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6 Combat Applications Types

        any type of blow to a well-considered target including hitting pressure points, internal organs, shattering bones, etc.
        any type of block or redirection.
        any type of movement to your advantage including stepping, leaning, stance shifting, closing or opening the distance, etc.
        any type of throw, sweep, takedown or push.
        any type of qinna including joint locks, grasping nerve points, dividing tendons/muscles, or sealing the breath.
        any type of counter to a qinna technique.

    Ideally, each of these should be present in each movement in every form, drill, technique, or other martial movement you do. It doesn't matter if it looks like a simple block or whatever. Make yourself understand how that movement can be used in each of these ways for each movement or combination of movements you do. For example:

      Say you have a step in a form: with a little thought, you should be able to see the following:
      • you can make it into any of a variety of kicks (e.g. kick to knee)
      • you can use it to block an opponent's kick (e.g. jam the kick)
      • you can use it to position yourself better in relation to your opponent (e.g. side step or close distance)
      • you can use it to sweep the opponent or as a leg takedown (e.g. sweep his leg out from under him)
      • you can use it to work some leg qinna (e.g. shin-to-shin press)
      • you can use it to avoid a sweep (e.g. move it out of the way)

      Similarly, say you have a down block. It could be (and is), among other things:

      • a hammerfist strike to the bladder
      • a block, combined to strike the offending limb on a nerve point
      • a neck take-down
      • an arm-bar, using the other hand to trap the wrist
      • a release to a wrist grab, going directly into a low strike

    Furthermore, the more of these types of applications you can combine into one, the better. As another example, say I have a series of movements from the first sequence of Tan Tui - draw & shirk, front kick, & punch. The possibilities are nearly endless using the 6 Applications. I'll list just a few, however:
    • release from grab, kick opponent's rear inner thigh, punch to solar plexus, extending so as to force the opponent back and off balance.
    • pull opponent in closer, jam his attempt at leg qinna, punch his throat in such a manner so as to deflect his incoming punch at the same time.
    • block low but he grabs your wrist, change the kick into a step forward close under your opponent's thigh, use the punching motion to release the grab but continue onwards slightly twisting the waist to execute an over-the-leg takedown.
    • and on and on...
Now, this is not to go against the intended applications inherent in a particular movement - each form has movements that were designed for a specific purpose or purposes by that form's creator. Still, body mechanics are such that often what is good for one technique will be good for a totally different one, or at least have elements that suit any number of other interpretations. And, given that people have differing body types, capabilities, and dispositions, an alternate interpretation might work better for you in a given situation. However, I wish to make it clear that I do not advocate abandoning originally intended applications at all. I just feel that it is worthwhile to apply the above methodology in addition.

Hopefully, these are very old and familiar ideas to you. If not, I hope this info will help put new life and insight into your applications. I feel that this type of approach should be common knowledge and matter-of-fact. I know it's helped more than a few of my students to have their heads explode with understanding of why and how we move the way we do.

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Copyright 1997-2017 Tye W. Botting

since Apr 13, 1999
Tye's Kung Fu
Last Updated: Saturday, 04-Feb-2017 22:42:50 EST, by Tye W. Botting