I use what I call Eastern uncrossed, not really combined. But, I’ve discovered the terms are not exactly used consistently. I call my method Eastern uncrossed, but some others call it combined. I have no idea where the combined part comes in. I spent several posts discussing this with someone who had seen the KH video, and she insisted the stitches would be reversed if done in a circular manner.
I never have reversed stitches, circular or back and forth. I always wrap clockwise (not really wrapped, I just hook the yarn, but it sits on the needle as though it were wrapped clockwise ). All my stitches are always reversed from English style on the needles. But, I will say that while almost everything was easier to do my way, purling for back and forth knitting was the hardest to visualize. However, I’ve found a you tube video that clearly shows my purl method.
This may not answer your questions, but I do believe (and Mary Thomas in her book which covers all methods agrees with me.) it is the fastest and easiest for most things. Hope you find “your” method in your quest.
Here is the video with “my” purl method.
The person is going very slowly, so it is easy to see how it is done. After you become proficient at it, you don’t use your fingers to hold stitches, but sliding the needle further into the stitch holds it. I do, however, use my index finger to push the left needle back & bring those stitches closer to the point of the needle.
Actually the method allows you to go much faster than any other method, IMO. I also avoid strain by holding my finger with the yarn down much closer to the needle. And you simply cannot wrap the yarns around your tensioning fingers, it will be too tight and slow you down. I run it zig-zag fashion between them.
I make no distinction between circular or back and forth, same method both ways. However, I will say the true speed comes in when doing circular knit stitch, round and round. And also when doing rib, as all you have to do is throw your finger forward or back, no extra movement. I can purl just as fast as knit, but seldom make anything in the round that has the purl side out.
I recently became enchanted with Brioche stitch and it is about 1000 times easier in my method than Eng or the type of continental which “picks” the stitch, orienting it the same way as Eng. It was just as easy as regular 1x1 rib.
Good luck in your quest!
EDIT: This is what I call Eastern crossed (albeit an unconvential yarn feed). Notice the knit stitches are wrapped conventionaly, as for Eng or “picked” continental. But purls are made my way. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBM16X70ctU&feature=related