Skills
   
     

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The purpose of martial arts

Once upon a time martial arts were taught for very simple, pragmatic reasons:

  1. Personal protection

  2. Professional combat skill

The need for professional combat skills remains unchanged.
Guns and batons may be widely used by security/military services. However, robbed of their weapon, an individual still needs unarmed combat skills.


Skills


Our students explore a variety of fighting skills from baguazhang and taijiquan
(supreme ultimate fist):

Strategy & tactics
Close-range combat
Conservation of energy
Kicks, punches, palm strikes, finger strikes, elbows, knees
Optimal use of alignment and structure
Whole-body strength
Minimal movement
Throws
Weapons
Defence against a knife
How to deal with multiple opponents/gangs
Seizing
Joint locks
Trapping
Focus
Accuracy
Stickiness
Physical
sensitivity and awareness
Balance, rhythm and timing
Evasive footwork
Escape from holds
Jing (whole-body power)
Grappling whilst standing and on the floor
Self defence

A student must become proficient with all of these fighting skills.


Form application


Form teaches the body to move in a way that can be applied in combat.
Each pattern of movement has a number of potential combat applications.

In order to be soft, you must first relax. In order to be relaxed, your joints must first loosen. When your joints are loose, you can move your body as one unit and manifest your jing like a soft whip.

(Yang Jwing-Ming)



San sau

'
San sau' are predetermined attack and defence sequences in which both students are required to adhere to a set pattern.
The purpose of san sau is to train timing, coordination, range, accuracy, footwork, rhythm, habitual responses, composure and reflexes.
Training begins with the basic pattern, before adding peng, jing and eventually full-power attacks.



San da


In contrast with san sau, san da is not fixed.
The assailant does not use predetermined attacks and is encouraged to be as awkward and challenging as possible.
The aim for the attacker is to provide a realistic combat experience. Non-cooperative.


Newton's Laws of Motion

 
Familiarity with Newton's Laws of Motion will aid your understanding of how taijiquan works in combat:

  1. An object in motion will remain in motion unless acted upon by a net force

  2. Force equals mass multiplied by acceleration

  3. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction


5 animals

S
tudents discover how to use the 5 animals: bear, bird, monkey, snake and tiger.


Not sport


It is important to recognise that the roots of Chinese martial arts lie with the need to defend oneself, not sport.
In real life combat there are no rules.
Train what is possible, not what is allowed.


Acceptable fighting skills

Clawing, pinching, twisting the flesh
Grabbing/seizing the trachea
Breaking a bone
Throwing an opponent on the head or neck
Groin attacks
Small joint manipulation
Throat strikes of any kind
Strikes to the spine or back of the head
Butting with the head
Hair pulling/seizing
Downward elbow strikes
Grabbing the clavicle


A
recognisable fighting style

If you watch wing chun applied in combat, it looks distinctly like wing chun.
The same could be said of judo, aikido, ju jitsu, pencat silat etc.
By the same reasoning, the martial art of taijiquan must look like taijiquan.

What does taijiquan look like in combat?
Taijiquan looks like taijiquan.
The form, pushing hands, you know... taijiquan.
If the martial expression of taijiquan does not look like taijiquan, it is probably not taijiquan.


Page created 2 March 1995
Last updated 19 December 2016