View Full Version : TCPM's Takedowns and Ground Fighting

05-27-2000, 12:57 AM
Although, Tai Chi Praying Mantis (TCPM) is primarily a striking art, many moves (Sau Fa) end in takedown. Sigung Chui Chuk Kai used to say "a superb strike isn't as nice as a superb fall."

Takedowns are very effective, because lots of people don't know how to fall. One can easily get a concussion or break a limb. Then the fight is over.

Tai Chi Praying Mantis also believe strongly in that very combination or strike has a counter (only things that can't be countered is speed.) The takedown can easily be countered by the fall. So he who has experties in falling obviously has an advantage.

As for the grappling phenomenon, to be honest we are not martial sport, it is view as a lack of experties to get to that point. It is perfectly fine for training purpose. Especially for agility, many agile NHB figthers come out victorious simply becase of being agile. Get into a self defense situation with a sporting mindset, quite frankly, you are heading for disaster.

Beside the 64 Sau Fa, TCPM also uses the Ground Mantis (Tei Tong Long) to train for ground fighting situations. This set has a section of sisscors legs (2 - 4 0f them) which I believe is where all the ground fighting techniques are hidden in. There is a believe that every Mantis set has a two mened mirror set. Currently only 2 men Bum Bo set remains. It is quite possible that the Ground Mantis's two mened set was lost as well. Personally, I think Mantis were one time very formidable amongst other styles was that they trained with a partner at all times. By this simple training practice, they gain the benefit of realistic drills (full speed and power) over and over again. Can you not be good if you are at it every day 2 to 3 hours constant drilling like that? Isn't it why the Boxing, KickBoxing, and NHB people critize Kung Fu. Somewhere along the line our training practices were changed. Isn't it time for us Kung Fu people
to look into this seriosly again?

Tai Chi Praying Mantis is a martial art system which is self defense oriented. Anyone who is familiar with Sigung Chui Chuk Kai knows that he had his share of real combat encounters. He quite often talked about dirty tactics in combat, too. It was his wish to see it remains practical.

Peace to all


Contraria Sunt Complementa

Paul Skrypichayko
05-27-2000, 01:46 AM
One big advantage of tai chi praying mantis (TCPM) is the way that they fell an opponent by sweeping (foot to foot), and seizing the limbs or body, so that the opponent falls in the most awkward position.

Many kung fu practicioners think they need to go to other styles to learn things like falling, ground work, joint locking, etc. In reality, kung fu is striking, kicking, and everything else. It just seems that over time, masters have neglected some things, and students just havent had enough skill to train things.

Dirty fighting is the best fighting. Don't fight unless you have to save your butt, but when you do fight, win at all costs. One of Chiu Chuk Kai's students discussed the advantages of biting, spitting, throwing rocks, and kicking shoes to gain an advantage in a bad situation. Anybody else have neat stuff to add to the dirty fighting topic?

Red Masque
05-29-2000, 06:27 PM
The things you speak of a by far not exclusive to TCPM.....8 step, 7*, Northern, etc, etc all have throwing/takedown techniques that produce an awkward/hard fall for the opponent.

05-29-2000, 11:59 PM
While it is great to know all Mantis styles strives to develope all range combat techniques, there is rearly a chance to see them being showcased. It saden me deeply that public opinion on Kung Fu is near to redicule when it comes to Kung Fu's effectiveness of ground fighting. If we ,Mantis (all styles include), are to claim that we are able and willing, we need to taggle the problem head on. Not we could, but we DO.

Hope to see more Mantis folks to work on all range combant techniques.


Contraria Sunt Complementa

06-15-2000, 11:48 AM
Learning how to fall is great. However, there are some throws and takedowns that are impossible to "fall out of."

Paul Skrypichayko
06-15-2000, 11:44 PM
Word, I think you are wrong on this one. Some throws and fells may be more difficult to get out of than others, but nothing in this world is unbeatable 100% of the time.

Maybe you know some special secret techniques, but I think one could get out of them with the right amount of skill and athleticism (example, jumping, flipping, rolling, etc...)

