Self defence (2)
Tai chi syllabus

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Tai chi & self defence

It is quite common to read a tai chi website and come across some sketchy, vague reference to how the art can be used in self defence. If you're wanting to protect yourself, this isn't good enough.

Martial arts classes are usually tough going

Mainstream martial arts classes typically teach skills that can be used in self defence. But, martial arts also have the potential to be quite brutal and not everyone wants to get smacked around.

Our classes

Self defence training in our classes is fun, friendly and gently challenging. Many of the skills seem counter-intuitive. We will invite you to consider new options, possibilities and choices.
To drop long-held preconceptions. Students work through a methodical, step-by-step syllabus designed to re-train how they move and how they think.

Start gently

Self defence training begins with the fundamentals of effective body use and slowly moves through different levels of threat. Escaping from holds, evading and counter-attacking are preliminary concerns.
Eventually you must discover how to handle armed assailants and multiple opponents.

More playful

Self defence students do not need to beat one another senseless in the pursuit of self defence skills. This seems somewhat counter-productive.
We adopt a playful attitude - like children who exuberantly throw one another around, without aggression, without malice and without harm.

When both the self defence aspects and the methods of training internal power are seamlessly integrated, you are doing tai chi.

(Bruce Frantzis)

Exploring self defence in our classes

Our martial students study a wide range of proven
self defence skills:

Disarm an opponent
Gain confidence

See situations differently
Avoid entanglement
Avoid panic when faced with the unexpected
Become mobile and nimble
Use everyday objects as improvised weapons
Understand how to use the human body to your advantage
Cope with gangs
Adapt, change and improvise
Strike rapidly and effectively

Manipulate balance
Lever joints, apply pressure and seize painfully
Gain situational awareness
Understand the nature of commitment and the value of non-commitment
Use gravity to your advantage
Read body language, dress code and manner
Deal with intimidation
Maintain composure when working with others
Give up the need for control and go with the flow
Cultivate your sensitivity; feel rather than think
Protect yourself from kicks whilst on the ground
Use distraction advantageously

Beyond class

Self defence fighting skills will teach you to approach situations differently; especially at work and in the street.
Instead of responding to aggression with aggression (or fear), you see more powerful alternatives.
Coping with stress is good for your body and your mental health. The training will make you feel calm, confident and capable.


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Page created 25 August 1994
Last updated 16 June 2023