After watching the first exercise to control the soft power (belonging to air movements category), we pass to a second one related instead to the water movements group.
The practice we are going to describe does not involve incredible difficulties but requires access to a body of water (a lake, a river, the sea, a swimming pool, a large tub, etc.):
- Deep at least up to the height of our chest
- Free from excessive disturbing / risking elements (strong waves, rocks, poisons, etc.)
- Broad and along at least 2x2m
- Under the supervision of someone who can help us in case of need
Identified the ideal workout place we pass to the explanation of the exercise:
- Let’s go in the water (in safety, away from danger and only after digestion)
- Let’s remain standing but slightly flexing our knees (the head remains outside the water)
- We have to find a stable equilibrium position (eg. ma bu) and to close our eyes
- Let’s relax the whole body, but let us not be carried by the eventual waves
- Let’s perform the Dragon Motion (which we already have spoken)
- Initially we do not involve the whole body but only the top half
- We must choose the motions on which we want to focus (eg. the cursive lower case “e” letter)
- Lets’ always repeat the same series of movements at constant speed
- The goal is to seek the trajectory and the position of the body elements which identifies less water resistance
- At constant boost we have to find the best path and aerodynamic; in the air only advanced practitioners can feel the difference, in water all it is more clear
- Let’s try sometimes to release big power after a rotation
- The exercise can be performed also with legs (involving the entire body)
- In the presence of adequate rescue personnel, the exercise can also be performed with the body nearly / completely immersed (water must not be too high, at the most at our height, this practice is for advanced practitioners);
- Also in conditions of maximum safety and with due preparation, the exercise can also be performed training the apnea (advanced)
- When the quality of our movements is very stable we can start to wear small weights (only on the wrists and ankles, for experts only)
- Let’s avoid using heavy weights in water (even for experts)
- When we get back to practice the Dragon Motion out of water we must play attention to do not reach for error the limits of our joints (the risk of damaging elbows, etc. is not remote)
- Let us not stop at the first apparent results, the research of mobility is long and full of red herrings; let us not be misled by our muscle memory out of the water
- The fact that a movement we seem faster than another may be due simply to the fact that we have repeated it many times and not to the fact that it is adhering to the best path / aerodynamic (this is why we must be very relaxed)
Even if the exercise requires some physical effort, this practice will teach us our “secrets paths” making us able manage new speed and power (potentially without a specific training).
In the next article of this series we will see other exercises (earth movements).
Author: Master Kongling
Founder of 6 Dragons Kung Fu.