October 14th - "Use your Sword like a cowboy"

David Carradine, Kung Fu

Never thought I'd hear that from a Kung Fu Master.

Let me explain a bit.

He was talking about how one should feel and present themselves when wielding the Jian (straight sword). It should be like we see in the movies, standing tall, relaxed, but confident. He said look at other characters of this type too, like cowboys, when they duel they are not nervous. They stand tall, relaxed, ready to shoot. (He even did the two finger guns from the waist Pew Pew)

My bad habit for all Kung Fu forms is tensing/raising my shoulders. Da Hong Quan, Long Fist and now the Jian, I've had the same problem throughout all of them. I just need to practice and remember to relax. Which is something easier said than done while performing Kung Fu. That is were part of mastery lies, learning when to relax and tense your body. 

Last night, I went hard in training. On top of the normal four hours of training that we did, I practiced an additional two hours on the Jian. I'd like to show Master Bao that I don't just want to learn the moves but I'd like to actually understand (掌握) the weapon. Instead of doing the moves robotic,  I'd like to flow with the weapon. "身体和兵器应该配合", or something like that is what Master Bao continues to tell me. At first it starts with building "hand feeling" (手感) and then you work on "body movements" (身法) until the weapon becomes an extension of you.

There is no trick to getting this. Only continuous practice, which in Chinese is sometimes referred to as 磨练 which literally means "to put yourself in the mill" or "grinding practice".

I know I threw in a lot of Chinese jargon in there but some of these ideas and phrases have a little more meaning to them in their "native tongue".

Hope you all are having a good Wednesday!

I found a new comic called Shaolin Cowboy


  1. Testing your comments area since dad had trouble posting. Hope ya are enjoying your last few weeks at the school. Love - Mom

    1. Comments have had a few problems, not sure why. Hope you're having a good week!


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