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    Choy Lee Fut Musings

    Choy Lee Fut is an amazing style in itself. Very fierce, fluent, powerful, and practical. I rarely find a move taught to me that I cannot use in Sanda.

    The problem is that unfortunately, just like many other styles of Martial Arts, it's full of role-players who spent their whole CLF/MA history posing in silky clothes or some fancy Chinese weapon instead of trying to figure out HOW TO FIGHT with what they learned. And as they become "masters", they tend to give birth to entire schools focused on that aspect of the art, rather than the fighting.
    It really shouldn't be too hard to tell the fighters and the posers apart, though. Just ask yourself a few basic questions. Try to find out what the main aspect of training with this master is, what he focuses mostly on teaching, and what he focuses most on correcting. Does he expect his students to give MEANING to the forms he teaches, or does he just let them wave their arms around and teach them how to make it look good? Does he blindly promote traditional methods slandering more modern ones (e.g. using traditional methods to build up muscles and forbidding weight training), or is he open to any approach that is most effective? Does he teach realistic applications based on the principles of a form he teaches, or does he teach the application exactly as it appears on the form (e.g. opponent attacks you with a full extended punch in bo stance and all that crap, lol.), in a non-realistic adapted manner? Does he only teach theory, or does he actually push his students' limits with physical conditioning as well as practice (sparring drills, etc)?

    Those are only some of my usual bullshit-detecting questions. There are many more questions that you could ask yourself, but to keep it simple, I believe you should just give it a go and see if what you get is beneficial to you personally. Ask questions, see if your teacher can give you a satisfying answer without leaving you puzzled with vague theories and myths. Though I think it's important not to be too ready to criticize, and to be humble. Keep an open mind, let them share what they know first, then you can judge it by yourself after you've gained some more knowledge in it.

    That's about it, I suppose. I don't know much about Chan family CLF as I'm from the Xin Hui branch. But considering that my Sifu still respects other branches, I suppose they're at least worthy of being called CLF.

    Here's some vids of Choy Lee Fut training, or at least what I define as good CLF.



    YouTube - choy lee fut

    Some CLF shadow-boxing...
    YouTube - Choy Lee Fut KungFu

    (Wow, I've written such a huge post just trying to express a simple thought... sorry).

    #2
    Originally posted by Iga Ninjer View Post
    Choy Lee Fut is an amazing style in itself. Very fierce, fluent, powerful, and practical. I rarely find a move taught to me that I cannot use in Sanda.

    The problem is that unfortunately, just like many other styles of Martial Arts, it's full of role-players who spent their whole CLF/MA history posing in silky clothes or some fancy Chinese weapon instead of trying to figure out HOW TO FIGHT with what they learned. And as they become "masters", they tend to give birth to entire schools focused on that aspect of the art, rather than the fighting.
    It really shouldn't be too hard to tell the fighters and the posers apart, though. Just ask yourself a few basic questions. Try to find out what the main aspect of training with this master is, what he focuses mostly on teaching, and what he focuses most on correcting. Does he expect his students to give MEANING to the forms he teaches, or does he just let them wave their arms around and teach them how to make it look good? Does he blindly promote traditional methods slandering more modern ones (e.g. using traditional methods to build up muscles and forbidding weight training), or is he open to any approach that is most effective? Does he teach realistic applications based on the principles of a form he teaches, or does he teach the application exactly as it appears on the form (e.g. opponent attacks you with a full extended punch in bo stance and all that crap, lol.), in a non-realistic adapted manner? Does he only teach theory, or does he actually push his students' limits with physical conditioning as well as practice (sparring drills, etc)?

    Those are only some of my usual bullshit-detecting questions. There are many more questions that you could ask yourself, but to keep it simple, I believe you should just give it a go and see if what you get is beneficial to you personally. Ask questions, see if your teacher can give you a satisfying answer without leaving you puzzled with vague theories and myths. Though I think it's important not to be too ready to criticize, and to be humble. Keep an open mind, let them share what they know first, then you can judge it by yourself after you've gained some more knowledge in it.

    That's about it, I suppose. I don't know much about Chan family CLF as I'm from the Xin Hui branch. But considering that my Sifu still respects other branches, I suppose they're at least worthy of being called CLF.

    Here's some vids of Choy Lee Fut training, or at least what I define as good CLF.

    YouTube - choy lee fut 蔡李佛

    YouTube - choy lee fut

    Some CLF shadow-boxing...
    YouTube - Choy Lee Fut KungFu

    (Wow, I've written such a huge post just trying to express a simple thought... sorry).
    its ok its very informative...actually the first day i went there were a couple of new students apart from me and he told us, if your looking to do this, he does some flowery kung fu moves, then he says this is not the place for you i guarantee that either one of two things are going to happen you're going to learn how to protect yourself or your going to quit because of the cardio workouts we do here.
    we do cardio workouts for about 30 mins with very short breaks for water then we move on to teaching us a move only if we understood why we did the one before.then he asks us if we have any questions about the move and then he spars with each person while the class watches...i ended on the ground wheni tried to wrestle him to the gound...it was pretty funny.
    will keep posting on what we do and thanks on all the postings

    Comment


      #3
      I'm an American Kenpo student. This guy used to do CLF in the park in Fresno on Saturdays and I went a few times. I liked what I saw and thought he was a good instructor. I'm really like CLF but I'm a brown belt in Kenpo and can't quit after 6 years of effort. HOWEVER, I plan on joining this school after I get my black. Let me know if u still like it or not, please.

