What does Chum Kiu and "bridging the gap" or "searching for the bridge" really mean in kung fu terms?
Well in Chinese combative practice the arms and legs are often called bridges, and in some instances, so is the entire body. For example, "Wah Kiu" means Chinese Bridges (or Chinese Immigrants) and that term is emblematic of Chinese planting bridge pillars in foreign soil and acting as a NEW bridge to-and-from China.
In kung fu practice CK primarily develops balance in motion. It introduces unity of hands and footwork from one point to another - unlike Siu Nim Toa - which is simply a stationary meditative practice. Chum Kiu covers 180-degrees of one's facing area from side-to-side in one swift shifting-motion. This form also introduces and builds a hau mah (or rear horse) stance. Thus prepping the VT practitioner for kicking.
This form sets the stage for using legs in a:
- balance-in-motion first;
- combined with hands second;
- kick-when-necessary last;
Finally Chum Kiu, explores and studies unity of hands and equal hands via the centerline and at times without the centerline. This form instills the theory of equal hands by training the body to value efficiency in different angles of position. Training the whole body to recover quickly from hybrid and off-center positions.