Pak Mei Pai forms

Discussion in 'Chinese Martial Arts - General' started by tigercrane, Aug 25, 2015.

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  1. Knapf

    Knapf Orange Belt

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    Interesting. According to the wikipedia article, Jow Ga is a combination of northern and southern kung fu.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2017
  2. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    In the future I want to train in one of the 3 systems that make up Jow Ga. Choy Ga Pak Mei and Hung Ga. Unfortunately I haven't found a Choy Ga school in Georgia so that leaves Pak Mei. I think it would be a good learning experience for me to learn a little more about what makes up Jow Ga.
     
  3. Knapf

    Knapf Orange Belt

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    Happy learning. Bak Mei has a different way of generating power. I was a previous student of Hung Ga and instead of tightening up your breath while doing a hammer fist, in Bak Mei you have to hammer fist and release your breath outward. At least that's what I experienced. I hope I'm not misinforming anyone.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2017
  4. VPT

    VPT Yellow Belt

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    When was Bakmei incorporated to Jow Ga? Because if Wikipedia is correct, the founder of Jow Ga died already before (1919) Jeung Lai Chyun started to teach BM, his original creation (1920s). This also answers Knapf's question: my lineage is by default connected to Jeung Lai Chyun, since the whole style was created and disseminated by him only.

    Which technique are you referring to? There are two different hammerfists in BM: soi kiu, the 'bridge shattering strike'; and laan daa, the 'hugging strike'. My teacher, however, only talks about "using your body" in the technique to add power. He does not really emphasize breath in any way.
     
  5. Knapf

    Knapf Orange Belt

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    Soi kiu.
     
  6. VPT

    VPT Yellow Belt

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    Ah, I think exhalation helps to produce better sinking (cham) in soi kiu, I could never imagine holding my breath or tightening any muscle groups in it. How is the Hung kyun version in effect by comparison? I've never done any.

    On the other hand, I exhale on pretty much every technique. That makes me wonder, when do I even inhale?... :confused:
     
  7. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    It would have to be incorporated later after Jow Lung's death by one of his 4 brothers. Jow Ga USA, Jow Ga Australia, Jow Ga Vietnam and Jow Ga China have lineages that differ. I think most Jow Ga styles are either from the Jow Biu lineage, Dean Chin lineage, and Jow Tin lineage. The Jow Tin lineage is differs from the other 2 and I think somewhere around there the Bak Mei was added. Originally from Jow Lung, Jow Ga has Bak Siu Lam. I think the Jow Ga from Vietnam has the Bak Mei in it. There is no "Pure Jow Ga Kung fu" because each of the 5 brothers had a different approach to Jow Ga
    This is a quote from one of the Australian Jow Ga schools. 5 tigers is reference to the 5 brothers "Each of the 5 Tigers had a slightly different repertoire and interpretation of the Jow Ga style, bringing his own skills and experience to bear. Thus the practices of each Tiger’s lineage or branch lines can be seen to vary." source: http://jowga.com.au/about-jow-ga/
    Even within the U.S. there are 2 main lineages Dean Chin and Derek Johnson. For the most part they both look the same but there are some small but noticeable differences. Dean Chin (dead) added some Eagle Claw Kung fu (what I've heard) which wasn't in there originally. Derek Johnson (still living) tries to get Jow Ga back to what was originally taught from Jow Biu (one of the 5 brothers). In Australia Andy Truong (living) has Bak Mei in his Jow Ga. I'm not sure but I want to say that I he comes from the Jow Tin lineage. I think Jow Tin died in 1971

    Here's a discussion from back in 2004 that mentions Bak Mei and that Dean Chin knew it.
    http://www.kungfumagazine.com/forum/showthread.php?29347-Jow-ga-Forms-(JOW-PEOPLE)
    By the way I can't verify any of the stuff on the kung fu magazine. My Sigung may know more. I'll have to ask my Sifu to reach out to him to find out what's what.



     
  8. Knapf

    Knapf Orange Belt

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    Here's a video
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
  9. VPT

    VPT Yellow Belt

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    I took off to investigate some of this, since it seemed to me very surprising that Jow Ga would've had Bak Mei in it in any kind of way. I should've been able to see it if there were, I thought. So this is what I found:

    Dean Chin started learning martial arts at the age of seven, he started with Jow Ga when he was nine. In the thread you linked someone mentioned Chin having taught Sap Ji Kyun, the "Cross-Pattern Form" to his advanced students. Now, Sap Ji is often the first form taught to new students in Bak Mei and does not yet train any of the distinct Bak Mei power generation. Furthermore, it is not an "original" form in the style and was borrowed either from Lam Ga or Lei Ga, both of which Jeung Lai Chyun studied in his youth. I do not know whether he continued with Bak Mei after joining Jow Ga, but so far I've only heard an account of him teaching elementary material. Seeing his forms list might help with it.