      Comment


        #4
        I practice Choy Lay Fut Buk Sing under Sifu Richard Leung. It is a hardcore fighting system and we spar barenkuckle and full contact always. Definately one of the hardest systems I've studied since Kyokushinkai.

        Comment


          #5
          Woah Woah Woah you compete full contact you spar hard contact.


          Spar:
          YouTube - Kyokushinkai vs Yushinkai - Karate Sparring - osaka 2006

          Compete:
          YouTube - Hung Xiong Choy Lee Fut fight compilation

          Sorry, I used to say the same thing. If you are full contact sparring, IMO, you are running out of partners.
          Last edited by It is Fake; 10/30/2009 5:38pm, .

          Comment


            #6
            I jumped the gun, I was on my out there. We spar semi contact...full contact to body and legs, light contact to face....no gloves. Sorry. We go quite hard though, which is why there are like 5 people in our school :(

            http://torontobuksing.page.tl/

            Comment


              #7
              Not knocking how you train at all.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by CodosDePiedra View Post
                I recently stopped doing choy li fut because the forms emphasis wasn't what I wanted and I'm still young enough to start all over. Having taken a step back, it's much easier to honestly critique choy li fut as I know it, and there's a lot of technical problems that I never found solutions to (although my FMA background provided some snazzy ways to make some of the long arm techniques more workable). I've been doing lots of training on my own and have been paring down everything to the bare bones, and it's starting to look like Carl Cestari's material.
                Guess you've been to the wrong school. If only forms are emphasized, it's not real Choy Lee Fut. Choy Lee Fut is definitely not performance Kung Fu. Most of it doesn't even look pretty and fancy, anyways.

                The ideal training method, besides the conditioning, normally involves learning a form (depending on your skill level, that'd be basic, medium, or advanced), and learning its applications. You can break down those applications and make short combinations out of them to practice as drills, either with a partner or on an object (pads, dummy, bag, w/e). You can also mix up many of those techniques in normal shadow boxing, by the way. Then obviously there's the sparring bit, where you actually get to test out some of the things you learn.

                Normally, Choy Lee Fut drills look like these:

                YouTube - CLF Punching Bag

                Those movements in the video are part of the following form if I'm not mistaken: Ping Kuen.
                However, you'll see that according to the form one learns, there are countless combinations like these that can be practiced as a drill.

                Anyhow, glad you're enjoying your CLF training, [COLOR=#cccccc]m31001603[/COLO"]No BS MMA and Martial Arts - View Profile: [email protected]@[email protected]@View Profile: m31001603</title>@@[email protected]@m31001603. CLF gets more interesting as you explore its techniques in depth... some applications may not be as visible as one would first assume, so it's always good to discover some of those facets from time to time. :>

                Comment


                  #9
                  It wasn't that we only did forms- we sparred hard and did san da. I was there for 8 or 9 years, so obviously there were things I liked. I even competed in pankration while with the school- but forms were the core, and from what I've seen in San Diego (several CLF groups), this seems to be the norm. I liked the bag work video, it seems to be going in the right direction (I never liked the sweeping tech at 1:30 or the spinning dot choi with the feet planted though). He's doing the sweep as a low round kick, but that seems like a stretch from the form application.

                  I should point out that I was part of the Hung Sing lineage, which has over a hundred forms. If a system is going to have so many forms, obviously forms practice must be valued in that style. I much prefer bag work, live drilling and conditioning. The Buk Sing people, at least from what I've seen, have less forms and focus more on fighting, and I can respect that.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by CodosDePiedra View Post
                    It wasn't that we only did forms- we sparred hard and did san da. I was there for 8 or 9 years, so obviously there were things I liked. I even competed in pankration while with the school- but forms were the core, and from what I've seen in San Diego (several CLF groups), this seems to be the norm. I liked the bag work video, it seems to be going in the right direction (I never liked the sweeping tech at 1:30 or the spinning dot choi with the feet planted though). He's doing the sweep as a low round kick, but that seems like a stretch from the form application.

                    I should point out that I was part of the Hung Sing lineage, which has over a hundred forms. If a system is going to have so many forms, obviously forms practice must be valued in that style. I much prefer bag work, live drilling and conditioning. The Buk Sing people, at least from what I've seen, have less forms and focus more on fighting, and I can respect that.
                    That's interesting... 9 years is quite a long time.

