The Value of Silk-Reeling Energy Exercises in the Practice of Internal Arts
Dropping Power in Taiji Xingyi and Bagua - Generating Power Over a Short Distance Like Bruce Lee's One Inch Punch

Connecting with Your Opponent's Center in Taiji, Bagua and Xingyi - Building Internal Self Defense Skills

Ken-Gullette-Jerit-Gendreau-1When you and a partner are doing push hands, or if you find yourself in a situation that calls for self-defense, one of your primary goals is to "remain centered."

Remaining centered requires you to maintain your mental balance and physical balance. If you lose your balance -- mentally or physically -- you are vulnerable. The same is true for your opponent.

This means that one of your goals when facing an opponent is to find his center, connect with it and control it.

On my website there are videos related to this topic. You can meld with your opponent's center as it is turning, helping it continue in the direction it is traveling. That's my favorite way to control an opponent's center, but there is another way.

Ken-Gullette-Jerit-Gendreau-2When you practice push hands with a partner, you try to remain sensitive, and you do not want to give him an opening. You hide your internal strength from him. You are relaxed but aware, connected through the body, but you are flexible, moving, and able to respond and spiral when he exerts force.

When you cannot move -- when you are put into a position from which you can't defend yourself -- you are "double weighted." That is actually what double-weighted means in Taijiquan. It does NOT mean having your weight distributed equally on both feet.

In the photos here, Jerit Gendreau and I are pushing hands. I am remaining flexible and connected. Then I find where he is weak, and as I press inward, I connect his arm and torso to his center. He is in a position from which he cannot defend. So I push him off-balance, and from there, in a self-defense situation, there is a window in which I can counter and finish him.

There are many ways of connecting part of your opponent's body to his center. I recommend practicing with a partner and working to help each other understand this concept. When you connect with your partner, you feel a stiffness between the part of the body you are contacting and their Dan T'ien area. At that point, they are ready to be defeated.

For more understanding, try two weeks free on my website. You really can't lose on the deal. I won't let you lose. You get two free weeks of complete access to more than 600 video lessons, plus pdf downloads and a private discussion board. It's a step-by-step learning situation for Taiji, Xingyi and Bagua -- but you get access to all material all at once. 

When your opponent attacks you, he has lost his center -- his connection with you. By considering himself separate from you, he has stepped out of harmony with nature. By connecting with him, you can bring him back into harmony, and this is a good way to practice as you begin learning internal self-defense.


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

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

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

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.


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.)