Showing posts with label kung fu. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kung fu. Show all posts

May 13, 2015

5 Year Old Nunchaku Master







Every now and again I run across a video such as this that makes me second guess my desire NOT to have children.  Dressed to the nines and mimicking the great Bruce Lee PERFECTLY with killer nunchaku (commonly referred to as 'Numchucks') skills! But then I am slapped back into reality when I see children and their keepers at the airport, grocery store, or unfortunately many a restaurant.  

A kind reminder to check out the Bruce Lee exhibit in the ID of Seattle at the Wing Luke museum. 

February 22, 2015

2015 Chinese New Year With Mike Martello

Miss all of you
Happy year of the Sheep / Goat!  I can think of no better way to celebrate the Chinese Lunar New Year then with my good friend and teacher Mike Martello.  He has been on my mind a lot lately as I was watching an Anthony Bourdain "The Layover" in Taiwan the other night, and sure enough if there wasn't Mike's old training crew under Wang Jie featured!  Then as mentioned in the previous post Feidor Laview brought back some great memories with the Miao Dao. 

Though I know I have posted these clips before, it has been seven years since this film was taken here in Seattle where we hosted Mike a couple of times.   Unfortunately this is the last film I have of Mike and us together.  He died in 2009 prior to returning stateside for another round of lessons.

There is pure gold in these clips regardless of what style you train.  Sadly the majority of us will never, ever reach even a quarter of what Mike attained prior to his premature death.  Study and learn. 

Miss you Mike...









February 16, 2015

The Bible of Ngo Cho Kun - Book Review

Mark Wiley and Tambuli Media have become known for offering titles on a multitude of styles and topics, but it is rare for us to get some a special, personal insight into a project that is so near and dear to his heart.  Though probably better known for his FMA background, Dr. Mark Wiley has been studying Ngo Cho Kun (Five Ancestor Fist) for decades.  Not only is Ngo Cho Kun rarely seen in print format, it is rarely openly taught here in the west.  This translation is an absolute gem for Chinese martial arts enthusiasts the world over. 

Originally written by Yu Chiok Sam under the title "Chinese Gentle Art Complete" in 1917, Tambuli's edition was translated into English by Alex Co, with additional editing and translating by Russ L. Smith and Mark Wiley.  Five Ancestor Fist is a southern Chinese martial that incorporates a wide range of tactics and traditional weapons, and this manual represents the fundamental movements including strikes, stances, kicks, and partner routines.  I am certainly not familiar enough with Ngo Cho Kun to critique the breadth of the art encapsulated in this text, but as an outside reader it certainly seems comprehensive of at least the basics. 

Broken into five volumes, 27 chapters, over 240 pages this text is thoroughly illustrated with clear, concise pictures of what the author is trying to convey.  Again in some of the partner pictures I would have liked to have seen one person in lighter colored clothing to offer some contrast for ease of the reader.  As far as a manual goes this translation is exactly what students look for, it is precisely how I envision a treatise of the systems I have learned.  The Chinese text is offered in traditional hanzi.  Directly below that the authors offer the English translation followed by a series of photographs demonstrating the translation.  Mark Wiley annotates the entire text with pertinent footnotes. 

Overall I must say I am quite happy with Tambuli's "Chinese Gentle Art Complete: The Bible of Ngo Cho Kun."  A professionally edited and presented text on a rarely seen art.  A welcomed addition to the martial collectors shelf. 

Click here to order The Bible of Ngo Cho Kun

December 9, 2014

Martial Arts Book Collection For Sale

Stuck for stocking stuffer ideas for the martial artist in your life?  I have been slowly culling my redonkuless book collection.  In addition to the various martial arts texts I also have a number of Asian philosophy, religion, and healing books.  Contact me for more info.  I am happy to ship anywhere, but keep in mind none of the prices reflect S&H.
   I have a number of various Chinese manuals on Praying Mantis Boxing, and Baji Quan that are not listed.  These are in Chinese, email me for more info. [email protected]

