Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

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Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby oragami_itto on Mon Nov 19, 2018 8:33 am

"This principle is very obvious and requires no further elaboration."
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby GrahamB on Mon Nov 19, 2018 8:38 am

Must resist uncontrollable urge to shout "BUT WHAT ABOUT THE KNEE TO FACE STRIKE?" ;D

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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby oragami_itto on Mon Nov 19, 2018 8:42 am

GrahamB wrote:Must resist uncontrollable urge to shout "BUT WHAT ABOUT THE KNEE TO FACE STRIKE?" ;D

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In the final iteration of the exercise, the opposite hand crosses over. It isn't explicitly named as a knee defense, since the context presented is more pure push hands or grappling, as mentioned, but it serves the purpose of getting between the knee and face, possibly blocking or deflecting.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby GrahamB on Mon Nov 19, 2018 8:45 am

Yeah, let's see him try to block this with his mystical amulet.

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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby Giles on Mon Nov 19, 2018 9:23 am

I have 'borrowed' (or stolen) this exercises following practice/exchange with various people in the Huang line. When doing the move I always let my 2nd arm or right arm (as classified in this video) immediately form a reserve 'peng arm' before my chest as my head goes down. Just a minor adjustment to what A. Mizner does in the vid. At the least this will usually buffer an upcoming knee to the face and if you're moving the kwa/hips properly it can also serve to deflect the knee to one side and take the other guy's balance. If a clinch/headlock is already on then that line of defence won't hold for long but the nice thing about this move/pattern is that it trains you to yield and circle with the head/neck before the opponent is able to get a good grip on you.

As I bring my head up again then instead of using a split technique with the right arm as in the vid I tend to go straight upwards with the right arm in a kind of "fair lady works shuttles" move and immediately peng the other guy off his root, and simultaneously project, strike or do whatever presents itself. This means the end of the tuishou pattern of course, so it's an action at a different level than what's demonstrated here. An application drill, more or less, instead of a repeating reciprocal pattern.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby Bao on Mon Nov 19, 2018 9:23 am

Don't like it, not a bit. It's not a good Tai Chi exercise, but as Huang was mainly a White Crane stylist, maybe it comes from there or was imported from some other style. In Tai Chi you always go directly for the balance and centreline to take control ASAP. So from a pure TCC perspective, this will build bad habits as well as give a wrong appreciation about Tai Chi strategy in general.

@Graham: Magic? Why not just take a step to the side? :/
(... or at least keep the guard up at face level..??? :P )
Last edited by Bao on Mon Nov 19, 2018 9:32 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby Giles on Mon Nov 19, 2018 9:36 am

Bao,
OK, would you say a little more about this?
Assumptions: when someone manages to get his hand or arm on your neck with enough strength to grab:
1. If possible stay aligned, don't bend but sink and rotate hips and thus neck in the force direction (clockwise/anticlockwise) of the grab to blend, neutralize and counter. Also using arms etc. to reinforce the impulse.

But if you're too late with that, or it doesn't work, then I think 2. the technique in the video is a good second option. Why are you so against it?
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby GrahamB on Mon Nov 19, 2018 9:46 am

Interesting point. I think this is where adherence to some sort of eternal God-like principle "not resisting ever" has landed him in hot sauce. If somebody manages to pull your head downwards only bad things happen from there.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby oragami_itto on Mon Nov 19, 2018 10:15 am

He exhibits the "not resisting" to prevent being pulled here. If you resist, you get pulled, so ideally here you're moving ahead of the pull. The left hand prevents their pulling hand from keeping effective contact while the right blocks the knee until the head is out of danger, at which point it joins and splits with the left.

It's not tidy math, in actual application it comes down to timing and finesse, relative level of certain skills. Usually with pretty much all of this stuff I can make it work on some people a lot easier than others.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby Bao on Mon Nov 19, 2018 10:27 am

Giles wrote:Bao,
OK, would you say a little more about this?
Assumptions: when someone manages to get his hand or arm on your neck with enough strength to grab:
1. If possible stay aligned, don't bend but sink and rotate hips and thus neck in the force direction (clockwise/anticlockwise) of the grab to blend, neutralize and counter. Also using arms etc. to reinforce the impulse.

