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#224777 - 01/23/06 09:15 PM zhan zhuang
RyuuJitsu Offline
Member

Registered: 01/22/06
Posts: 25
Loc: every where and no where
does anyone here do any zhan zhuang?

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#224778 - 01/23/06 10:25 PM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: RyuuJitsu]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
Never heard of it...so I went online for a quick description:

"Zhan zhuang or "standing like a post" is a method of training in many Chinese martial arts in which static postures are used for meditation and to develop patience, leg strength and stamina. Perhaps the most well-known variety of zhan zhuang training is the "horse stance" or ma bu.

Many styles, especially the internal styles, combine post standing with breathing training to develop coordination for martial and health purposes. Yiquan is known for having discarded most other styles of training found in its parent art, Xingyiquan, in favour of zhan zhuang as one of its fundamental training methods."

I think you might get more response posting this question in the Energy Arts?

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#224779 - 01/23/06 10:51 PM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: harlan]
RyuuJitsu Offline
Member

Registered: 01/22/06
Posts: 25
Loc: every where and no where
well it is a meditation and it also impoves balance, internal power ( jing ), and helps develop chi which is what im going for.its also qigong ( stationary qigong ).

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#224780 - 02/22/06 09:42 AM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: RyuuJitsu]
taijidave Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/22/06
Posts: 7
Loc: Liverpool.England.
Good day, I have done Zhan Zhuang for 5 years now.As a standing meditation you get to know where the tension is in your body, which you must lose to do Taiji.Can recommend "Stand still and be fit" as a good introduction by Lam Kam Chuen.(google search engine).If you can build up to 30 mins a day, you have arrived !Also enables awareness of chi circulation and how to control it, but this side needs 15 mins before it can be considered. You can only learn by experience on this one, there are no short cuts. best regards Dave
_________________________
Taiji Dave

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#224781 - 02/22/06 01:17 PM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: taijidave]
Fisherman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 1656
Loc: Colorado, USA
Quote:

If you can build up to 30 mins a day, you have arrived !



Arrived at what?

Quote:

Also enables awareness of chi circulation and how to control it, but this side needs 15 mins before it can be considered.



Can you please provide a bit more depth to this statement? What enables awareness of chi circulation? What enables us to control it?

Thanks!
_________________________
Chris Haynes

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#224782 - 02/23/06 03:00 AM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: Fisherman]
taijidave Offline
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Registered: 02/22/06
Posts: 7
Loc: Liverpool.England.
Good day. 30 mins standing with no shaking, straining but total relaxation means you have control of your body.So you are no longer using muscle strength, but are using the mind to hold the posture. It is not an endurance test, if your arms feel as heavy as lead, then stop and start again.A teacher would go through a checklist when you start.Your arms should float to position, your mind already being in that place.All taiji principles are brought into account, elbows down, shoulders down, legs not locked our, tongue held loosely on the roof of the mouth just behind the teeth, small of the back pushed out, tailbone tucked under, head as if suspended from above, etc etc. In a lot of traditional schools,you have to do ZZ before you do taiji, that way you appreciate what relaxation actually is. Your movements are with the mind, where the mind is, is where the Chi is.Therefore as the martial aspect, when you punch, in your mind you have already hit through your target, the chi is there, your body just completes the strike. To hit hard and fast you must relax. If tension, you have 2 moves to do. One, relax, 2 strike. If you are already relaxed,its just one - hit. tense up your arm and trying moving it, no can do. Study Western boxers, they have plenty of muscle, but look at their shoulders, they are relaxed, you can hit anyone if muscles locked up. Release and relax, this is what ZZ teaches. It seems simple, just stand there, but once you get over the physical side, then you develope the Chi movement.
You start by pulsing between the hands, then make it circle around the arms, then vertical body etc.This takes time and effort.
Its like train stations around the body, you have to move the mind to each station in turn, until you can eventually go around the full track without stopping.
This is why you need a good teacher, you cannot develope from books, there are too many mistakes and pitfalls depending on the physical and mental state of the practioner...
15 mins is expected of first year students. When you see you can actually hold this positions without the shakes, then you can feel in control and that you have actually achieved something, this is the first building block of many.Trust this gives some food for thought, regards Dave.
_________________________
Taiji Dave

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#224783 - 02/23/06 09:09 AM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: taijidave]
Fisherman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 1656
Loc: Colorado, USA
Hello Dave,
Thanks for the reply.

Quote:

This is why you need a good teacher, you cannot develope from books, there are too many mistakes and pitfalls depending on the physical and mental state of the practioner...




This is the most important point of your statement. If I am not mistaken, there is approximately a dozen people here that do zhan zhuang. This is why I asked for detail in your previous statement. As you stated, there are many pitfalls within standing practice and the only way to avoid them or correct them should they occur is with the help of a teacher.

Quote:

All taiji principles are brought into account, elbows down, shoulders down, legs not locked our, tongue held loosely on the roof of the mouth just behind the teeth, small of the back pushed out, tailbone tucked under, head as if suspended from above, etc etc.




These points are not just for Taiji, they are general structural guidelines for training the proper structural alignment in the body. They are primarily concerned with the internal arts, however, they can be incorperated into the basic structure of externals as well.