"Mastering the Rubber Guard" - Eddie Bravo                   $30
"Mastering the Twister"            - Eddie Bravo                   $15
"Mastering Sambo for MMA"  - Scott Sonnen                 $15
"Mastering MMA: The Guard" - Antonio Nogueria          $10
"Advanced BJJ Techniques"     - Marcelo Garcia              $50
"BJJ Theory & Technique"       - Renzo and Royler Gracie $25
"Fundamentals of Shuai Chiao" - Daniel Weng                   $25
"Warriors of Stillness vol I"       - Jan Diepersloot              $20
"Tao of Yiquan: Warriors of Stillness vol II"                       $20
"Taiji, Xing Yi, Bagua Throwing" - Mark Small                 $25
"Martial Arts of Ancient Greece" - Kostas Deruenis         $10
"Fighting Strategies of Muay Thai" - Villa Lobos               $10
"Muay Thai Textbook"                                                    $20
"Comprehensive Applications of Shaolin Chin Na"
                                                    - Yang Jwing Ming       $10
"Muay Thai Advanced Thai Techniques" - Delp                $10
"JuJitsu: Japans Ultimate Martial Art - Daniel Craig         $10
"Baguazhang Theory & Applications"
                           - Liang Shou Yu & Yang Jwing Ming    $15
"Healing Art of Qigong"                - Hong Liu                   $10
"Combat Techniques of Taiji, Xing Yi, Bagua"
                                                   Lu Shengli                     $15
"Essential Guide to Sumo"              - Buckingham              $5
"Father of Judo - Jigoro Kano"      - Brian Watson            $30
"Dictionary of Martial Arts"            - Frederick                 $5
 "Last Samurai"                               - Marc Ravina            $5
"Gaijin Yokozuna: Biography of Chad Rowan"
                                                      - Paenek                   $10
"Root of Chinese Qigong"               - Yang Jwing Ming     $5
"Yiquan and the Nature of Energy"  - Fong Ha                 $10
"Essential Anatomy for Healing and Martial Arts"
                                                       - Tedeschi                $5
"Eight Simple Qigong Exercises for Health - YJM            $5
"Wrestling Tough"                           - Mike Chapman       $5
"Chinese Healing Arts"                    - William Berk          $2
"Dachengquan"                              - Wang Xuanjie         $20
"Nei Gong Authentic Classic"         - Tom Bisio              $10
"Chinese Medical Qigong Therapy" - Jerry Allan Johnson $250
"Zen in the Martial Arts"                 - Joe Hyams              $2 (or a beer;)
"Wushu Among Chinese Moslems" - U/K Author            $5
"A Tooth From the Tigers Mouth"   - Tom Bisio               $5
"The Way of Qigong"                      - Ken Cohen            $12
"Wu Style Taijiquan"                        - Wang Peisheng      $10
"Body Mind Mastery"                     - Dan Millman          $5
"Light of the Kensei"                       - G. Bluestone          $10
"Karate"                                         - Bruce Tegner         $5
"Seven Star Mantis: Section I & II  - Lee Kam Wing      $20 ea.
"Soft Weapons: Nine Section Whip & Rope Dart"
                                                      - Li Keqin                $10
"Chinese Weapons"                        - ETC Werner          $5
"Sword Polishers Record"              - Adam Hsu              $5
"Iron Palm in 100 Days"                 - Lee Ying Arng        $20
"Ultimate Iron Palm"                      - Wing Lam               $10
"Dynamic Strength"                        - Harry Wong           $5
"Kama"                                         - Toshishiro Obata     $30
"Chinese Gung Fu"                        - Bruce Lee               $5
"Ip Man"                                        - Ip Ching                 $5
"Jeet Kune Do: Entering to Grappling" - Hartsell              $5
"Scholar Warrior"                          - Deng Ming Dao      $10
"The Martial Way and its Virtues"   - FJ Chu                   $5
"Secrets of Iron Fist Training"         - Jamal                      $30
"Iron Fist Training in Hung Gar"      - Jamal                      $30
"Jun Fan / Jeet Kune Do Textbook" - Chris Kent             $5
"Praying Mantis Kung Fu vol. 1-5"  - Paul Eng                $10 ea
"Praying Mantis Seizing the Cicada" - Stuart Alve Olson  $20
"Praying Mantis Kung Fu"               - HB Un                   $5
"Taiji Praying Mantis Freehand Routines vol I & II"
                                                      - Lam Wing Kit        $10 ea
"Kung Fu Basics"                           - Paul Eng                 $5
"Qigong Empowerment"                - Liang Shou Yu         $10
"Still as a Mountain, Powerful as Thunder"
                                                     - YP Dong                $5
"Chi Kung Way of Power"             - Lam Kam Chuen    $5
"Creating an Abundant Practice"    - Andrea Adler         $10
"Who Can Ride the Dragon"          - Zhang Yu Huan      $10
"Taichi Health for Life"                   - BK Frantzis           $5
"Mastering Kung Fu"                     - Garrett Gee           $5
"Chinese Wrestling" Written by Dong Zhong Yi
                              Translated by Marcus Brinkman      $20
"Art of Throwing"                           - Tedeschi               $10
"The Gracie Diet"  Signed               - Rorion Gracie       $20
"Jiujitsu Vol III"                               - George Kirby      $5
"The Complete Kano JiuJitsu"         - Irving Hancock    $10
"A Discourse on the History of Praying Mantis Boxing
in China for the Last One Hundred Years"                     $15
"Jade Emperors Mind Seal Classic"  - Olson                $5
"Dynamic Jiu Jitsu"                          - Wally Jay            $10
"Kwan Dao"                                   - Leung Ting          $10
"Hsing I"                                        - Robert Smith        $5
"Illustrated Shaolin Grappling Kung Fu" - Yong Wun     $5
"Secret Chin Na Techniques of Hung Gar" - Jamal        $20
"Simplified Capture Skills"                                           $5
"Essence of Shaolin White Crane"   - Yang Jwing Ming $10
"Hsing Yi"                       - Liang Shou Yu & YJM       $10
"Wu Shu Standard Course"             - Joseph Eager     $20 

November 19, 2014

Fut Sao Wing Chun by James Cama - Book Review

Tambuli Media's latest offering by James Cama offers a glimpse into the little seen world of the Leung Family Buddha Hand System of martial arts with "Fut Sao Wing Chun."  A 115 page overview of a little known branch of the Southern Chinese Martial art known as Wing Chun, a system renown for its pragmatic approach to self defense and health.

The author, James Cama, offers a brief historic overview of the art before leading the reader through the various aspects of Wing Chun. Subjects such as weapons, empty hand forms, internal healing (nei gung), and two person form are touched upon.  Cama also shows a taste of the self defense aspects that Wing Chun has to offer.   Unfortunately these are mere appetizers to the uninitiated!  Though written decently it almost seems rushed as I was left wanting more details on every aspect; lineage, pedagogy, mindset of a Wing Chun fighter; how to deal with specialists in other methods of combat etc.etc.  A smattering of self defense scenarios are presented but little explanation is offered.  For instance on page 106 the author talks about the importance of controlling the opponents energy in a self defense situation.  But ultimately this is merely a maxim as their is no further details offered nor explanation.

Edited well the photo's are well lit and clear, offering a single angle on the subject in most instances.  The  form stills are solid and clear though again only offering one angle, not multiples. The reader is left yearning for more info and depth unless of course you already practice the Buddha Hand system of the Leung Family.  To those practitioners this book is of the most value since Cama offers the basic forms broken down into over 200 photos as well as the two person set.  A wonderful source of the movements to any student of the art.


The Hei Gong (nei gung) form is also presented (and to the best of my knowledge this is the first time it appears openly in print).  A strong, powerful healing set that combines breath work with dynamic movements and mental acuity training. 

One is left feeling as if there must be a follow up volume diving into more details of such a rare art, but that desire is overshadowed by the sad fact that James Cama unexpectedly passed on the day this title was in fact published. A legacy cut short for sure but none the less one cemented in the foundation of time with this text as a treatise to his past for the students of the future. 

