Karate, Kung Fu, Ju Jitsu, Krav Maga, Boxing, MMA… all of these arts are known for their excellent self defense techniques. T’ai Chi, on the other hand, just doesn’t have the same reputation. To the average observer, it’s just too slow, too gentle, and not nearly aggressive enough to be a viable method of combat.
On top of that, many modern instructors only teach T’ai Chi for health benefits, leaving very few examples of combat applications available to the public. It’s no wonder that among non-practicioners, there’s a sense that T’ai Chi isn’t very good for self defense.
To many out there, T’ai Chi combat might look something like this…
So, how can we begin to dispel this myth? What practical application can T’ai Chi bring to martial training?
In order to explore this myth, we have to consider the ways T’ai Chi takes a unique view on self defense training.