Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 20

Thread: is mantis enough?

  1. #1
    laughing tiger Guest

    is mantis enough?

    Greetings! I am curious as to whether you believe that your own Mantis art is comprehensive enough, by itself. Do you think it is a complete system, or an aspect of a larger collection of arts? Thanks, friends! :-)

  2. #2
    Red Masque Guest
    It is one of the diminishing systems of a complete fighting art.

  3. #3
    bamboo_ leaf Guest
    Yes, it seems to be a very complet art, with a wide range of movements and ideas.

    enjoy life

    bamboo leaf

  4. #4
    whitmcc Guest
    Wow! What a question! There are so many different styles of mantis, and each one covers different aspects of fighting. All focus on trapping, and are most effective in that area. Some are more acrobatic, some have more or fewer kicks, most have weapons as well.

    I'm limited to experience in Northern Praying Mantis of the Wah Lum variety, so I can't speak for all mantis systems, but I found Wah Lum to be pretty darned comprehensive. The workouts were quite challenging, and the emphasis on flexibility and developing your agility and body control through forms was great. The only place I found anything lacking was in groundfighting and grappling. There were tons of throws and takedowns and sweeps to put your opponent on the ground, but it seemed to me that unless they stayed there, unconscious, you might have to venture into unfamiliar territory.

    I've said it before, and I'll say it again: knowledge of other systems is a good thing. It's far better, IMHO, to be acquainted with other techniques and styles other than your own so that you will have more tools at your disposal, rather than fooling yourself into thinking your style is the 'be-all-end-all' of styles. I've been at this for 18 years, and I feel like I'm just starting out.

    Overall, I think that the various Mantis styles are fantastic, but could benefit from some additional emphasis on grappling.

  5. #5
    Red Masque Guest
    Any & every art is "lacking" in one area or another. Please deffer back to the original question.

  6. #6
    whitmcc Guest
    Huh? I thought I did answer the original question. And I certainly agree with you about any and every art lacking something. Most grappling styles aren't that handy with many of the primary fighting tools of striking systems, and that's a disadvantage.

    I'm curious about your answer, that mantis is a 'diminishing system' of a complete fighting art. If you mean that it's been diluted or has lost something in the translation over time, then I suppose I follow you, but please elaborate. And please understand that I'm not bickering or trying to pick a fight. I just enjoy the discussion. Peace, brother!

  7. #7
    Red Masque Guest
    I mean by diminishing is; Through the last 20-30 years or so there has been a great knowledge loss. The "Me Too!"/need more stuff/partial-artists in "todays" society have caused a great enough frustration in many traditional instructors to make them say, "Why the hell should I bother teaching you what I know?? You will be gon in 3 years anyway to find an art to "fill the gaps" that this system you think, because you didn't stay here long enough to be taught fill in the gaps with this system.". Enough of this has gone on long enough for many modern schools to specialize in something ie., the latest thing that makes money, & not even skim the surface of what the original art had to offer. I mean, ground fighting existed back when the older arts were created! They had to deal with them on one level or another. You can generaly see how well a country did with its fighting by looking at the current world map. It hasn't changed a whole lot in the last hundred or so years by the way of cultural population pertaining to martial arts.
    Sorry about taking offence, this is a point of historical, social & cultural irritation for me.

  8. #8
    mantis boxer Guest
    Praying Mantis is a complete style. It absorbed a little bit from 17 other styles. Just because someone can't fight with the style means they aren't training correctly. Don't blame it on the style, blame it on the practioner. It takes 2 lifetimes to master a style. Any style of kung fu is "good enough." I think it's silly to " Learn mantis for the quick strikes" and" Learn Hung Gar to develop incredible strength." That's ridiculous.

  9. #9
    molum_jr Guest
    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Red Masque:
    It is one of the diminishing systems of a complete fighting art.[/quote]

    I have to agree, and I'll give two examples.

    1) For disciples before the Wong, Hon-Fan generation, it was not uncommon for all mantis students to practise "iron body." In the old days, when chinese martial artists would travel thru out China to match skills, you never knew if your opponent used Iron palm. In the Shaolin Temple movie, Jet Li fights a drunken sword opponent. That opponent is a well-known mantis guy. He has confirmed that iron body was standard practice by the old-timers.

