Tang Yik pole vs "others"

Discussion in 'Wing Chun' started by wckf92, Sep 27, 2017.

  1. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    I know in past threads we've discussed various pole methods; but my question is this: Given that Tang Yik's pole form is quite long and in-depth...do you think it contains the same or similar aspects (dims?) as the other / shorter / condensed pole forms?
    Not saying more is necessarily better...just looking for your thoughts. Thanks.
    Put simpler - is Yip Man's pole methods encapsulated in Tang Yiks longer pole form?
    And, what of Yuen Kay San's? Leung Jan's/Kulo? etc?
     
  2. Danny T

    Danny T Senior Master

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    I think it is more of what is the emphasis of the form. Is it to cover all movements and positions or to cover enough to describe and cover the principles for the moves. Maybe to simple list the most important techniques. Subsequent drills develop the skills needed.
     
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  3. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    Whether the Tang Yik form encapsulates other people's forms would be hard to say for sure without knowing those other forms fairly well. But my feeling is...yes...likely the essential moves in those other forms are also found in the longer Tang Yik form. But the Tang Yik pole mechanics are a little different from other Wing Chun pole. The pole is seldom held out away from the body, but rather is supported against the lead thigh or the torso. As far as the "points" between various pole forms, everyone seems to have a different list of what the "6 1/2 points" actually are. Often times they are the same movement with a different "point" name given to them. But not always.

    When I see video of other lineages' pole forms I often think.."is that it?" And yet I look at the whole Tang Yik form and think "it doesn't need to be that elaborate!" There should be a happy medium in there somewhere! ;)

    There is a repeated sequence within the Tang Yik form that encapsulates all of the 6 1/2 points. It is repeated multiple times for emphasis and is broken out as an essential drill on its own. This could be practiced with a little linking footwork added and would be essentially the equivalent of other lineages' shorter pole forms. What those other lineages often lack is the more extensive angling and footwork that is included in the Tang Yik form. That's what I mean when I say I often think "is that it?" I'm wondering why they don't have the angling and quick footwork that is so important to Tang Yik pole and that is developed in the form.

    Also the history of the Tang Yik lineage notes that Chi Sim's pole form was combined with a spear form at some point. This is likely why the form is longer and contains more movements than other pole forms. The second half of the form contains a lot of what I would call "specialized" movements. For instance, there is a sequence of striking the ground with the pole which is interpreted as hitting or warding off a swordsman that is rolling on the ground and trying to slice at your legs. Another movement is for coming upward and behind the bottom edge of a swordsman's rattan shield.

    Honestly, I think that the Tang Yik form is an actual historical set that has been passed down for several generations. Whereas the Ip Man pole forms (and likely other lineages) were probably initially learned simply as a set of simple drills or concepts that different people seem to have combined into a short form in different ways. When you look at different Ip Man branches, no two seem to use the same pole form. The basics will be the same, but not the form.
     
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  4. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    How high up on the torso are you referring to?

    Would be fascinating to create a matrix or spreadsheet with as many pole versions' points as possible and look for a theme or correlation points.

    I'm surprised to read this from you. Don't you travel to China to learn this form? And, from your previous studies in other lineages, did you learn their pole forms and if so, do you feel those pole forms are contained in your Tang Yik studies?

    I hear ya. Frustrating. Kind of like the swords/knives. Everyone was taught (or made up) their own stuff and the lack of consistency is maddening at times.

    How many sources of Tang Yik's methods are there in the US? I've heard of you of course (MD area); and I think I've heard of a guy up in NYC... anyone else?

    Thanks!
     
  5. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    There's a guy in the UK I think...an Asian guy that has what appears to be a very aggressive/yang energy pole form... a Sifu Austin Goh. I'm not sure of his lineage but it is an interesting form. Lots of aggressive motions. Ever hear of him?
     
  6. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    How high up on the torso are you referring to?

    ---About xiphoid process level. "Tik" is a short thrust that keeps the forearm and the tail of the pole against the body at this level. "Cheung" is the full thrust, and even it keeps the forearm against the body with the elbow down rather than having the rear elbow pointed out as you see so often.

    Would be fascinating to create a matrix or spreadsheet with as many pole versions' points as possible and look for a theme or correlation points.

    ----I tried that awhile back. Started a thread here asking about other people's "points" for the pole. I'd have to dig it out again! ;-)



    I'm surprised to read this from you. Don't you travel to China to learn this form? And, from your previous studies in other lineages, did you learn their pole forms and if so, do you feel those pole forms are contained in your Tang Yik studies?


