Review of Clive Potter's Seminar on Siu Lin Tau DVD
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Title: Senior Instructor Clive Potter Presents- Seminar on Siu Lin Tau
DVD Length: 1:24:47
Video Quality: Average
Audio Quality: 3.0 out of 5.0
What It's About:
Seminar presented by Clive Potter, on the first form of Wing Chun Siu Lin Tau.
Clive Potter is an experienced martial artist in Wing Chun kung fu. This DVD is geared toward those who had attended his seminar and have a strong working knowledge of the first Form. The DVD is not one where it teaches Siu Lin Tao form beginning to end. What Sifu Potter does do, however, is chunk the form down into manageable sections while explaining crucial points a student should know in their beginning practice.
An ingredient of Potter’s pedagogy is to use a chalkboard to illustrate essential aspects about the basics of Siu Lin Tao. I’m certain its use was a valuable visual aid if you attended the seminar and took notes. However, you might find it a strain on your eyes trying to figure out what he was attempting to show while watching this DVD. Honestly, he could have done without it and still have achieved his objectives. Unfortunately, I found his tries at diagram making more distracting than helpful.
There were no variable camera shots used in this DVDs production. Because of this, it was obvious that practical applications were missed during his demonstration. It was a shame, because he is obviously a skilled practitioner and teacher. Unfortunately, at times home style productions with the camera just setting on top of a tripod with the hope of capturing everything sadly misses the mark. Although, that’s not to say one would not learn from this DVD in spite of its production style. Sifu Potter is dogmatic about what he considers important in Wing Chun training, particularly in regard to the attributes of each form in the system. Some of what he has to say I agree with and on some specific points I do not.
Potter makes the claim that Siu Lin Tao, is essentially for stance development and nothing more. That is simply not true! However, I suppose one could say that a teacher has the privilege of saying, where their right, there right and where they are wrong, that’s their prerogative. Martial art teachers, in general have their own understanding and methods of what they consider important. Believe it or not, there are Chinese Kung-Fu teachers, who simply don’t believe in the concept of Chi and therefore don’t promote it. Sifu Potter tends to promote the physics of Wing Chun mostly. However, he had aptly stressed the importance of “feeling the punch” at the beginning stages of learning as the movement relates to the elbow. Potter gives excellent advice throughout his seminar in learning how to do the technique right from the beginning. There is much in this DVD for beginners to learn from and for experienced teachers to benefit. Especially for the novice, provided they have taken the time to thoroughly learn Siu Lin Tao.
- What the Si Lin Tao teaches
- Stance-what it contributes to the form.
- Correct position of the Feet and spine.
- Visualizing the centerline.
- Keeping the chin level.
- Forward Pressure
- For example-Tan Sao Hand and Elbow.
- The vertical line and the elbow.
- Force is directed upward and forward.
- Using the Palm in Si Lum Tao
- Downward movement against a kick.
- Using the palm to move the kick to the side.
- Stepping in to block.
- Si Lin Tao Hands and Use
- Gong Sao hand and elbow.
- Gong Sao hand and moving forward.
- Punching forward from where you are.
- Movement of the elbow makes the punch work.
- The straight line from point to another.
- Pac Sao and how to use the elbow.
- The position of the triangles in Si Lin Tao
- Using the elbow to control the centerline.
- Covering all gates of the upper body.
- Rotation stopping the opponent’s movement.
- The Bong Sao Hand - what is right and what is wrong?