other areas of skill is a must.
This spirit of combat will infuse and transform the pattern; making it energised and edgy. The martial spirit/intent is evident in the gaze, poise and every movement.
The Chen form derived from
battlefield military movements, where people wore medieval body armour that
had to be compensated for. The Chen-style stances were specifically designed
to achieve these compensations and obtain a workable position from which to
realistically throw an armoured opponent.
By the time Yang had reached Beijing, times had changed. With the advent of firearms, battlefield armour became obsolete; hence, the need for techniques to deal with armoured foes had passed.
Yang and his students had to deal with situations encountered by bodyguards, not armies opposing each other.
9 March 1995
Last updated 07 January 2020