Silk Reeling Demo (A)

OP
Appledog

Appledog

Orange Belt
Joined
Nov 13, 2022
Messages
61
Reaction score
24
Location
Taiwan
look at the form. If you know what silk reeling is, just look at the form

I know what silk reeling is, but I am not sure I see it in Yang style. "If you know, you know" is kind of my point. If we say "It's in the form" then where? What if I didn't know what silk reeling was, how would I learn it?

Smooth movement, or stretching out, is not silk reeling. Body leads hands is not silk reeling. Any movement which starts and stops is not silk reeling, and Yang has many such movements such as needle at sea bottom, step up parry punch etc.
 

Xue Sheng

All weight is underside
Joined
Jan 8, 2006
Messages
34,169
Reaction score
9,183
Location
North American Tectonic Plate
I know what silk reeling is, but I am not sure I see it in Yang style. "If you know, you know" is kind of my point. If we say "It's in the form" then where? What if I didn't know what silk reeling was, how would I learn it?

Smooth movement, or stretching out, is not silk reeling. Body leads hands is not silk reeling. Any movement which starts and stops is not silk reeling, and Yang has many such movements such as needle at sea bottom, step up parry punch etc.
Silk reeling is also not just waving your arms around as demonstrated in the video you posted.

silk reeling is the method used to coordinate the parts of the body to achieve whole-body movement: upper combines with lower, when one part moves, all parts move, and it all comes from the daintian

Ch獺n s蘋 j穫n (蝥) refers to the development of a spiral (helical) refined force - rather than brute strength - and the ability to direct that to a point of application.

It is in every form in Yang, if done right, including needle at sea bottom and step parry punch
 

Oily Dragon

Senior Master
Joined
May 2, 2020
Messages
3,257
Reaction score
1,647
It might help to remind everyone what "reeling" actually means.

Reeling is a roping term. It means to put a long strand of something (silk, thread, wire) into something called a reel, or take it off.

Reels have spools, central cores, around which material is wrapped, and in the case of Tai Chi the spool is the abdomen, and the "silk" is everything else.

Reeling is what happens when you rotate a spool around an axle, in the TC sense this is basically just a metaphor for how the body moves around the core (like Snake/Qi in the Wuxing). The water Qigong warmup I posted has some of the classic arm wrapping warmup exercises. You can witness 100 year old people still doing these daily for fitness.

The ancient Chinese TCC master got this concept extracting silkworm proteins for cloth. Pretty sharp. It's also present in non-TCC Neigong like the southern Shaolin Tid Sin Kuen.
 
Last edited:

Kung Fu Wang

Sr. Grandmaster
MT Mentor
Joined
Sep 26, 2012
Messages
13,962
Reaction score
4,452
Location
Austin, Tx/Shell Beach, Ca
Do you feel that there is any silk reeling in tantui, changquan or cha quan? There may be. I am not sure.
The silk reeling start from

- bottom and up, and
- back to front.

silk_reeling_1.jpg


The silk reeling then reach to the whole body.

silk_reeling.jpg
 
Last edited:
OP
Appledog

Appledog

Orange Belt
Joined
Nov 13, 2022
Messages
61
Reaction score
24
Location
Taiwan
Silk reeling is also not just waving your arms around as demonstrated in the video you posted.

silk reeling is the method used to coordinate the parts of the body to achieve whole-body movement: upper combines with lower, when one part moves, all parts move, and it all comes from the daintian

Ch獺n s蘋 j穫n (蝥) refers to the development of a spiral (helical) refined force - rather than brute strength - and the ability to direct that to a point of application.

It is in every form in Yang, if done right, including needle at sea bottom and step parry punch

Relax Xue Sheng. It's a couple of beginner kids doing a jibengong. Based on what John and you have said, I conclude we mean different things by silk reeling. It's no biggie, different schools have different analogies to explain it and use different ways to train it. Just because someone does it differently than you think it should be done or you cannot see the internal, does not mean it is not silk reeling.

For example, Oily just said "It might help to remind everyone what "reeling" actually means. ... in the case of Tai Chi the spool is the abdomen, and the "silk" is everything else." Well let's just say that Oily is not wrong, but, I've never heard that before. There are other valid perspectives, too. Chen Zhonghua has stated that it's called silk reeling because it goes through a hole (like the silk thread goes through the guide-loop). He also says another reason is because different strands twist together in the dantian to produce the thread. This is a different explanation than yours and Oily's, and I would even provide a fourth for reference, that the reason it is called silk reeling is because of the tension on the string and that the string is twisted. I'm sure there are many ways to look at it, but what is more important is if you can express it or not!

Even so, if you can't express it yet, there is no shame in training! The training itself, is also called silk reeling. So there's no need to say that it's not silk reeling. Just relax and enjoy the morning air.
 
