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Thread: Marriage of Gravity

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    Default Marriage of Gravity

    This has been bugging me for ages now. M.O.G is where one uses the your own body weight under the effect of gravity to assist you in the execution of a strike/blow, right? So could someone please explain how gravity (which acts on a vertical plane) assists in the execution of any strike that is executed on a horizontal plane? I just don't 'get it'....

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesB
    M.O.G is where one uses the your own body weight under the effect of gravity to assist you in the execution of a strike/blow, right? So could someone please explain how gravity (which acts on a vertical plane) assists in the execution of any strike that is executed on a horizontal plane?
    MOG is a structural unification of your entire body. So the strike, in any plane, is backed up solidly and lands with the entire body behind it. This is especially important in solidifying your base/stance. Doc has talked about this fact in relation to other topics- the way the human body is designed requires gravity/weight to set the structure in our hips and legs. Gravitional application is also required to hold that structure. That is one reason upweighting your opponent destroys his base. So gravity, acting in a vertical plane, helps us to strike horizontally by backing up that strike with a solid base on which to unify our body and support the strike. It's why we momentarily settle into a stance instead of just steping into it.

    Dan (that sounds a little convoluted, but it's the best I can do right now) C
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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    That actually is a very good explanation. I understood this concept but didn't know how to put it into words until now. So employing MOG with our strikes and blocks makes them more effective because our whole bodies become "structurally unified". I like that... thanks
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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    In simple terms, by solidifying your base you are more balanced and more able to strike on a horizontal path
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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Thanks everyone (esp. TheDan) for the good responses, so far the explanations mirror my own understanding of the MOG principle. I guess the problem I have with it, is the way I sometimes see this term used to imply that is the downward movement that contributes power, rather than the solidification of the body which is the real reason. That, and the bizarre 'reverse marriage of gravity' term you see sometimes, which makes absolutely no sense to me at all....

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Greetings.

    There is one important aspect that has not been mentioned.

    Frictional forces on contact points on the floor we're stepping on are what counterforces and keeps us in place whenever we strike someone instead of bouncing and sliding away.

    That force has been proven to be equal to the normal force (in the case of a flat horizontal surface, the weight of the practitioner) multiplied by a coefficinet of friction dependent on the contacting surfaces (example: sneakers and cement).

    The thing is that if you hit someone and the force is greater than the frictional force, you'll slide back. If you don't slide then your structure must bear the force. If your structure is sound, then the force and mechanical energy will be transmitted to the attacker and the momentum will be conserved by deformation of the attackers body.

    Notice that if you increase the normal force, then you can hit even harder without sliding. THe way in which you increase the normal force is by increasing the body's force towards the ground. Loweing your center of gravity explosively increases your weight momentarily by a lot.

    Just try it on a normal weighting scale. Stand until it is still. Then explosively bend your knees lowering your height by 6 to 12 inches and stop. You'll notice a change.

    So Marriage of Gravity cen be seen as the simultaneous execution and use of many of the concepts, principles and physical phenomena associated with vertical forces as they apply to martial performance.

    Hope this helps. There is a lot more on this, yet this is enough for now.

    Juan M. Mercado

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesB View Post
    Thanks everyone (esp. TheDan) for the good responses, so far the explanations mirror my own understanding of the MOG principle. I guess the problem I have with it, is the way I sometimes see this term used to imply that is the downward movement that contributes power, rather than the solidification of the body which is the real reason. That, and the bizarre 'reverse marriage of gravity' term you see sometimes, which makes absolutely no sense to me at all....
    Keep in mind James that the term is a "conceptual" one, and not a true scientific principle, that suggests conversely you can disengage gravity at some point, for the purposes of "marrying" it for convenience in applications. However, as a concept dedicated to the activity it does have significant merit.

    Also consider in Newtonian physics, all actions are subject to the vertical forces of gravity to some degree creating a "parabula effect" on all horizontal actions, much like the act of walking is nothing but a series of "controlled falls" from the parabula effect of gravity on human forward locomotion.

    And a big thanks to Dan for remembering.
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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Perhaps it would help to cite the actual definition:
    The uniting of mind, breath, and strength while simultaneously dropping your body weight along with the execution of your natural weapon(s). Timing all of these factors with the dropping of your body weight greatly adds to the force of your strikes. This combined action literally causes a marrriage with gravity, and makes vertical use of BODY MOMENTUM while employing the dimension of height.

    To further aid in understanding, Body Momentum is: Body weight used to increase the force of your action. it involves the coordination of mind, breath, strength, and body weight so that all forces are moving in harmony in the same direction (DIRECTIONAL HARMONY.)

    I hope that helps.
    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." – Charles A. Beard

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by Celtic_Crippler View Post
    Perhaps it would help to cite the actual definition:
    The uniting of mind, breath, and strength while simultaneously dropping your body weight along with the execution of your natural weapon(s). Timing all of these factors with the dropping of your body weight greatly adds to the force of your strikes. This combined action literally causes a marrriage with gravity, and makes vertical use of BODY MOMENTUM while employing the dimension of height.

