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Nov 2020 Personal Progress

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  • Nov 2020 Personal Progress

    October got away from me (posting, not practicing!), but that means we should have even more to report now, right?

    What progress have you noticed since September? Have your objectives changed or remained the same? What are your goals for November (or the end of the year)? What/how do you like to practice now?

    Chris Didyk
    Shaolin Wahnam USA

    Thank You.

  • #2
    Hooray for training journals! Been a while since I thought of one, thank you for opening this thread, Chris siheng. Keeps us honest

    The last month and change saw me mostly looking back at the Glory of Shaolin Kung Fu course material, especially the 72 pattern Tiger Crane and the Flower Set. I was always a bit annoyed that I couldn't quite seem to "get" Ng Mui's kung fu (you can see me tank multiple organ seeking kicks somewhere in that video series, for example, because I'm not used to "rescuing" the Dragon Riding stance footwork, and I was finding it very difficult to really use Double Worshiping of Buddha). Eventually started making some headway, thankfully, with recommendations from Sifu.

    I also figured at the beginning of November that I should probably get off my lazy rear and continue training the second half of the basic Shaolin Kung Fu syllabus that we got at Becoming a Shaolin Wahnam Practitioner. It was my first time formally learning kung fu weapons in our school. I'm looking to dedicate time to the "simpler and more direct" material in my repertoire now, after which I'll go back to the more sophisticated material.

    Right now, I'm practicing twice a day. The first session looks like:
    1. Lifting the Sky
    2. Stance training, mainly Golden Bridge
    3. One Finger Shooting Zen
    4. Art of Flexibility
    5. Staff thrust training (don't have the ceiling space to practice Open Mountain Chop Rock )
    6. Cosmos Palm sequences
    The second session is milder, consisting of one or two of the following:
    • Cosmos Palm
    • Double Worshiping of Buddha
    • Sinew Metamorphosis
    • Abdominal Breathing and its evolutions
    • Flowing Water Staff pattern practice with an eye for not gouging holes in the ceiling or knocking stuff of my bookshelves
    Some things I'm looking to be able to accomplish over the coming months:
    1. Refine my force control so that I can continue delivering a series of decisive strikes without breaking my flow
    2. Trust more in the process of Art of Flexibility, developing flexibility "comprehensively" rather than purely physically
    3. Develop a decisive and accurate staff thrust
    4. Work towards a "true breakthrough" of the Small Universe
    5. Relaxing my mind and letting my awareness "just be," rather than being locked up
    Also considering buckling down and practicing Going Through Woods or Bamboo Man. In the past, I only really played around with them occasionally, but I have the space now, so why not!

    How is your training, Chris siheng?
    I like making silly videos (including kung fu ones!) every so often on YouTube and taking pictures of weird things on Instagram.


    • #3
      Dear Sisookgungs, dear family,

      this is a wonderful idea! As my doctor colleague above, I have also chosen to add staff training to my routine.

      At the moment, I like practising One Finger Shooting Zen, Dragon Strength and either the staff thrust or some combat sequences for my Kung Fu.

      For Chi Kung, I always practise Lifting The Sky and sometimes add a spiritual exercise like Small Universe, Cosmic Shower or Five Dantien Breathing.

      I have found staff training excellent to improve Dantien movements.

      One of my main aims is to improve my ability to go with the flow, relax and smile from the heart in everyday life.

      It is wonderful to notice how helpful our arts are in that regard.

      All the best for everybody!

      Lots of love,
      Last edited by Steffen; 11 November 2020, 08:59 AM.
      May all beings be happy

      Thank you.


      • #4
        Dear Chris Siheng and dear all,

        Thank you for opening this thread, it's very interesting and enriching to see how everyone is doing and directing his Kung Fu Training. Thank you everyone for sharing!

        I have been focusing my kung fu training on the Wudang Cotton Palm Set since last august. So it's now 3 months and a half of daily or almost daily focused practice.