Fut Sao can be purchased by clicking here

August 19, 2014

Martial Arts Book Sale

After much hoeing and humming I have decided that I do not absolutely NEED every damn  martial art book on the earth, therefore I am parting with a good chunk of my personal library.  All these books are in great condition (I do not write in books, nor dog ear) unless otherwise stated, and the asking price is fair but certainly negotiable especially if getting more than one.  Keep in mind many of these titles are no longer in print.  I am happy to ship so email me ([email protected]) and we can coordinate the S and H and details. First dib's go to my blog readers. 

I have a number of various Chinese manuals on Praying Mantis Boxing, and Baji Quan.  These are in Chinese, email me for more info.

"Mastering the Rubber Guard" - Eddie Bravo                   $30
"Mastering the Twister"            - Eddie Bravo                   $15
"Mastering Sambo for MMA"  - Scott Sonnen                 $15
"Mastering MMA: The Guard" - Antonio Nogueria          $10
"Advanced BJJ Techniques"     - Marcelo Garcia              $50
"BJJ Theory & Technique"       - Renzo and Royler Gracie $25
"Fundamentals of Shuai Chiao" - Daniel Weng                   $25
"Warriors of Stillness vol I"       - Jan Diepersloot              $20
"Tao of Yiquan: Warriors of Stillness vol II"                       $20
"Taiji, Xing Yi, Bagua Throwing" - Mark Small                 $25
"Martial Arts of Ancient Greece" - Kostas Deruenis         $10
"Fighting Strategies of Muay Thai" - Villa Lobos               $10
"Muay Thai Textbook"                                                    $20
"Comprehensive Applications of Shaolin Chin Na"
                                                    - Yang Jwing Ming       $10
"Muay Thai Advanced Thai Techniques" - Delp                $10
"JuJitsu: Japans Ultimate Martial Art - Daniel Craig         $10
"Baguazhang Theory & Applications"
                           - Liang Shou Yu & Yang Jwing Ming    $15
"Healing Art of Qigong"                - Hong Liu                   $10
"Combat Techniques of Taiji, Xing Yi, Bagua"
                                                   Lu Shengli                     $15
"Essential Guide to Sumo"              - Buckingham              $5
"Father of Judo - Jigoro Kano"      - Brian Watson            $30
"Dictionary of Martial Arts"            - Frederick                 $5
"Last Samurai"                               - Marc Ravina            $5
"Gaijin Yokozuna: Biography of Chad Rowan"
                                                      - Paenek                   $10
"Root of Chinese Qigong"               - Yang Jwing Ming     $5
"Yiquan and the Nature of Energy"  - Fong Ha                 $10
"Essential Anatomy for Healing and Martial Arts"
                                                       - Tedeschi                $5
"Eight Simple Qigong Exercises for Health - YJM            $5
"Wrestling Tough"                           - Mike Chapman       $5
"Chinese Healing Arts"                    - William Berk          $2
"Dachengquan"                              - Wang Xuanjie         $20
"Nei Gong Authentic Classic"         - Tom Bisio              $10
"Chinese Medical Qigong Therapy" - Jerry Allan Johnson $250
"Zen in the Martial Arts"                 - Joe Hyams              $2 (or a beer;)
"Wushu Among Chinese Moslems" - U/K Author            $5
"A Tooth From the Tigers Mouth"   - Tom Bisio               $5
"The Way of Qigong"                      - Ken Cohen            $12
"Wu Style Taijiquan"                        - Wang Peisheng      $10
"Body Mind Mastery"                     - Dan Millman          $5
"Light of the Kensei"                       - G. Bluestone          $10
"Karate"                                         - Bruce Tegner         $5
"Seven Star Mantis: Section I & II  - Lee Kam Wing      $20 ea.
"Soft Weapons: Nine Section Whip & Rope Dart"
                                                      - Li Keqin                $10
"Chinese Weapons"                        - ETC Werner          $5
"Sword Polishers Record"              - Adam Hsu              $5
"Iron Palm in 100 Days"                 - Lee Ying Arng        $20
"Ultimate Iron Palm"                      - Wing Lam               $10
"Dynamic Strength"                        - Harry Wong           $5
"Kama"                                         - Toshishiro Obata     $30
"Chinese Gung Fu"                        - Bruce Lee               $5
"Ip Man"                                        - Ip Ching                 $5
"Jeet Kune Do: Entering to Grappling" - Hartsell              $5
"Scholar Warrior"                          - Deng Ming Dao      $10
"The Martial Way and its Virtues"   - FJ Chu                   $5
"Secrets of Iron Fist Training"         - Jamal                      $30
"Iron Fist Training in Hung Gar"      - Jamal                      $30
"Jun Fan / Jeet Kune Do Textbook" - Chris Kent             $5
"Praying Mantis Kung Fu vol. 1-5"  - Paul Eng                $10 ea
"Praying Mantis Seizing the Cicada" - Stuart Alve Olson  $20
"Praying Mantis Kung Fu"               - HB Un                   $5
"Taiji Praying Mantis Freehand Routines vol I & II"
                                                      - Lam Wing Kit        $10 ea
"Kung Fu Basics"                           - Paul Eng                 $5
"Qigong Empowerment"                - Liang Shou Yu         $10
"Still as a Mountain, Powerful as Thunder"
                                                     - YP Dong                $5
"Chi Kung Way of Power"             - Lam Kam Chuen    $5
"Creating an Abundant Practice"    - Andrea Adler         $10
"Who Can Ride the Dragon"          - Zhang Yu Huan      $10
"Taichi Health for Life"                   - BK Frantzis           $5
"Mastering Kung Fu"                     - Garrett Gee           $5
"Chinese Wrestling" Written by Dong Zhong Yi
                              Translated by Marcus Brinkman      $20
"Art of Throwing"                           - Tedeschi               $10
"The Gracie Diet"  Signed               - Rorion Gracie       $20
"Jiujitsu Vol III"                               - George Kirby      $5
"The Complete Kano JiuJitsu"         - Irving Hancock    $10
"A Discourse on the History of Praying Mantis Boxing
in China for the Last One Hundred Years"                     $15
"Jade Emperors Mind Seal Classic"  - Olson                $5
"Dynamic Jiu Jitsu"                          - Wally Jay            $10
"Kwan Dao"                                   - Leung Ting          $10
"Hsing I"                                        - Robert Smith        $5
"Illustrated Shaolin Grappling Kung Fu" - Yong Wun     $5
"Secret Chin Na Techniques of Hung Gar" - Jamal        $20
"Simplified Capture Skills"                                           $5
"Essence of Shaolin White Crane"   - Yang Jwing Ming $10
"Hsing Yi"                       - Liang Shou Yu & YJM       $10
"Wu Shu Standard Course"             - Joseph Eager     $20