    To further aid in understanding, Body Momentum is: Body weight used to increase the force of your action. it involves the coordination of mind, breath, strength, and body weight so that all forces are moving in harmony in the same direction (DIRECTIONAL HARMONY.)

    I hope that helps.
    I love defs, but the devil is so frequently in the details...

    Directional harmony is, in my mind, one of the most important components of power principles in kenpo. Yet so few kenpoists have ever sat with their basics to see where it exists, and where it only seems to exist. MOG is a nice way to at least make sure the weight and structure are going more in the direction of the blow, then away. MOG is often the "missing link" in helping a student make the mental transition to recognizing the directionality of force multiplication.

    Take the Left NB with a right rear hand reverse punch while pivoting into forward bow. There is the assumption that pivoting around the Y-axis center of gravity that runs vertically through our bodies is enough to power the punch...bringing the rear hip forward also brings the rear hand forward, etc. BUTT!! (I love that word), the left hip rotating towards the rear around that same axis, though "forwarding" the right arm more, also moves 50% of the mass of our torso's in the opposite direction of the blow. So we end up inadvertently diminishing our mass effect by generating momentum in the opposite direction of the blow.

    Conversely, if we accomodate footwork that allows us to ALSO translate forward in the Z plane (going the same direction that the punch is traveling) WHILE we rotate around the COG in the central Y plane, we create a direction to be harmonious with (a presupposed prerequisite to directional harmony). Our weight is now actually travelling in the direction of the blow, better to back it up. The infamous "Parker Stomp" sets us travelling ever so imperceptibly in the same direction as the blow. Absent the stomp, or some similar corrective mechanism such as a shuffle or push-drag, etc., true directional harmony would require that we bisect our bodies down the middle, so the left half could move rearward, and the right half forward; each harmoniously travelling with it's foundation.

    Pitch a baseball as hard as you can off of a forward moving hop-skip-jump thingy. Then do it again moving your torso rearwards, away from the target you're pitching to. Structure is for poop, and it will show in the power and accuracy of the throw. Same for our simplest blows in kenpo. The lower carriage and central torso MUST be going the same direction of the blow for us to have DH or MOG. Otherwise, we're marrying a chick who ain't even there.

    *hopping over the tennis net with raquet in hand* biomechanics anyone?

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by Doc View Post

    Good to see you again, Bubba. Don't stay away so long next time.
    Clear mind, clear movement. Mastery of the Arts is mastery over the Self. That in this moment, this motion, the thoughts, memories, impulses and passions that cloud the mind must yield to the clarity of purpose, and purity of motion.

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    This is why I dislike 'conceptual' terms. Like martial ARTS, they are just too subjective and rife with contradictions even when understood within a pseudo-science group. It reminds me of psychiatry, a so-called in-exact science. Isn't that an oxymoron? Anyway, real principles are grounded in actual physical descriptors closer to mathematical equations over artistic impressions. Directional Harmony makes no allowances in its overly simplistic definition for anatomical symmetry, or the diversity of function in actual application variables. In Newtonian Physics it could be applied to a singular meaning with multiple components. However in the collective called Martial Science, the physics of the human body relative to itself must be added to Newtonian Principles. The definition I was taught by Mr. Parker (outside of the commercial motion kenpo vehicle) suggests that:


    "Directional Harmony from an anatomical perspective, is not about a singular clock direction as it is relative to the human body, and its many components working in harmonious direction(s) for maximum effect and result, often in multiple clock directions in application."
    "Nothing is more dangerous than the conscientiously ignorant, or the sincerely stupid." - Martin Luther King Jr.

    "Knowledge speaks but wisdom listens." - Ed Parker Sr.

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesB View Post
    This has been bugging me for ages now. M.O.G is where one uses the your own body weight under the effect of gravity to assist you in the execution of a strike/blow, right? So could someone please explain how gravity (which acts on a vertical plane) assists in the execution of any strike that is executed on a horizontal plane? I just don't 'get it'....
    The first half of your horizontle strikes should have a downward trajectory. Even Eazy E would "Start dropping the dogs".
    Sean

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoChanger View Post
    The first half of your horizontle strikes should have a downward trajectory. Even Eazy E would "Start dropping the dogs".
    Sean
    ok that makes sense....but you say the 'first half' has a downwards path - what about the second half?

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoChanger View Post
    The first half of your horizontle strikes should have a downward trajectory. Even Eazy E would "Start dropping the dogs".
    Sean
    Uh, could you maybe explain that ...