Quote:

Your movements are with the mind, where the mind is, is where the Chi is.




I understand what you are getting at here, I have more commonly heard this related to as intent or yi. Yi can loosely be translated as awareness/intent. By simply moving your awareness (mind) to a certain area you can cause the body energetic to be moved to that area. By increasing the awareness of a part of the body you will feel it more. The trick is to spread the awareness evenly throughout the body without breaking the continuity of the feeling. This is a very delicate matter.

Quote:

...once you get over the physical side, then you develope the Chi movement.




I don't know if I completely agree with this statement, and maybe it is just because I have been taught differently. IMHO, once the physical side has been aquired and your can be compfortable in the proper posture, you need to refine the mind and expand your awareness of what your body feels. In other words, taking the time to feel the body with the mind and at the same time making sure that the mind is relaxed. If the mind is tense then it will lead to tension within the body.

Quote:

You start by pulsing between the hands, then make it circle around the arms, then vertical body etc.This takes time and effort.




This has been brought up here before. You shouldn't try to feel anything. You should be aware of what you feel. To say that you should feel any particular sensation can be misleading. People need to simply be aware of any sensations that they have in the body, hands, whatever. It is up to the teacher to determine whether or not these sensations are valid or not.
_________________________
Chris Haynes

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#224784 - 02/23/06 12:51 PM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: taijidave]
Reiki Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/30/02
Posts: 3400
Loc: MiddleEarth
Quote:

All taiji principles are brought into account, elbows down, shoulders down, legs not locked our, tongue held loosely on the roof of the mouth just behind the teeth, small of the back pushed out, tailbone tucked under, head as if suspended from above, etc etc.




Its interesting how many internal arts use the closing of the conception vessel/governer circuit.

In healing I find that the flow of reiki comes more easily from this.
_________________________
Allow me to acquaint you with my friends Mr Jab and Mr Cross...

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#224785 - 02/23/06 01:30 PM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: Reiki]
Fisherman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 1656
Loc: Colorado, USA
Isn't the conception vessel/governer circuit the main channel in the body?

Reiki
In your area of the healing arts do you rely on the chakra system or the tradional chinese accupunture meridian system. Or are they the same?
I'd be interested to see the commonalities between chakra's and the meridian system. Do the chakras that govern particular organs correspond to meridian points that govern the same organs?
(Maybe this should be in a different thread? Although it'd be interseting to see how this all ties into zhan zhuang also).
_________________________
Chris Haynes

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#224786 - 02/24/06 03:01 AM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: Fisherman]
taijidave Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/22/06
Posts: 7
Loc: Liverpool.England.
T.G.I.F.(SOON BE THE WEEKEND).
The thing about Zhan Zhuang it is so basic it was over looked for years.We do ZZ before we start the taiji lesson.
A lot of people do it (chinese) and they think nothing of it, as its just for health.A lot who teach it make it too mystical.Good teachers are usually martial artists who know its value for body, mind and spirit.So a lot of people who have the ability to teach it or pass it on,dont know that other people would like to get in on it.
With regard to Taiji principles, I found that when I took up Iaido, all the principles were in that as well. My teacher said I was a natural for iai until he found out that I had done Taiji for some years, that explains a lot he said,the basics of both are the same.
I have also been invited to teach Taiji principles to Karate schools in my area. Progressive karate teachers have found they can make their students better and faster if they learn to release and relax.
This also means that I start them off on ZZ. The senior students / dan grades etc., pick it up very quickly, and all acknowledge even on the day, they can work out the advantages and possibilities.
Fortunately, most I have been involved with have had open minds, and not dismissed it out of hand.
Regarding your comment on Yi.Awareness etc. you are correct, continuity is all important especially in Taiji forms.
Regarding tension, if you have the slightest tension, then you are not physically relaxed.If you are not relaxed you cannot operate efficiently.
The object of ZZ & taiji is to learn to totally relax.
A relaxed person is a better fighter than one who is tense.(not that fighting is the be all and end all of everything), lose your temper - lose the fight, but if you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, then maybe you dont understand the situation !
With regard to sensations.
I dont think you should not try to feel anything. Chi to me is purely physical. We all have it, its as real as breathing, and to me is matter.Its that until you turn on, and tune in, you dont appreciate it. Millions can live with it, they dont know they have it, and it makes no difference to their lives. But they still have it.
I agree with you, dont tell other people what you feel, they might have a different feeling and think they are wrong.
Examples: We have one senior student who can generate more Chi than you can shake a stick at. But he cannot feel anything, or any sensations. Walk past him when he's in top gear, and you can feel it, but he cant. Well thats Ok, he's learnt to live with that, but knows he got it.
Another student reads alot, all this mystic stuff fom South america . guru's etc. He cant tune in because he has his wrong head on. hes looking for something that does not exsist.Until he gets rid of that clutter from his mind he wont feel anything worthwile.
Some students feel heat in their hands / arms etc. Some dont feel heat, but feel as if two magnets are repelling each other.
Its all the same, but a lot of factors alter the perception.
But once you know you can fine tune it, and move it you build on that.
So if you were going to hit someone ( sorry for violence again) thenyou dont just use body, Chi is where the mind is, in this case your hand, so mind and body together to achieve more power.
As you say a good teacher can sort out the chaff from the wheat. But we dont all feel the same, but the end result should be the same.
ZZ should be making you into "the radio".You should tune into the station. This could mean you alter your balance slightly, raise or lower arms an inch. Move weight slightly more to the heels.Bend knees slightly more etc etc.
In China, ZZ was all a lot of people needed.Stand still and be fit.Not many people in China even believed that.So you put it in the middle of a dozen other ChiGung exercises, and hey presto you could sell it.
If out of every art I did, I could only pick one, it would be ZZ, the possibilities are only limited by your own imagination.
Just do it for physical, and believe it or not, after 100 hours training standing still, you are guaranteed to see a physical improvement in your body.
best regards
dave.
_________________________
Taiji Dave

