Seventy Two Hidden Kicks of BaguaZhang

Tim's Discussion Board: Ba Gua Zhang : Seventy Two Hidden Kicks of BaguaZhang

   By Maoshan on Saturday, June 29, 2002 - 11:08 pm: Edit Post


{It would seem to me the sensible way to test your skills and revive the 'fighting' spirit/attitude of the past masters is to adapt those abilities to coping/meeting the challenges of modern daily life, which while different to those of the past are no less challenging. You may express disdain for the practitioners who emphasise health and taoist Ba gua, but in todays world, it makes plenty of sense, for its disease and pyschological problems that most people face, not; roving bandits, warlords, foreign armies etc.}

That depends on where you live. The other points you made are true, but it doesn't apply totally.
As Tim has already pointed out Ba-Gua was/is for fighting. Growing up where I'm from is no cake walk. There where times when I had to fight every day going and coming from school. oh yeah, I disagree with you.
As for the dangers of which you speak concerning sport/ Health Ba-Gua, It's already begun. among most of the martial artist I've met over the years, until I showed them different, believed that all Ba-Gua did was walk around you to make the opponent dizzy. Also, of those that do practice BaGua, very few know what their doing and the rest are totally mislead. Concentrating on the I-Ching instead of walking the circle fortifying their root.

This Tournament is too see where we are, as far as a standard is concerned and to raise it if we can. Now someone may come along and do just what your saying, but as long as I am the one doing it, It will never happen.
This tournament is to promote and uplift Ba-Gua.
That's all I care about. The masters of the past are in my eyes. The standard here must raise. the truth is it's a joke. Very few here in the states can stand with the worst of China across the board. It is the hope that this tournament will help in understanding what the problems are and how to correct them. Exchanging info, new experiances etc.. will benifit everyone.

B.C. Hill Bey

   By Chris Seaby on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 04:12 am: Edit Post

Maoshan and Tim,

Thanks for taking the time to reply to my concerns. That fact alone and the manner of your replies, speaks volumes to me of your sincerity, that you have the best interests of the art, at heart and that you treat my views and others with more respect than they probably deserve.

I was taught that there is nothing worse than a lack of benevolence towards others, and that in trying to determine who is a boxing 'worthy', to look not just to martial skill, but to look to their general conduct towards others. To come across individuals who exhibit such qualities and not publicly 'honor' that, would be a failing on my part.

For me there is nothing more to be said, but to wish you the best in your efforts.

Chris Seaby a.k.a. Big Goose Dummy

   By Tim on Sunday, June 30, 2002 - 03:45 pm: Edit Post

I understand your point of view and your concerns. But I think we all have the same concerns in mind, we all want to preserve the essence and promote the benefits of Ba Gua Zhang.

Ben made the critical point above; the 'watering down' process has already begun. Instuctors take a weekend seminar or learn eight 'palm changes' off a tape, or just make it up then add Ba Gua Zhang to the list of arts they teach (right below "Tai Ji Quan" ). Then sincere students are exposed to is this empty practice and believe it is real Ba Gua.

If you look at the upcoming Ba Gua Zhang tournament as an attempt to balance the scales, as an event that will increase general awareness of the fact that Ba Gua Zhang is primarily martial in nature, students will at least be better equiped to ask questions and and make informed decisions about where to train. They will be better able to access the skill level of the teachers. This is a good first step in helping to preserve the Art in it's complete form. The problem with keeping an art "low profile" is that it becomes very easy to deceive those without access to information.


   By Walter T. Joyce Sr. on Monday, July 01, 2002 - 09:40 am: Edit Post

This thread has taken quite a few twists and turns, and while I'm sure it hasn't completely run its course, I just wanted to say that the last dozen or so posts have added a different character to the discussion.
With less rancor between the participants and more direct communication on real issues I, for one, am happy with the results of the exchange of ideas.

Tim and Maoshan, I respect your desire to preserve the fighting essence of the art of ba gua. I also believe I understand the challenges you are facing in the process, to a degree, and I admire the way you are rising to the challenge.

Tim, I couldn't agree more about ba gua becoming the flavor of the week, so to speak. To many people are doing what you described, the seminar, video route, and then "teaching" what they think they learned.

I am faced with a decision myself. As much as I love ba gua, and the idea of understaning it in a physical sense, the lack of a real master instructor in my area makes me wonder if the annual visit from Luo lashi is enough, even with diligent practice. How do I know I'm practicing correctly?

I have been training with by all accounts one of the best tai chi teachers in my area, as I figured I was better off learning the skills he could teach me, with regular corrections.
Anyway, I drifted off track there.