        My goal was to go deep into the set. Initial Objectives were to develop general cotton palm force. Good Set Performance. Develop skills on a selected sequence on the set.

        Some Practice and Results on the First Month (August) Were:

        The first month practice consisted in Cotton Palm Set Practice Form - Flow - Force. Developing Cotton Palm Force (soft force and exploding force) for every pattern. Spiritual Big Universe.

        The result brought many practical results and insights about bone marrow level, 5 tan tien trainning, small and big universe, cosmic shower and cosmic breathing.

        Also some days i perceived more energy volume going to my hands and fingers, it felt like many needles breaking through blockage in my fingers meridians. After that the hands felt very heavy and in two different occasions after feeling that in training i had the experience of objects dropping down from my hands, i knew that it was because the new force generated so i had to be more aware and improve my perception to the new situation.
        Also some minutes after this specially strong practices, because of the great chi volume i felt difficulty to bend the fingers or elbows without "good pain", this sensation disappeared after 10 minutes or so.

        Some Practice and Results on the Second Month (September) Were:

        Wudang Cotton Palm Set - Develop Wudang Cotton Palm Force - Cotton Palm Combat Sequence - Nourishing and expanding the Mind - Enrich daily life

        This month i could focus on practice the Tornado effect. Relaxed, grounded and with a lot of chi flowing.

        Some past injuries started healing and improving by their own,

        The daily practice became very pleasant and delightful.

        I perceived important changes in my relationships with others. I could communicate much better and with a deep impact (if required) while people was feeling happier than normal.

        Some Practice and Results on the Third Month (October) Were:

        I continued with the set practice and force training. The cotton palm practice was shorter than the last two months but results still the same. Sometimes i practice once a day, sometimes twice a day.

        The results were more grounded. I noticed better and effortless performance of the set with form, flow, force and a natural improvement in kick force.

        During some practices the enfasis was on focusing force at the palms.

        Some Practice and Results on the Fourth Month (November) are:

        I´m continuing with the set practice, force practice and sequence practice. By now this month the focus is on good stances and speed.

        Best regards,



        • #5
          I like to keep it as simple as possible.

          Morning - last couple of years was it short Chi Kung, Golden Bridge + OFSZ. Last month is about Cosmos Palm. After the force training I do some simple sequences.
          After work stretching and sitting meditation.
          Evening - Chi Kung and OFSZ. I would like to do meditation on the evening, but then energy is too strong to fall asleep.


          • #6
            Dear Shaolin Wahnam Family,

            Thanks for taking the time to share your training journal. :-)

            I usually practice twice a day. Sometimes I skip morning practice.

            In the morning, I practice Tai Chi Chuan sequences (or a part of some set) and some force training (usually One Finger Shooting Zen). The practice usually lasts for around 15 min or so. I want to go through all the TCC sequences, learn them really well and get a good flow. Sometimes, when I practice them they feel kind of choppy so I want to fix that.

            In the evening, I always practice Chi Kung. Usually 18 Lohan hands, 5 Animal Play, 18 Jewels followed by a vigorous Chi Flow. The practice lasts around 10 min or so. Once a week in the evening (Sundays) I practice Cosmic Shower.

            Once a month I practice Small Universe.

            With Love, Care and Shaolin Salute,



            • #7
              Dear family,

              I love reading about your progress and how you train! Thanks for sharing.

              Things started great for me in September, but then we unfortunately got hit with a few tough life events. The focus of my practice changed to keeping my chi circulating well and helping whatever needed to flow through me to do so and not get stuck. I found that practicing gently flowing force was very helpful in this regard, particularly Cloud Hands and Grasping Sparrow's Tail. I also continued solidifying the 12 basic Taijiquan sequences and re-learned the Cloud Hands set. I still sometimes practiced other things, but those became my main focus.

