We have asked several local and not so local Bagua Zhang experts:
1. If you had to recommend a modern shoe for Bagua Zhang students what make and model would you suggest?
I am distressed to say I have no clear memory of what shoes my own teacher wore when teaching. I think they were always black, but I can’t recall if they were laced or not. It was
so long ago (> 30 years) that I doubt the answer has much relevance.
2. Were you teaching Bagua Zhang this afternoon would you change from whatever wushu or tai chi shoes you normally wear
Back in the day (1980s), I was studying Bagua Zhang near Mendocino way up in northern California. I started out wearing one pair of the usual white socks and the popular black cotton shoes with red plastic shoes. The shoes rarely lasted more than two or three weeks – the material would tear out near the big toe. It became common to wear two pairs of socks and normal running shoes. Even so, the tips of my toes and the front of the bottom of my feet (between the bottom of the toes and kidney 1) took a beating. I am sure the teacher knew we were using Zheng Gu Shui on our knees, shins, feet and toes, but he never said anything.
3. Is there a better liniment for legs
4. Were you to teach Bagua Iron Palm what liniments and elixir would you recommend?
We used two different liniments – both seemed to resemble Dit Da Jow. One was used
before practice and one after. Fifteen or twenty minutes after the second liniment we
would drink two ounces of elixir mixed with 4 ounces of water. The mixed solution was a murky yellow color. I am reasonably sure it contained alcohol, but whether that was rice wine, vodka or something else … no idea.