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View Full Version : How long can you hold a horse-stance?



CDavidNeely
Jan 29, 2009, 07:09 AM
Greetings,

My MA training is heavily layered with traditional methods of training. I still remember spending a long time in stance training. I used to hate horse stance training. This is a horse stance if you don't know what I am talking about:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/db/Mabu_posture.gif

Here is the question. Get into a deep horse stance and hold it. It is not as easy as it looks. How long can you hold that position. My record is 27 minutes but my legs were shaking so had that I couldn't walk for a few minutes.

David

Ironmunki
Jan 29, 2009, 08:33 AM
Back when I got my first degree black belt in kung fu (Tien Shen Pai), one of the requirements for black belt candidates was to hold a "proper" horse stance for 20 mins. At my test some of the guys who were already black belts would come and "check" your stance by kicking your legs or trying to topple you with a push but the worst was when someone would grab a long staff and lay it across your thighs. This would force you to stay at at least 90 degrees or the staff would fall to the floor. If you came out of your stance your test was done and you'd have to wait again until the next cycle. There were many other challenges and restrictions that candidates faced before reaching this one and believe me no one wanted to repeat cycle but still the horse stance (ma bu stance) was the challenge that stopped many a would be black belt. Since those days the school has removed the 20 min ma bu stance requirement. Perhaps to retain more students because in the end a martial arts school is a business and while I'm sure every master would love to have only have die-hard students as his disciples this is just not as profitable.
Anyway all that to say a 20 min horse stance was pretty tough for me then (especially with the heckling) and I'm not sure how long I could hold one for now. Much respect on the 27 mins man.

cheesedog
Jan 29, 2009, 02:32 PM
I do a good amount of stance training during dynamic tension exercises, but a lot of it is moving rather than static. I doubt if I could go for more than 5 minutes in a parallel horse stance stationary. :(

olinek
Jan 29, 2009, 02:48 PM
From what I understand different styles have different horse stances.

For example i've noticed that all the kung fu ppl seem to get super low.. in fact with most stances.

When training in karate, we never descended all that low....

hmm mahybe we did I can't rremember. Our front stances definitely weren't low... i can' t remember :confused::confused: it has been so long..

EIther way I have found 3 exercises to make you indestructible on ice:

1) pistols
2) horse stance as taught by Kurz - it is an isometric stretch
3) extended lunge - also an isometric stretch

I haven't slipped once on ice since training these (it has been 2 years) and the side walks here are dreadful.

Journeyman
Jan 29, 2009, 03:25 PM
One of my TKD teachers when I was younger, a great guy and 4th degree BB, had to hold a horse stance for over an hour and a half for one of his advanced tests.

cheesedog
Jan 29, 2009, 04:32 PM
When I did TKD stances weren't low and weren't emphasized much. When I switched to Shotokan stances were supposed to be very low and we did a good amount of old school style stance training, but mostly moving stance training. Their belief was that you move in a fight, not stand in one spot. Of course in a real fight you don't usually use stances like that anyway except during throwing techniques, but there you go. Most of the Shotokan guys I have known and trained with were great fighters and very tough but also very "traditional".

LOK222
Jan 29, 2009, 04:42 PM
my best is 47 mins

David43515
Jan 29, 2009, 11:43 PM
Okay, ready your bullshiite meters, but here goes. Thighs paralell to the ground, around an hour and a half to hour and forty minutes. High horse (70-75% of your regular height) pretty much indeffinately.

I`m 42 and I`ve been doing kung fu since I was eight though. If it makes you feel better, I`ve never done more than 20 pushups without stopping though. LOL

punk shaun
Feb 01, 2009, 10:29 AM
i am up to nearly 6 minutes in very low stance, ie with a staff accross the legs. i've been training hung gar for nearly 2 years, when i started i could barely sit it at all lol! for our black sash you have to sit 30minutes but could be asked to hold any of the other 7 stances for 30 mins too. Lol in an advanced class i've sat about 9 minutes before, my legs were shakin but you wouldnt stand up :) Dynamic tension excercises take the focus off your legs i find

USMC machine
Feb 01, 2009, 07:25 PM
3 minutes, if that.

stevenl
Feb 01, 2009, 08:09 PM
That's intense. I have no idea.