OP
Appledog

Appledog

Orange Belt
Joined
Nov 13, 2022
Messages
61
Reaction score
24
Location
Taiwan
The silk reeling start from

- bottom and up, and
- back to front.

The silk reeling then reach to the whole body.

I agree with you but I can't seem to place it directly in a tantui or chaquan-esque form. Could you please point out a move that uses silk reeling so I can see where it is? I suspect we may be talking about two different things.
 

O'Malley

Black Belt
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
596
Reaction score
496
Silk reeling is also not just waving your arms around as demonstrated in the video you posted.

silk reeling is the method used to coordinate the parts of the body to achieve whole-body movement: upper combines with lower, when one part moves, all parts move, and it all comes from the daintian

Ch獺n s蘋 j穫n (蝥) refers to the development of a spiral (helical) refined force - rather than brute strength - and the ability to direct that to a point of application.

It is in every form in Yang, if done right, including needle at sea bottom and step parry punch

FWIW, this is my understanding as well, from a daito ryu/aikido background. That's also consistent with my personal research into several internal arts.
 

O'Malley

Black Belt
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
596
Reaction score
496
Relax Xue Sheng. It's a couple of beginner kids doing a jibengong. Based on what John and you have said, I conclude we mean different things by silk reeling. It's no biggie, different schools have different analogies to explain it and use different ways to train it. Just because someone does it differently than you think it should be done or you cannot see the internal, does not mean it is not silk reeling.

For example, Oily just said "It might help to remind everyone what "reeling" actually means. ... in the case of Tai Chi the spool is the abdomen, and the "silk" is everything else." Well let's just say that Oily is not wrong, but, I've never heard that before. There are other valid perspectives, too. Chen Zhonghua has stated that it's called silk reeling because it goes through a hole (like the silk thread goes through the guide-loop). He also says another reason is because different strands twist together in the dantian to produce the thread. This is a different explanation than yours and Oily's, and I would even provide a fourth for reference, that the reason it is called silk reeling is because of the tension on the string and that the string is twisted. I'm sure there are many ways to look at it, but what is more important is if you can express it or not!

Even so, if you can't express it yet, there is no shame in training! The training itself, is also called silk reeling. So there's no need to say that it's not silk reeling. Just relax and enjoy the morning air.

Clarifying what you mean by silk reeling might help you in this discussion.
 

Xue Sheng

All weight is underside
Joined
Jan 8, 2006
Messages
34,169
Reaction score
9,183
Location
North American Tectonic Plate
Relax Xue Sheng. It's a couple of beginner kids doing a jibengong. Based on what John and you have said, I conclude we mean different things by silk reeling. It's no biggie, different schools have different analogies to explain it and use different ways to train it. Just because someone does it differently than you think it should be done or you cannot see the internal, does not mean it is not silk reeling.

For example, Oily just said "It might help to remind everyone what "reeling" actually means. ... in the case of Tai Chi the spool is the abdomen, and the "silk" is everything else." Well let's just say that Oily is not wrong, but, I've never heard that before. There are other valid perspectives, too. Chen Zhonghua has stated that it's called silk reeling because it goes through a hole (like the silk thread goes through the guide-loop). He also says another reason is because different strands twist together in the dantian to produce the thread. This is a different explanation than yours and Oily's, and I would even provide a fourth for reference, that the reason it is called silk reeling is because of the tension on the string and that the string is twisted. I'm sure there are many ways to look at it, but what is more important is if you can express it or not!

I'm not upset, so no need to tell me to relax, Just because I disagree with you, does not mean I am upset, and I do disagree, and that is based on 30 years of Yang Style, 20 years of Chen Silk reeling and 20 years of Xingyiquan and 50 years in Martial arts

Even so, if you can't express it yet, there is no shame in training! The training itself, is also called silk reeling. So there's no need to say that it's not silk reeling. Just relax and enjoy the morning air.

Question, is that a dig or a shot at me?.... if so it was not necessary and you may need to relax and calm down yourself
 
Last edited:
OP
Appledog

Appledog

Orange Belt
Joined
Nov 13, 2022
Messages
61
Reaction score
24
Location
Taiwan
Clarifying what you mean by silk reeling might help you in this discussion.

Ok, Another example,


versus


I mean both kinds of silk reeling. Including what may appear (rightly or wrongly) to people as "waving arms". In Feng's video, he appears to be "just waving arms". In fact, what little motion you do see appears to be opposite to what is shown in the Chen Zhonghua video. This is because the methods are different. It doesn't mean one of them is wrong. To provide a bit more clarification on my own definition, as I said one analogy for silk reeling is because there is song chen and zhuan (twisting). But there is more to it, the initial training is like tracing with tinfoil. Some of these analogies are hard to explain and are better served with tea.

