View Full Version : Training Long Form left-sided?

03-21-2001, 12:14 PM
Hi all, here's a question for you

How many of you train the long form left-sided as well as right-sided? My instructor doesn't feel the need but I've recently felt deficient in my structure on the left side - Ji feels especially weak...

Anyway, I've started training the form both ways now (finished part 1 at the weekend, it's ****ed hard). I can alrady feel a difference in my structure and I now initiate a lot more from my left side in sparring and pushing hands.

Thoughts/Opinions/Experiences of this training and its benefits?

"A 'superior' martial artist is one who is adept at applying/internalizing the entire philosophy of his system (doctrine, strategy, tactic)." - Scott Sonnon

03-21-2001, 05:10 PM
I think your teacher is right, it isn't necessary. But it couldn't hurt. Most of our bagua forms are both sided. I have tried yang long form left sided for fun.

03-21-2001, 06:15 PM

FWIW, imho, it isn't "necessary" to do the form on the opposite side, if you're just doing it for health. For basic self-defense, however, it makes sense to practice applications on both sides. It's not always possible to control which direction an attack will come from, so it's a good idea to be prepared. If one wants to teach or study more than basic self-defense, then being able to do the "mirror" form will help both. OTOH, I don't think that the mirror form should be "taught." I agree with what you're doing, i.e., teaching it to yourself. I guarantee that, by the time you finish, you'll know a lot more about your regular form. don't expect them to be the same, and you should use that to understand what "both" hands are doing in each movement. So, I guess I think you and your instructor are right. BTW, bagua is symmetrical, and I don't think anyone has argued that there is anything wrong with that. And, there's also baguataiji, that basically looks at taiji from the symmetrical, constantly changing perspective of bagua. Anyway,

03-21-2001, 08:25 PM
The answer to learning the left side - as applies to most Chinese arts - is the two man fighting set. Dr Yang, Jwing-Ming has a book called Advanced Yang TCC Vol 2, Martial Applcations. It details a two man set for the 108 long form, in pictures and descriptions. Also has good info on application and push hands. The second edition has a new name, I believe. Check out www.ymaa.com. (http://www.ymaa.com.)

Kevin Wallbridge
03-22-2001, 02:12 AM
I've heard it suggested that a method the Chen family used was to train individual movements bilaterally, but to do the whole form reversed would be considered a poor use of training time.

"The heart of the study of boxing is to have natural instinct resemble the dragon" Wang Xiangzai

03-22-2001, 06:14 AM
I believe Guang Ping Taichi long form is done on both sides, but I might be wrong.


"Madness takes its toll. Please have exact change."

Ben Gash
03-22-2001, 09:37 PM
When I used to do the 37 step Cheng Man Ching form I learnt to do it on both sides.

"Weapons are the embodiments of fear,
the wise use them only when they have no choice"
Lao Tzu

03-23-2001, 12:24 AM
When I was a student at Wen Wu, in the SF bay area, students were encourage to practice both left and right after having learned the primary left side approach well (after about 2 -3 years of training).
Also, we were encourage to practice movements left and right in linear sequences. This was done to encourage perfection in movements and gain dexterity on left and right.

[This message was edited by ddh on 03-23-01 at 02:30 PM.]