David43515
Feb 02, 2009, 11:33 PM
i am up to nearly 6 minutes in very low stance, ie with a staff accross the legs. i've been training hung gar for nearly 2 years, when i started i could barely sit it at all lol! for our black sash you have to sit 30minutes but could be asked to hold any of the other 7 stances for 30 mins too. Lol in an advanced class i've sat about 9 minutes before, my legs were shakin but you wouldnt stand up :) Dynamic tension excercises take the focus off your legs i find

Yeah, alot of my early training was in Choy Lee Fut, and we did all kinds of dynamic Tension work for our arms and drills to loosen up the waist. Contact drills with a partner, twisting and tossing patio blocks,etc. Everything was done in stance and it was so much easier than doing "just" stance work. You`d start concentrating on something else, and it was like the stance training was just a little bonus you were getting at the same time.

cheesedog
Feb 03, 2009, 01:43 AM
Yeah, alot of my early training was in Choy Lee Fut, and we did all kinds of dynamic Tension work for our arms and drills to loosen up the waist. Contact drills with a partner, twisting and tossing patio blocks,etc. Everything was done in stance and it was so much easier than doing "just" stance work. You`d start concentrating on something else, and it was like the stance training was just a little bonus you were getting at the same time.

That's a great way to practice stance training. We used to occasionally do a training exercise when I studied Shotokan called "Climbing Mount Fuji". Basically you would practice all of your blocks and strikes from a low horse stance, then do the same for left foot forward front stance, then right foot, and so on through all our stances. It took over 30 minutes and could get real painful after awhile. Good times!

theunwn
Feb 06, 2009, 03:05 AM
For me its 3 minutes max. Im working on getting it to at least 10mins.
Is it fine to do the stance everyday or should I practice it every alternate day?

cheesedog
Feb 06, 2009, 03:53 PM
It's very low-intensity, you can do it every day.

jackstraw278
Feb 10, 2009, 05:57 PM
Longest I've done so far is fifteen minutes, but I'm still improving.

stealthlynx
Feb 13, 2009, 11:05 PM
A very good leg isometric routine would be to do all of the traditional kung fu stances and hold them for 2-3 minutes each. For example , you start with the horse stance (ma sek) then you adjust your right leg into an arrow stance (kung sek) , from there you continue to a cat stance (din sek) , then you go into a hanging stance (tai tui) , then to a light stance (hoi sek) , then to a sitting stance (jor poon tui) , then a pressing stance (pok tui) and finally a steal stance (tow bo) , after that you do the same stances but to your left side. A good way to make it more interesting is to add 10 knuckle push ups and 3 burpees between the changing of every stance. Google: eagle claw kung fu stances and you will get some websites with the stances pictures.

billgetsstrong
Feb 25, 2009, 08:52 AM
If you do any qigong you should be holding horse for at least 1 hour.
Try learning yiquan if you wanna get serious about horse.
Beginners hold for 30 min daily. your upperbody gets hit this way too.

itlives
Mar 05, 2009, 08:54 PM
If you do any qigong you should be holding horse for at least 1 hour.
Try learning yiquan if you wanna get serious about horse.
Beginners hold for 30 min daily. your upperbody gets hit this way too.

True that qigong does hold for long times, but not as this thread is describing.
I am in My Jhong Law Horn ( northern Shaloin). We only had to do 5 min. for black belt. Of course, if you moved AT ALL, test over.

Antimony
Mar 18, 2009, 09:11 PM
No time at all! I cannot physically do the Horse Stance, as I cannot rotate my feet to face forward. It causes my knees to lock up, and must do all my horse stance training in what was called the Duck stance, where my feet are angled from the body.

GOYLA
Mar 19, 2009, 12:11 PM
wow, I'm feeling light a big puss....granted I've never trained with stances...kickboxing doesn't require many static holds...

I figured I'd give it a try and almost fell on my ass after 1 1/2 minutes...

You guys that are doing that for 20+ min are fukin nuts!!!

Props to you!!

Barlow
Mar 19, 2009, 05:10 PM
wow
that is really hard!
So what exactly does it do for you?
(other than fry your quads?)

Journeyman
Mar 19, 2009, 05:35 PM
^ makes you tough mentally

itlives
Mar 19, 2009, 07:00 PM
^ makes you tough mentally

Wise, you are!

It also makes you forget/endure pain.

bodylifter
Mar 22, 2009, 11:42 AM
I have went about 5 minutes.

Kanik
Mar 24, 2009, 04:52 AM
Well the horse stance I use in my way of doing things is generally a bit more narrow and higher than the average horse stance, but I also deepen it for the benefits, but not like legs paralal to floor kinda deep, If I am gonna go that deep i'm gonna go into sumo stance. which I can only hold for a few minutes, maybe 4-5 if i'm lucky.