    2) Anyone with an old text of Bung Bo Kuen with the old-time master holding a closed-clenched fist. Notice that the thumb is adjacent to the index finger and NOT underneath the index and middle fingers. Just a little thing like this, but it meant that the clenched fist could not only punch, but also be used to graze an opponent's temple or eyebrow w/o changing hand form. The thumb could suddenly stick out and jab into the eyes, ears, or throat. Check out the old editions of Ching Mo books and notice how mantis, sil lum, and eagle claw held their fists... Interesting stuff.

  10. #10
    HKMantis Guest
    Northern Praying Mantis is considered complete system. It is not the only one and nor do I believe is the "end all, be all", a lot of it will depend upon the practioner and his/her ability.
    Northern Praying Mantis contains various empty hand and weapon sets and practical drills on how to use each. Groundfighting is not unheard of, in fact my understanding of it is, that it's quite brutal. However Mantis practioners do not prefer to be there.
    Chi-gung is also be a part of some linages, as is the "Iron-Body" and "Iron Palm". It is said that the two create a better balance within a practitioner.
    It is as Red Masque pointed out, unfortunate that through the years bits and pieces have been lost to some. Not only from Sifu not finding any students they deemed worthy, but also from people that learned the art and never passed it on. Unlike other MA styles in which you can be considered a "master " in 2-4 years, (because the style has become Americanized with an attitude of quick to instant gratification) Mantis takes much longer. Personaly I was told to expect 6-10 years and even that depended upon my learning abilities. So I decided to enjoy the journey and learn as much as possible however long it takes.


  11. #11
    molum_jr Guest
    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by HKMantis:
    [BIt is as Red Masque pointed out, unfortunate that through the years bits and pieces have been lost to some. Not only from Sifu not finding any students they deemed worthy, but also from people that learned the art and never passed it on.
    HK [/B][/quote]

    Which lead me to this question... Did Wong, Hon-Fan learned everything and document it or was he given the grandmaster position even though there were more senior sihings due to his attitude and politeness?
    Given that Preying Mantis has over 100 sets, which of the old-timers actually learned everything?

  12. #12
    BeiTangLang Guest
    Given the fact that on the mainland there are nowhere near 100 forms in any one lineage of mantis, I would have to say that he learned them all, or he would not have been given the title & rank in the system. On the other hand, I am no great historian, so to get a better answer to your question there is a place where mantis people from all over the world converse online. Many of them are the top mantis sifu & historians in the world. Go to click on the mantis button & then join the mantis mailing list there. CCM & WHF lineages plus a few more are all represented by very knowledgable people. To get your best answer, repost your question there.

  13. #13
    HKMantis Guest

    OK, on the mainland Fan Xu Dong taught to Lo Kwang Yu 18 empty hand sets. Are you saying they weren't masters? I only ask this because of your criteria of having over 100 forms. As to the question of "Is WHF a Grandmaster?" Depends on how you answer my question. Did he document everything he knew? Only he could answer that.

  14. #14
    Young Mantis Guest
    I have a few questions:

    Molum_Jr: Why do you believe PM having over 100 forms is a given? Only the CCM lineage claims to have over 100 forms.

    HKMantis: How do you know Fan Yuk Dong only taught 18 forms to Law Gwong Yuk? What is your source? Curious.

    As for the question of WHF being a grandmaster, I think it really comes down to your definition of GM. What does the title have anything to do with whether or not he published everything he knew? There are GM's that never published in their lifetime. WHF was asked by Law Gwong Yuk to teach for him at the age of 20. He taught for 40 years and was known as the Mantis King in HK. Whether or not he published everything he knew, which he did not, I believe he is still the most published PM GM to date.

  15. #15
    HKMantis Guest
    Young Mantis,

    My source is one of the guys that trains on the mainland. I'm sorry I don't recall his name at the moment. It was published on Authentic Kung-Fus' mailing list. (BTW it's a great source of information) It was brought up during such claims as mentioned. It seemed to bring that whole discussion to a quick end.
    I will be in Yantai in July meeting with Fan Yuk Dongs' decendents I would be more than happy to confirm this with them at that time and give you their answer.


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts