Starting in a Direction
This morning I was training from 5-6 am and was walking Hsing I hands in a park here in Raleigh, near North Hills. Lin Ging (Cantonese) or Lian Jin (Manderin) means "to perfect ones spirit or strength" or "exercise one's expression and skill". It has always been emphasized on walking hands to improve understanding, firmness and softness. Building stamina, and massaging the fluidness of the movement.
Understanding Expression Comes in Soaking
For any of your kungfu to work it is beneficial to practice walking hands. The students that practice walking hands, such as Beng Chuan, develop an understanding that is difficult to attain any other way.
Walking hands creates 'body knowledge'. When you walk through it so often, with the right mind-set (very important aspect), then the body (bone and tendon) will digest the expression, regardless if it is TaiJi Chuan, Hsing I, DaChen Quan (Yi Chuan), BaGua, HopGar, ChoyLi Fut or any kungfu.
Make the UnNatural, Natural
How long do you walk? It can vary greatly. With Sifu Chin and to this day, it is common for us to walk one hand for 1/4 mile to mile, then another hand. We spend many hours walking a single hand, but it must be done with the mind-set to activate the bone. If you want to learn a hand, I would easily recommend 15 minutes 3-4 days per week until the 'un-natural becomes natural'.