Book Review - What is Tai Chi by Peter Gilligan
The Master Disease -- Every Instructor Wants to Be King

3 Goals for Tai Chi and Bagua Self-Defense

I'm shooting a video lesson this weekend for the online school -- a video that goes over the three main goals of internal self-defense, particularly Tai Chi and Baguazhang.

Hsing-I utilizes many of the principles of internal fighting, but the primary goal of Hsing-I is to take your opponent's ground and drive through him.

Tai Chi is more like a beach ball floating in water. If you jump on the ball, it gives a little, then it bounces back and spirals you into the water. There's really very little you can do about it once you jump on the ball.

Bagua is similar to a wire ball that's spinning. If you punch into the wire ball, you'll get caught up and flung out in any direction.

There are three goals of self-defense that are very similar in Tai Chi and Bagua:

Bagua-Uproot-1 1. Uproot -- your opponent is rooted but your goal is to uproot him. There are several ways of doing this, but two primary methods are pushing upward (starting under his center of gravity) or bumping with the shoulder, hip, and body.

2. Unbalance -- when your opponent goes off-balance, it opens a window of opportunity. We call it a "moment of vulnerability" when you have dissipated his force and can counter-attack. This can be done in a variety of ways. You can simply remove the target and not allow his force to find it's target. You can use closing techniques with your feet to break his root and unbalance him. Movements such as "walking obliquely" in taiji and "sweep the rider from his horse" in bagua unbalance the opponent and take them down.

Bagua-Uproot-2 3.  Control the Center -- Where you opponent's center is going -- you want to keep it going that way. The old Taoist saying "do not contend" applies here. Go with the flow. Step into your opponent's center. Allow your center to become One with your opponent's center. Then control his center. Move with his center and when you take control, you take him down.

The photos show intercepting a punch and applying "supporting" or "upward" energy to uproot the opponent. There are several techniques that show this in a real way. These are all physical skills that require practice thousands of times. 

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

How to Relieve Stress

While reading your post about three goals of self-defense, I was actually able to visualize what you wer describing.

Just wanted to say that this tells me that you did an excellent job of explaining them. Good job.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)