LFIAA Original Feng Shou-Kung Fu “Controlling The Opponents Striking Limb”. (Shou Fa)

When an opponent delivers a series of punches at a practitioner of the Original Li Style Feng Shou-Kung Fu. The practitioner has a vast amount of defensive hand methods (Shou Fa) they can use to deflect the in-coming blows away from their intended target, but it is important that the practitioner remains in contact with the opponents limb using their sticking (Nian) and adhere (Zhan) skills to listen and feel for the opponents direction of strength and pressure. Once the practitioner has made their contact with the opponents striking limb using their chosen ward off method, it is important to take control of one of the opponent joints on the striking limb, either the wrist, elbow or shoulder, this will limit your opponents ability to respond with another attack.

We are taught in Feng Shou-Kung Fu that taking control of your opponents striking limb below their elbow will manipulate their upper body to tilt forwards, backwards or to either side. Whereas, controlling their elbow joints will control the opponents ability to maintain their balance. For example if I was to use an outside arm ward off to deflect the opponents punch, making contact on the outside of their elbow, then I slide down their arm to their wrist for which I then grasp and pull, there upper body will be pulled and tilted forwards from their waist, for which I could then lead them onto a counter strike of my own.

If I were to make contact with the opponents elbow joint on the outside of their punching arm. I could then manipulate their elbow by adding pressure to the outside of their arm forcing it across their body that twists and rotates their whole body causing them to lose balance. Obviously there are many ways that the practitioner of the Original Feng Shou-Kung Fu can manipulate the opponents elbow joint to control their balance and leading them into counter strikes, kicks, joint locks and throws.

Every defensive hand method that a practitioner of the Original Feng Shou-Kung Fu uses to deflect or ward off the opponents attacks. Can also be methods of entering into the opponents defensive space, but only if they are used intelligently by each practitioner, by controlling and manipulating the opponents punching limbs joints to limit their mobility. To many practitioners of the Original Feng Shou-Kung Fu simply use a particular ward off to deflect the opponents blow away, but have no intention in remaining in contact to the opponents limb to control and enter deeply into their defensive space.

LFIAA Li Style (Lishi) Taijiquan “ The Body Moves First, The Hands Follow” (Shen Dong Shou Sui)

When an individual performs the Li Style (Lishi) Taijiquan Square Yard Form (Lishi Taijiquan Zheng Ma Shi). Many beginners place their emphasis on moving the hands ahead of the rest of the body, this means that they are using more strength and bringing more tension into the body. As a whole their body is not fully connected and disciplined enough to move in a more relaxed, smoother and controlled manner. Once the individual commences their Li Style Taijiquan Form practice they will begin to generate a momentum of strength within their actions that passes from one posture into the next, Like a current that guides the river to flow continuously to the sea.

One of the basic principles when practicing taijiquan is that the strength of movement begins in the feet, is directed by the waist and ends in the hands and fingers. Hence the body moves first and the arms/ hands should follow (Shen Dong Shou Sui), the moving of the body here is reference to the shifting of the bodyweight from one leg to the other as the individual steps in any of the eight directions, and the turning of the waist, means the whole torso gently rotates from right to left and vice-versa. As the bodyweight shifts and the waist turns the arms and hands follow and are guided by the power and strength of the legs and torso, the power is then released through the hands and fingers.

As each individual transforms their body movements from one posture into another as they perform their Li Style Taijiquan Square Yard Form, learning to maintain the passing of the momentum of each movement that is generated by the driving action of their legs and waist, into their both arms and hands from the start to the end of the form. Many individuals perform their taijiquan form without being aware of generating the strength and momentum of each movement into the next, many individuals due to lack of practice and correct tuition have a tendency to stop and pause their movements, which then effects their ability to maintain the momentum from one movement into the next. One particular cause to this is using “Double Wighted Stances” (Shuang Zhong Shi).