06-16-2000, 12:06 PM
Go let a good mantis guy do a 7 star takedown where he chops your waist and pulls you in his direction passing his left shoulder and tell me if you can roll out of it. On that takedown/throw/ whatever you want to call it, the only way out of it is not to get into it.

Paul Skrypichayko
06-16-2000, 01:11 PM
Word, I love northern mantis takedowns, and think they are very effective, but I dont think they are completely unbeatable.

Please be more specific about the technique you are trying to describe, maybe post a pic of you doing it, or we can always practice together.

The way you described it is as follows:
he chops my waist
pulls me (with his chopping hand?)
and then passes me beyond his left shoulder?

Ok, I assume you mean to say I am punching him first, he intercepts my hand (you tell me, my right, his left, etc....???) Then does he pull my hand and attack with his chop simultaneously? Is he trying to throw me, body check me, trip me, topple me, or sweep me foot to foot?

With good acrobatics and athleticism, I still think you can get out of this one. If we are thinking on the same wavelength, this move will be very tough to get out of, and designed to be very awkward for the person being felled. However, I think you can still get out of it using an arial manouvre called "hoijeon" (sorry, I only know the korean word for it).

Michael Dasargo
06-16-2000, 01:53 PM
I believe the throw that "Word" is refering to is known as "Chat sing/yan jam yu cham", which is Cantonese for threading the needle while chopping the waist, in a 7 star stance.(Not literally translated).

On the topic of throwing and escaping:
The effiecency of throwing and escaping can not be discussed without acknowledging the following variables:

1.) The position of the opponent in regards to stance, weight distribution and direction of intended movment.

2.) The principals of a given throw, and whether all aspects of the principals are applied or neglected.

3.) The actions of both the opponent and the "thrower":
A.)To effectivley throw, it must come inconspicuously.
B.)To effectivley counter, you must know what is happening to you.

i.e., the 7 Star throw can be succesful if the opponents weight is set on (or pulled to) the front foot. However, it may be countered easily by simply shifting the weight to the rear leg, and raising the front foot. (assuming that the thrower is not effectivly pulling the wieght to the leg being weeped/tripped)

In regards to effectively falling, it is determined by the person throwing. Ultimately, to effectivley fall you must protect your head and lower/mid back. If the thrower understands this factor, he can reduce the possibility of a counter by further disrupting the opponents weight distribution before and during the throw. If not, then there will be a counter.

There are several factors that determine the outcome of a certain situation. It is these variables that create the possibiltiy of danger/counter. However, it is the training and skill evolution that limits the possibility.
Remember, skill is acquired through dilligence. The greater the skill, the higher the chance of success, whether it be throwing or falling.

Bottom line: nothing is gauranteed.

The Traditinal Kung Fu Academy
San Diego, CA.USA

[This message has been edited by Michael Dasargo (edited 06-17-2000).]

06-16-2000, 11:51 PM
Hi all,

Great going. I would tend to agree with Michael. Yes, I think "Yu Cham" or "Yiu Jarm" (chop/cut waist) is the move in question here. This move is shown in the first form Bung Bo Kuen which is universal to all Northern Mantis. Word can you see the value of forms here?. I think the counter move is in the 2 men version of the same form. Good analysis on the move, Michael. Critical thinking is what a lot of us needed. My take (no pun intented) on it is that "speed is paramount". Where speed comes from economy of motion and not just from the accelerated velocity. The different is that high velocity moves tends to "rush" the techniques out; therefore, miss the rigt timing. The speed that comes from economy of motion place emphasis on the right timing and right angle, etc... That kind of speed is like Word discribe very hard to get out of.

Nice to see a technical approach to this thread, please keep it up, guys.


Contraria Sunt Complementa

Paul Skrypichayko
06-17-2000, 01:02 AM
Speaking of the the great takedowns of northern mantis, what are some of your favored techniques?

Word mentioned one.

One that I am more comfortable with is similar, except after intercepting the arm, the other hand hooks your opponents head/neck while you are sweeping boot to boot. You have no arm to break your fall in this move, so either you can roll or backflip out of this one (minding your captured arm of course.)

