In Xingyi, there are four kinds of bird forms: Sparrowhawk, swallow, taibird, and eagle. The sparrowhawk, taibird, and eagle are all species of fierce birds, considered terrifying and cruel in nature, with sharp claws. However the swallow form is seen as deft.
The swallow is very light and very quick and nimble. Its nature has ability to skim water and it can spiral to heaven, flying high and circling in the air, quickly turning without stopping. In fighting there is the swallow form.
In "Swallow Skims the Water" one must leap to the front, then drop down like flying low close to the ground. The Dragon leaps up. The Swallow leaps forward. It uses liveliness and speed to create strength. The Chicken form has a scooping palm (liao zhang0, a palm strike that starts low and rises up. The Swallow form has liao zhang too. The Chicken form only has left liao zhang. The Swallow form uses the right liao zhang. The movements are complimentrary. Use the mind to discriminate between them. The Chicken form liao zhang is like shaking feathers. The Swallow form liao zhang is like a swallow tail.
In the body it makes the lungs and liver. Liver creates the sinews
and lungs create the hair, these are organs of qi. If the qi is lively
then shen and qing flow, and one hundred diseases are prevented. The qi
has the form of light qing. Thus in swallow form, create a light
and clever spirit. If the form flows then the kidney's water spreads
and the heart's fire descends, the four appetures open, jing and shen are
full, the tendons wind and unroll freely, the heart is empty, the qi flows
in the luo channels and is able to rise and fall. If it doesn't flow
then the qi in the tendons will be sluggish, the body slow and not agile.