Great input on the difficulty of preserving the essence of a little understood and complex fighting art.
Good training,

   By Maoshan on Tuesday, July 02, 2002 - 12:12 am: Edit Post



Thanks for the words. Now, as to your Qustion,
(How do I know I'm practicing correctly?)
By meticulis observation of his words and actions, and your thoughts and action. Compare these to see how close you are to him in movement
(for aligment, Spirit).

Next, Remember that feeling you had when you were corrected and you felt the energy and when you did it , it felt right.

Combine these two things, and you can make progress. As I get the feeling your sincer, but now comes the test of your mantle, Ba-Gua is an Art that must be wanted. It has to be wanted!
because unless your a Natural, nothing less will do.
Also here's somthing that's an ecouragement as well as a goal, here's a truth about Masters of the past, Many high level masters recieved instruction only 1- 2x a year, with a time span of from a couple of weeks to a day. these men trained with what they were taught until the next time they saw thier Sifu. and they trained hard. The main reason the standard is so low. All masters past the age of 65 agree with the fact that "no one spends enough time with the basics any more". Both the Blacktaoist and myself share this belief. For ex: it was 3yrs before I learned all 8 palms. Going to school everyday, but I was fortunate. most are not.
You have to drill what you've been taught until you no longer think about. you simply do it. the fact that he comes every year shouln't dissuade you, it gives you the chance to actually be better than most that have a teacher who they see 2-3x a week. Remember it's the energy that your trying to perfect. And that takes time. To be real about it, true proficiency takes time. Perfection is another animal all to gether.

But in the end, as I stated, it's all a matter of how bad do you want it.
I hope your one of the few that do.

B.C. Hill Bey

   By Walter T. Joyce Sr. on Tuesday, July 02, 2002 - 09:58 am: Edit Post

Thank you for your advice and encouragement.

   By CoolHandLuke on Tuesday, July 02, 2002 - 06:53 pm: Edit Post

That's right...the barren a very good teacher.

   By Mauro Sgroi on Wednesday, September 15, 2004 - 11:17 am: Edit Post

Hi Tim,
I've some questions for you about the 72 hidden legs:
1) Is it a routine or basic techniques?

2) I've the book by Zhu Bao Zhen on Yin style BaguaZhang and he shows 12 kicks (Bagua Spring Legs), probably derived by the Shaolin tradition of Yin Fu. This techniques are performed right and left hand and at 3 levels (basins), so they are considered 72. Is the 72 hidden legs routine the same thing as the bagua tantui?

3)Is the routine shared by all the Bagua styles?
On this forum has been said that Jiang Rong Quiao style has this type of form (Zhao Zhen Zhong books/Gerald Sharp Video). On the other hand, on Jarek's web site, the Liang style Master Ma Chuanxu talks about the 72 legs. Also Xie Peiqi mentions the 72 kicks... Have you further details on the story of this mysterious routine? Was it invented by Dong in person?

Thanks a lot and regards,

   By Tim on Wednesday, September 15, 2004 - 01:03 pm: Edit Post

There isn't one set of 72 kicks common to all Baguazhang styles.

There are various versions of the kicks in the different branches. Other branches have different methods (the Gao sytle has 8 kicks for example).

As far as I know, Dong Haichuan taught one kick, a front stretching kick that is still seen in some styles' circle forms. Like much of the Baguazhang curriculum, the kicks were added later.

   By Mauro Sgroi on Thursday, September 16, 2004 - 03:25 am: Edit Post

Hi Tim,
Thanks a lot for the explanation.

   By Rolaids (Unregistered Guest) on Thursday, September 16, 2004 - 09:51 am: Edit Post

72 kicks! I'm having a helluva time just trying to learn one. And just the fact that they're all hidden. Sheesh.

   By Tim on Thursday, September 16, 2004 - 12:43 pm: Edit Post

Opinions vary, you may be better off with just one kick.

In a famous interview in the 1940s, Wang Xiangzhai (the founder of Yiquan) stated the addition of the 64 palms and 72 kicks to Baguazhang was the beginning of the downfall of the style.

   By Rolaids (Unregistered Guest) on Thursday, September 16, 2004 - 01:14 pm: Edit Post


That spells relief.
Relief in knowing that I'm not the only one who finds 72 a tad overwhelming.

   By stan (Unregistered Guest) on Thursday, September 16, 2004 - 02:05 pm: Edit Post

Even the concept of a hidden kick is 'extraneous'.
It is not that it is hidden but unexpected thereby causing havox where the kick strikes.

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