On learning a new form

tshadowchaser

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On learning a new form

For those that have been in the arts for a while:
When learning a new form how often do you practice it?
How often do you walk through it each day in your mind?
How often to you picture opponents when you do the form?
How often do you see different techniques or applications of the given move?

For the newer practitioners:
When learning a new form how often do you practice it?
How often do you walk through it each day in your mind?
What do you concentrate most on when doing the form: movement, the technique, just remembering what to do next?
 

terryl965

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Sheldon for me it goes on for about three months on the initial movements. After learning them and moving toward understanding the currant application I spend about another six months on that part alone, once I am pretty sure I understand the original application I then go on to discover other application and start to bring what I precieve as more to A GIVEN FORM.
 

bowser666

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I typically , when learning a new form, and have understood the placements, footing, etc....... ( to make sure I am not learning incorrectly) I practice it a minimum of 8-10 times a day. I tend to think about it all the time though and visualize it. I know 5 times a day doesn't sound like much but in my style forms are an average of 1-2 minutes. I will work it a few times at normal speed, and then I slow it down alot, to analyze stances and positioning, posture etc.......
 

yak sao

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I was taught that you should practice a form for 1000 reps to learn it.
This doesn't count the memorizing stage. So, let's say you learn a form over the course of a month. Then, after you know the sequence you begin the 1000 reps. If you practice it 10 times a day then you've got a 100 day program. But the first 1000 reps is just the beginning. Strive for 2000, then 3000, etc.
 
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tshadowchaser

tshadowchaser

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yak sao, thats the way my instructor would teach forms. He always would sk "how many times have you done i" then say " show me again when you have done it 1000, 2000, 3000 times.
 

exile

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On learning a new form

For those that have been in the arts for a while:
When learning a new form how often do you practice it?

Every day, but often only parts of it&#8212;usually five, six time a day.

How often do you walk through it each day in your mind?

Many times... again in parts, often, but also the whole thing, as much as I've absorbed. I also do a lot of kind of truncated practicing. I'm pretty sure other people who've been doing MAs for any length of time know what I mean: you don't do full motions on each form, but you make very short, almost telegraphic, gestures that 'stand for' the full motions, and you turn exactly the way you're supposed to in a full performance of the form. It's really to drill the pivoting and basic movements at each step, kind of running through a checklist. The point is keep what I've managed to absorb so far alive in muscle memory even when I'm in places where you really can't practice the form (unless you want people to start looking nervously at each other and whispering that maybe someone needs to contact the police or the mental health services about this guy...)

How often to you picture opponents when you do the form?

Never, when I do the whole form at one go. But always , when I'm working on bunkai for the form and treating it as a series of stand-alone combat scenarios. In the latter case, I try to picture very carefully just what the initial attack was, and I'm looking for an interpretation (or interpretations) which have a 'forced-mate' quality: once my initial response to that attack is made, according to what the bunkai I'm considering dictate for that particular scenario, the attacker should never get any discretionary moves in response to mine. Everything should be forced to a successful conclusion.

How often do you see different techniques or applications of the given move?

I try to come up with one really good one, and that's often hard for me. I've not been doing it long enough to be able to just suss out a robust app by eyeballing the subsequence I'm working on; it's always a tricky puzzle. If I can find two good ones for the same subsequence of the form, I'm very pleased with myself!
 

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I start off with trying to do it full through 2-3 seperate times and 2 full times through at each of the different times. I always try to visualize every time I do a technique.
 

harlan

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For the newer practitioners:
When learning a new form how often do you practice it?

Often, learning the form starts with unique aspects introduced 'casually' in a drill. I've finally figured this out ('Soooo...what kata is this from?') At some point, the new kata is added, but honestly...newer forms are at the bottom of my priority list...as I have plenty of work to do on the other katas.

How often do you walk through it each day in your mind?
Mentally, I don't go over katas completely...just sections.

What do you concentrate most on when doing the form: movement, the technique, just remembering what to do next?

Kata is introduced with bunkai, and attention to specific movement from day one. So, as I go over it, I mentally hear my teacher's voice, the corrections from class. I end up only going so far on a section of a kata, trying to get the corrections down, and then 'practicing' it alone as if doing bunkai. I don't try to remember the whole kata (Goju kata are pretty repetitive)...just focusing on aspects, segments and technique.
 

Xue Sheng

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When learning a new form how often do you practice it?

I try to practice from beginning to end at least once a day if time allows I would prefer 2 or 3. But then it depends on the length of the form. When I learned the last fast form I was working on it 2 to 3 times a day.

How often do you walk through it each day in your mind?

You know I have never really sat and counted so I really do not know but it tends to stick in my noggin and pop up when I least expect it but I would not call it a walk through as much as a 1 posture at a time kind of thing

How often to you picture opponents when you do the form?

Not much in the early stages but as I get comfortable with the form it depends what I focusing on. Again if I am working with the internal I do not focus on opponents at all until I get comfortable with that and from there things seem to progress naturally to thinking about and opponent and it is from there applications appear

How often do you see different techniques or applications of the given move?

Again not much in the beginning, I actually try not to, but as things progress again they seem to appear as I train.
 

Aniela13

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Not sure which I qualify as on this one (MA in general, 14 years...current system, 5 months), so I'll play with all the questions ;)

When learning a new form how often do you practice it?
Depending on how long the form is, it usually takes me 3-5 times through it in class to "get it" (I have the basic movements and understand it, now time to sharpen and strengthen it.) After that, I drive my roommates crazy by coming back to my place and going over it at least as many times that same night. I try to go over new forms at least 3-5 times each day while they're still "new" (unfortunately, time constraints make it go down to about once a day after that...otherwise I'd love to keep it up!)

How often do you walk through it each day in your mind?
Oh heavens, I can't even imagine. My most notable example is after learning my bo kata...I put myself to sleep that night going over it in my mind, and was thinking about it in the shower the next morning, and I don't think I ever fully stopped thinking about it for the next few weeks ^_^ The kata I learned recently is much longer than the bo kata, so most of the time I'll have a random portion of it pop into my head, then I find myself going over it!

How often to you picture opponents when you do the form?
Not often, unless I intentionally think about it. When learning it, I try to learn the application and understand the situation...aspects of that come to me during practice (for instance, every time I do a spinning hook kick during my kata, I picture where the opponent is so that I know where the kick is headed.)

How often do you see different techniques or applications of the given move?
I see these more often when thinking about the kata than when doing it...I love coming up with applications/tie-ins for moves though, so I think if I let myself see them while practicing it would become a problem & a distraction ;) lol

What do you concentrate most on when doing the form: movement, the technique, just remembering what to do next?
Initially, I focus on technique (to make sure I'm doing it correctly) and making sure I know what comes next (because, though I have a paper curriculum that describes the kata, it's very difficult for me to keep things straight if I don't remember it from my instructor.) After I have that down, I focus on strengthening the moves and improving my technique, as well as the little finesse details that make it a truly good kata ^_^

~Ani
 
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