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#161382 - 06/28/05 09:38 AM A Tai Chi Question + an Eagle Claw roll call
MrEd Offline
Member

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 252
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
Hey guys...

I was curious if anybody else out there studies Eagle Claw? I just got back into it after some injuries and am loving every minute of it. Truthfully, at my current (limited) level of knowledge it is probably more of basic technqiues that lay the foundation. Occasionaly we get to see some of the advanced locks and such. Basically, i was just wondering how many others train / have trained in this form.

secondly, i had a brief tai chi question. i had also started learning the yang style prior to injury and have resumed training in this as well. But I always seem to run out of breath halfway through. Does this go away over time or is there something i can do to actively increase its longevity?
(Because of my really bad nut allergies, i had previously studied different breathing techniques and learned abdominal breathing only through my nose. When i stand still i can inhale slowly down to my abs and watch them expand with a decent amount of air, but the minute i add even the gentlest of motion to it, my capacity shrinks by half or more)

any thoughts/suggestions/comments greatly appreciated...

Thanks,
Ed
_________________________
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#161383 - 06/28/05 09:44 AM Re: A Tai Chi Question + an Eagle Claw roll call [Re: MrEd]
MAGr Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/11/05
Posts: 1147
Loc: London, home: Athens
Your breathing question would be best directed to the breathing forum, maybe someone there might be able to help. As far as I know, you should breathe naturaly (I am reffering to the pace). Dont try to breathe to the rhythm of the movements, and continue breathing through the abdominal, but exhale through the mouth as if you are exhaling through a straw.

I havent trained in eagle claw, but would be very interested to hear more about it.

be well

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#161384 - 06/28/05 03:14 PM Re: A Tai Chi Question + an Eagle Claw roll call [Re: MAGr]
MrEd Offline
Member

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 252
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
hey...

thanks for your response....what you're saying about tai chi makes sense, but here is where i'm coming from: my instructor associates an inhale with the first part of a circular movement and an exhale with the second. (For example, with warm up exercises like Drawing the Bow or Playing the Guitar) Its possible that the other students in the class aren't coordiating their breath fully with those movements, or i need a lot more practice than them, but i have to move slightly faster than them on the inhale to make my breath last for that. i can exhale with no problem though; i can make that last through the duration of its part of the movement.

as for eagle claw, ask me more in another five years or so


I'm sure the quality of instruction has a lot to do with my overall satisfaction with the style. one day it just hit me how many techniques and visualizations are hidden in those forms. im not versed in the specifics of any other style of kung fu, but eagle claw also includes groudfighting techniques of which i've learned a few of the beginner ones.

* * *

the eagle's claw is a hand posistion that is used to separate tendons and rip tissues. i presume it is used in alot of the 108 joint locks, but i'm not advanced enough to have learned them. i've heard that the more advanced practicioners train their grip to be strong enough to crush bone with it.
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#161385 - 06/28/05 09:07 PM Re: A Tai Chi Question + an Eagle Claw roll call [Re: MrEd]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Mr. Ed,

I am a student of Ernest Rothrock, who I suspect is your instrutor or perhaps your instructors instructor in the Pittsburgh area.

First it is always best to discuss your progress with your instructor. I've been doing Mr. Rothrock's Yang long form for over 27 years. Are you learing the long form or the 24?
You might discuss your breathing problem with your instructor. I believe the one answer would be to work on the form for the time being with normal breathing and let time help you develop your breath capacity with the tai chi movement.

They are teaching the specific breathing techniques for the way it will help your tai chi skills develop, but those things have to be tempered by an individuals abilities, IMO.

Not knowing you I can't give more specific advice. Tai Chi builds so many skills that take time and I believe in time your question will be answered in your practice.

As for Eagle Claw, in a sense I've studied a little, but I am most definately not an Eagle Claw student, or even a hobbiest.

Mr. Rothrock explained to me that the primary tool for building the Eagle Claw grip is the long correct performance of the lengthy forms and the many claws they contain. Accompany them with the many two person sets and a lot will be covered.

As for the full feeling of the claw, I personally invite you to go to Ernest and tell him Victor Smith wants you to feel the locks up close and personal. I'm sure he'll be glad to share with you what he shared with me. I don't believe he can crush bone, it just feels like he's doing so. But then again I may be wrong.

I envy you the many in depth studies before you.


Edited by Victor Smith (06/28/05 09:09 PM)
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#161386 - 06/28/05 11:46 PM Re: A Tai Chi Question + an Eagle Claw roll call [Re: MrEd]
pathfinder7195 Offline
Member

Registered: 02/11/05
Posts: 336
Loc: T.C Michigan, U.S
We do have eagle claw in CLF. To strengthen you finger tips do pushups on you thumb, index finger and middle finger this will help with the grip needed. The key to eagle claw is the thumb which is refered to as the talon. When grabing the throat the index finger and middle finger stablize the grip while the thumb should penatrate behind the windpipe.
The old eagle claw master's would grow their thumnail out and sharpen them to a point for eaiser penatration of the skin. Most kung fu styles have some sort of eagle claw in them, some more than others.

Kevin

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#161387 - 06/29/05 09:05 AM Re: A Tai Chi Question + an Eagle Claw roll call [Re: pathfinder7195]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Kevin,

I agree there is eagle claw present in many systems.
What I should have clarified is the Eagle Claw I'm referring to is the Faan Tzi Ying Jow Pai taught by Shum Leung and Ernest Rothrock. Shum Sifu studied in Hong Kong and this system is extremely complex, one of the total systems of MA I've encountered.

Mr Rothrock spent the better part of 30 years to acquire it's knowledge.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#161388 - 06/29/05 09:10 AM Re: A Tai Chi Question + an Eagle Claw roll call [Re: Victor Smith]
MrEd Offline
Member

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 252
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
Hi Victor,

As you correctly guessed, i am a student of Master Rothrock's pittsburgh school. I probably get to go about half of the week, as the other half is taken up with grad school classes. I'm currently learning the first 12 of the 24 yang style tai chi, and am at orange level 2 in the kung fu course.

I have mentioned my tai chi breathing question to one of the instructors, who advocated the same thing you did, namely patience. They are very helpful and I usually ask them my questions first. In this case, I was wondering if anyone else had encountered this same 'running out of inhale space problem' early in their tai chi training.

If you ever come to Pittsburgh to visit Master Rothrock, let me know and I'll stop by the school and introduce myself. Thanks for the invitation, next time I see him, i will mention your name and brace myself for the impending pain

Ed
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.

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#161389 - 06/29/05 09:41 AM Re: A Tai Chi Question + an Eagle Claw roll call [Re: MrEd]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Ed,

I've had a standing invitation for years, but one can only do what one can do. And whenever I get there he makes me work, running a clinic. So perhaps someday.

If you look at my articles on this site, FightingArts.com, you will find I did an article on him and Eagle Claw a few years ago.

Do say hi to him for me.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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