question on hand techniques

Discussion in 'Chinese Martial Arts - General' started by hungryninja, Dec 1, 2011.

  1. hungryninja

    hungryninja Orange Belt

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    Often times I see the following hand techniques/positions in kung fu, but have no idea what they're called or what their purpose is (fyi, i don't practice kung fu, so I apologize in advance for any ignorance):

    1) the heel of the palm is exposed, with the fingers curled in, with the exception of the index finger, which is pointed/straight. is this some type of palm heel strike or finger thrust? (I've only seen it done in slow motion)

    2) the index finger and middle finger are straight/pointed and side by side (no space in between), and the remaining finger tips are touching so that it forms an "O" (it looks like a sign language letter). I've seen this when someone is using a sword.
     
  2. Touch Of Death

    Touch Of Death Sr. Grandmaster

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    Touch someone in the jugular with that first one and watch what happens. :)
    Sean
     
  3. David43515

    David43515 Master Black Belt

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    The first one is used in alot of Southern Chinese systems, more in exersise forms than fighting one, but used for both. Iirc, there are actually about 17 muscles in the forearm that flex the wrist and fingers. When youcurl the fingers in, you use more muscles on the underside (palm side), and when you pull the hand back to expose the palm heel you use the muscles on the top (knuckle side) more. In exercise forms where southern stylists are trying to build up the muscles of the forearm for blocking and build grip strength, they often extend the index finger to relax the smaller muscle that controls it so that they can get a more powerful contraction on the muscles that control the ring and pinkie fingers. That`s the side of the fore arm that gets more action in "bridge" type blocking. Among Hung Gar stylists and other Southern styles with a history of opposing the Manchu rulers (Ch`ing Dynasty) it also had a symbolic meaning. They used to say that the Han people outnumbered the Manchu to the point that "if each Han lifted even one finger" it would overthrow the Ch`ing.

    The second form, with the index and middle finger extended together is actually called "sword fingers" in some styles.The straight sword focuses on thrusting and slices made with the tip of the sword more than the big broad slashes that are more common with the saber. It`s more about precision and the cutting of veins and tendons. The sword finger position is used to either provide support to the weapon bearing wrist on some manuvers, or to thrust on it`s own and do strikes to soft tissue. You could think of it as being similar to a small knife in the off hand of a western fencer; it may not have the ability to parry an opponant`s weapon, but it can sting him and create an opening for the fencer to exploit with his sword.

    At least that`s what my teachers used to say. Your milage may vary.123
     

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