Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

Jun 01 2007

5/30 Tuishou

As I was practicing last Wednesday, Tuishou seemed much like a chess game, with all of the various feints and dodges and runarounds involved. The more I’m able to “see” what’s going on in the exchange of energy, the more I’m able to feel what’s going to happen. I suppose it’s kind of like most sports, in anticipating what’s going to happen next and being ready for it. But since Tuishou places such emphasis on internal maneuvering, it’s even more important.

Pushing with Mr. You went well. He’s back to his usual gentle self, distracting his opponent by actually explaining what he is doing at the time. My next bout was with The Guy Who is Not from Hong Kong, and that went poorly. He grabs his opponent and will not let go, and does not budge an inch, locked into position and pushing forward with all his might. Of course, I’m not up to dealing with that for long, and it quickly became a meaningless wrestling match.

Teacher Xu reiterated the concept of using soft to deal with hard, Yin to deal with Yang, Yang to deal with Yin, etc. It makes a lot of sense intellectually, but I’m having trouble putting it into practice. I need to unlearn a lot of things I previously took as practical laws of physics. This, I suppose, is one of the reasons weightlifting is bad training for Tuishou, i.e. it’s using direct and opposite force to deal with another force rather than deflecting and/or absorbing it. In other words, it trains your muscles to do exactly what they shouldn’t do in Tuishou.

He also warned against keeping your opponent away by blocking with your hands. This is something I’m extremely guilty of, and I’ll have to rid myself of this bad habit as well. Truth be told, most of the students do this, however. It will be a challenge to “lose” those particular defenses while everyone else is using them. But I’m already the worst student in the class; what harm could it do? It’s not like I have any kind of reputation to uphold.

posted by Poagao at 11:22 pm  

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