As in the practice of taijiquan if one part of the body moves, then the whole body moves. But if one part stops, then the whole body stops. There should be no isolated actions in the practice of the Li Style Taijiquan Square Yard Form, sadly for those who use “Double Weighted Stances”. Then the legs will momentarily stop moving, while the upper body moves, this is what is known as isolated movement which will affect the over-al momentum being generated and passed from one posture into the other. Hence, many individuals of the Li Style Taijiquan perform stop, start Taijiquan and not continuous flowing Taijiquan.

LFIAA Original Li Style Feng Shou-Kung Fu “ Changing Hands Working Together Defensively & Offensively”.

In the study and practice of the Original Li Style Feng Shou-Kung Fu there are single (Dan), double (Shuang) and changing (Bian Hua) defensive and offensive hand methods (Shou Fa). Properly the most effective and practical of these three Feng a Shou-Kung Fu hand methods is the use of the Changing Hands Methods (Bian Shou Fa), which combine both defensive and offensive techniques together at the same time, with both hands constantly moving and working in harmony with each other to create a vast amount of ways to enter into the opponents defensive space, that involves both soft (Yin) manipulative hand methods to disrupt the opponents balance and root (Gen), or using hard (Yang) hand methods that attack the opponents muscles, nerves, joints and acu-points causing great damage or a combination of both soft & hard changing hand methods (Bian Hua Shou Fa).

Once a practitioner of the Original Li Style Feng Shou-Kung Fu becomes more accomplished with the changing hands methods to enter deep into the opponents defensive space. They can then combine fast, powerful striking methods and close range kicking methods alongside their changing hands methods. Allowing for a vast amount of Three Star (San Xing Fa) Fighting Methods to be discovered by each practitioner that not only combines strikes & kicks, but also devastating joint locking techniques and powerful, fast throwing methods (Shuai Fa).

The Changing hands methods is a high level skill that every practitioner of the Original Feng a Shou-Kung Fu must learn to develop to a high level of proficiency if they want their Feng Shou-Kung Fu to be a practical, effective fighting art. They then have to learn how to add and combine skilful footwork alongside their changing hands methods, such as using their Clock Face Eight Directional Stepping Methods (Zhong Mian Ba Fang Bu Fa), Box Stepping Methods ( Zheng Bu Fa) and the Ladder Linear Stepping Methods ( Ti Zhi Bu Fa).

There is a saying within the Original Feng Shou-Kung Fu that the “Hands opens the doors, but it is the feet that allows you to enter”. To be successful in using your Three Star Fighting Methods a practitioner of the Original Feng Shou-Kung Fu must develop skilful hand & footwork techniques that allow themselves to adapt, change and overcome any aggressive situation.

LFIAA Five Element Qigong “Wuxing Gong” Harmonising The Five Qi For Cultivation, Health & Wellbeing.

When teach the practice of the Five Element Qigong Exercise it can be performed from either a standing or sitting position. The sitting practice of the Five Element Qigong (Zuo Wuxing Gong) is usually taught to individuals alongside sitting meditation, for the cultivation of the three treasures (San Cai) of essences (Jing), energy (Qi), and spirit (Shen). Whereas, the standing practice of the Five Element Qigong Exercise is mainly performed for promoting health & wellbeing in people of all ages and genders. The particular Five Element Qigong Form that I teach within the LFIAA was taught to myself by Master Ji Jian Cheng of Hangzhou, China.

Before starting the standing Five Element Qigong Exercises each individual spends a while developing a Qi connection within both palms. Connecting the Laogong acupoints that lay in the centre of each palm and the five finger tips of each hand to each other, here each individual should begin to experience certain sensations within their fingers and palms, even the space between each hand. Theses sensations can range from a tingling, pins & needles feeling, warmth or great heat building, a feeling of fullness, thickness within the fingers, palms and arms. They might begin to feel a connection In the space between both hands as if they are holding a sponge ball, or a magnetic ball between their hands, the more you practice pulling & pushing your both hands with the rising & lowering of the whole body and coordinating your breathing with the actions of the entire body, gradually each individual will begin to feel these same sensations, plus it will happen quicker and with more strength.

Once the individual as developed the Qi within their both hands and fingers through the pulling & pushing Qi basic exercise. Then they can begin the standing Five Element Qigong Exercise using the Qi strength that they have accumulated within their both hands to then connect to their Liver, Heart, Spleen, Lungs & Kidneys finishing with the both hands gathering the five Qi of each yin internal organ and returning it back to the lower energy field (Xia Dantian). When practicing the Five Element Qigong Exercise the both hands can perform pulling, pushing, pinching, rubbing, raising, lowering, pressing, rotation & stroking hand methods (Shou Fa) to manipulate both the sickly Qi (Bing Qi) to exit out of each of the five Yin internal organs and to enter with clean, fresh (Qing Qi) energy.

As each of the Five Elements also corresponds with a certain colour, then each of the Yin internal organs use the same colour therapy. The Liver is Green, the Heart is Red, the Spleen is Yellow, the Lungs are White and the Kidneys are Blue. When practicing the Five Element Qigong Exercise each individual can visualise a dull colour exiting and brighter colour entering into each of the five Yin internal organs as they perform their qigong actions.

LFIAA Li Style Qin Na-Kung Fu “ Bow to the Ancestors” ( Ju Gong Zu Xian).

There are many joint locking (Qin Na) methods within the Li Style (Lishi) Qin Na-Kung Fu system. One of my personal favourite techniques is the ” Bow to the Ancestor” which is a straight arm lock that can be applied from various holds, grips and punches. For example an assailant as gripped you around the throat using a single hand, the “Bow to the Ancestor” arm lock can be used to break free of the hold and to also subdue and immobilise the assailant by applying pressure to their elbow joint. Irrespective of size, gender or strength this particular straight arm lock can be applied effectively, as the practitioner places the whole of their bodyweight onto the assailants elbow joint, causing great pain and discomfort to the assailant to control them.

Obviously, using the “Bow to the Ancestor” straight arm lock is not just simply used to subdue or immobilise the assailant by forcing them to the ground. It can also be used to set up the assailant for a heavy finishing blow or kick to a vital area of the body to end the assault. When applying the “Bow to the Ancestor” straight arm lock from a punch, each practitioner has to develop their ability to stick, adhere, follow and connect to the assailants attacking limb. Many try and apply this particular joint locking technique when the assailant as fully extended their arm while punching. But sometimes, if the assailant throws a very fast punch it is very difficult to then capture their arm while it is extended. Whereas, if you can attach to their attacking limb and change the angle of their elbow through a subtle twisting action, the assailant will then find it very difficult to retract their arm back and you can then practically apply the “Bow to the Ancestor” arm locking technique.

In the study and practice of the Li Style Qin Na-Kung Fu, once you have been taught various joint locking methods (Jie Suo Fa) you are then taught how to counter them if they were to be applied on yourself. It is the same once you have been taught the “Bow to the Ancestor” straight arm lock, practitioners would be taught how to relax and not resist against the applied joint lock, to then change the angle of the applied pressure on your elbow joint to escape the hold and apply a large variety of counter joint locking techniques.

Even in our present violent society, learning to protect yourself is becoming vastly important, as you could be assaulted at anytime, in any place. I have recently come across a group of women who have become concerned when taking their dog for a walk and finding themselves vulnerable when a stranger appears along they usual path. Many have asked themselves what could they do to protect themselves if they were assaulted and so they enter into our classes and courses to develop their self confidence, self awareness in being able to self protect themselves from an assailant.

LFIAA Daoist Kunlun Swimming Dragon Qigong “Pulsating the Fluid within the Joints”

There are two training aspects to the practice of the Swimming Dragon Qigong 32 Step Form. Firstly there are the slow, soft, gentle and passive actions that resemble the movements of Tai Chi, secondly there are the more vigorous, dynamic, stretching actions that resemble the many various styles of qigong. Swimming Dragon Qigong involves spiralling, coiling and swaying movements of the whole body, which means the tendons, fascia and joints of the body come into play to help pump and circulate the blood (Xue), lymphatic (Lin Ba Ye) and energy (Qi) through the entire body.

Through the gentle twisting and rotation of the bodies joints, the synovial fluid (Jie Shui) that lays between every joint gradually develops a pressurised sensation within the space between the joints. This happens as more body fluids like the blood and lymphatic fluid enter into the space between the joints and mixes with the synovial fluid. This build up of fluid between the joints is what gently stretches each of the bodies joints open to increase each persons flexibility. It is through the opening & closing, pulsating actions of the bodies joints that allows the (Yin) body fluids and (Yang) Qi to circulate inside the body to nourish the functionings of the internal organs (Zangfu) to maintain health and wellbeing.

Most styles of qigong are performed slowly from start to finish. Whereas, the Swimming Dragon Qigong also utilises vigorous, active movements that improve fitness & stamina. As the heart rate is raised to increase stronger blood flow and the lungs are worked more allowing for more clean Qi to enter into the body and the sickly, turbid Qi to exited. The exiting of the sickly Qi (Bing Qi) actions of the Swimming Dragon Qigong can benefit those who suffer with more emotional imbalances such as anxiety, irritability, anger, grief etc.

Practicing the Swimming Dragon Qigong can benefit individuals on a physical, mental, emotional and spiritual level, it obviously can take some individuals a longtime to gradually delve through the many layers to clean and dredge the negative, blocked, turbid energy that has accumulated over the years in each of the physical, mental, emotional & spiritual levels, gradually opening the energy gates of the whole body to allow you to fully connect with yourself and the Dao (Way).

LFIAA Wild Goose Qigong “ Opening The Small Heavenly Circulation” (Xiaotianquan)

Through the regular repetition of the physical movements of the Wild Goose Qigong 128 Posture Form. Gradually, each individual will begin to experience the sensations of the Qi mobilising itself inside of themselves, they will experience in time various sensations like warmth, heat, tingling, fullness, lightness and heaviness, these are just some of the beginning sensations that each individual should feel through regular practice of the Wild Goose Qigong. Overtime the opening of the “Small Heavenly Circle” (Xiaotianquan) will gradually open, which is the opening of the Yang Governor Meridian (Du Mai) that travels directly up the back through the spinal column. Where it will connect to the Yin Conception Meridian (Ren Mai) that travels directly down the front of the body.

The placing of the tip of the tongue to touch the roof of the mouth known as creating the “Magpie Bridge” (Que Qiao) is how the connections of the Yang Governor and Yin Conception Meridians join together to form the “Small Heavenly Circle”. This allows for a current of Qi to flow smoothly around the upper body that gradually strengthens as each individual practices the actions of the Wild Goose Qigong over a long period of time. When the individual performs their Wild Goose Qigong movements, they do not have any intention of using their mind to guide & lead (Daoyin) the Qi around the “Small Heavenly Circle”. But allows the opening of the “Small Heavenly Circle” to happen naturally (Ziran) through the many hours of self practice that each individual must do if they wish to mobilise the circulation of Qi to promote health and wellbeing.

It is through the constant bending forwards from the waist as each individual performs a series of steps forwards. Such as in the postures of “Skimming the Water” and “Searching for Food” from the Wild Goose Qigong 1st Post-Natal 64 Form that the “Small Heavenly Circle” is gradually opened. The bending forwards gently stretches the back muscles to release trapped muscular tension, the spinal column is also stretched allowing for stiffness to be released from the joints of the spine that may have accumulated over time, causing the Qi to stagnate and become trapped. Through the bending forwards from the waist the back muscles and spine begin to become more relaxed, allowing for better Qi and blood flow.

As the two meridians that create the “Small Heavenly Circle” begin to open and fill up with Qi. Then some individual’s may experience a sensation of heat ascending upwards through the length of their spinal column, they might also feel a vibration within the spine as the Qi travels upwards towards the crown of the head (Baihui Acu-Point 20), as the individual straightens up their body the Qi will then flow down the front of the body through the Conception Meridian (Ren Mai), most individuals do not get any sensation of heat lowering down the front of the body, but some do feel a slight feeling of heaviness or pressure as the Qi sinks to the lower elixir field (Xia Dantian).