Archive through April 12, 2002

Tim's Discussion Board: Ba Gua Zhang : Gao's 64 Tactics: Archive through April 12, 2002
   By Rick Matz ( on Tuesday, February 05, 2002 - 10:00 pm: Edit Post

On Allen Pittman's (, there is announcment that a new book is coming out: Gao's 64 Linear Tactics.
Allow me to display my ignorance:

1) Can Gao's 64 linear forms stand as a system by itself?

2) Aren't the 64 forms essentially a reformulation of Xing Yi?

Best Regards,

Rick Matz

   By Jonathan ( on Wednesday, February 06, 2002 - 06:49 am: Edit Post

Intersting, I would like to hear more on this as I am currently studying Gao Yi Shengs BaGuaZhang myself and we seem to be also learning some Hsing I along side.

It seems to me that they compliment each other quite well.

It will also be nice to have a book on the forms. Hopefully it will be available in the UK!

Oh, and hello everyone! I've been reading this forum for some time now but this is my first post.


   By Walter T. Joyce Sr. ( on Wednesday, February 06, 2002 - 05:55 pm: Edit Post

I thought the 64 tactics, or the linear form containing these tactics, were, at least in theory, derived from the eight mother palms. Tim, any thoughts or care to clarify? Is there a hsing I link as well?

   By Tim ( on Wednesday, February 06, 2002 - 06:31 pm: Edit Post

The 64 palms are the technical applications of the Eight Palm Changes. There are eight straight line forms that correspond to each of the circle forms. The straight line forms were developed as a sort of 'catalogue' of the techniques inherent in the circle forms. There is some Xing Yi Quan influence in the forms, but they are primarily derivations of the techniques of Cheng style Ba Gua Zhang, as Gao Yi Sheng taught them.

For those of you who are studying under Lo De Xiu or his students; the forms Alan learned from Hong Yi Mian will be somewhat different from the forms Lo teaches.

   By Jonathan on Friday, February 08, 2002 - 06:24 am: Edit Post

Interesting, and on the money.

My instructor mentioned last night that you will sometimes see people doing the linear forms in a more 'Hsing I way' with the wave up through the body, however he also said that others will do them very long - the difference I think is whether they incorporate the Hsing I or are pure BaGua.

I hope to be able to get to London for Lo's seminar this year, with a bit of luck and some careful planning ;-)

Keep on keepiing on...

   By Mark Hatfield on Friday, February 08, 2002 - 11:03 pm: Edit Post

I have one of Pittmans other videos and it's ok but I was a little surprised that it was silent, simply demonstrations without explaination or elaboration of any type. Not even naming or numbering the exercises. I suppose one could say that this was a strict 'traditional' method of presentation but I was expecting something a litle different.

   By Walter T. Joyce Sr. on Saturday, February 09, 2002 - 08:38 pm: Edit Post

I emailed Pittman about these videos, and found it interesting that he claimed to be the gao lineage holder in North America.(I just checked to see if I saved his email, but I have deleted it.)

I spoke with a friend who had seen the videos about them and he also commented about the poor quality. To Pittman's credit, he also mentioned this up front, explaining that the videos were done informally, without consideration for distribution when filming.

Isn't Lo planning on releasing a video on the linear form? If so, any idea when?

   By Rick Matz on Monday, February 11, 2002 - 07:43 am: Edit Post

I once sent an email to CS Tang, who fills the niche of historian/scholar, when it comes to Gao sytle; asking him who Zhang Jun Feng named as lineage holder.

He replied that many people claim to be the lineage holder, but he didn't name anyone.

Best Regards,

Rick Matz

   By bagua Bill on Tuesday, April 09, 2002 - 06:23 pm: Edit Post

Hi has anyone heard of hal mosher?He showed me the form in the book by smith and pittman.
I was just wondering if there's any way to find if he actually studied with smith as he said?
Thank you for this forum Tim.Also is smith's version called gao style? And is it really
gao?Thanks for the time patience and effort.

   By Bagua Bill on Tuesday, April 09, 2002 - 06:29 pm: Edit Post

P.S. the moves of the form were a little less expansive as was taught to me also.I really like
the twisting motions and the crossing arms.
I am trying to learn from yangs baguazhang emei book.I know you shouldn't do this and I love
baguazhang and how it feels to me.I have found so many practical uses for the palm changes it's
amazing.Feel free to write me and share your experiences about bagua/hsing-yi.Thanks again;)

   By Tim on Tuesday, April 09, 2002 - 07:10 pm: Edit Post

The circle forms in Smith and Pittman's book are the version taught to Wang Shu Jin by Chen Pan Ling, they are not the Gao forms. In Smith's original book on Ba Gua Zhang, the straight line forms demonstrated by Smith are from the Gao style as taught to Smith by the Hong brothers.

