The Shuai Chiao Kungfu Club at The Ohio State University (return)

Instant Kungfu Lesson

Why is "Instant Kungfu" an oxymoron?
Because "Kungfu" means a skill developed with much time and effort.
This is an "instant" lesson -- but to understand it fully will take time and practice.

General Hints:

Keep breathing: don't hold your breath!  Breathe out on extensions and power moves.  Inhale on
transitions and absorbing movements.

Keep the hips tucked in and the lower back as straight as possible:  don't arch (hyper-extend) the
lower back or bend over forwards.

Concentrate on the movement, focus on its application.  Kungfu is not just calisthenics.  You cannot
just "walk-through" the forms and expect to gain the full benefits of mind-body integration.

Shaolin "Springing Leg" fist form,  Tantui #1

The Tan-tui (literally "springing" or "snapping" leg) fist form series has been used for centuries as a basic training tool.  Outwardly, it has the appearance of an "external", or hard style, where the power is generated by obvious lunges, dropping, and twisting of the waist.  The kicks are low and hard in the first sets, but get higher and more acrobatic in the later sets.  The basic Tantui forms teach important principles and skills.  The student who can perform the first several sets well has learned how to put full body power behind a single arm punch.  How to shift weight from leg to leg, how to twist smoothly between the basic horse and front stances, and the importance of yin and yang: high and low stances, back and forth movement, must all be absorbed.  Three distinct types of kicks, and several different hand forms are used as well.  The movements of Tantui have both striking and throwing applications.

                   Salute                                                         1                                         2

Salute: From a relaxed ready position, the left hand arcs up and over the head in front of the body, in a standing palm position. The right hand comes up, "threads the needle", and punches straight out to the side (standing fist).

One: On the count of "One", drop down into a left front stance, and lunge punch out with a left standing fist.

Two: Pull the left arm back in a flat arc across the body as you twist back into a horse stance, and then thrust out the left elbow sharply.

               3                            4                      5                                  1

Three:  Twist the whole body back into a left front stance, and swing the left arm down and across the body and knee, as the right arm swings up in a powerful reverse hammer-fist.

Four: The right arm makes a quick circular movement into a right backfist strike (this is also a scooping block).

Five: Pull the right fist sharply back to the waist as the right leg snaps out in a low Tantui kick.

One: Drop the right foot down into a solid right front stance, as the right fist lunges out in a standing fist.  This begins the next cycle.

               2                            3                         4                          5

The second cycle is exactly the same, but mirrored on the other side of the body.  The third cycle is the same as the first, and ends by drawing the left foot up as the right hand "threads the needle" out to the right.  The next Tantui form can then proceed in the opposite direction.

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Copyright 2005, MG-3D,  The Shuai Chiao Kungfu Club at OSU

The Shuai Chiao Kungfu Club at The Ohio State University (return)