Saturday, April 19, 2008


The other day during pushing hands, I was taught how to lu 捋 properly.

The important thing is to wait for your opponent to commit his force. A common mistake of mine is that one I sense his force coming, I try to divert it away. While this meant that my opponent is unable to push me, it also means that I am deflecting his force away without causing him to lose balance, since his centre of gravity is still well within his two feet.

My teacher demonstrated how to do it properly. He let me push. All the way, until my hands are close to his body. Then he used peng and lu to first deflect my force away, then draw me off balance. Because I have committed my force and my centre of gravity was near it extremities, a little help from my teacher and I lost my balance.

It reinforces the principle of "don't be afraid of losing". Allow your opponent to commit his force before you act, because otherwise, while you won't lose, you won't win either.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Let Him Have His Way

During a recent pushing hands session, I came to realise how important it is to let your opponent have his way. When he pushes towards you, you have to do your best to deflect the force away. But once the force has been diverted away, you shouldn't just push towards him. Instead, you should try to let him lead you towards him. See where his diverted force is going. Follow it. In doing so, he won't realise that he is the one leading you in, and by the time he realises it, you would have went in beyond his defences.

Similarly, if you have pushed, and your force has been diverted away, don't panic and try to bring your force back. See where your opponent has diverted your force, and see if there is any way to bring it back towards him instead. Divert the diverted force back towards your opponent.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

A Student With a Heart

My teacher started teaching a new class of students today.

The new class is actually organised by one of his ex-students. She used to learn from him for about slightly over a year at a church. But because church activities interfered with classes on a regular basis, the class was discontinued about a year ago. While some of the students then mentioned that they will join other classes (my teacher teaches at quite a few places), none of them actually turned up.

Who would have expected that a year later, one of them would gather people together, and organise a new class for my teacher.