    ---I've learned Augustine Fong's version of the pole many years ago. It is longer than most Ip Man versions. Not sure of its exact origins. I have not learned the Pin Sun pole, but I have seen it. Frankly, I wasn't too impressed. It is very short! It has "3 1/2 points" rather than "6 1/2 points." I have learned the first half of the Tang Yik pole form. When I visited Sifu Tang in Hong Kong we always practiced the whole form. But the first half is what I had worked on prior to my trip in order to have the sequence down and pick up on the fine points. So the last half of the form didn't really "stick" and I haven't gone back to work on the sequence. All of the essentials and "good stuff" are up front, in my opinion! ;-) And I haven't made it back to Hong Kong for another training session.



    How many sources of Tang Yik's methods are there in the US? I've heard of you of course (MD area); and I think I've heard of a guy up in NYC... anyone else?

    ---Derek Rozanski (Ving Dragon) is in Brooklyn. There are a couple of guys on the west coast but I'm not sure how active they are. Not much really in the US. However in Europe Sifu Tang has a close student in Germany with a large group, and a couple of close students in Italy with fairly large groups.


    There's a guy in the UK I think...an Asian guy that has what appears to be a very aggressive/yang energy pole form... a Sifu Austin Goh. I'm not sure of his lineage but it is an interesting form. Lots of aggressive motions. Ever hear of him?

    ----Austin Goh is Lee Shing lineage. Lee Shing was the first guy reaching Wing Chun in the UK. He had a pretty varied background, including studying with Jiu Wan, Ip Man, and Fung Sang of Ku Lo Pin Sun. His Wing Chun is fairly elaborate. He included more of the traditional chinese weapons like the broadsword, flag-waving, etc. as well as more than one pole form. Not sure what version Austin Goh is doing. It seems Lee Shing passed most of his Ku Lo Pin Sun knowledge on to Joseph Lee. I've seen the pole form that they do and call "Gulao Pin Sun", and it is nothing like the pole form I saw demo'd by Jim Roselando as coming from Henry Mui.
     
  7. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    Cool.. Thx. Gonna have to consult a dictionary for that word though! hahaha.

    Did you determine any cross-lineage correlations?

    Do you intend to go back and finish your training?

    Are you and his pole forms close? Or the same?
     
  8. DanT

    DanT Black Belt

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    According to the research that I have heard, Yip Man's pole form is only the first section of Tang Yik's form. My knowledge of both forms confirms this. Yip Man only learned the first section, as the Luk Dim Boon Kwan that Yip Man learned from Cha Wah Shun did not have a form of its own, just drills and sparring exercises. So in order to further add to his system he sought out a pole form. He managed only to learn the first section however. One can clearly see from 0:55-1:10 a Yip Man Pole form:
     
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  9. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    In the past LFJ has shown that Wong Shun Leung's pole form (and therefore presumably Ip Man's pole form) was taken from a section of a much longer Hung Kuen pole form. He showed video of WSL doing the pole form and then a video of the Hung Kuen form with the appropriate section pointed out. It wasn't exact, but it was pretty close. That section you indicate from the Tang Yik form also isn't exact, but pretty close. As wckf92 was asking/pointing out, there is a "common core" that seems to be shared. It could be that this common core came from Chi Sim (or someone that the legend represents) and was picked up by Wing Chun guys as well as Hung Kuen guys. In other words....the pole form or at least the method itself may very well pre-date Wing Chun and was adopted by Wing Chun guys and then "adjusted" somewhat to match Wing Chun empty-hand concepts. Or possibly (as Guy B. suggested) concepts from the pole method may have been used to further refine or define the Wing Chun empty-hand methods. But I do get the sense that the pole came before what we now know as Wing Chun empty hand.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2017
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  10. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    Did you determine any cross-lineage correlations?

    ---I'll have to hunt it up and give it a good look again. Nothing really stood out, other than the fact different lineages often used a different term for what appeared to be the same concept/movement.

    Do you intend to go back and finish your training?

    ---Truthfully....not sure. I wasn't too impressed with the Tang Yik empty hands and I'm not sure Sifu Tang will keep teaching me the pole if I am not practicing the entire system.



    Are you and his pole forms close? Or the same?