Paul Skrypichayko
06-17-2000, 01:09 AM
I also thought about backstepping to circle behind your opponent, maybe that could prevent being felled? Still gotta try it out with a partner though.

06-18-2000, 07:54 AM
The 2nd move in Spear Hand is a good one.

Paul Skrypichayko
06-18-2000, 10:05 AM
The one where you sink your whole body and you're grabbing the opponent with both hands?

Works well, and looks pretty cool in the form.

What do you think of that double punch in gung lik kuen, in hung gar's fu hok, they call it "law hon sai si".

06-19-2000, 12:13 AM
Hi Paul,

I was shown 2 versions of the same move. The one I like is the left hand punching towards the lower torso. The application is to use against a clinch and knee combo as in Muay Thai. The hand on top would be resting the the opponent's left shoulder, the elbow is under his left elbow. As he pulls you, your right side twist upward. With help of your left elbow, it is possible to screw up his balance and/or rythm to execute the knee. The punch can be use offensively (to the ribs, "Dan Tin", etc...) or defenseively (to the inner thigh of the incoming knee. One must observe caden and use his force against him. That's my take.


Contraria Sunt Complementa

06-19-2000, 01:23 AM

[This message has been edited by MaFuYee (edited 06-23-2000).]

Paul Skrypichayko
06-19-2000, 02:34 AM
Actually, there are maybe around 5 different "drunken" moves in hung gar.

law hon sai si,
jui jow bat sin,
law hon chut dong,

I can see a few different uses for this move, but I can't understand how you can throw from this position. It seems that the hands are too far extended, and the body is not close enough to your opponent to throw or topple. Perhaps you are thinking of the move right after law hon sai si?

I'd love to see how some shuai jiao experts practice rolling and falling. Can anybody explain the differences between them and others?

mantis boxer
06-27-2000, 07:29 AM
The falls are the same.

wisdom mind
10-17-2000, 05:26 PM
mantis 108 mentioned starting a TCPM thread....here is one already!

10-17-2000, 08:10 PM
Hi Burn the Wikked,

Thanks for bringing this thread up. I found a typo on my reply. The move against the clinch should be the right hand rests (if you are in gloves) on you opponent's RIGHT shoulder while you are facing him (kind of across the chest). If you are not gloved, you should be able to dig into his pressure point located near right collar bone. At the same time the rotation of your body brings up the right elbow,which is now stick to his right arm; thereby, taking the pressure of the clinch off a notch. The hand on the right collar bone area is to restrict his use of the his right side. That way the long or shot right knee of his should have less power. To take him down, simply use the following moves off the form. This works well especially if he uses knee combinations which means he has only a very narrowed base of support at any given time at the duration of his combination.

Just correcting a typo. Thanks


Contraria Sunt Complementa

10-18-2000, 05:58 AM
Paul my sifu ( Sifu Ly in MI.) used to show us how to use a ciggerette in multiple attacker situations.Hot box the cigg. while situation is escalating then flick into nearest opp. eyes , then unleash a volley of blows while the sparks are still flying, one down.Mantis 108 ther is still a 2 man seun ba chow set. Many two man weapon sets still exsist.Thanks for being here guys.

10-18-2000, 07:24 PM
Hi Initiate,

I can't thank you enough for share this with us. This cigarette trick brings back memory of training with Sigung. Although he quited smoking during the final years of his life, he was a smoker when he was much younger (Vietnam days). I can picture him socializing in his suits and holding a cigarette. /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif (I have seem some old picture of him and his friend like that) Anyway, this trick reminded me of the talk about using tricks in physical conflict. Be creative, any object becomes a weapon at your disposal.

BTW, Taijimantis (your peer?) has mentioned some background info. of yours to me in his last email. Please feel free to contact me at sifu1@internorth.com. Thanks for sharing, and hope to hear from you soon.


Contraria Sunt Complementa

10-18-2000, 08:51 PM
This is my first time with a computer,
as soon as I know my e-mail add. I will be sure to contact you.Until then see you here. Nice to talk to somone about this system. Thanks again