    Jow Ga in Vietnam then seems to be limited to Hanoi in Northern Vietnam. Bak Mei has only been introduced to Saigon in the Southern part of the country by one of Jeung Lai Chyun's early students. I have never heard of Bak Mei in Hanoi (but Wing Chun/Weng Chun, yes).

    There is actually an example of mixing Bak Mei to other arts. Fatsan Bak Mei seems to be a hybrid of Choy Lee Fut hand techniques with Bak Mei stances and principles. The result is distinctly BM, but you also see lots of waving hands that are not typical. Below one of their original forms:


    I'm not trying to debunk anything here, I'm just trying to figure out of what I know already and how does new information fit into it. If you can help me out with more tidbits of knowledge, I'd be happy. :)

    This is starting to stray from the topic of the thread, but how is Shaolinquan visible in Jow Ga? I have a friend who's been going to China for about ten years to train the old-style Shaolin boxing, and I'm hard-pressed to see commonalities with the two. However, Jow Ga has to forms that are identical to Shaolinquan in name: Siu Hung Kyun and Daai Hung Kyun exist in Shaolin, (the former is even their most important core form) but the Jow Ga versions are actually different forms than ones in Shaolin.
     
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  10. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    Thanks this is helpful information as well. I'm waiting for a reply from my Sifu about the Bak Mei. It may be that I've gotten a hold of some bad info about the Jow Ga having Bak Mei.

    For the Shaolin parts it's not the form that is similar it's the techniques. I'll use this example of Bak Siu Lam and point out what I've seen in Jow Ga forms. I know for sure without a doubt that that Bak Siu Lam is part of it.

    :10 Elbow
    :14 Kick and low crouch
    :26 Double spear hand
    :28 - :33 kicks
    :41 drop scissors (forgive me for the lack of proper names. my wife is kicking me out of the room lol so she can sleep lol) But we roll with ours.
    The crescent and half moon kicks.

    There's another video that I will post later gotta get out here.
     
  11. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    Here's the second video. This is from a Jow Ga Sifu in New York. I don't know this form. I think my school has a total of 18 forms and out of those 18 forms I only know 5 (7 if you count the 2 beginner forms that teach how to step and punch)


    The thing about Jow Ga is that there is a lot of variation. I can go to 3 different schools and each would have a different variation of Sei Ping Kuen, which for many schools is a beginner school. In my first school, Flower fist looked was like the video below. It was the first Jow Ga form I learned. In the school I'm in now, Flower fist is not the first form and it looks nothing like this one. You can see more of the Shaolin in this one.



    Last one for the shaolin question
     
  12. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    Question about Bak Mei. How do they drive their power for strikes? Does it come from the center of the torso along with forward movement?
     
  13. VPT

    VPT Yellow Belt

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    Ah, so there exists a school/style called "Northern Shaolin" :D That is not in fact Shaolinquan strictly speaking, but I find it more probable being incorporated to Jow Ga than the "Shaolin from Shaolin". I have a tendency to be skeptical about claimed backgrounds since it is quite confirmed that the official origin myths of at least Bak Mei and Lung Ying are highly embellished, if not straight up fabricated. It's hard to take things at face value.

    I see there lots of generic Northern material in that video, but the guiding principles for movement are not "Shaolin from Shaolin". The hand techniques are also actually more from the likes I've seen in Mizong and Eagle Claw than Shaolinquan.

    Oh, I also checked Andy Truong's training history: Jow Ga, Bak Mei and Lung Ying. All learned from different teachers in Australia. His Bak Mei seems to be of Saigon lineage judging by his teacher's name. :) I'm curious if he's mixed the styles or kept them separate.

    In Bak Mei we generate power with a sagittal arching of the spine. It is centered around the principle of sei biu, or "sink-float-swallow-spit": generating movement along the directions of up, down, out and in. Some people might call this kind of spinal power generation internal, but I don't personally care if it is or not, it is unarguably intricate at least. We first start learning this concept from the Jik Bou routine/exercise, but I have a good video for you. Here the guy takes away all the hand techniques and uses a cane as prop to emphasize the back-bow movement:



    I just wished he had a little better technique...
     
  14. VPT

    VPT Yellow Belt

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    Rather different! I was expecting a forward-facing stance, but it shows what I had the suspicion of: there is less visible sink, if any at all. Our soi kiu at least is also a more whip-like in execution.