August 12, 2014

Dit Da Jow - Healing Bruises & Contusions with Traditional Chinese Liniments

Traditional Dit Da Jow / Tieh Da Jiu, often translated as either "Fall - Hit Liniment" or "Iron Strike Liniment," is a traditional Chinese herbal remedy used to help heal contusions, bruises, sore joints etc.  Because of the nature of the liniment it became synonymous with martial art schools and groups, and over time each family developed their own specific recipe for both the herb content as well as the methodology in which it was brewed.

In general the herbs help to facilitate blood flow and the movement of lymph through the injury.  Some recipes (such as the one I offer) bring lots of heat to the injured area.  These elements combined help to speed along recovery and shorten the injury time.

My experience with Chinese medicine is limited to the many amazing healers I have met in New Mexico, and the 500 or so hours I took at Natural Therapeutic School that covered general principles and theory.  I have studied some Tui Na (Chinese massage) and have been taught many various things from my friends in NM that were DOM's, but I cannot say I can prescribe anything so the following should be read with common sense and the knowledge that I am just some schmuck babbling on a blog that you happened across one lazy Tuesday afternoon.

My introduction to jow and its usage came via the Chinese martial arts and my first CMA teacher Dug Corpolongo in the Burque, NM.  Dug has an eclectic approach to the arts and it was via him that not only did I learn the basics of CMA, but also I owe a debt of gratitude for influence on me spiritually in regards to my future in Chinese Philosophy and Religion at university.  Dug knows a fair amount about herbs and massage and he was kind enough to impart his knowledge and info onto me through the years.  His friends Kurt Saenz and Phil Romero also shared their knowledge of traditional Chinese healing methods learned in guan's across Asia.  Many martial artists were also healers of one sort or another, so the knowledge of how to hurt and heal is not as cliche as one would sometimes assume!  Kurt and Phil learned from their respective masters Augustine Fong and Hawkins Cheung respectively.

The list grows for me in New Mexico as I was very tied into the CMA community which was small and many students were also students at the various acupuncture and healing schools (we had up to 6 at one time in a 120 mile radius around Albuquerque!!).  So jow recipes and talk got thrown around quite a bit, and quite frankly none of them were bad, but nothing to get excited about.

Then I met Mike Biggie via Steve Cottrell one day while competing at Tony Yangs Wu Tan Invitational in Akron, OH.  As a gift Mike gave me a bottle of his latest batch of jow and it was amazing!  I had some serious bruises from getting hit on my ribs and his jow healed it up within 3 days!

Now for those of you whom are unfamiliar with Mike Biggie, well you really have not studied your North American CMA history because he has been here since the early 70's.  Known for his devastating Choy Li Fut, Mike's mistress is Northern Mantis.  Namely HK Seven Star!  As a "hobby" Mike has studied Chinese herbs, only Chinese herbs, for as long as he has trained CMA.  He has no degree.  He does not treat people.  But he has collected recipes, studied the various qualities of combining herbs, and treating various ailments of his own for over three decades!  To say he knows a thing or two is quite the understatement.
Luckily Mike and I are basically from the same stock and hit it off quite well.  As a matter of fact he is one of the few "old timers" I stay in touch with.  And it is through him that I get my herbs for the recipe I have (story for another time about the recipe I have from the mid 1800's).  I also learned Iron Palm technique from him, and he has taught me a lot about liniments, jows and herbs as well.

This liniment is perfect for anyone who does any kind of contact sport!  I have had friends use it on their kids bruises from soccer and football.  My mother used it for arthritis.  I use it in recovery from serious injuries.

I just found a batch that was prepared in the fall of 2004, and has been untouched since.  It is some of the best jow I have ever come across and I am getting rid of the last little batch I have.  Limited amounts are available so email me if you are interested: [email protected]

4oz Bottles $40 + S&H

8oz Bottles $75 + S&H

Again email me if interested: [email protected]

Train Hard, Train Smart!
Jake

March 10, 2014

Mat Manners Monday

Every now and then I like to offer a little PSA for those new to the martial arts mat, or simply those in need of better manners.  Today lets discuss body language and position on the mat while receiving instruction.

One of my, and many instructors out there, biggest pet peeves is when a student lays down or sprawls out and back, resting on their arms and/or sides.  This presents an air of disinterest and laziness, neither of which is desired in the dojo.  You should be actively engaged in your learning, and subconsciously your central nervous system goes into a state of relaxation and rest when the body is physically put into a position of relaxation.

Often times it is necessary to move and switch positions to better see your teacher and the details they are expounding, and this is perfectly acceptable.  But it never ceases to amaze me that grown adults will be so unaware of their surroundings that they will literally sit/stand in front of someone else with complete disregard for blocking their training partners view.  Pay attention to your surroundings and make sure to walk behind fellow students when repositioning yourself.  Attention to these subtleties will improve not only your martial abilities but also your social etiquette. 

February 8, 2014

2013 Yixing Shuai Chiao Championships

Thanks to Wrestling Roots for this stellar find they shared on FB.  An absolute clinic on Shuai Chiao (Chinese Wrestling) is put on at the 2013 Yixing Shuai Chiao Tournament. Shuai Chiao is one of the oldest existent martial arts practiced worldwide today.  A wonderful art and sport of which I have had the pleasure of training with some of the greats including my teacher Hu Xi Lin (student of the great Pu En Fu AKA Pu Liu), Dave Pickens, John Wang, and David Lin.  A great art if you can find a good reputable teacher.  

 It is rare to see Shuai executed so crisply and cleanly by BOTH opponents, and there is a lot to learn from this video so grab a note book and start studying:



February 1, 2014

Happy New Year of the Horse

Happy Chinese New Year!  What better way to celebrate the year of the Horse then with this AWESOME clip of footwork and movement (qualities of the horse) my friend Dave Teetz shared from Greg Nelson.  All of my students MUST watch this video and study his movement as this is precisely how you should shadow box!

Eat lots of dumplings and may the year of the Horse be fruitful and healthy for you!






For those interested I teach Chinese Martial Arts (Taiji / Bagua / Xing Yi / Mantis) privately and would be happy to talk to you about taking 2014 by the reigns by learning some martial arts and getting in shape!  Hit me up at 206-941-3232 or [email protected]

October 15, 2013

San Shou Lei Tai Fights From Taiwan Circa 1986

Thanks to my broski William for sharing this clip of San Shou Lei Tai fights from Taiwan circa 1986.  San Shou is not a style per se of Chinese martial arts, but rather a rule set of full contact kickboxing.  Different organizations have varying rules but in general all strikes are allowed (minus head buts) as well as takedowns and throws with no ground fighting.  Many traditional artists will train San Shou as well as their respective art.

So enjoy this video and if you are interested I wrote down some basic observations after it:







  • The round kick is absent from the traditional Chinese Martial Arts, yet it is one of the most prevalent attacks used in this video.
  • Those with straight strikes scored faster and in general hit harder.
  • Those with wild swinging strikes still hit really, really hard!  You must respect the strike even if it is sloppy.
  • Notice the clinch is absent here.  This may be due to some governing bodies restricting clinch time (limited to 3 seconds), or banning the clinch position all together.
  • Because the clinch is restricted, the majority of throws we see are quick sweeps and fast knockdowns (kao die).
  • Dropping your hands doing some crazy Bruce Lee type shit gets you hit! 

July 7, 2013

Three Harmonies Combatives and Kali Class Schedule (Revised: July 2013)

Effective July 9th the following class schedule for my Combatives Class as well as the Pekiti Tirsia Kali Class:


Monday 6-7pm: Combatives

Tuesday 6-7pm: Combatives

Wendesday 6-7pm: Pekiti Tirsia Kali

Thursday 6-7pm: Combatives

Saturday 9-10am: Pekiti Tirsia Kali
              10-11am: Combatives

There are a couple things you will notice here.... First and foremost the importance of training in the combatives class even if you are mostly interested in Kali training.  We now have 5 days a week you can train in a group lesson.  Private instruction is scheduled individually.  Tuition will not change... still $105 / month for unlimited classes, or if you choose to attend 1-2 classes a week it is only $85 / month.  Private instruction is available as well in BJJ, striking, weapons work, personal fitness, etc.  Contact Jake Burroughs to arrange a lesson today: [email protected] / 206-941-3232





June 1, 2012

Kung Fu - Tai Chi Magazine Article

I am pleased to announce my latest article, "Sun Taiji's Fan Through the Back" is out in the July/August 2012 issue of Kung Fu Tai Chi.   It covers some grappling and counter-grappling techniques you may not have seen before in traditional Chinese martial arts.  I am also honored to share the magazine with my old friend Phil Romero in Albuquerque, NM.  On the stand now so grab a copy and support one of the last rag's that covers solely Chinese martial arts!

I have been fortunate to be exposed and train under some of the best martial artists in the world, the vast majority of my past two decades in the arts has been training within the Chinese martial spectrum.  It is the arts of Northern Mantis, Xing Yi, Sun Taiji, Sun Bagua, Baji, Shuai Chiao, etc. that have all graced my plate at one time or another in my life.  Training under Tim Cartmell and Hu Xi Lin for the most part I have been fortunate to be involved in many different aspects of the Chinese marital arts.

I find some of the backlash from the community I was once very much a part of, rather amusing in their assertions and assumptions.  But then it dawned on me that perhaps folks need an update as to what I have been doing over the past few years, so let me reminisce and summarize a bit.

When my wife and I moved up here nearly 6 years ago I had two goals; get closer to my Mantis teacher (Hu Xi Lin), and train my ass off in BJJ.  I was fortunate enough to accomplish both goals and am still training in both the traditional martial arts as well as Brazilian Jiu Jitsu under Brian Johnson at the NW Jiu Jitsu Academy.   My main focus has been on BJJ due to the fact that the Chinese martial arts have NO ground fighting what-so-ever,  the high standards my teacher holds, as well as the demanding nature of the martial art.  I have fallen in love with competing once again in my adult life and quite frankly grappling is 10X safer, and more fun to practice then the striking arts!

I still practice, and teach, the traditional martial arts that I know.  Sadly most folks do not hold an interest in the archaic arts of China save a few die hard fans.  The secretive nature of the Chinese culture coupled with an arrogant attitude towards ground fighting ("Like dogs rolling in the dirt") has made the Chinese martial arts antiquated in their training and much of their technique.  Simple fact of the matter is your average BJJ school has a more realistic approach to teaching self defense then your average Chinese martial arts school.   Most Chinese martial academies locally do not even teach the take downs and grappling inherit in their Chinese martial arts.

My group classes are termed "combatives" because they incorporate all my knowledge in the martial spectrum, not just Chinese based.  I teach what I feel is best for my students, not what tradition states.  For in the end when it comes to self defense it is their ass on the line and they are relying on my teachings to keep them safe.  I take that responsibility very seriously!

Keep your eyes peeled for articles coming up in Kung Fu magazine, as well as the final issue of Journal of Asian Martial Arts.  On that note please go out and support your favorite magazines as print media is a dying breed.

If you are interested in training in either group classes or privately, please hit me up so we can arrange a lesson today!   [email protected] / 206-941-3232

Cheers
Jake

January 7, 2012

Journal of Chinese Martial Arts


It has been over a decade since Nick Scrima's landmark publication, "Journal of Chinese Martial Arts"  (prior to that it was also known as the "Wu Gong Journal") folded.  With a fresh start and a new year I am happy to see that the Journal has made a comeback in a eco friendly digital edition, or more expensive hard copy subscription.

  Scrima hopes to offer a comprehensive approach to the Chinese arts, and with the varied instructors and subject matter it seems he has hit his mark:

  • Wang Rengang's student Zhenshen Wang offers an article on the fundamentals of Hao Jia Taiji Meihua Tanglangquan (Hao Family Grand Ultimate Plum Blossom Mantis)
  • Alex Kwok offers the "24 Martial Standards"
  • Origins and history of Wuzuquan
  • A very interesting interview with Liu Xiaoling (renowned teacher of Bagua / Taiji / Xing Yi)
  • Jason Tsou offers some deeper training with his article on developing the sixth sense
  • Nick Masi offers a great piece on Shuai Chiao's tearing practice
  Crisp, clear, color pictures adorn the digital version.  I had no problem logging in and the magazine loaded uber fast (I do have a high speed connection).  A full 56 pages of articles, including media reviews, and almost no advertising at all make this a steal of a deal!  

The Journal of Chinese Martial Arts looks to be a promising addition to the martial arts mass media blitz that has been dominated by MMA magazines offering terrible writing and insight.  The Chinese arts have certainly been experiencing poor representation, with Inside Kung Fu tanking last year, and overall interest waning.  I am happy to see Nick Scrima and his crew stepping up and offering something of a bit more substance and style.  

Please subscribe (click here) and support such a worthy venture.   Plus you never know who you might see writing in future editions;)

Cheers
Jake 

April 8, 2011

Liu Donghan - Yang Taiji Practitioner

4-28-11 * As my research continues into Liu Dong Han I will update info and share my findings.  Thanks to Jon Nicklin for the following corrections.


(1) Liu's teacher was definitely Yang Zhaolin, not Tian Zhaolin. Yang Zhaolin was the only son of Yang Luchan's eldest son, Yang Fenghou. Yang Fenghou died young, so most of Yang Zhaolin's taiji was learnt from his uncles Yang Banhou and Yang Jianhou. 
(2) The region in Hebei that Liu came from is called Xingtai (邢台) rather than Xiantai.


Many have asked me why I do not post more Chinese related topics on this blog since my background and training is primarily based in the Chinese martial arts.  The overall general answer is simply because there is not much of anything positive going on in the CMA right now!  I do not feel the need to be negative and focus on the negative, so I just don't post anything. But every now and then I come across a nugget of important info in my continued research and training.  


In my lineage of Xing Yi Quan goes as follows:
Dong Xiu Sheng --- Li Gui Chang --- Song Zi Yong / Mao Ming Chun --- Martin LaPlatney / Tim Cartmell --- Jake Burroughs.  What is interesting is that Li Gui Chang  studied Taiji in depth with Liu Dong Han.  Of all the Taiji teachers I have had the hardest time finding information on Liu, and I have been looking for years.  Limited by my complete inability to grasp the Chinese language mostly, but in general there is little information out there on Liu!  


Li's push hands was renowned throughout northern China, and his Xing Yi is seriously influenced by his Taiji.  Li's forms and foundation lie within Hebei Xing Yi Quan, but his body method and approach are unique in the Xing Yi world.  Focusing on being very slow, soft, with a heavy emphasis on feeling and sensitivity, Li's Xing Yi is quite different then what many associate Xing Yi with being.  With both of my teachers Martin and Tim the focus has always been on relaxed force occurring naturally via proper structure and mechanics that are natural to the body.  


Much thanks to my friend Scott Meredith for not only finding this little blurb, but also his translation and notation is much appreciated!  Though this is a general overview, it is a start in regards to finding and disseminating information on Liu Dong Han.  


As always if anyone out there reading this knows more than I have posted, I would welcome a chat to learn more about Liu Donghan: [email protected] 


Enjoy,
Jake 








刘东汉
Liu Donghan (? - 1950)


Personal style name  Jingxi, son of Liu Yingzhou, from the village of Dabeidong in Ren county (Hebei province), born in the early years of Guangxu reign, Qing Dynasty [note: reigned 1874/75–1908].Born into a well-known martial arts family,as a child he learned the Three Stars Pao Chui style from his father. Later he learned Yang style Taiji from Yang Zhaolin [Note: sic. Here the author might actually mean TIAN Zhaolin, who was a great and famous Taiji master and Yang family indoor student around that time] and was also taught Wu style Taiji by famous grandmaster Hao Weizhen, thus receiving the full transmission of these various arts.


He was one of the four famous spear masters of the Xiantai area (south/central Hebei province)  who were: Liu Donghan, Cao Ke, Zhang Bingheng, and Dong Yingjie. With his long spear in hand, he seemed to soar like a dragon and coiled like a snake, opening like a phoenix spreading its tail, and swooping like a golden rooster pecking. 


It is said that whenever the disciples got together for practice, Liu Donghan would rush into the practice room, yelling “Xiangyuan, do you dare come out to spar with me?” [note: The reference here is to Li Baoyu (Li Xiangyuan), another famous student of Hao Weizhen at the time] And at that, Baoyu would insist on sparring with Liu. It’s clear that even while they had both learned from the same teacher, each of these disciples had his own particular strong points and unique skills.


Liu Donghan had worked with his father as a security escort, gaining  a wealth of real-world hand-to-hand combat experience. His fighting skills were absolutely first-rate. In the latter part of his life, he taught for a long time at Daoqi, Jianzhou, Taiyuan and other villages n the mountainous area west of Xiantai, eventually establishing a school in the region. He also fought competitively, prevailing in dozens of competitions. He came to be called the “Warrior of the Western Mountains” and “Warrior of the North” [note: referring to Hebei province] He continued teaching Yang style Taiji and older styles, particularly emphasizing offensive fighting tactics. His most accomplished students included Cao Ke, Zhao Shou and others.




Liu Donghan was a 3rd generation Yang Taiji disciple, and was the first to establish that style in the Xiantai area. Before Liberation [note: 1949], he opened a widely renowned martial arts school on Tieza Street in Taiyuan city where he taught both his original family style of Three Stars Pao Chui as well as Yang style Taiji.


Throughout his teaching career in the regions west of Taiyuan, he created a distinctive synthesis of the various style of martial arts he had mastered. His famous disciples also included Liu Dianku (1912-1985) and others. His name is also sometimes written as 刘东寒 [note: different third character, meaning ‘cold’].

February 2, 2011

Zhen Wu Training Camp 2011 - Portugal

The 2011 Zhen Wu Martial Arts Camp will be held in Porto, Portugal.  Anyone interested in Chinese martial arts will want to make sure and attend this camp as it will feature some of the most prominent teachers living in China today!  The Zhen Wu training camp was the brainchild of the late Mike Martello whose dream was to unite people under the banner of Chinese martial arts in an effort to make each and everyone of us stronger, better martial artists and human beings.  Since Mike's passing his students have kept the flame alive by continuing his spirit and legacy via the Zhen Wu training camps.

For more information email Kim Haukland at [email protected]

Cheers
Jake

May 25, 2009

Xing Yi Seminar June 09

You are most welcome to attend my first workshop of 09, a study of the Horse & Tuo animals from Xing Yi Quan. I will teach the form and function both of these animals, along with variations that I have learned. Feel free to contact me with any further questions or to register.

Cheers
JAB

May 13, 2009

Training at Three Harmonies

I have had a lot of friends, students, and mentors give me a hard time lately about not having much about the Chinese martial arts (CMA) on my blog. It is true, there has been little. The reasoning is simple.... there has not been much in general to talk about, and what little there is, is not positive in my humble opinion.

So I decided to change all of that by offering a glimpse at what makes training at Three Harmonies different than what other CMA schools may offer. This is certainly not an attempt to say we are the sole _________, nor did we create anything. Unfortunately there seems to be a general lacking of skill and realistic based training within the greater CMA community, as the student base seems to be attracting individuals who are not so interested in the 'martial' aspects of the martial arts. This is discerning on a number of different levels, but the one pet peeve that really irks me to no end is the lack of responsibility many instructors take in regards to their students well being and abilities (or lack thereof) to defend themselves. I have literally heard instructors tell their students to execute the techniques from the form if they are ever in a real fight and they will sufficiently ward off any aggressive attacks! JESUS!! ARE YOU [email protected]#KING KIDDING ME!?!?!?!?

Here are just a couple things that I feel set us apart from the general CMA kung fu community both here in Seattle, WA. and generally around the world.

- REALISTIC UNCOOPERATIVE DRILLING (aka sparring)

This is not to say you need to throw on pads and kill each other, which is actually counterproductive, but uncooperative drills such as grappling, sparring, etc. with resisting opponents is absolute key to martial skill retention and development. In general I have seen two models within the CMA community:
  1. Over aggressive "kill 'em all" type attitudes which are both intimidating to newbies, and dangerous to everyone including the"killer."
  2. Complete lack of any type of resistance training. And though push hands is better than nothing, the silly restrictions many schools put on their practice of push hands pretty much nullifies anything productive coming from it.
Every class I teach we are doing some sort of resistance training, testing what I just taught out on some one giving at least 60-75% resistance. This does not mean we spar every class, (sometimes yes, sometimes no) but their is practice and drills where our partners gradually give more and more resistance.
- ADHERING TO ANTIQUATED TECHNIQUES & TRAINING METHODS

Many of the techniques in traditional CMA have become antiquated, yet some schools have no interest in improving and updating their fighting repertoire and stick strictly to outdated dogma that is often rooted in Asian culture. Sports science and sports medicine have developed so much in the last 20 years, let alone the last 150, there is really no reason not to incorporate some of it into ones teachings! Some traditional exercises such as iron palm training, hard conditioning, and esoteric energy practice have proven to be quite harmful and detrimental to ones body. To cling to ancient beliefs is not always the best nor healthiest ideas.

Actual techniques need to evolve too. CMA are still very dependent on blocking which will get you hit with someone that has any fighting experience. We teach to cover and slip, much in the same way boxers move and defend themselves. This has proven (for me) to be much more effective in combat. It also nullifies my opponents attack since we keep our arms in tighter and do not allow many techniques to be used simply by not allowing our arms to leave our body.

The anti-grappling attitude needs to be addressed as well. The CMA NEVER have had an organized ground combat curriculum. EVER! With the popularity of MMA and BJJ in the 21st century one needs to be prepared for any and all scenarios, and threat includes the ground. If I hear one more CMA practitioner / teacher tell me "I cannot be taken down." I am going to choke a fool! ANYONE at ANYTIME can potentially find themselves on the ground be it from a fall, a hit, a trip, a throw, a slip etc. So a base knowledge of how to defend oneself and get back to their feet safely is fundamental in my opinion. All students at Three Harmonies are taught Tim Cartmells Ground Proofing curriculum and I incorporate certain aspects of ground fighting into my teachings as well. Not much, but enough to provide a sound base knowledge on survival and escape.

- THE RESISTANCE TO MODERN TRAINING
I guess now that I think about it this is pretty much a continuation of what I wrote above, and honestly is the CMA biggest problem. Whether we are speaking of sparring, ground grappling, or using modern methods and equipment, the CMA in general are very opposed, almost xenophobic, to incorporating aspects from other martial styles into their training regime. A couple years ago I was berated on some CMA forums because of my use of boxing defense and focus mitt work, as well as using the clinch and Thai pads from Muay Thai. Now I see those very same people who criticized me are using the same methods and equipment! It's funny!

I had a girl stop in to watch my class a year or two ago, and her comment was; "It does not look like kung fu. It looks like kickboxing." To which I replied "Thanks!" I would rather be compared to the kickboxing gyms I have seen, than the majority of CMA schools I have seen! We use pads. I bring to my class any and all advancements I have made on my own, or were taught by my teachers to me. I harbor no secrets! Secrets are bullshit! The only secret you ever have to remember is this.... train hard! I have been on the receiving end of this crap and it usually means the teacher is either: 1. milking you of all your money, or 2. does not know that much so draws out the training by leading on that the student needs to practice to get the "secrets." Of course the secrets never come, or worse yet the student is left to figure them out for themselves which can be very frustrating.


Being as immersed in the Chinese culture as I have been for the past 10 years or more, I can honestly say I believe a lot of this xenophobic attitude stems from seriously deep racist roots amongst the Chinese. And keep in mind it is not exclusively Chinese, most Asian cultures are known to be extremely racist especially to other Asian ethnicity's! It is a shame because one of the most beautiful aspects of Chinese culture are ruined by one of the ugliest aspects of any culture; racism!

Training at Three Harmonies is not like any experience you have had at any other CMA school. I maintain the tradition of the arts I have learned, but I also approach those traditions with a questioning persona and a modern mind in an effort to provide the very best I can offer to my students. For if they ever get in an altercation on the street, I am the one responsible for their preparation in terms of knowledge base and skill acquisition (whether or not they do what I tell them is a whole other story!). I take that responsibility very seriously and continue to learn and grow myself as a martial artist in hopes of passing on those new skills and knowledge to those who want to learn.

Train Hard,
JAB

April 16, 2009

They say mimicry is the highest form of flattery...

At university we had an epidemic of plagiarism and cheating that broke out and caused quite a stir one semester. My mentor, teacher, and friend Prof. Fred "Ted" Sturm (RIP) raised the argument one day that we should not punish those who copy an other's work, as this is not only flattering to the original artist but it is also a learning model, or method. After all in the days of Picasso apprentices would copy their teachers works in an effort to learn their technique, while developing a unique flavor of their own.

So what is the difference between mimicking for sake of mimicry (to pass a test for example), and mimicking with the purpose of learning?

Intent.

A lot can be said about intent in the martial arts, but my focus this day is on the disturbing trend of traditional martial artists (TMA), and Chinese martial artists (CMA), that are jumping on the current popularity of BJJ / MMA by 'creating' ground forms and work that has no sound structure, nor history, in their respective arts. I certainly can understand the desire to incorporate ground principles into ones traditional arts, since for the most part ground work is NOT an aspect in most all traditional arts and is a very real aspect of modern day combatives. Many Chinese consider rolling around on the ground fighting like, "Dogs rolling in the dirt." - John Wang (Shuai Chiao instructor). It was looked down upon culturally, and included a bit of Chinese arrogance in that many instructors I have spoken to and trained with have the attitude that their throw would incapacitate the opponent so much so that the fight would be ended right there. Those of us a little more open minded and grounded in reality know that is not necessarily the truth!

Some teachers such as my good friend Tony Puyot in San Diego have taken a proactive approach and gone to train with ground fighting specialists such as BJJ players, or Sambo players, to further their knowledge base and include ground combat into their curriculum. Unfortunately many instructors are not as humble, and are insistent upon "creating" techniques, drills, and even whole systems where they try to use certain principles and applications from their stand up, on the ground. Many of these instructors argue incessantly that ground fighting has always been an aspect in CMA, or it was one of the infamous "lost" arts! This is silly for a couple of reasons:

First of all their are already proven systems (Sambo / BJJ / and to a lesser extent Judo) that have been established for decades that have a solid fundamental approach to ground combat. These systems have been proven and developed in uncooperative learning environments, and tested in venues where failure was extremely painful, if not deadly.
So to try and "reinvent" the wheel is ultimately a gigantic waste of time. Why do the work when someone else has already built a proven system that you can go study?

Though there are certainly many general principles that can be used both in ground fighting, as well as stand up (the importance of joining centers for example), ultimately those principles that are similar will be trained and drilled much differently depending on the scenario and situation. Sure a wrist lock standing is basically the same wrist lock I apply when on the ground rolling, but the set-up, execution, and availability of isolating and applying that lock will be very, very different depending on our positions on the ground or standing.

Ultimately what is the problem here with TMA-ists?

Fear. And as the great Sifu-Guru-Master-Maestro-Maharajah-Sensei Yoda taught us, fear breeds ignorance, and vice-versa. Fear of not knowing something, and having to admit it in front of others. Fear of not being able to handle oneself in a self defense situation. Fear of ones business being infringed upon (TMA schools are feeling the pressure of the immense popularity of MMA & BJJ). Fear of having to learn a very difficult art from the ground up. Some instructors are so afraid of admitting to there students, and themselves, that they are lacking in a certain aspect of combat, that they go so far as to create things that will ultimately get them and their students hurt due to false senses of security. This is the human ego at its finest! I have seen many examples of this over the years.

Personally I found it very liberating and exciting to enter into the grappling world as a newborn babe! To put on the white belt again and have to climb the ladder of success in a given art. It has reinvigorated my passion for the martial arts as a whole, and has given me the desire to compete again and challenge myself harder than I ever have. I originally went into BJJ with the intent to attain a blue belt level so that I could handle whatever situation may present itself on the street. I hated rolling around on the ground! Now I find myself immersed in the culture, training, and teachings of my instructors to the point of a love affair gone awry! If I do not roll every other day I start to get twitchy and Dana makes threats to send Brian over to choke my ass out!

So if you are an instructor who falls into the trap of a creator, I beg you to go and get some solid instruction from a qualified grappler. You will be surprised at the level of difficulty, but also by the feeling of elation when you overcome your fears and push yourself to new levels! Your students, your martial family, and most importantly; YOU will stand proud knowing that you are training the right way and providing the most honest training for you and your students!

Train hard,
JAB