Doing forms with eyes closed

JowGaWolf

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I just learned today that I can do my forms with my eyes closed. This wasn't a mission of mine, I was doing Tai Chi and closed my eyes and just never opened them until the end of the form. I just wanted to rest my eyes and it just felt better with my eyes closed at the time.. Not sure how it looked on the outside but I was able to get through it with my eyes closed.

Now I'm curious to see how many forms I can do with my eyes closed. I'll see how my Jow Ga form works since it has a tornado kick in it... couldn't wait. just tried the tornado kick and I was able to land it solid..
 

isshinryuronin

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I have long been an advocate of doing forms blindfolded, as I may have mentioned once or twice on this forum. It puts them/you into a different dimension. We are such visual creatures and our whole being is oriented around what we see. Take that away and it changes everything. No visual cues for direction or balance, or what our technique looks like. We center on what it feels like. Any visualization is done internally.

Now, if your form has many angle changes, unless you are exceptional, the "blueprint" or embusen may be off line, but that is nothing. Embusen was not developed to be written in stone. It's a convenience, basically, to keep things organized. While kata should be taught and mastered as handed down (for many reasons) advanced practitioners should be aware that forms are made to go off the path a little to explore applications - just return to the path often to keep from getting lost. So, don't worry about ending up in exactly the right position.

Glad you experimented with this JowGa. How did it feel? You sound surprised you got thru your form. Liberating, isn't it? Without vision, it's easier to concentrate on the feel of the techniques' execution. I think it allows you to "let yourself go" and feel the energy flow. Just make sure there's no lamps, windows or little kids around.
 
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Kung Fu Wang

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There is a reason that you focus your eyes on your major hand (the striking hand, or the blocking hand). If your eyes can follow your own hand, your eyes should be able to follow your opponent's hand.
 

_Simon_

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Yeah I love doing forms eyes closed, this reminded me to do it more actually, it's been awhile!

Really forces you into staying with and moving from your center, and works that kinesthetic awareness so well..
 

dvcochran

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I just learned today that I can do my forms with my eyes closed. This wasn't a mission of mine, I was doing Tai Chi and closed my eyes and just never opened them until the end of the form. I just wanted to rest my eyes and it just felt better with my eyes closed at the time.. Not sure how it looked on the outside but I was able to get through it with my eyes closed.

Now I'm curious to see how many forms I can do with my eyes closed. I'll see how my Jow Ga form works since it has a tornado kick in it... couldn't wait. just tried the tornado kick and I was able to land it solid..
We have done this for years. It is a great way to test your stances and turns. Have a room full of people lined up with their eyes closed and have them all do the same form on their own count and it will get quite interesting and telling. We have had a more than a few people get squarely punched or ran over. A great motivator and object lesson.
 
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JowGaWolf

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How did it feel? You sound surprised you got thru your form. Liberating, isn't it?
Yes I'm surprised since, I've never cared about doing a form with my eyes clothes. It felt good but I think part of that was because I was tired lol. but out of it all I think I was amazed that my stance and balance had improved that much. I was also surprised with how well I was aware of the space that I had to move in., I did my tornado kick in the kitchen where there's limited space.. I went to a narrow hallway and did some other techniques and combos and it was all the same outcome. I was able to do the technique without bumping or punching a wall or chair.

Normally I would have thought that I would try to remember were objects were, but my body was only calculating open space which is easier to track than various objects. No matter the shape of the room, my mind always placed me in a fat oval. This placement is something that my mind is doing on it's own.. In the narrow hallway it put me on a line. I didn't see techniques, I felt them. It was more like, when my body felt a certain way then I knew I had completed a certain technique. (I guess that came from all the form training) my footwork stability worked in a similar way except that I was also paying attention to the weight on my leg. Those were the only things that were guiding me.

The first time it happened I was tired and I really didn't care that I would hit something so I was all in 100% (trustwise). Even in tight spaces, I don't worry about hitting anything. I think i won't get the technique if I worry about that. When in tight spaces my arms and kicks feel differently. So if I don't feel that then I know that my techniques are too wide for the space.