    I like Hung Ga nowadays way more than I did say two years ago, so I kinda "get" that they are also going for a different feel for their techniques than Bak Mei. :)
     
  15. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    I wouldn't expect it to be exactly the same in Jow Ga, I would expect it to look generic. If techniques are being integrated into a different system then the movement will change. Similar to how one can recognize kung fu techniques in Japanese and TKD martial arts, but the movement for that technique is not the same.

    Your guess is as good as mine. The variation is probably why my Sigung was / is on a mission to learn and teach Jow Ga without the variation that is often found in it. He's known for trying to get Jow Ga "back to it's roots" after the discussion I've had with you and looking at the different schools doing Jow Ga. I have a better appreciation for what my Sigung has been doing all these years. To be honest, which ever school as the "purest" representation (s) of Jow Ga, should write a book to help keep the oral history straight.
     
  16. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    The video looks like something that I use but wasn't taught in Jow Ga. We have Qi Gong exercises in training and in our forms, that I've been able to make use of in real world fight application. I don't know if it's similar but I can throw people around the room with a similar movement and I can jam punches and kicks as well. I hold my arms with my elbows towards my center and I use a similar movement which shoots my arms forward with minimum effort. Having my elbows to the center causes my center to "suck in" like in that video. The forward movement causes me to expand, I haven't tried to do it with punches yet. I've always done it from a grappling perspective.
     
  17. VPT

    VPT Yellow Belt

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    Bak Mei uses the back action for generating inch power and sudden bursts of energy, be it pulling, jamming, slamming or pushing. In the below video from HK show "Sau Hang" they display zero-inch board breaking at 0:30 and 10:30:



    It is possible to push people with that, but the goal would preferably be to get those punches sink into your opponent instead of displacing them. Holding your arms and hands close to the centerline helps, since it aligns them better with your center of gravity. The tight centerline guard is a featuristic of Hakka arts and gives them a distintive look from general Guangdong arts like CLF, Hung Ga and so on.

    My interpretation of utilizing inch power is in the idea of fighting strategy and bridging in Bak Mei. If Hung Ga wrestles with the bridge, Wing Chun rolls with it and Tong Long sticks to it, Bak Mei aims to break it upon contact. It seems like the arms would touch, but suddenly there comes a smash, vortex-like spiraling action, pull or a snatch. The distinct feel is called "scared power" because it looks like the sudden jump or twitch that you do involuntarily when being startled. :D
     
  18. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    It doesn't look like I'm going to get an answer about Bak Mei in Jow Ga. I asked my Sifu about it and he's not answering. So all I know at this point is not ask again. I was taking a look at some Bak Mei form application videos and Bak Mei does have 1 technique that I've seen the other instructor do. The technique knocks a punch down in returns with an upper cut. The only difference is how it looks in form, in application the concept is the same. Bak Mei seems to be a closer range of fighting.
     
  19. VPT

    VPT Yellow Belt

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    Is it this idea you are referring to?

     
  20. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    Yes that is the exact video I was watching. Our application of it slightly different, less spring with the downward strike on the arm. We have more of a pop/chop which isn't as loose. I guess a general difference is be one is an "Internal application" of the technique and the one I use is an "External application" of the technique. I watched 2 of his videos and I hope to spend some time this weekend looking at some more. The only think I didn't like with the video at the top is the distance in which he did the technique to address a jab coming from 5 miles out. But other than that the concept is sound. I use the same concept of "dropping and rising" in other techniques and either way it's dangerous. It's one of those techniques that we take a lot of care and caution so we don't hurt our training partners. In free sparring we already know that we have to pull it every time on the rising simply because it's damn near impossible to stop. I literally can't figure out any counter that would work after the "dropping" is successful. So we know if we get that part right that he second part is a piece of cake.

    The same techniuqe that he used works really well with people who like to fight with a low guard like these guys. With a low guard the jab to the face has to rise more than it would if the guard is high.
    [​IMG]

    In the video below at 2:49 is our beginner technique in Jow Ga. The concept and hooking is the same. The only difference is that we initially learn it as a beginner to deal with a jab. The other difference is we don't use the hooking hand to strike. We maintain control with the hooking hand and blast with the freehand. One hand pulls and at the same time the other hand strikes. But the application is the same. Hook the arm and punch. In reality there's no rule to which hand we can use to punch with after we hook the arm. As beginners we just learn it one way and as we understand the technique better, we start to learn different ways to apply it. I like things like this because it helps me have a larger understanding of what I already know. It also give me something to think about because I never considered trying to hook the inside of the arm as shown in the video. Below
     

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