Lets get real:Martial arts:Self defence

Listen up:Tai Chi Chuan and Martial arts: Does it really work?

Self defence, Tai chi and Martial artsLet’s get real— Much of the Tai chi chuan and martial art stuff may not work for some and work for others. Why is this? Each person finds certain movements easier to understand and perform, than other moves.

This is because we have different body sizes, developed strengths and abilities both in our body and the mind.

I met someone recently who states that he teaches self-defence. We started to talk about wrist locks. He stated that when a person grabs your wrist tightly, all you have to do is swing your arm from side to side. He demonstrated this.

So what happened?

He said after awhile let go off my wrist, and still he stated that after a while a person will let go (may be after 2 hours when the person gets bored withholding your wrist). No! This cannot be right, I have tested techniques with strong people grabbing my wrist, good clear technique and knowledge is essential. The thumb joint is the weakest part of the opponents grip on the victim’s wrist. In fact when you know the weak points, disconnecting from a wrist hold is easy. Use most of the techniques to capitalise on the weak thumb joint.

However in some cases it is better to let the person hold your wrist, the reason being:

  1. The opponent holding the wrist will mentally have the assumption that they have the advantage over the victim (in fact they have just made one of their hands redundant).
  2. You know where their hand is, you could use that connection to pull them in towards (head butt them or knee, kick them – your body can be an effective butting weapon) you or direct their body into a wall or implement For example; a table, chair.
  3. Welcome to the spiders web – you do not realise you are the fly (oh you big juicy fly).
  4. Damage the bones on top of the hand (metacarpals). A good firm blow to this area could give some devastating damage. Make a fist shape, do not hit with the knuckles, but with the (interphangeal joint IP), this is the opposite end to the knuckles (this will hurt you less, and be more penetrating and damaging to the aggressor).

The person then stated that you should spit in the aggressors face; this will reduce the attackers grip on your wrist. Sorry, no..no..no. Maybe if the victim has a streaming cold, where the mucus is in abundance and is thick and brown and yucky. Come on ..Use your common sense, spit in someone’s face and it will probably make them more aggressive. Fear is strange, it makes you sweat, and freeze up, and Ohhh mouth goes DRY. I would not recommend this technique at all. If I were going to recommend a similar techniques to the one above. It would be to scream as loud as you can in the aggressors ears (this might damage the eardrums) or use the head to butt the opponents nose. To make these techniques work you need to be in close to the aggressors head.

I think certain techniques can work sometimes, and because it has worked once maybe it seems natural to latch on to the technique as being the 100% foolproof technique. Be wary ‘it might work’ and ‘it might not work’. It all depends on the circumstances, the timing, execution of the technique, the respond of the opponent.

It is wise to remember: If the reaction is not spontaneous and natural when attacked, there is a likelihood it may not work. Learn many variations of defence (countermoves). With hope and good fortune one of them counters may be spontaneous and natural and save your bacon.

As a last word to this article. I would like to comment that it is fun to understand, practice and reflect on the self defence.

Hope this article was helpful.

My martial art tip for this week is: In most cases it serves best to turn around and walk away in a fist to fist conflict, it takes far less for the ego to heal than physical damages to both you and the opponent/s.


Article written by Boz Odusanya.