    Dan C
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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Dave in da house View Post
    Take the Left NB with a right rear hand reverse punch while pivoting into forward bow. ... if we accomodate footwork that allows us to ALSO translate forward in the Z plane (going the same direction that the punch is traveling) WHILE we rotate around the COG in the central Y plane, we create a direction to be harmonious with (a presupposed prerequisite to directional harmony). Our weight is now actually travelling in the direction of the blow, better to back it up. The infamous "Parker Stomp" sets us travelling ever so imperceptibly in the same direction as the blow. Absent the stomp, or some similar corrective mechanism such as a shuffle or push-drag, etc., true directional harmony would require that we bisect our bodies down the middle, so the left half could move rearward, and the right half forward; each harmoniously travelling with it's foundation.
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc View Post
    "Directional Harmony from an anatomical perspective, is not about a singular clock direction as it is relative to the human body, and its many components working in harmonious direction(s) for maximum effect and result, often in multiple clock directions in application."
    I'm glad you are talking about that. I picture this as a left (front) foot PAM that allows the body to hinge at the left side rather than rotating around an axis. Now, I could be using the term "PAM" incorectly, and I could even be wrong in my interpretation of this move. So, I figured I'd ask, since you brought it up. When in doubt, ask the experts. Thanks.

    Dan C
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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by thedan View Post
    I'm glad you are talking about that. I picture this as a left (front) foot PAM that allows the body to hinge at the left side rather than rotating around an axis. Now, I could be using the term "PAM" incorectly, and I could even be wrong in my interpretation of this move. So, I figured I'd ask, since you brought it up. When in doubt, ask the experts. Thanks.

    Dan C
    You will have more reinforced synaptic pathways for finding stability in stepping forward & translating your weight directionally forward with each step, then you will for coming from a place of strength solely through rotation around a Y axis. Why? It's every step you take.

    In short, pretty close, Dan'l.

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by thedan View Post
    I'm glad you are talking about that. I picture this as a left (front) foot PAM that allows the body to hinge at the left side rather than rotating around an axis. Now, I could be using the term "PAM" incorectly, and I could even be wrong in my interpretation of this move. So, I figured I'd ask, since you brought it up. When in doubt, ask the experts. Thanks.
    Although your example is fine, (with a push-drag forward which will trigger a natural PAM), it still represents essentially the simplistic and conventional view that the body moves in only one direction. At an advanced or higher level an understanding of body mechanics and structure supplant that basic view of how the body moves relative to itself, as being as or more important. However more sophisticated information does not necessarily negate that view, which is perfectly valid on its own at that level.

    Experiment: step back into a right neutral bow with both hands chambered at the hips. Push-drag forward with a right straight punch and feel your power as you lock out your right punch with your left remaining chambered. Have someone push your punch to check the overall structure of the body. By the logic of the simple definition, the body as a unit is moving in the same direction and therefore should maximize the effect.

    Next find a surface you can strike with the same experiment to feel the energy again. Compare the energy you feel with the structure you manifest under load.

    Now, execute exactly the same, but this time take your left hand and thrust it to 9:00 simultaneously with your 12 o'clock right thrust in the air, locking out both. Have someone check the structure again of your right punch.

    Go back to the striking surface again and strike utilizing the 12/9 thrusting method.

    Simplistically, this violates the conventional view of Directional Harmony, however you should feel a difference internally AND externally in this application example.

    The experiment conclusions are subject to the efficacy of the posture, stances, and footwork, and execution of the punches in proper unison.

    You know Dan those eight directions everyone talks about in Kenpo? Well they have a much deeper meaning than the simplistic definition Ed Parker assigned to it for the purposes of commercial applications. A really good understanding of the Chinese Martial Science yield much more sophisticated information at a higher level of instruction. The real Chinese material works from the human body outward. Conventional understandings are all external and extremely limited in knowledge. Take those angles and extrapolate them into the "Universal Sphere," (which Ed Parker jr. has actually illustrated). The Sphere formed the basis for the Universal Pattern Parker created for and to support the Commercial Motion-Kenpo philosophy.
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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Doc, this is going to hurt, but I'll get back to you on the experiment.

    I'll also think about the eight directions (I actually extrapolate the ninth direction comeing straight at you from the point where the four lines intersect) and the Universal Sphere.

    Thank you, sir. Always good to get some meaningful experiments, and I've been getting antsy.

    Dan C
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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesB View Post
    ok that makes sense....but you say the 'first half' has a downwards path - what about the second half?
    Now that you mention it, its all on a downward trajectory, but the first half or the hammering portion can be accompanid with a body drop or settle. The second half is the launch portion or the uncoil. This is known as the centrifical.
    sean

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    Default Re: Marriage of Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoChanger View Post
    Now that you mention it, its all on a downward trajectory, but the first half or the hammering portion can be accompanid with a body drop or settle. The second half is the launch portion or the uncoil. This is known as the centrifical.
    sean
    Now I'm really confused.

    From horizontal to downward hammering?

    Only settling in the first half of the strike?

    Launched/uncoiled in the second half?

    Are you saying to settle into a stance and then throw the strike? And what strike(s), specifically, are we talking about? Cut me some slack, man- I'm on drugs here (prescription, but all the same...).

    Dan C
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