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#218021 - 12/28/05 07:22 PM The Animal Styles
ParadoxPlague Offline
Member

Registered: 04/19/05
Posts: 46
Loc: New Durham, NH, usa
Any chance someone could give me specific information about the movements, pros and cons of the animal forms and methods?
I'd ask my Sifu but, you know, I'd like to do some research first.
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#218022 - 12/28/05 07:57 PM Re: The Animal Styles [Re: ParadoxPlague]
Diga Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/05
Posts: 209
Loc: Hoodsport, Washington
Hi and welcome to the forum.
Not sure if I am the right person to give information on the animal arts. I say this because my study of animal arts was in -Internal healing arts - not fighting arts.
I did wind up useing them in my martial arts and have a lot of good things to say about my experience.

I am pretty sure that in any class the most important part of learning and incorperating animals into your fighting techniques will be - Visualization.
The first step of useing an animal form is to visualize it......That is visualize it within yourself.

After you have practiced any movements while visualising a particular animal you will notice completely different additudes and ways of movement. At any time during your sparring you can shift your additude to one of your animal forms and have great advantages that you might not have noticed before.

For example - Bear will be solidly connected to the ground and move in with great force. Monkey might do something completely unexpected and unorthodox. Eagle will pearce through like steel with deadly accuracy. Tiger could spring with all weapons active at the same time. Dragon comes in like thunder and lightning carried in with the wind.

Just immagine what internal additudes like these can do when you are feeling a little overwhelmed by an opponent. Not only does it help you to not worry about such an opponent but it also uplifts your additude in many different ways.

Hopefully this gives a little insight to these studies. Also there are elements like - water, fire, earth & wind that can be considered. These are actually part of some animals.
Good luck and remember to visualise is most importane.

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#218023 - 12/29/05 12:36 PM Re: The Animal Styles [Re: ParadoxPlague]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!
Prolific

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Nice post, Diga.

I can only add that there are a lot of animal forms, and they can be quite different from each other. I learned a bit of Snake style KF, which emphasized a lot of linear strikes combined with circular footwork.

I also learned a bit of Tiger style KF which was pretty much the opposite - circular/angled strikes but mostly linear footwork.
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#218024 - 12/29/05 12:53 PM Re: The Animal Styles [Re: MattJ]
ShikataGaNai Offline
Veteran

Registered: 08/27/05
Posts: 1163
Loc: Bellingham, WA
A lot of the technique is in the hands too - many animal styles share hand forms that look very similar but have various uses based on the subtle differences. For example, the dragon claw looks like the tiger claw with the fingers pointed instead of curled. The tiger rakes, scratches and uses palm strikes. The dragon gouges, stabs and grips as well as scratch. I'm fairly new to this, but it seems like the hands are almost a form of their own with the animal styles.

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#218025 - 01/05/06 05:00 PM Re: The Animal Styles [Re: ParadoxPlague]
Tienying Offline
Newbie

Registered: 07/16/05
Posts: 17
Excellent response Diga. The only thing I would humbly add would be to take a moment to study the actual animals in nature. When i starting in the animal systems, my Shifus would take us to Zoos and show us documentaries on certain animals.The thing that helped me was determining how those animals 'root' themselves in nature...as in their interactions/survival with against different things. Then I meditated on what i believed prompted the developers of the animal systems to emulate them. This allowed me to develop a sense how I should feel. I hope this helps.
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#218026 - 01/08/06 07:32 PM Re: The Animal Styles [Re: ParadoxPlague]
VigilanteSilver Offline
Member

Registered: 01/02/06
Posts: 33
Loc: Location, Location!
There are not only tons of animal styles (there is a duck style!), but they also vary in application depending on your school, which region they originate etc. etc. For instance, our school teaches tiger boxing, which uses a lot of ground rolls and grapples and stuff, but there's also other tiger forms which use more leg stuff than you would expect. Some crane forms use almost all legs, some not as much. It totally depends on how traditional the form is, where it came from, and who's teaching it. The best research you can do is talking to your Sifu, probably.
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