Developing a ‘Tai Chi’ fighter to hang with Boxers, Kickboxers, BJJ and, and MMA fighters

Lets examine some BASIC features that some Tai Chi fighters might try to employ to “Hang” with fighters from other styles:

Characteristics of Tai chi fighter, Tai Chi is a ‘Chuan’ which means fist and loosely translated as ‘Boxing’. These things I am learning might help in Hanging with top fighters from MMA, Muay Thai, etc.

Fight Stance: It your gonna want to fight with Tai Chi you need to develop good structure in fight stance- ‘hands up’ like 7 stars or Play Pipa- protect your knock out points- temple, jaw, face, liver/stomach.

Striking: Your gonna need striking. ‘Parry (open palm) and punch (fist)’, for hand techniques and ‘separate foot’ for kicks.

Footwork: gonna want to use 5 element steps or 5 directional stepping- (front, back, left, right , and center), be mobile and work to out maneuver, yet be efficient.

Fa Jing/power hit: Your gonna want to transfer power through the leg, body, and out the hand- articulate legs and body (core) ‘speed x mass’ for more power in strike.

Principles: Your gonna need to have good balance, Root and absorb the opponent incoming force with neutralization, also try to lead opponent to emptiness (empty body). Understanding of leverage, use of techniques like sweeps and throws, etc.

Mental Intention: Your gonna have to relax and try to be more relaxed than opponent. sink breath to dan tien, breathing control under pressure.

Strength: no doubt your gonna need stamina, endurance, cardio, and strong legs, body and arms. combining- ‘yi’ (mind strength)+ ‘Chi’ (internal strength)+ and ‘Li’ (bone and muscle strength).


About Administrator

Coach Matt Stampe is a Database Administrator and I.T. professional. In the world of Bodywork, he has been a Massage Therapist, and is currently a student at Virginia University of Oriental Medicine ( He has taught hundreds of people Authentic Tai Chi Kung fu for over 25 years at places including: Kung fu schools, Parks and Recreation centers, Chinese schools, Martial arts clubs, MMA/Boxing gyms, and Acupuncture Universities. He has positively impacted peoples lives whether for health, sport, strength, and spirit. As a true combat athlete and fighter, he teaches realistic methods so people can be confident to defend themselves. (without all the woo-woo mystical BS.)
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