The Proper Horse Stance?

Flying Crane

Sr. Grandmaster
Joined
Sep 21, 2005
Messages
13,770
Reaction score
3,249
Location
San Francisco
I don’t much care for the look of that, but styles do vary. Those punches and that stance don’t even resemble anything from the cma gyms I trained in. Your mileage may vary. That sort of thing will get you tossed on your head by any judoka student worth his salt.
I don’t understand your comment. How do you feel it would get you tossed on your head? And how more so than if you stand in a square horse and punch, without the stance change?

What is shown in this video is similar, but not identical to, how punches are developed in Tibetan Crane.
 

Wing Woo Gar

Green Belt
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
106
Reaction score
24
I don’t understand your comment. How do you feel it would get you tossed on your head? And how more so than if you stand in a square horse and punch, without the stance change?

What is shown in this video is similar, but not identical to, how punches are developed in Tibetan Crane.
Ok let me Say this first, I do not claim to be any sort of master of anything at all. I am a student and hobbyist of martial arts for 39 years,and almost 25 years in Wing Woo Gar. I focus on balance, posture, and coordination when I teach. Speaking to what I saw in that video specifically? First, leaning and reaching with the punch. Second, pushing up out of the horse instead of pulling with the foot and folding the ankle and sitting down on the legs. Third, the fist I see is limp and not properly formed for the punch. I could go on, but I can answer your question starting there. If you put those three things together, you are pushing off and reaching out to full extension with a limp fist while leaning forward. Practically begging someone with even minimal throwing experience to help you along to the floor. This is easy to demonstrate. I do it to my students all the time. Have a friend try it(without actually throwing you). Just sit in your horse stance, shoot your punch to full extension, have a friend grab your fist and pull gently. Did you lose your balance? Have to take a short step forward? Did you resist and pull back? Now do the same thing but push up out Of the horse. The point is this, everything has to come from the bottom of the foot. It’s physics, it’s not jumbo jumbo. How hard can you punch in zero gravity With nothing to push or pull against? So then during practice, (not a fight per se) it makes sense to feel the bottom of the foot and pull against the earth while folding and stacking the bones and internal structures. it is simple to topple a crooked structure.
 

Wing Woo Gar

Green Belt
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
106
Reaction score
24
They are not training horse stance there. They are using horse stance to bend their legs, they then straight their legs for power generation.

It's a good example that stance is only a temporary body posture that is used to perform a certain function (such as power generation, hip throw, ...).
Whether it’s horse or not, it doesn’t look good to me, plain and simple.
 

Flying Crane

Sr. Grandmaster
Joined
Sep 21, 2005
Messages
13,770
Reaction score
3,249
Location
San Francisco
Ok let me Say this first, I do not claim to be any sort of master of anything at all. I am a student and hobbyist of martial arts for 39 years,and almost 25 years in Wing Woo Gar. I focus on balance, posture, and coordination when I teach. Speaking to what I saw in that video specifically? First, leaning and reaching with the punch. Second, pushing up out of the horse instead of pulling with the foot and folding the ankle and sitting down on the legs. Third, the fist I see is limp and not properly formed for the punch. I could go on, but I can answer your question starting there. If you put those three things together, you are pushing off and reaching out to full extension with a limp fist while leaning forward. Practically begging someone with even minimal throwing experience to help you along to the floor. This is easy to demonstrate. I do it to my students all the time. Have a friend try it(without actually throwing you). Just sit in your horse stance, shoot your punch to full extension, have a friend grab your fist and pull gently. Did you lose your balance? Have to take a short step forward? Did you resist and pull back? Now do the same thing but push up out Of the horse. The point is this, everything has to come from the bottom of the foot. It’s physics, it’s not jumbo jumbo. How hard can you punch in zero gravity With nothing to push or pull against? So then during practice, (not a fight per se) it makes sense to feel the bottom of the foot and pull against the earth while folding and stacking the bones and internal structures. it is simple to topple a crooked structure.
So, this is a very, very brief clip which makes commentary on the quality of the individual participants somewhat difficult to make. I see what you mean about a weak fist and wrist. But honestly I wasn’t even looking at those little details. Instead I was looking at the overall methodology, as a systematic approach for developing full body connection and driving the punch from the feet, up the legs, through the rotation of the torso, and down the arm. That is a powerful method, nevermind that every method, no matter how solid, has its share of poor practitioners and it’s share of good practitioners.

The method works, and gives very good results when done well. It is a training mechanism for creating that body connection, but is not meant for fighting exacting in that manner. In application, the stylization is eliminated for a more natural movement, while keeping the full body connection that was built from using the methodology.

It is a bit like building physical strength by engaging in weight lifting exercises, and being a stickler for proper lifting form. The method builds the strength. But when you need to use that strength in the real world, such as moving some heavy boxes in the garage, you simply do what you need to do. You don’t pick up the boxes and lay down on the floor of your garage like and start doing bench presses. Instead you move the boxes and get the job done.
 

