Wu Style Spear
The Spear is the “King of the Weapons,” as often called, mostly because of its length, which allows to experts to attack from a longer distance than the warrior who holds a sword. Many people believe it’s the easiest weapon to learn, but all trainees who have studied it conclude that it’s very challenging and demanding and its practice develops superior skills.
In the battle field, the Spear was a weapon for soldiers, highly useful in a battle from a distance and in the defense of a pedestrian against a rider. It is usually made of quality hard and flexible wood, it’s about 2 meters long, its thickness gets thinner from the base to its tip, where it has a metallic nose and a red knot made of horse wool.
The Spear can nail, strike with its body or base, deviate the opponent’s blows and control his weapon, all with a resilience that offers many advantages in defense or attack. It is usually used with both hands, with very fast and unpredictable rotations and changes of direction, and as a result, the strength that is generates is so powerful. Due to its great flexibility, when the trainee applies its strength, the spear is intensely vibrating. That, however, is not an end in itself as many people think, but an outcome of the technique and the force that follows. The trainee should study the correct technique and the act of vibrating will of course follow.
Like all weapons, the Spear develops further strength, flexibility, and agility. Because the majority of her movements are executed from the center of the body, it’s imperative to understand what it means to position the body behind the strength and the strokes, and the ability to strike straight blows. Because of its length and the use of both hands to handle it, it develops an extremely superior ability of coordination between the hands and between the hands and the body.
During practice, the Spear is often replaced by the Long Pole, which is at least three meters long. The Long Pole doesn’t have the flexibility of the Spear, it’s equally thick throughout its length, it’s much heavier, and it doesn’t have the metallic nose of the Spear.
Because of its length and weight, the Long Pole doesn’t have the speed and agility the spear is distinguished for, and it relies on its huge impact force. It develops very strong stances, as well as a great ability to provide balance and rooting, since its center of gravity extends very far from the body. It also gives enormous force to the hands, spine and body. During practice of the Long Pole, it’s imperative to move and handle it from the center of the body, since only by the power of hands, handling would be impossible.
As all weapons, the Spear is an art by itself, for students who wish to gain competence in it. Apart from the highly detailed and demanding forms, there are individual exercises to understand the weapon’s technique, special pair training similar to Pushing Hands (Sticking Spears), as well as some very demanding fighting applications of the form.
13 and 24 Wu Style Spear Forms
Wu Family, practices two Spear Forms, the 13 and the 24, each of which teaches in a different way its technique and tactics. Very sophisticated and demanding forms, it is a necessary complement to the practice of anyone who wants to learn and fully understand Tai Chi Chuan.