                    We're from the Hung Sing Gwoon as well. Our compulsory training day is on Friday, where we do around 45 minutes of hard qi gong (jogging, sprinting, sit ups, push ups, stretching, etc), and 15 minutes of form training, which for the higher rank students it only involves teaching the beginners and kids. Then there is an extra session after this class where we practice drills, pushing hands exercises, do padwork, and towards the end, we have a few 2 minutes rounds of sparring. Unfortunately, this only happens once a week right now because of the venue. Otherwise my sifu would have encouraged every training session to be as such.
                    My sifu says that despite there being so many forms in CLF, one would only need to learn 3 hand to hand forms, and some weapon forms. For the hand to hand, it would involve one beginner form, one medium form, and one advanced form. For the weapon forms, I think he said it's enough to know one weapon of each category (long, short, flexible, etc). But I'm not too sure on the last statement.

                    Forms are something I practice in my backgarden, when there's no one to practice with. They're good for stamina, the low stances strengthen the muscles and joints, they improve the balance, and more.
                    When training with someone, though, training forms is a waste of time. Yet some people like to do that, unfortunately. Form collecting is also a way to advance through grades in many schools, which is quite sad. Especially when those people who earn a "black belt" by doing forms think they're good martial artists.
                    I don't really have any authority or credibility to say they're doing it wrong, but it's definitely not the approach that I, or my sifu, would recommend.

                    And yeah, I never really liked the spinning dat choi with the foot planted... static footwork. It does have its application, but it's too situational. I do like the spinning dat choi when the footwork follows through, though.
                    And the sau goek as a low side kick is definitely not a stretch from the form application. In forms it's normally done in empty stance, and when executing it in the form, the foot is supposed to take the same path as a round kick, while the dat choi hits towards the opposite direction. It's an amazing sweeping technique, works very well in sparring.

                    What other uses of that technique have you been taught?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      At our school (Buk Sing) we do 3 forms, and several basics that are repeated every class (mostly shin conditioning, and forearm conditioning), as well as hundreds of repetitions of basic punches. The rest is mostly sparring. Lots of people leave because it's the same over and over again...but I enjoy it. Cheers.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Thank for the vidoes everyone! Cool stuff. I think the idea I like most about CLF is that it looks like there are no "hard" blocks, more parries to let the attacker's energy disipate, with constant attack follow ups. In Kenpo, we are a "checking" system, that is, most of our self-defense tech. have various checks built into them. The leg checks aren't to bad but the upper body checks are very difficult to utilize in full speed action.

                        CLF looks like a VERY realisitic and workable system.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by Iga Ninjer View Post
                          And the sau goek as a low side kick is definitely not a stretch from the form application. In forms it's normally done in empty stance, and when executing it in the form, the foot is supposed to take the same path as a round kick, while the dat choi hits towards the opposite direction. It's an amazing sweeping technique, works very well in sparring.

                          What other uses of that technique have you been taught?
                          The one with dat choi while doing like a round kick is one thing, and doing like nop sau then swinging sat choi while bringing the leg across in a diu ma or slant horse are two different things, in my opinion. The first one works fine- it was never really my thing but I've definitely been dropped by it and it's a very unpleasant sweep to be on the receiving end of. The idea behind the other application is to place your leg behind the back of theirs so they can't move backwards, then force them backwards with the backfist. In the forms it tends to be with the weight back so the leg can quickly shoot behind theirs, but personally I like the weight forward, like the throwing application of parting wild horses mane or carry tiger (or in clf terms, like dat choi in a sei ping ma). I try to have them spiral over my leg and end up behind me, because trying to throw them right over your leg can often end up with them awkwardly hopping over it. I've always used these sort of techniques with more of a pressuring kind of force, not a percussive one, because I found it difficult to sweep and hit at the same time- I'd rather do one or the other. My limited judo experience has really helped me learn how to use footsweeps on an actual opponent- much more useful than drilling the motion in the air imo.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            CLF is great for fighting. But I only have one suggestion to you if you want good fight training, you should try to look for a Buk Sing CLF, not Chan style CLF. Chan style mostly focuses on forms. Buk Sing only has 3 main forms, so they focus on conditioning, sparring and fighting. Hung Sing is a bit in the middle.

                            I'm doing Hung Sing CLF, but i've got a great sifu and we focus alot on combative aspects of CLF and not TOO much on forms.

                            So once again, if you want to join CLF but want one that focuses more on combat, try to find a Buk Sing CLF school :)

                            Hope that helps, goodluck!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Iga Ninjer View Post
                              Guess you've been to the wrong school. If only forms are emphasized, it's not real Choy Lee Fut. Choy Lee Fut is definitely not performance Kung Fu. Most of it doesn't even look pretty and fancy, anyways.

                              The ideal training method, besides the conditioning, normally involves learning a form (depending on your skill level, that'd be basic, medium, or advanced), and learning its applications. You can break down those applications and make short combinations out of them to practice as drills, either with a partner or on an object (pads, dummy, bag, w/e). You can also mix up many of those techniques in normal shadow boxing, by the way. Then obviously there's the sparring bit, where you actually get to test out some of the things you learn. :>
                              nice! I love the way you explained it right there. exactly what's going on in my mind :)

                              Comment

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