              Now, I'm feeling more like myself again and naturally wanting to push myself more in my practice. In retrospect, I'm glad I set simple, generic objectives because I mostly dropped my more detailed ones. At the same time, I gained some clarification about the things I really want to practice, and am ready to set some more detailed End of Year objectives:

              Sustainably build consolidated and flowing force. To do this, I am rotating mainly amongst One Finger Shooting Zen for consolidated force, Cloud Hands + Grasping Sparrow's Tail for flowing force, and Sinew Metamorphosis (on different days). At the end of the year, I'll check if I was able to practice these consistently without over-training and if I feel the effects of having built more force over this time.

              Solidify the 12 basic Taijiquan sequences. I want to be able to do them in any order, confident that the routine is correct, with good form, force, and flow. That's what I'll test at the end of the year. To get there, I am regularly practicing all 12 sequences and spending some time focusing on one or two of them at a time. When focusing on a sequence, I practice a mix of the entire sequence and individual applications within the sequence. (One of my favorite exercises is to practice "building up" a sequence by practicing the first application 5 times, then first + second application 5 times, and so on until I do the whole sequence 5 times.)

              Deepen the Four Gates sequences. I haven't been giving the Four Gates sequences the time they deserve, and as a result, I don't know them as well as I should. They are also sophisticated enough that I don't have nearly the confidence in really applying them that I have with, say, (most of) the 16 basic Shaolin sequences. At the moment, "deepening" them means two things:

              1. solidify the routines to the point where I can do any side of any of the four sequences confident that the routine is correct, and with good form, force, and flow
              2. improve my ability to apply a couple of small chunks of the sequences.

              To do this, I am regularly practicing the Four Gates sequences individually, as well as a special focus on the start of Sequences #2 and #3 (both initiator and responder). At the end of the year, I'll check that I can do the sequences correctly on any side in any order, and that my confidence in applying the beginning of Sequences #2 and #3 has improved.

              Re-establish fast, forceful kicks via double kicks. My kicks are decent, but they used to be much better. When I started training Shaolin, I disregarded the kicks for some time to instead focus on the other categories of attack. Now, I realize that I've neglected them for too long, and there's no reason why I can't have some fun building them back up. A fun way to improve my kicks and over all agility is to practice double kicks! I've identified a handful to focus on:

              Happy Bird -> Naughty Monkey (from basic Taijiquan Seq #8)
              Naughty Monkey -> Naughty Monkey (from Four Gates Seq #3)
              Double Continuous Kicks (organ-seeking kicks) (from Flower Set Seq #4)
              Thrust Kick -> Thrust Kick (from Wudang Three Harmony)

              I am practicing these in both leg modes, rotating which ones I practice and also practicing the responder sides, including counter attacking after the second kick (and defending the counter as the initiator). At the end of the year, I'll do each set of kicks and observe whether they feel faster, more forceful, and more relaxed than when I started.

              Improve my conditioning. I want to be able to do a 5 minute round of non-stop, full-speed combat applications without losing my breath. To get there, I am practicing combat applications in 5 min. rounds (usually three rounds in a row with no break).

              Improve initial attacks and defenses. I have some bigger objectives around this, but my immediate objective is to noticeably improve my ability to apply and defend against some basic initial attacks. To geth there, I am practicing the initial attacks and defenses from the basic Shaolin and Taijiquan sequences as well as any other sequences I want to practice.


              A typical practice session for me is some Chi Kung followed by 15 min. of force training and then 15 min. of combat applications in three 5 min. rounds. There are lots of ways I can pick my three rounds so that I satisfy all of my objectives in one session, for instance Taijiquan Seq. #8 (includes a double kick), building up a Four Gates Sequence (includes improving initial attacks and defenses), and anything for the last round.

              I usually prefer one big session in the morning, but I also sometimes break it up into multiple 15 min. practices throughout the day.

              Happy practicing everyone!
              Chris Didyk
              Shaolin Wahnam USA

              Thank You.