Kung Fu Wang

Sr. Grandmaster
MT Mentor
Joined
Sep 26, 2012
Messages
10,689
Reaction score
2,732
Location
Austin, Tx/Shell Beach, Ca
The method works, and gives very good results when done well.
I still remember that after only 6 months of this training (60 punches daily), I could

- hear the sound, and
- feel the wind,

that was generated from my punch (with only T-shirt on).

The punch start from a horse stance and end with a bow-arrow stance. The guideline is to end a punch that the punching arm, chest, back shoulder all form a perfect straight line with eyes focus on the punching hand.

After this training, I could understand how to punch by putting my arms behind my back, and only punch with my body.

It has been a long time that I have not heard the sound and feel the wind from anybody's punch (with only T-shirt).
 
Last edited:

Wing Woo Gar

Green Belt
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
106
Reaction score
24
So, this is a very, very brief clip which makes commentary on the quality of the individual participants somewhat difficult to make. I see what you mean about a weak fist and wrist. But honestly I wasn’t even looking at those little details. Instead I was looking at the overall methodology, as a systematic approach for developing full body connection and driving the punch from the feet, up the legs, through the rotation of the torso, and down the arm. That is a powerful method, nevermind that every method, no matter how solid, has its share of poor practitioners and it’s share of good practitioners.

The method works, and gives very good results when done well. It is a training mechanism for creating that body connection, but is not meant for fighting exacting in that manner. In application, the stylization is eliminated for a more natural movement, while keeping the full body connection that was built from using the methodology.

It is a bit like building physical strength by engaging in weight lifting exercises, and being a stickler for proper lifting form. The method builds the strength. But when you need to use that strength in the real world, such as moving some heavy boxes in the garage, you simply do what you need to do. You don’t pick up the boxes and lay down on the floor of your garage like and start doing bench presses. Instead you move the boxes and get the job done.
 

Wing Woo Gar

Green Belt
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
106
Reaction score
24
It’s that methodology of pushing up instead of pulling down that I disagree with. I saw enough to comment about that and lack of structure. I thought I was fairly specific. I am not trying to insult anyone, just making an observation. Maybe give my comment another read.
 

Kung Fu Wang

Sr. Grandmaster
MT Mentor
Joined
Sep 26, 2012
Messages
10,689
Reaction score
2,732
Location
Austin, Tx/Shell Beach, Ca
It’s that methodology of pushing up instead of pulling down that I disagree with. I saw enough to comment about that and lack of structure. I thought I was fairly specific. I am not trying to insult anyone, just making an observation. Maybe give my comment another read.
Do you agree with the following statements?

- You need to compress before you can release.
- In the beginner level training, it's wrong that when you punch, your back foot is not connected to the ground (static punch).
- In the advance level training, it's wrong that when you punch, your back foot is still connected to the ground (dynamic punch). This is used to cover the distance when your opponent moves back.
 

Wing Woo Gar

Green Belt
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
106
Reaction score
24
Do you agree with the following statements?

- You need to compress before you can release.
- In the beginner level training, it's wrong that when you punch, your back foot is not connected to the ground (static punch).
- In the advance level training, it's wrong that when you punch, your back foot is still connected to the ground (dynamic punch). This is used to cover the distance when your opponent moves back.
 

Wing Woo Gar

Green Belt
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
106
Reaction score
24
I agree that one must compress to release. Much like a spring that must compress or contract before it can expand or release. There are many ways to create pressure or torque in the body, which is exactly my point. As far as foot placement in relation to a strike, I have many options that vary widely for the situation. We train in several different stances, horse, cat, bow, kneeling, etc. There are so many different strike/stance combinations that I have to say that the second two statements are far too broad to agree or disagree with. Perhaps you can narrow it down for me? Again, I mean you no disrespect sir, I see this as spirited discussion and debate.
 

Flying Crane

Sr. Grandmaster
Joined
Sep 21, 2005
Messages
13,770
Reaction score
3,249
Location
San Francisco
It’s that methodology of pushing up instead of pulling down that I disagree with. I saw enough to comment about that and lack of structure. I thought I was fairly specific. I am not trying to insult anyone, just making an observation. Maybe give my comment another read.

Fair enough and I know enough about these things to understand that there isn’t only one method that works, to the exclusion of all others. If this isn’t how you train, yet you get good results from what you do, then you’ve got a good method, regardless of its differences from this one. But this one still works. In Tibetan Crane, one of the differences is that we do not rise up as we rotate. We push the feet into the ground and rotate the torso on a level plain. But I don’t see the rising with the rotation as an automatically terrible idea. Granted, I’ve never experimented with it that way, but I suspect it can be functional.

At any rate, I don’t see how this method of power development suddenly puts one at a distinct disadvantage against a judoka, as you suggested. It’s just a training mechanism that teaches you how to hit really hard. Application comes later and, as with most things in life, depends on context and a lot of variables that often cannot be controlled for and are not absolutes.
 
Last edited:

Flying Crane

Sr. Grandmaster
Joined
Sep 21, 2005
Messages
13,770
Reaction score
3,249
Location
San Francisco
Do you agree with the following statements?

- You need to compress before you can release.
I do not agree with this, but perhaps the definition of what it means to compress needs to be clearly stated. As I look at our methods, I would not describe it as compressing, and we have never, to my recollection, called it that.
- In the beginner level training, it's wrong that when you punch, your back foot is not connected to the ground (static punch).
- In the advance level training, it's wrong that when you punch, your back foot is still connected to the ground (dynamic punch). This is used to cover the distance when your opponent moves back.
I can’t say that the last to are true or not true. I would say it always depends.
 

Wing Woo Gar

Green Belt
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
106
Reaction score
24
I do not agree with this, but perhaps the definition of what it means to compress needs to be clearly stated. As I look at our methods, I would not describe it as compressing, and we have never, to my recollection, called it that.

I can’t say that the last to are true or not true. I would say it always depends.
We don’t use the word compress either, but I think I know what he means. Anything can work, we are very fragile creatures. I don’t say you can’t generate power that way, I say that I don’t like the look of that. It was the combination of execution and poor structure added to rising up and turning the hip that would assist someone throwing them. Read my earlier comment on testing it with a friend. The individuals in the video may not be executing the excercise correctly or with good form, but then why film or use it for example? If they are executing it as taught, then I take issue with the entirety of it. I am giving my opinion on structure as it relates to training, this is demonstrably poor structure. Either I am on my legs or I am not. The foot and the root are the key. The bottom moves the top, the back moves the front, the inside moves the outside. Take that to the bank. Talking about it is fun, but results are what count. Training hard and being brutally honest with myself can make me a rather rough critic. I am a firm believer that what you do in the gym is what you will do in the street. I am not an expert, I do however have some experiences that affect my opinion. In the end, it’s the man, not the style that counts. My opinion is just that, an opinion. Take it for what it’s worth. Try it out, you have nothing to lose. For my part, I tried this video‘s technique out in the gym, I can see the value in the concept if performed with good form and structure.
 

Flying Crane

Sr. Grandmaster
Joined
Sep 21, 2005
Messages
13,770
Reaction score
3,249
Location
San Francisco
We don’t use the word compress either, but I think I know what he means. Anything can work, we are very fragile creatures. I don’t say you can’t generate power that way, I say that I don’t like the look of that. It was the combination of execution and poor structure added to rising up and turning the hip that would assist someone throwing them. Read my earlier comment on testing it with a friend. The individuals in the video may not be executing the excercise correctly or with good form, but then why film or use it for example? If they are executing it as taught, then I take issue with the entirety of it. I am giving my opinion on structure as it relates to training, this is demonstrably poor structure. Either I am on my legs or I am not. The foot and the root are the key. The bottom moves the top, the back moves the front, the inside moves the outside. Take that to the bank. Talking about it is fun, but results are what count. Training hard and being brutally honest with myself can make me a rather rough critic. I am a firm believer that what you do in the gym is what you will do in the street. I am not an expert, I do however have some experiences that affect my opinion. In the end, it’s the man, not the style that counts. My opinion is just that, an opinion. Take it for what it’s worth. Try it out, you have nothing to lose. For my part, I tried this video‘s technique out in the gym, I can see the value in the concept if performed with good form and structure.
Well, the way I see it, that full rotation is part of the training methodology that teaches you how to get the full body connection. But in that learning and drilling phase, the movement is exaggerated and can later be virtually eliminated once you have developed the skill. You train large, to become small. That power is still there even with smaller movement. So I agree, you fight as you train, but I suspect that what I mean by that may be somewhat different from what others mean by it.

I’m not interested in experimenting with other methods because I believe in the method that I follow. Consistency is important in how you train, especially on foundational matters, which this is. But I can look at something like this video and recognize what they are working on and see the value in it. The details might affect it in some ways. Maybe it depends on the person, and how good of a “match” it is for that person. These things matter too. But it isn’t difficult for me to see the value in the method.
 

_Simon_

Senior Master
Joined
Jan 3, 2018
Messages
3,462
Reaction score
1,768
Location
Australia
I do not agree with this, but perhaps the definition of what it means to compress needs to be clearly stated. As I look at our methods, I would not describe it as compressing, and we have never, to my recollection, called it that.

I can’t say that the last to are true or not true. I would say it always depends.
Or we could even see that there already are subtle compressions within the body occurring even while standing! So capitalising on those and learning to release those into the strikes without doing a precursor action to CREATE a compression might be an interesting trajectory...

Sorry, this line of thought that popped up has now captivated me haha... I will experiment...
 
Top