The following is a short "crib sheet"
for the movements of the basic Mantis Form.
This Praying Mantis Style form was taught by Dr. Fred Wu as a basic training form for the original Kungfu Club at OSU back in the early 1970's. It combines some signature Mantis movements with Northern leg techniques. The movement summary below is intended as a quick reference for OSU Shuai Chiao Kungfu Club students, not as a complete lesson.
1. Attention position: both hands at hips, loose fists, palms up, legs straight.
2. Small step out with the right foot, and pivot 90 degrees into a left foot forward cat (empty leg) stance, facing to your former left. Both hands snap into Mantis hook blocks at chest height, left hook extended about a foot in front of the right hook block.
3. Step forward with the R foot into another cat stance, but with the right leg almost straight ( as in the Tai Chi "Strum the Lute" leg position). Simultaneously, deliver a short Right vertical punch to the middle, while bracing it at the elbow with the left palm.
4. Lunge into a right front stance, striking straight up and in with the right elbow. Brace the right fist with your left hand.
5. Retreat immediately to the former stance, while snapping out a right backfist. The left hand does a "covering" block over the elbow as this happens, and ends up under the right elbow, palm facing down.
6. Step out again with the right foot into a medium height front stance. As you lift your arms, the left hand slides along the outside of the right forearm in a "scraping," circular release block motion. The right fist circles in an arc, to your left, back past your forehead, then out in a flat circle from your right to chop at the opponent's neck. The right hand forms a tight "willow leaf palm" with the palm up. The left palm braces the right arm near the elbow.
7. Step forward again with the right foot, the left hand cover blocks down as the right hand reverses direction and retraces the arc, turning the palm to chop the opponent's neck on the opposite (his right) side. The back of your left palm is on the outside of your right elbow.
8. Lunge forward into a left front stance, swinging the right hand down, then out and up into a hooking "cobra" style punch. This punch meets your left palm (with a solid thwack) in front of the centerline of your body.
9. Keeping your hands together, draw the right leg up into a right front inside crescent kick, swinging up, across to your left, then down. When the foot is at waist level, pivot on the ball of your left foot and thrust the right foot out in a side kick. This is sometimes called an "e" kick from the complete path traced by the right foot.
10. The right foot drops down into a right front stance. The arms now swing over the head, separating as they swing down into double hammerfists, right hand leading.
11. Leap forward into a crouching stance, with the left foot leading. When the stance lands, the left arm sweeps up in a rising block, the right hand following with a low uppercut punch.
12. Rise straight up, make a large mantis hook block with the left hand, pulling out to your left, then the same block with the right hand pulling out to the right. Immediately leap up into a flying double front snap kick: left foot, then right foot.
13. Come down into a right front stance, and lunge forward with a right elbow strike, and retreat into a right backfist as in positions 4 and 5 above.
14. Draw both hands back in a tight "X" near the chest with fingertips up and palms open to the sides. Snap out a quick chest level front kick with the right foot.
15. Step back with the right foot in a small retreat, bringing the right hand in and down towards the leg . Then step back with the left foot, bringing the left hand in and down, as the right hand circles out and up. Last, sink slightly into a cat stance with the right leg forward, and circle the hands again, so the left is up and the right is lower.
16. Reach up to your left front with both hands, and pull down strongly to the lower right, while striking up to the left with your right knee. Take a small step forward with your right foot as it comes down, and your hands go up together to your right front. Pull both hands down to the lower left while striking up to the right with your left knee. Step forward with the left foot and repeat one more time, striking with the right knee.
17. Without dropping the right foot below knee level, pivot 180 degrees to your left on the ball of the left foot, and deliver a right inside crescent kick, striking the outstretched palm of your left hand.
18. Drop the right foot down and back and deliver a swinging vertical hammerfist with your right hand as you drop into a solid left front stance.
19. Step back with the left foot and swing down a left hammerfist in a right front stance.
20. Sink back into a cat stance with the right foot forward, and swing down a final right hammerfist, swing the left hand in front in a downward cover block, and deliver a sharp upward backfist with the right hand.
21. Step back with the right foot into a cat stance with the left foot forward, and smartly bring both hands inward to double mantis hook blocks, as in the second postion.
22. Finish: pivot 90 degrees to your right, and bring both hands to the hips, standing back in attention position.
Alternate ending: after position 19 step back again with the right foot and repeat position 18. Then execute positions 20 and 21 on the LEFT side, with a left hammerfist and backfist, ending in a cat stance with the right foot forward.
From this position the form is then repeated as a mirror image with
all the hand attacks performed with the left hand. After the alternate
ending on the left side, pivot 90 degrees to the left into the original attention