The Chen Family style Tai Chi Chuan Long Pole 13 Movements set after Grandmaster Chen Zhenglei
Cheb Qing-Zhou, Chen Family stylec, Chen Xiaowang, Chen Xiaoxing, Chen Zhenglei, flail, Han YiLing, Hung Gar, Jack Yan, Lam Yan, Lin Xin, Liuhe, long pole, Ma Hong, saber, spear, tai chi chuan, Wu Dang Dragon Gate
From Plum Publications (www.plumpub.com). Note that there are three sections of the web site – one for DVDs, one for books and one for VCDs
In Master Jack Yan’s translations of Grandmaster Chen Zhenglei’s books volume V has the Chen Family style 13 Movements Long Pole as well as two person drills for long pole versus long pole and long pole versus flail (two section staff)
Kung Fu Direct has the following videos:
butterfly knife, butterfly sabers, Chen style, Chen Zhenglei, Drunken Master, flail, Hung Gar, Jack Yan, Jackie Chan, lau gar, Lau Kar Leung, long pole, Shaw Brothers, spear, sword, tai chi chuan, tassel, waxwood
Chen style Tai Chi Chuan has a set called Long Pole 13 movements which features a tapered waxwood (Ligustrum lucidum, sometimes known as Glossy Privet, Chinese Privet or Broad-leaf Privet) staff about 3 meters long. The same staff is used in a set called Lau Gar in Hung Gar style [teaching DVD by Grandmaster Wing Lam http://www.wle.com/products/LauGarLongStaff.html] To confuse matters a bit, Lau Gar can also be a southeastern Chinese style from Guangxi province near Vietnam. In that case Lau Gar is written differently (but sounds the same) and means Lau Family fist. That Lau Gar is a lot more popular in Britain than here in the US. Even more confusing, there is an unarmed set in Hung Gar called Lau Gar [teaching DVD by Grandmaster Wing Lam at http://www.wle.com/products/VHG02.html]. I have not done it for years and years, but back in the 70s it was made popular by the famous master Lau Kar Leung, director and star of many great martial arts movies for Shaw Brothers in Hong Kong. There is a lot of Lau Kar Leung’s choreography (so the art is revved up a bit for the movies) in Jackie Chan’s Drunken Master films.
Chen style Long Pole 13 is a comparatively short set: as one might expect, only 13 movements. According to written tradition (one example is page 179 of volume V of Jack Yan’s translation of Grandmaster Chen Zhenglei’s books), one can add a spear point and a typical (for spears) red horsehair fringe or tassel around the point. As an opponent you are supposed to be distracted by the red color and dismayed that the fringe is red from being soaked in the blood of my enemies. That is, unless it is the student’s own blood from making mistakes.
There are two collections of Chen Family style schemes based on long pole: two persons, where both have long poles AND two persons where one has a long pole and one has a flail (two section staff). Quite by chance, I once saw two very capable Wing Chun students in Florida decades ago perform a set featuring double butterfly sabers versus single long pole. Grandmaster Wing Lam has a teaching DVD of the Hung Gar version of this set [http://www.wle.com/products/VHG33.html]. I have never seen or even heard rumors of long pole versus single sword or versus single sword with shield.
Most aides carry devices like an iPad and some students also have smart phones. The SAITO software has to sort out what a device does and who it belongs to. Class starts with a formal bow and salute, followed by five minutes of sitting meditation and then five minutes of standing meditation. Then several minutes of centuries-old Chen family warm-up exercises, so we had thought we had a comfortable amount of time until the first Tai Chi Chuan set to perform this identification process. Until Professor Peter Wayne and others at Harvard Medical School pointed out it was useful to measure movements during sitting and standing. We’ll see what the upcoming Internet of Things Conference and the Sensors Expo (both in San Jose California in May and June, respectively) showcase in terms of hardware, but we are leaning toward pressure sensors embedded in chair seats and personal foot mats.
The shortest and simplest (and, therefore, the first taught) of the Chen Family style sets is known by the precise but not especially imaginative name of 18 Movements. Once they learn this set, students would perform it twice per class forever. The students can see a canonical video of Grandmaster Chen Zhenglei, who choreographed 18 Movements, either projected on large mirrors or on smart glasses. 16 students times 20 sensors ties several times per second gets to be a lot of measurements to store in a database very quickly. Well over 100,000 sustained database inserts per minute. And we have to extract the raw sensor data from the Internet of Things hub where it is stored.
On an average day three two-hour long classes each with 16 students, most of whom have autism spectrum disabilities. That means they often have expressive language disabilities (cannot speak), behavioral issues and may have medical challenges like seizures, tachycardia (heart rate suddenly triples) or overheating. Before class starts the teacher places a tub file for each student on each table and checks that necessary clothing and objects are available. Things start when a bus or van arrives and we get a head count of students and their aides from the driver. We use biometrics to check everyone in – we currently use multiple fingertip readers to keep the bottleneck to a minimum.
The SAITO software sends emails to designated parents, schools or other third parties indicating the student did (or did not) arrive.
If we are expecting a guest viewer or teacher there will have been a poster of him or her in view on the way to the practice area. Students have added the habit of touching a portrait of Grandmaster Chen Zhenglei. The significance remains elusive.
Four days a week students dress informally – that usually means a school t-shirt and traditional black pants. Once a week or so students dress in semi-formal black cotton uniforms (leftmost of the images below) for film that will be sent to outside reviewers. If we have a guest, or there is a dress rehearsal or an exhibition, then everyone dresses in full formal silks (center and rightmost of the images below).
These are Stan Smith style shoes from Adidas. Note that they are available with either traditional laces and with Velcro straps. They are a favorite of the esteemed Sifu Nick Gudge, a Chen Zhenglei student who teaches in Ireland. I am not altogether clear on about what percentage of autistics can tie their own shoes, let alone with consistency and reliability (not too loose and not too tight). Not do I have anything to say yet about how well or poorly the students like the straps.
In real life a 24″ x 36″ blow up of an 8″ x 12″. Best would be if a professional shot a very high definition picture. The problem with taking a picture of the poster is the picture pixellates – the black is actually a metal frame. Worse, the glass reflects. That white rectangle is actually a reflection of a door. Indoors the glass reflects any light and there are complicates if the camera adds a flash.
After snapping two (2) titanium drill bits drilling into the maple “wood” it was eventually possible to finish the shelves. Maybe for bird’s eye maple this aggravation is worth it.
Getting an even light so none of the plastic covers DVDs or VCDs distracted the camera took some adjusting. Alas, the silver writing on the covers of the red books (second shelf left) does not show up well in this light at this distance. There’s room left (lower right) for recordings of double maces, fan or maybe double fans, melon hammers …