View Full Version : Query: Do you know other arts that use this training method?

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10/22/2003 10:31pm,
I have recently added a Korean martial art called Gicheon (Kichun) to my schedule. So far my guess is that it is related in some way to bagua and preying mantis. I haven't had access to either of those arts so I am basing my guess solely on what I have seen of them.
One element of Gicheon which the instructor has stressed is the difficulty of the training. I am used to that. It seems like almost everyone trains harder/better than everyone else. The claim he made that *did* make me pay attention and get suspicious was that "only Gicheon use yok-geun to train the body."
As soon as someone uses absolutes like only, always and never I tend to get suspicious. So, I thought I'd ask on this forum to see if anyone knows of other arts that use this principle as a part or core of the training.
Yok-geun is a type of training which uses static stances that require the body to be held with the joints at maximum extension, with maximum muscle power for increasingly long periods of time. There are different stances which target specific sets of joints.
As an example in one stance, one of the joints that is targeted is the wrist. You bend (open) your wrist to its maximum range (back of hand toward top of forearm) and keep the hand, wrist and forearm rigid. It doesn't take long to start feeling the muscle burn, and as far as effectiveness goes, I must admit that it works for both strength and endurance, while increasing tenacity.
What I'd like to know is, are there other martial arts, Chinese or otherwise, which use this technique? Part of my curiousity is to help trace the roots of Gicheon as I just can't bring myself to accept another Hermit in the woods story.

10/22/2003 11:13pm,
Actually, that sounds kinda' like what Pavel Tsatsouline (sic?) talks about in some of his stretch methods.


Not quite sure if it's the exact same thing, but from what I've read it sounds KIND of like some stuff he does.


Mr. Mantis
10/22/2003 11:31pm,
No leg stance that I have ever done in CMA employ full extension and pressure on the joints.

I have done that hand extension while doing low leg stances, shantung mantis.

I would be leary about stressing the joints with stances.

10/23/2003 12:40am,
You might want to check out Yiquan. I've heard they do some fixed stance training as a first step in learning how to develop power.

10/23/2003 1:23am,
Originally posted by Mr_Mantis
No leg stance that I have ever done in CMA employ full extension and pressure on the joints.

I have done that hand extension while doing low leg stances, shantung mantis.

I would be leary about stressing the joints with stances.

I may have given you the wrong impression by choosing the wrist as an example. For the legs, one stance involves a horse stance with the knees turned inward and bent to 90 degrees. The feet are at 45 degrees inward from straight ahead, the spine is curved, etc. No pressure, is applied to the joints per se, what I am talking about is flexing, or twisting a joint by itself to build the strength of that joint's muscles.

Then again, perhaps that's the pressure you mean...?

For pictures try this link:


I have an address for a site in English but not on my office computer. I'll post that later.

10/23/2003 1:36am,
Sounds a bit like some of the chi-kung exercises I used to do. For example, one of them involved holding our arm out horizontally and twisting the arm around as far as it will go (so the thumbs pointing downwards) and holding it for 5 or so minutes.

10/23/2003 2:22am,
Thats just Dynamic Tension from the Sound of it . I have a Book on it from the 70's here somewhere , and it was at the Core of Charles Atlas' programme .

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10/23/2003 2:25am,
Oh , and hes Right , it also sounds like Dachengquan (Yi-Chuan) to me .

Wu De
10/23/2003 2:30am,
A fair number of Chinese arts have similar kind of training that you mentioned, Shaolin Kungfu for example has stance training as one of it's very basic foundations. Holding static stances for long periods of time develop muscle strength and stamina.

I checked out the link you posted, very interesting, the stances look very much like an elongated Bagua Zhang.

10/23/2003 2:57am,
Now that Ive looked at the Link , What theyre doing looks like Piss-Poor Wushu , at best . Well , the Pic on the First Page looks like Bagua .

But look HERE :


You telling me youve never seen "Anything Like" these vids before ? Its just Wushu in the Majority of the vids from what I can see . ANd not even very GOOD Wushu , at that . Later on they seem to be doing Qigong . Its all VERY Chinese .

The woerd stuff looks Japanese tho . its probably just Gumdo .

10/23/2003 4:29am,
Dijimbe's right, I think. That looks like Wing Chun.

10/23/2003 5:38am,
Here's the English link for Gicheon...


I am primarily a sword stylist and I definitely did not get into Gicheon for their swordwork. It has nothing to do with standard gumdo (kendo) and little to do with the recreationist styles of gumdo drawn from the extant texts. It is a driect precursor of Haidong Gumdo with the difference that the founder of HDGD was interested in making the techniques function rather than just exist. I doubt many gicheon students have the faintest idea of how swords actually work.
I got into Gicheon due to the similarity of terms from it to my primary art and for this type of strength training.

I am surprised to hear that the videos remind a lot of you of wing chun.

From a wing chun point of view, what is technically "wrong" with what they are doing? Do you feel it is poor because of the mechanics or because of the performance?

I wouldn't doubt that there are holes in their combat theories based on the problems I have encountered in the swordwork. The organization as a whole is advised not to spar so as not to "damage themselves spiritually." If the workouts weren't so intense and focussed exactly where I need improvement, I wouldn't have been able to go back for a second lesson. On an unrelated note, it's also helping me learn more chinese characters. Heh.

Mr. Mantis
10/23/2003 10:43am,
The NaeGa ShinJang stance looks similar to a stance I know as holding the goat, except you press the thighs together. The stance in that picture looks like it would put pressure on the knees, all the other stances look good to me.

10/23/2003 1:18pm,
The only ones that really looked AWFULLY like Awkward Wing Chun to me were the Little Drawings on the Main Link you gave us

Das Moose
10/23/2003 3:11pm,
Yeah loads of Chinese arts do that. I think a lot of Asian ones do to.

Das Moose
10/23/2003 3:15pm,
Yep that looks like awkward wing chun.