Monday, February 9, 2009

Scenes From Tim Cartmell's Internal Art Seminar

The Gang

Well, I survived another two-day seminar on Internal Arts with Tim Cartmell, king of the Combat Throw. Tim is one of the best instructors on body mechanics I have been to, with subtle methods and adjustments that make tossing your 200-pound training partner - well, "effortless". I think this is my third seminar with Tim.

Tim demonstrates application of "Peng" with Jake Burroughs
The Saturday session focused on the last two animal forms of the Sun-style Bagua system, the Monkey and the Phoenix. The Monkey is a fairly straight-foward neck break technique, while the flowing movements of the Phoenix employed the Fan Jang (overturning palm), wrapping and coiling methods. These of course, led us to a variety of throws as Tim's Bagua instruction is based on grappling techniques.

Tim demonstrates Chin Na elbow lock and projection on Terry
Day two began with Bagua applied combat theory. This had a lot of work on stepping patterns that allow the fighter to seek a superior position against the opponent, a factor that not only allows use of whole-body power but is the key to making those throws "effortless". These techniques (as well as many others) were off the opponent's jab, cross or hook punch.

The final session was an examination of the foundational hand methods (Peng, Fan, Heng) of Tai Chi Chuan, Bagua and Hsing-i. All of these arm structures are similar, but rely on different energies, angles and intended result.
Many of the throws we practiced could truely be devestating without a forgiving mat, I can imagine what would happen on concrete or being rammed into an object like a car. Tim is patient and informative with his instruction, and provides the detail that makes these techniques practical when the gap is closed from kicking and punching to grappling.
- As always, the seminar was generously hosted by Jake Burroughs. You can reach Jake for information on future master instructors visiting the Seattle Area at his "Three Harmonies Chinese Martial Arts Center", the Website is found HERE.
Tim Cartmell's Shen Wu Website is linked HERE.

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