The Secret Yang Family Houses/Rings No. 5
Well, Erle promised last month that the June workshop was going to concentrate on the combat aspects of our system and boy did he deliver. The sun shone on Saturday as we traversed across the country- destination Llangadog. For once the Gods were smiling as the sun was also shining on the other side of the Brecons! As we all huddled inside the hall, Erle started with what has now become our customary warm ups - striking the focus shields. We began with the "crane spreads wings" punch directly from our form, however, done with a slight twist. This time our so called "kill-shot" was to become our secondary shot. The primary shot would be a stun type shot followed instantly by the big guns firing!!! This really got the muscles warmed up and then Erle started "drinking" one big lump from the spitoon!!!! Ok! If the above doesn't make sense then buy the video and you'll see what I mean - the topic turned to the Reptilian Brian (yes, that does read BRIAN - again those who were there will understand for the rest read Brain!!!). Erle talked at length about the importance of the reptilian brain during real combat and how to access this wonderful organ. After explaining the "C" back and how that linked with the reptilian brain mode, off we went again to work upon the shields to develop these ideas. The strikes again were multiple reflexive attacks in defending ourselves.
After a short break out came the bogo masks and we finally got to strike directly at our targets as opposed pulling our punches. This, again, added another dimension of reality to the training methods. As before, Erle demonstrated the attacks on Eli (and jarred his neck on a couple of occasions - healed with fatherly kisses!) before he let us loose upon one another. Also covered: Angles of attack and The Tai Chi Posture "Chee" with multiple kill methods. As the day wore on we continued with the chin na applications, which we started last month, covering "guard your house" & "fist under elbow" as well as beginning the Hawk form of Baguazhang (more about this later). We ended the Saturday by learning a qigong which would help us develop our reptilian brain & "C" - back mode.
Thus, the day came to an end. It actually went rather quickly, as we hugged each other & shook hands firmly. Myself and Jerry in our matching purple tops - we could have been mistaken for twins in our colour coordinated training gear until someone mentioned that Jerry was white and that ended that!!! Back we traversed across the land making a short pit stop at the Sommerfields in Llandovery, where Kam was shocked to find the checkout staff speaking - wait for it- English!!! We arrived with our bruised and battered bodies back to Leicester, hoping to fall into a deep slumber and get some rest for the next day - did I heck!!! I ended up mowing Kam's mum's garden till 10 at night while that git went home & slept!!! Sunday morning, the sun shone, the birds sang until that is we passed Hereford - dark clouds gathered on the Welsh borders as the summer came to an end! Onwards we went towards Llangadog to begin another day. Well there were a few more faces on Sunday. Erle again drank from the spitoon and we carried on from the previous day.
Yielding and understanding the classics regarding to this very misunderstood topic was flavour of the day. Again, the detail and information regarding this subject was of the highest quality, delivered in a typically Erle fashion with the aid of a Monty Python sketch! However, all the horsing around didn't distract from the importance of understanding what it meant to yield. Erle tied this subject up beautifully by linking it's importance to the small frame form and push hands or joining hands as he prefers to call it. This was certainly an eye opener for those who perhaps haven't had the chance to do a lot of push hands etc.
Once more we linked everything into practicing our attacks using the concept of "yielding" followed by some chee sau including the reverse roll. Again, throughout, Erle emphasised the importance of the "power stance" whilst plying our trade. We returned to the Hawk in the afternoon and continued from where we'd left off the previous day. I'd like to think that by the fourth change, we were all diving & tumbling as gracefully as the bird in question but that'd be a lie! Jerry looked like a chick that has tumbled out of it's nest! Elliot & Neil appeared to be doing the form in synchronization, which rather resembled Come Dancing! Kam tried to film it all without switching the camera on & I, mercifully, faked an old war wound and saved myself for the attempt to come in Germany!!! At 1.45pm, I reminded Erle he had also promised to show us, both, the yin & yang side of the Xingyi Fire Drill on the previous day, to which he replied in the way only Erle can - "Oh F**K!"
And that's how the weekend ended. Ben rummaged around for a spare tape and in ten minutes flat we had the Xingyi drill down and filmed. Most of us were brain-dead at that point, so it didn't really matter! Oh, and we had only made it 1/3 down Erle's list of things to do!!
With broken bodies we said goodbyes, slumped into our cars and headed home. And it rained!!!!
Roll on the next session on 30th June-1st July!!
P.S. I am so knackered that it is now 1.45 in the morning and I can't sleep!!!
- Level: Intermediate
- Run Time: Approx 60 mins
- Media Type: MP4 Download