    ---I visited Derek before I visited Hong Kong. He was the one that encouraged me to contact Sifu Tang and try to arrange it. I haven't seen Derek do the entire form, so I don't know. I do know the basic mechanics he showed me were the same. Derek put me on the right track with the basic mechanics. Then after a bit of back and forth conversation over eMail Sifu Tang agreed to teach me. He sent me video of himself to start working from. This was of the pole method as well as the first Tang Yik Weng Chun empty hand form. I taught myself the sequence for the empty hand form and 1st half of the pole form. I would send him video of myself doing it and he would eMail me feedback. Then I visited for 10 days and did daily lessons in which he corrected my mechanics, went over some of the 2 man drills and worked on the entire form. So it was a lot to try and absorb! I didn't even try and remember the second half of the pole form since the form is so long. The first empty hand form has eleven sections and each section has a flowing 2 man drill that goes with it. Much like a Chi Sau exercise specific to each section. But, like any Chi Sau exercise....it was very "Weng Chun specific" and just didn't seem all that applicable to the way people fight today.
     
  11. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    Interesting!. Thanks DanT.
    I wonder why YM only learned what he did? Was that all he was allowed to learn? Or, perhaps he saw the first section being played out in Dai Duk Lan and asked to be taught it. Guess we'll never know.
    ...
    Perhaps another thought is, maybe he only wanted the first section in the first place?
     
  12. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    Oh yeah...had forgotten about that. Maybe I'll search for it and link it to this discussion.

    Yes it's this common core that I'm curious about. Maybe Yip Man analyzed the pole methods he learned from CWS (and/or Leung Bik?), and later was able to view/learn some or all of a much longer set (either the Hung Kuen or Tang Yik's) and then distilled it down into what he thought were the barebone methods of his day?
    Who knows...maybe this is what he did with the knives as well and that may be partly to blame for why there are so many variations in the weapons stemming from YM.
     
  13. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    for reference:

    6 1/2 Points for the Pole
     
  14. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    Found this in an old thread... possibly a Tang Yik variant?



    and LFJ had posted this one a while ago...I think the full WSL version?



    I couldn't find the Hung Kuen pole post so I looked on youtube and I think this is the one referenced by LFJ (or at least a small portion of it)...unsure of the timestamp though...

     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2017
  15. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    So you've been taught both forms and have trained both methods? Do you prefer one over the other?
     
  16. ShortBridge

    ShortBridge Black Belt

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    That first video does have some footwork that I associate with Tang Yik, but KPM would know better.
     
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  17. DanT

    DanT Black Belt

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    Originally Wing Chun only had the empty hand methods. The BJD were added in first, but it is now unknown who incorporated them into the system. We know for certain that the LDBK was added in by Wong Wah Bo who learned it from Leung Yee Tai who taught him in exchange for the Wing Chun empty hand techniques. Wong Wah Bo taught Leung Jan the pole methods but not the pole form. Leung Jan taught them to Cha Wah Shun who taught it to Yip Man. Yip Man was thus skilled with the pole but did not know a pole form. He went to Dai Dak Lan to further his Wing Chun knowledge and incorporated the first section of the Weng Chun pole form into his Wing Chun.
     
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  18. wckf92

    wckf92 Master Black Belt

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    Thanks DanT. Interesting feedback for sure. Does this info come from you or your sifu/lineage? Or is it in a book or...?
     
  19. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    One version of history/legend I have heard is that it was Fok Bo Chuen that incorporated the knives. Remember "Bart Jam Do" was just Ip Man's own term for them. Other lineages use a different name. Anyway....Fok Bo Chuen was Leung Jan's classmate and likely picked up the knives later. LJ did not teach the knives in Ku Lo village, suggesting his system did not have the knives. But he did teach a version of the pole! So I don't think it likely that the knives were added prior to the pole. The part about Ip Man is unclear, but seems likely to me! Ip Man Wing Chun does not have the Kwun Jong or "pole dummy." It has been said that this was because Tang Yik had it on the roof of his apartment building and not at the Dai Duk Lan. So Ip Man never saw it. Otherwise the Kwun Jong might have been a regular part of Ip Man Wing Chun! Whether Ip Man picked up on the first part of the Tang Yik pole form or from that Hung Kuen form is unclear as well.
     
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  20. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    Found this in an old thread... possibly a Tang Yik variant?

    --Not a variant, that is the Tang Yik form! This is Max Kraft. He is one of Peter Schultz's students in Berlin. I trained with him and Peter and some of their other students when I went to Hong Kong.

    and LFJ had posted this one a while ago...I think the full WSL version?

    ---I think so!


    I couldn't find the Hung Kuen pole post so I looked on youtube and I think this is the one referenced by LFJ (or at least a small portion of it)...unsure of the timestamp though...

    ---Yes, starting at the 1:00 mark and only going to about 1:15. Here is the same thing broken out specifically for practice. The "practical Hung Kyun" guys teach it as a beginner's level or preliminary pole form before teaching the longer traditional version of the whole form.

     
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