...Why are you so against it?


Now one would just go into a clinch and stay there. Grabbing neck and attack with the knee or anything else happens at the same time, everything happens fast, not first one and then two. Last time (20 years ago) someone grabbed my neck and tried to attack with me a knee, I just pushed away my his right knee to the side with my left hand, stepped in and pushed him away with my right hand so he fell on his back. I didn't even consider that he grabbed for my neck, I went for the body following his own movement. Easy peasy.

But if you're too late with that, or it doesn't work, then I think 2. the technique in the video is a good second option.


Never consider a second chance. If you are too late, as in the gif where the guy can't even hold his hands up, you are already gone. There's no time for "2". If your timing is off on "1" it means that you suck. And that you lie bleeding on the floor will be proof enough.

oragami_itto wrote:He exhibits the "not resisting" to prevent being pulled here. If you resist, you get pulled, so ideally here you're moving ahead of the pull.


If you can reach his centreline (or even his upper arms) as he grabs your neck you won't need to resist. Just follow and fill in. Simple.

.... the problems as always when it comes to defensive techniques as always is intellectually overly complicating. Instead, scale it down and keep it simple.
Last edited by Bao on Mon Nov 19, 2018 10:38 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby oragami_itto on Mon Nov 19, 2018 10:42 am

Bao wrote:
oragami_itto wrote:He exhibits the "not resisting" to prevent being pulled here. If you resist, you get pulled, so ideally here you're moving ahead of the pull.


If you can reach his centreline (or even his upper arms) as he grabs your neck you won't need to resist. Just follow and fill in. Simple.


That's definitely another way to approach it.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby Giles on Mon Nov 19, 2018 11:09 am

OK, Bao, I understand your viewpoint. And of course things happen too fast to make choices in the sense that if the first technique doesn't work, you usually won't then have time for a second. But shit happens. Yes, if someone has already grabbed your neck with enough energy to pull you down, then in some way you've screwed up to let things come that far. Just like if someone takes you to the ground in a real-world attack, then in some way you've already screwed up. But then you still need to get off the ground and onto your feet again as fast as possible, and that's still worth training. -- If you even get attacked at all then probably you've already screwed up in some way.

I still think the basic move is one possible useful reflex IF things have already gone so far wrong that the guy is starting to hook your neck. I'd certainly prefer your described defence if the way for it is open; I always try to keep my spine uncompromised. When you train tingjin it's about increasing the chances of your body making the appropriate decision based on haptics, proprioception and xxx in a split second. IMO this Huang-based option can sometimes be a good option for a bad moment, albeit often not the best option.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby Fa Xing on Mon Nov 19, 2018 11:34 am

Adam Mizner lives in Thailand, home of the neck clinch in Asia. He should try this out on a Thai Boxer, let's see the results. It should be very entertaining.

Those of you who are interested in training legitimately, don't fucking do this.
Last edited by Fa Xing on Mon Nov 19, 2018 11:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby Steve James on Mon Nov 19, 2018 1:13 pm

Well, first off it's push hands, so --imo-- the focus should be on training sensitivity as opposed to training an application. For one thing, if someone is just trying to wrap your neck, there are various counters. So many that doing so is considered a fundamental error in wresting. Otoh, in terms of dealing with a strike, it's similar to slipping a (round) punch in boxing. On that note, though, some punches can transform into a grapple. The "casting" punch is an example.

Anyway, my point is that push hands has to be separated from techniques. As Graham said, it is an illustration of "going with" the opponent. But, in phs, the idea is cooperation. One guy takes his turn, and the opponent takes his. That's not necessarily the case in competition (or conflict).
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Re: Push Hands - Head Pull (Clinch defense)

Postby jaime_g on Mon Nov 19, 2018 1:30 pm

This is bad in so many ways that I dont know how to start
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