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#224787 - 02/25/06 08:32 AM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: taijidave]
Fisherman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 1656
Loc: Colorado, USA
Dave,

You said...
Quote:

This also means that I start them off on ZZ. The senior students / dan grades etc., pick it up very quickly, and all acknowledge even on the day, they can work out the advantages and possibilities.




What are the advantages and possiblities that they are acknowledging?

Quote:

Awareness etc. you are correct, continuity is all important especially in Taiji forms.




...and Baguazhang and Xingyiquan and other MA's also. Continuity of motion and mind can be a very overwhelming thing when it is impressed upon an opponent.

Quote:

I dont think you should not try to feel anything.




They should feel what their bodies are saying to them when their minds quiet down enough to listen. They should not be looking to feel something that their teacher told them to feel.

Quote:

So if you were going to hit someone ( sorry for violence again) thenyou dont just use body, Chi is where the mind is, in this case your hand, so mind and body together to achieve more power.




I get what you are saying, but I think that there is more to it than just 'putting your mind there'.
Here we go...
There are 3 major components to zz training. Proper structural alignment in the body, relaxation, and clarity of mind.
Proper structure provides an optimum vehicle in which power can be transmited through given the body is relaxed enough so that the powers transmition is not impeded. You must have clarity in the mind so that power knows exactly where it is going.
This is done standing still!! To do this when moving and hitting is a different ball game, especially when your opponent is trying to clean your clock.
I understand how the basics of zz training can be implemented into forms practice and then into fighting and it more than simply putting your mind there.

Quote:

If out of every art I did, I could only pick one, it would be ZZ, the possibilities are only limited by your own imagination.




Then your primary intention of training would be for health, correct?
You would receive all of the health benefits of zz, but the martial side would be lacking. ZZ does not translate to martial ability unless you add the concept of technique to it.
_________________________
Chris Haynes

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#224788 - 02/27/06 01:29 PM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: Fisherman]
Reiki Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/30/02
Posts: 3400
Loc: MiddleEarth
Quote:

Isn't the conception vessel/governer circuit the main channel in the body?

Reiki
In your area of the healing arts do you rely on the chakra system or the tradional chinese accupunture meridian system. Or are they the same?
I'd be interested to see the commonalities between chakra's and the meridian system. Do the chakras that govern particular organs correspond to meridian points that govern the same organs?
(Maybe this should be in a different thread? Although it'd be interseting to see how this all ties into zhan zhuang also).




1> yes it is

2> In reiki we work on the chakras AND the meridiens, or at least within the lineage that I come from, we do. Most practioners will use the governer/conception vessel bridge to increase the effectiveness of treatment. We also treat the meridiens with reiki to move ki within them and balance the body.

Basically the chakras cover parts of the body as you already know, but reiki is not limited to treating solely at the chakra, and can be used anywhere there is a problem.

I'd just leave this discussion in this thread for now.

oh and guys can we please leave off using the beating a dead horse graphic for a while, I just lost my best mate [my old horse] on Thursday and it brings back too many unpleasant memories for the moment as I found him laying like that in the paddock. I'd had him for over 16 years so its been like losing a member of my family.
_________________________
Allow me to acquaint you with my friends Mr Jab and Mr Cross...

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#224789 - 02/27/06 03:47 PM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: Reiki]
Fisherman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 1656
Loc: Colorado, USA
My condolences on the loss of your friend.
_________________________
Chris Haynes

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#224790 - 02/27/06 04:41 PM Re: zhan zhuang [Re: Fisherman]
Reiki Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/30/02
Posts: 3400
Loc: MiddleEarth
Thanks, he was a great old boy and it was a real shock to find him like that. I expected to have to make a decision about him in a few years time but the old bugger decided it was his time and went out in grand style doing what he loved best!

I was fortunate to be able to use him for my jousting grading just before Xmas which he really enjoyed. He really liked being part of the action and seemed to get a real buzz out of dismembering cabbages and stabbing sacks, not to forget impaling things with the spears!

I was hoping to use him for some full contact passes shortly to get some practice in my new armour but it wasn't to be and Zen will take over as my main horse now.
_________________________
Allow me to acquaint you with my friends Mr Jab and Mr Cross...

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