Single Palm Change of Sun Style Baguazhang
How to Perform Sun Style Single Palm Change
Liang Yi is the two poles of Yin and Yang. In Baguazhang, walking to the left (counterclockwise) is Yang, walking to the right (clockwise) is Yin. Sun Lu Tang associated the Single Palm Change to Liang Yi.
From the left Pushing Millstone Palm, toe-in with the right foot to begin the change. The torso posture does not change.
Toe-out with the right foot and turn the palms over so they are pushing in the direction of the change. This movement can look as if you are pushing with the arms but do not; maintain the torso and arm alignments and let the toe-out movement create the push. The eyes remain focused on the left hand.
Toe-in with the right foot so the body is facing away from the center of the circle. The right hand pierces under the left elbow with the palm facing up. The left palm turns over to face upwards as the right hand pierces under the elbow. The arms form a “T” shape at the elbow. As it passes the left arm, the eyes catch the right hand and remain focused on it until you complete the Single Palm Change.
As you close up into this posture, imagine that the right shoulder is trying to pierce under the left elbow. This is the first time in your practice when the shoulders and back can roll forward and down. Remember the rolling movement you practiced with The Bellows, the shoulders and spine should roll forward in a similar manner as you perform this closing movement of Single Palm Change. Your body is twisted to the left like a rope or spring that is about to come undone.
Let the energy of the coiled rope or spring be released by continuing the pierce of the right hand past the left arm and above the head. The left hand is inside the elbow of the right arm and follows the elbow as you uncoil to the right.
The Single Palm Change completes with a toe-out of the right foot as your right and left hand lower into the Pushing Millstone Posture.
Begin walking in the clockwise direction by Stealing a Step with the right foot and then following with a Sweep Step of the left foot along the line of the circle.
Walk at least three circles before changing directions with a right turning Single Palm Change.
Essential Points of Single Palm Change
When practicing the Single Palm change, we learn to harmonize the palms changes with the footwork. The old masters said, “above and below must be coordinated.” The movement should be continuous, with a mind focused on the practice.