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Sky and Ground Palm Featured Image

Sky and Ground Palm of Baguazhang

Emblem for the Dragon Method of Internal Martial Arts Practice

How to Perform Sky and Ground Palm

This change differs from the previous palms in that the arms do not complete their change until you take the Sweeping Step.

Stand on the edge of the circle facing in the counterclockwise direction. From Holding the Spear Posture, lower the right hand down the front of the body with the palm facing away, while the left hand rises from its extended position with the palm facing to the body.

You can over stretch this posture by raising the left shoulder and straightening the left elbow. If you want to maintain the Wuji Posture alignments, you will not straighten the left elbow. I prefer the latter posture, but either is acceptable.

Left facing Sky and Ground Palm
Sky and Ground Palm

Walk as before and perform the Simple Change, maintaining the posture when you toe-in. Change hand positions as you toe-out. Drill the right palm up, inside the elbow of the left arm, as you drop the left palm down. As the arms change positions, they twist in opposite directions. The arms continue to change positions as you perform the Sweeping Step.

This change differs from the previous palms in that the arms do not complete their change until you take the Sweeping Step.

Sky and Ground Palm as a Mother Palm of Baguazhang

The Sky and Ground Palm is practicing a key transition movement from the Double Palm change as a static posture. Most Baguazhang schools incorporate large sweeping movements of the arms with a sudden lowering of the body. In martial terms these are throws or clearing actions to enter your opponent’s center.

For our purposes, the raised arm, twisted in one direction, the lowered arm twisted in another direction, and the torso, twisted toward the center of the circle presents a challenge for our focused attention. Imagine you are cutting a groove in the ceiling and floor with your hands as you walk. If you let the twist of either arm relax, you will fall off the groove and have to start over.

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