   By Walter T. Joyce Sr. on Wednesday, April 10, 2002 - 05:03 pm: Edit Post

Could you please discuss the 48 Songs and the 36 Stanzas of Shi Jidong's baguazhang and where I could find these in an understandable and in your opinion accurate english translation?
Thank you,

   By Tim on Thursday, April 11, 2002 - 04:19 am: Edit Post

'Liang Zhen Pu Eight Diagram Palm', originally published by High View Publications. ISBN 1-883175-00-3 I believe it is still available through Plum Flower Press.

   By Walter T. Joyce Sr. on Thursday, April 11, 2002 - 09:12 am: Edit Post

Thank you once again. You and your message board are a great resource for information on martial arts. Could you also express your opinion on the value of this text as a means of understanding ba gua?
Thanks again,

   By Tim on Thursday, April 11, 2002 - 07:02 pm: Edit Post

Although no substitute for training with a competent teacher, the Songs and Verses are full of practical information (both on body use and strategy, there are even songs on how to fight in the dark or on slippery ground). The text also is a fascinating window into the mindset of the first generation teachers of Ba Gua Zhang.

   By Bagua Bill on Thursday, April 11, 2002 - 07:11 pm: Edit Post

Tim,Thankyou for your answer.Is it possible to let
me know the style as I learned with the circle walking? I am aware of the book that has the
exercises you stated being gao.I just thought
that the exercises were for jing/qing developement. Those exercises weren't shown to
me by Hal,but he did show me some qigong for the
circle version that he shared with me.I have seen
in the book subsequently that wang leads back to
chang to ma weichi to tung hai.But I have never
heard of an name for this style.Hal just called it
pa kua orthodox.(as well as the xingyi/yang tai chi was called orthodox.)

Also thankyou for your patience with one such as I
concerning these matters. Was there any other forms or techniques than the initial form and
qigong? I would like to learn more if possible.

   By Walter T. Joyce Sr. on Friday, April 12, 2002 - 09:13 am: Edit Post

Thanks again. I recently received the Xing I nei gung book you worked on, and Liu Xing-Han and John Bracy's book on Ba gua. I will probably order 'Liang Zhen Pu Eight Diagram Palm' today. I wholeheartedly agree that one needs a qualified instructor to even have a fair chance of reaping the benefits of the knowledge in these books. I am still practicing what Luo taught me diligently, and am also training with Vincent Chu in Classical Yang style. I look forward to Luo's return, and have my material reviewed by Buddy from time to time. I confess it gets lonely training in the ba gua at times, but who knows what the future will bring.
Have a nice weekend,

   By jeff k on Friday, April 12, 2002 - 09:29 am: Edit Post


Maybe I should start another thread about the songs, but I would like to first comment from my perspective, we also have a straight line version of 64 palms. There is nothing hsing-i like about it. In fact many of our forms originally do have straight and linear versions, I believe, (haven't asked/don't care) this straight line version was modified by my teacher as a way of teaching and simpler to translate to fighting. The energy is the same though, bagua not hsing-i!

My main question/comment is about the songs. First of all, I agree that with a competent instructor you learn all the principles of the songs but I think these are the most important classics to enforce your knowledge of baguazhang since they reflect the closest thing we have to Dong Hai Chuan's teaching. That is, at least, the 36. My personal opinion is that the 48 come from somewhere else. What do you think?

Also, I have to say that the book you mentioned, translated by Huang Guo Qi from Li Zi Ming's original transcript is good, but some of them are way off the mark. If you like I could be specific. Even the original transcript in Li Zi Ming's words have some errors in the Chinese characters transcribed by the writer. I have heard that your Chinese skills are pretty good and I wonder if you have read the Li Zi Ming book? If so, do you know of any other published translations that might be closer? Have you made notes on your own translations or understanding of them? Would you be willing to share?:)

   By Walter T. Joyce Sr. on Friday, April 12, 2002 - 03:39 pm: Edit Post

It was out of print, and i was told by the guys at Plumflower that it probably won't be re-issued. Thanks anyway. If you know of anyone else that may have a spare copy hanging around, i'd appreciate a heads up.

   By Anvar on Friday, April 12, 2002 - 05:19 pm: Edit Post

You can try the link below:

The used copy also seems to be available from there.