Just make sure there's no lamps, windows or little kids around.
no lamps, but there are chairs and things I can hit. Will I get turned around? I probably will if I try to visualize where I am instead of paying attention to may footwork. I haven't done my form full speed yet. That's the big challenge because I usually gain distance and I don't know how my body will calculate that, So I'll probably get some opened space. I'm fine with slow and relaxed with my eyes closed.

Now I wonder what my staff form will feel like .
 

Flying Crane

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Careful doing this with the weapons. Make sure you are in a place where nothing might get hit. Would suck to smash a car windshield or damage the siding on your house...
 
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JowGaWolf

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Careful doing this with the weapons. Make sure you are in a place where nothing might get hit. Would suck to smash a car windshield or damage the siding on your house...

Yep. I have a place where I can go in the front where it's just bushes around. I don't want to take any chances with staff, where I might accidentally hit someone. I want to be able to swing it without worry. I'll probably have my wife out there as my audio warning that way I can be completely worry free and just take in what I'm feeling..

I think I was able to do the tornado kick in a tight spot because I've been working on my theory about using long techniques in tight spots and coming up with new combos based on fighting in tight spaces
 

JP3

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I did my TKD and HKD poomse with my eyes closed for years, specifically to work on my spatial awareness, staying on the line, distance. All that stuff. It's effective.
 

Xue Sheng

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I just learned today that I can do my forms with my eyes closed. This wasn't a mission of mine, I was doing Tai Chi and closed my eyes and just never opened them until the end of the form. I just wanted to rest my eyes and it just felt better with my eyes closed at the time.. Not sure how it looked on the outside but I was able to get through it with my eyes closed.

Now I'm curious to see how many forms I can do with my eyes closed. I'll see how my Jow Ga form works since it has a tornado kick in it... couldn't wait. just tried the tornado kick and I was able to land it solid..

Try the taiji form, outside, in the dark. Doing the form with your eyes closed. or in the dark allows you to pay attention to the internal. and if the ground is uneven you can learn a lot
 

Balrog

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I just learned today that I can do my forms with my eyes closed.
That was one of my favorite drills. All the forms in my style begin and end on the same spot. if you can do that with every form blindfolded, you not only know your form very well, you have also developed consistency in your stances and techniques as well as excellent balance.
 

Kemposhot

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Ive tried it before to varying degrees of success. Its fun, and definitely can help improve stance and grounding.
 

V P

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I just learned today that I can do my forms with my eyes closed. This wasn't a mission of mine, I was doing Tai Chi and closed my eyes and just never opened them until the end of the form. I just wanted to rest my eyes and it just felt better with my eyes closed at the time.. Not sure how it looked on the outside but I was able to get through it with my eyes closed.

Now I'm curious to see how many forms I can do with my eyes closed. I'll see how my Jow Ga form works since it has a tornado kick in it... couldn't wait. just tried the tornado kick and I was able to land it solid..
I remember doing a tsuki exercise with my eyes closed once. The instructor went and bopped my forehead then made fun of me with the rest of the class. I didn't like him much.
 

Monkey Turned Wolf

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I remember doing a tsuki exercise with my eyes closed once. The instructor went and bopped my forehead then made fun of me with the rest of the class. I didn't like him much.
Unless the timing of that was wildly inappropriate on your end, if that was a normal thing I wouldn't go there very long.
 

Drobison491

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My instructor had me do this for the first time a couple weeks ago with Kanshiwa (our second Kata) it was eye opening so to speak. seemed like I was better able to focus on the techniques, even though my internal compass was off and I ended in a different position than I started.
 

V P

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Unless the timing of that was wildly inappropriate on your end, if that was a normal thing I wouldn't go there very long.
Yeah, for some reason that one guy didn't like me much from the get go. I haven't been to that school in a long while, as both it and I went through a phase of major turmoil and I started looking elsewhere for training.
 

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I had an instructor who would close his eyes while watching forms. When he opened his eyes, he expected to see the person doing the form to be at a particular point.
 

Prostar

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We used to take four students on the floor at a time. The trick is that they all would be turned to face the center point of the box.

It is easy to get used to being aligned with the walls.
 
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