Cheng Zu Li Mu Jia (稱足力木架, lit. 'Foot power-adjusting wooden frame')
|Drawing of a Cheng Zu Li Mu Jia, from 'Bing Fa Bai Zhan Jing (《兵法百戰經》)'.|
|Left: Trainee balances himself in horse stance with the aid of handlebar. Right: Trainee practicing with archery postures while standing on the balance board. Both images are taken from 'Bing Fa Bai Zhan Jing (《兵法百戰經》'.|
|Trainee practicing with archery postures while in horse stance. From 'Bing Fa Bai Zhan Jing (《兵法百戰經》)'.|
Wooden practice horse
Wooden practice horse can be used to practice mounting a horse. Ming cavalrymen were required to master the skills of mounting a horse without stirrups from both sides, as well as mounting a horse from both sides without using hands.
|Left: Trainee tries to mount a wooden horse without stirrups from the right side. Left: Trainee tries to mount a wooden horse without stirrups from the left side. Both images are taken from 'Bing Fa Bai Zhan Jing (《兵法百戰經》)'.|
Equestrian training equipment and cavalry tactics
Chinese equestrian training equipment can be compared and contrasted to similar equipment used by medieval knights-in-training, as these equipment reflected the approach to cavalry warfare of their respective cultures. Chinese did not employ quintain and and wheeled wooden horse in their training as couched lance charge wasn't their primary tactic, and lance precision as well as conditioning to deliver shock and withstand recoil were seen as less important.
On the other hand, Chinese put great emphasis on cultivating the rider's sense of balance as well as his ability to ride without hands, as these were required skills for horse archery. They also practiced mounting a horse in various less than ideal conditions, which seems to suggest that Chinese cavalry fought dismounted quite often.