Luk Dim Boon Kwun
Six and a half point pole – Wing Chun long pole form
Luk Dim Boon Kwun literally means six and a half point pole. The techniques in this form are generally taught as the first of the weapons forms. The form only has six different techniques which are repeated in various directions and the half technique of dropping the pole. Therefore it is much easier to learn than the Bart Cham Dao which has well over 100 techniques.
The pole itself, sometimes called a „Dragon pole“ presumably because people thing it sounds „cool“, is around 8 or 9 foot, (one and a half times the height of the practitioner is a general rule). It is tapered at one end so it is thinner at the top than the base. Throughout the form the practitioner only holds the base. This is quite a big difference to other pole based styles which tend to use both ends of the weapon to spin and lash out in various directions. Because of its large size it is quite cumbersome to handle and it is thought the weapon was mainly for use on the battle field rather than one on one fighting. Theory has it the pole is for the first impact and the butterfly knives are for close fighting. Hence the half technique of dropping the pole is very important all be it a relatively easy process.
The form will help the practitioner gain strength in both the legs and arms. This is because a traditional horse stance is used for most of the form putting extra pressure on the legs. Also being around 9 foot in length the practitioner will require reasonable amount of upper body strength just to hold it out straight let along train with it for long hours. The form will also help improve coordination and it will help understand the principles of Wing Chun better. For instance being a centimetre off of the centreline with your guard would be hard to notice, however at the end of the 9 foot pole it becomes obvious. Therefore training the pole will help the practitioner identify subtle mistakes in his technique which applies to both empty hand and weapon techniques.