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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Novag Robot Adversary Chess Computer

 I think there is lots of applications for robot arms.

I want one for my dummy. This one looks good. This was a commercial set in the 80s I think. It beats the other design from MB games that had magnets under the board.

Robots are 'in' now in the news. Driver-less cars gets coverage and so does potential unemployment.

What if we have robots teaching martial arts will they make Sensi redundant?

Monday, February 20, 2017

freestyle on dummy

This practitioner uses some Vietnamese  kung fu and main land Chinese moves he says. This and the associated video he has shows the fastest hands I have seen with hard hitting. This is not a tippy-tap' set he has here, I sense. He is kicking that wooden leg. His bones know about this, trust me. Respect. 

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Dit Da Jow: Iron hit wine in Traditional Chinese medicine

This is a well thought through analysis of this Chinese medicine.

Does Dit Da Jow Die Da Jiu really work The power of ancient kung fu me...

Here is an experiment. I am glad he massaged one side and did not just let it lie fallow at all, with no massage. I expect the next step is to do the same thing again but use a different chemical - say olive oil - on one leg to contrast vs the dit da jow.

BUT ... I have used this and I go with it.

Monday, December 05, 2016

Kortschnoi, Grand Master - Mirror Glasses

This is a picture of Viktor Kortschnoi. He died this year aged 85. We can learn a lot from him. He was a world class chess player who knew the meaning of struggle.
He was a good player in the 60s but not world class until he re-evaluated his style and changed the way he played. He then started getting stronger and stronger. This is unusual as he got better the older he got. But age was the reason why he got passed over for Soviet state support, as they thought Karpov would be more likely to beat Bobby Fischer.
In 1976 Kotschnoi defected from the USSR. (He smuggled his chess library across the boarder in 2 batches). He left his family behind and his son was put into hard labour for 'dodging draft'.

Korschnoi did not get top level support but was able to qualify for the 1978 World Chess Championship - beating fellow Soviets and even playing under the Jolly Rodger flag, as he was stateless!

The picture here shows an event from the final match. Karpov's group had KGB support and a parapsychologist staring at Kortschnoi -from the front row ..... who lost games when this started. The mirror glasses gave some respite - as well as a group of religious gurus vibing for him to counter the parapsychologist. Kortschnoi went 5-2 down in the match. You needed 6 to win and he pulled it back to 5-5.

When I read about this match, when I took up chess and started reading and studying. I was transfixed by these events. Korschnoi played the same openings I  did so I identified with him. But ... he lost the final game and the match 6-5. Damm. I still read and re=read about this match and his life. I still want him to win that final game and I have played through these games again and again as if I was there, or part of his team - a second - helping him with ideas and approaches.

He came back. He defeated other challengers again, in the next World Chess Championship Cycle and qualified for the final in 1981 in Merano. He was 50 now and past his best. He still ahd to face Karpov again, plus his entourage and KGB tricks. He played one or two great games but lost. (These events in his life are well worth looking at in-depth for more details. The nuances are excellent to read about. Who else could cope with all the things he faced and perform).

  • I want to be like Kortschnoi - 
  • Getting better as I get older.
  • Overcoming massive barriers - State level bad tricks / efforts to unnerve me / 
  • Massive resilience / 
  • Top skills.  
  • A fighter.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

One year on standing like a tree and Chi-Kung

Last year I said I would report back on my new exercise inspired by the channel 4 series from 1995 and the supporting book, on standing like a tree - Zhung Zhang.

Well despite some very, very sincere effort and real attention to detail, I had to give up after 5 months doing it. I had managed to get 30 minutes into the stance and work my way to the 2nd pose (no including the neutral start up stance).

I stand by the benefits I noted in my blog entry last year .... but there began to be a pain in my knees. I could not prevent that and I could not work out why it was being caused. I was really careful not to have knees beyond toes, and I varied the depth of the stance to make it more forgiving but the pain came back. I tried stopping the 8 pieces of brocade, to see if that was involved but no.
This was a real blow as it had good benefits on my mind. Also for the first few weeks when I started it had a real energy boost. I did not need sleep in the amounts I usually needed. The mind benefits were to make it feel calmer, anaesthetic-like, once the session got started  by 10 mins in and had ended. I can get this effect from the wu chi neutral position which is something I salvaged, however.

My knees developed a creaking noise now, that was not there before. Wonder what caused that?

I did manage to keep up with the 8 pieces of brocade, however. I had stopped for 3 weeks in Spring to give knees a rest but then kept going back to it. I am glad I did this. This does give me something constant to do and come back to. The more you do it the more skilled you become, (there is a surprise). Even though the moves are simple the co-ordination of the mind / moves and breathing is not easy. In Dr Yang Ming's book he gives the supporting ideas of where the chi should be directed - I see it as mind control - and that takes some work. (He does say breathing can be just natural but he then goes on to say you can coordinate it later when you feel more confident).
The work is the beneficial thing too. I do feel more focused vs a year ago at times. Also my stretching and joints have improved in my legs. There are 2 moves, when you grab your feet, and 'shake head and tail like a bear' that give you a nice leg stretch / hip stretch. It is gentle and over the months the benefits accumulate. My hands feel warm at the end of these sessions and I tend to put them on areas of my body that feel bad and 'need healing'. Ok I cannot promise that is chi energy and the warmth is magic powers but I know my circulation is better and I do not feel the cold as much as a year ago.

Conclusion: Standing still for the 5 months showed me that simple things are not easy but there is something to be said for this. Real pity I could not keep it up. I would if I could.

Pleased I am still doing the 8 pieces, however.

So mission was partially successful.

I stopped massaging my knees in the way shown in the Tai Chi video below. I think picking up the patella and manipulating it was not a good idea. I think that is for extreme one-off pain, not a post exercise thing.