Here's another example of what I mean by silk reeling:


As you can see, turning the neck side to side is considered silk reeling in some schools. It's a jibengong. High level skills are not required to train or express silk reeling. So, another great example of silk reeling is the video in the OP ;-)

Xue: It's no big deal :) I'm sure one day we'll meet for tea and we can talk about it in person. It would probably be easier to demonstrate the move and point out what I am doing, it's hard to do that in text. We have a similar amount of experience, if not greater, so there's no need to argue about definitions. I'd rather try and share and exchange knowledge.
 
Last edited:

Kung Fu Wang

Sr. Grandmaster
MT Mentor
Joined
Sep 26, 2012
Messages
13,962
Reaction score
4,452
Location
Austin, Tx/Shell Beach, Ca
I agree with you but I can't seem to place it directly in a tantui or chaquan-esque form. Could you please point out a move that uses silk reeling so I can see where it is? I suspect we may be talking about two different things.
When you throw a back arm straight punch, do you feel that your

- back leg is stepping down, twisting first?
- body is twisting after your legs twisting?
- arm is finally twisted?

 

Xue Sheng

All weight is underside
Joined
Jan 8, 2006
Messages
34,169
Reaction score
9,183
Location
North American Tectonic Plate
Ok, Another example,


versus


I mean both kinds of silk reeling. Including what may appear (rightly or wrongly) to people as "waving arms". In Feng's video, he appears to be "just waving arms". In fact, what little motion you do see appears to be opposite to what is shown in the Chen Zhonghua video. This is because the methods are different. It doesn't mean one of them is wrong. To provide a bit more clarification on my own definition, as I said one analogy for silk reeling is because there is song chen and zhuan (twisting). But there is more to it, the initial training is like tracing with tinfoil. Some of these analogies are hard to explain and are better served with tea.

Here's another example of what I mean by silk reeling:


As you can see, turning the neck side to side is considered silk reeling in some schools. It's a jibengong. High level skills are not required to train or express silk reeling. So, another great example of silk reeling is the video in the OP ;-)

Xue: It's no big deal :) I'm sure one day we'll meet for tea and we can talk about it in person. It would probably be easier to demonstrate the move and point out what I am doing, it's hard to do that in text. We have a similar amount of experience, if not greater, so there's no need to argue about definitions. I'd rather try and share and exchange knowledge.
And all of those are silk reeling, unlike the very first video you posted that in my opinion is just spinning your arms around and only your arms, nothing else
 

Kung Fu Wang

Sr. Grandmaster
MT Mentor
Joined
Sep 26, 2012
Messages
13,962
Reaction score
4,452
Location
Austin, Tx/Shell Beach, Ca
And all of those are silk reeling, unlike the very first video uoip posted that in my opinion is just spinning your arms around and only your arms, nothing else
This is why I always encourage people to train MA by putting arms behind the back and just let your body to do the work.

When I walk 3 miles daily, sometime when there are people around, I just use my body to do the punch. It's a lot of fun. I assume the term "body method 頨急" only exist in CMA.
 
OP
Appledog

Appledog

Orange Belt
Joined
Nov 13, 2022
Messages
61
Reaction score
24
Location
Taiwan
When you throw a back arm straight punch, do you feel that your

- back leg is stepping down, twisting first?
- body is twisting after your legs twisting?
- arm is finally twisted?

Great example. I have it on good authority that Baji uses many of the same energies as Tai Chi :)
 
OP
Appledog

Appledog

Orange Belt
Joined
Nov 13, 2022
Messages
61
Reaction score
24
Location
Taiwan
And all of those are silk reeling, unlike the very first video you posted that in my opinion is just spinning your arms around and only your arms, nothing else

It's ok :) It's just a couple of kids doing a jibengong. If you want to add anything here I suggest we should discuss what Feng is doing in his video besides waving his arms -- especially considering that the video in the OP shows body turning in coordination with the hands, which Feng's does not.

The purpose of those videos is to show that even great masters can radically disagree over the definition and training of silk reeling. How much more so you and me? That is the amazing, beautiful thing about these forums. We can share and learn something new every day :)
 

Kung Fu Wang

Sr. Grandmaster
MT Mentor
Joined
Sep 26, 2012
Messages
13,962
Reaction score
4,452
Location
Austin, Tx/Shell Beach, Ca
Great example. I have it on good authority that Baji uses many of the same energies as Tai Chi :)
The "silk reeling" training is easy to design.

The "double hook punches" can be an excellent "silk reeling" training.

- You rotate your hip counter-clockwise.
- Your upper body rotates to your left.
- Your body push/pull your right hook to your left.
- You rotate your hip clockwise.
- Your upper body rotates to your right.
- Your body push/pull your left hook to your right.

By rotating your hip, you can control your both hook punches. In other words, when you think about hook punch, you think about your hip first.

By using punches to train silk reeling can give you more combat benefit.
 
Last edited:

Xue Sheng

All weight is underside
Joined
Jan 8, 2006
Messages
34,169
Reaction score
9,183
Location
North American Tectonic Plate
It's ok :) It's just a couple of kids doing a jibengong. If you want to add anything here I suggest we should discuss what Feng is doing in his video besides waving his arms -- especially considering that the video in the OP shows body turning in coordination with the hands, which Feng's does not.

The purpose of those videos is to show that even great masters can radically disagree over the definition and training of silk reeling. How much more so you and me? That is the amazing, beautiful thing about these forums. We can share and learn something new every day :)
Thanks, but I am no great master
 

O'Malley

Black Belt
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
596
Reaction score
496
Ok, Another example,


versus


I mean both kinds of silk reeling. Including what may appear (rightly or wrongly) to people as "waving arms". In Feng's video, he appears to be "just waving arms". In fact, what little motion you do see appears to be opposite to what is shown in the Chen Zhonghua video.
I would need to touch them to be sure but I think that both these videos show the production of spiral force that Xue Sheng described above. AFAIK, silk reeling is a method of organising the body and not a specific sequence of movements.
As you can see, turning the neck side to side is considered silk reeling in some schools. It's a jibengong. High level skills are not required to train or express silk reeling. So, another great example of silk reeling is the video in the OP ;-)
Turning the neck side to side is silk reeling if you do the move while maintaining the required body organisation, i.e. if you maintain structure in all directions (and "pull silk"); move from the kua; draw force from your legs, control it through dantien and express it through your hands. In my experience, it is hard to do. The movements may look simple but the focus of the exercise is on maintaining proper structure and body mechanics to benefit from the training, otherwise it is just very light gymnastics.

It is obvious that the people in the OP video are not there yet, although their enthusiasm may take them somewhere, if they get hands-on training with a good teacher.
It's ok :) It's just a couple of kids doing a jibengong. If you want to add anything here I suggest we should discuss what Feng is doing in his video besides waving his arms -- especially considering that the video in the OP shows body turning in coordination with the hands, which Feng's does not.
Feng's movement is actually quite complex under the hood. By contrast, although the kids in the OP do turn their bodies simultaneously as they wave their arms, the body does not drive the arms (they are visibly controlled through regular shoulder movement, which requires no training at all beyond learning the choreography). The kids might benefit from learning basic power generation (i.e. how to strike, swing a sword or launch a ball), and from basic athletic preparation to strengthen their bodies, in particular the legs and posture. This would make a big difference IMO.
 
OP
Appledog

Appledog

Orange Belt
Joined
Nov 13, 2022
Messages
61
Reaction score
24
Location
Taiwan
It is obvious that the people in the OP video are not there yet, although their enthusiasm may take them somewhere, if they get hands-on training with a good teacher.

Feng's movement is actually quite complex under the hood. By contrast, although the kids in the OP do turn their bodies simultaneously as they wave their arms, the body does not drive the arms (they are visibly controlled through regular shoulder movement, which requires no training at all beyond learning the choreography). The kids might benefit from learning basic power generation (i.e. how to strike, swing a sword or launch a ball), and from basic athletic preparation to strengthen their bodies, in particular the legs and posture. This would make a big difference IMO.

Thanks. Is it possible to qualify in what way Feng's movement is complex? I am not sure that shoulder driven movement is enough to qualify this as "not silk reeling" -- if you are familiar with Feng's silk reeling set, there is an entire set of shoulder-only exercises:


Many of these are taught in our school but not in the same order as Feng/ZXX's sets. So, driving movement with obvious shoulder rotation is something you should be taught to do as a beginner. In Charles Tauber's excellent silk reeling foundational video (Taijiquan Foudations No. 2) he explains the progression from exaggerated movement towards minimal or internal movement. At a beginning level this is exactly the kind of thing beginners should be taught. In fact, in Shi He quan (which is a similar art in some respects, as in Bajiquan) we also isolate shoulder motion in strikes as a form of training and then integrate it with stance and body, before trying to unify it as one complete move. So I think this approach is widespread in many CMA.

Overall I think there is a difference between a silk reeling "jibengong" and the expression of silk reeling "jin". I'm not here to split hairs; the OP is a demonstration of silk reeling. I know that many people here would disagree, but you have to start somewhere. If you want to discuss skills, a good question would be how to get from the video in the OP to someone like Feng or Zhang Xuexin. You mention power generation-- how to strike, swing a sword, etc. Well, in your experience does that kind of training help your silk reeling? My teacher said that the first step is "100x100" style practice; do the movement 100 times for 100 days just to see what happens. As I mentioned in the OP this is the level I am trying to speak to right now. I notice a lot of people here have discussed very high level requirements. That is not necessary when talking about basic silk reeling training.
 

Latest Discussions

Top