Tai Sabaki – Body Shifting

We are just a week away from testing at Grace Martial Arts in Tampa. Many of our students will be testing for a new color belt, so that’s always an exciting time. Testing will include what we’ve been learning the past three months in addition to what we learned previously.

The younger class will be tested on basics of escaping, blocking, striking and kicking. The older class will be tested on the first Waza and the basics of Tai Sabaki (Body Management, Body Shifting, Body Movement) – including footwork (Ashi Sabaki) and handwork (Te Sabaki). These play a vital role in the most basic aspects of Yon Ch’uan Martial Arts:

  • Yield
  • Clear
  • Contact
  • Control
  • Counter

Tai Sabaki is how we manage our movements for dealing effectively and efficiently with an opponent’s attack. Here is an explanation of how we accomplish that from the writings of Grand Master John Chung Li and Grand Master Robert Xavier.

“The source of strength in the Yon Ch’uan Internal System is derived from a relaxed posture of perfectly balanced whole body power connected in unison with springy energy spiraling through the physical body movement. The essential difference between meeting force with external ridged strength as opposed to internal energy is when resisting force with force you engage the attacker on his/her terms. Whereas, when using SOFT internal energy, you deny both your attacker’s expectations and the object of his/her attack: Yourself. Through daily practice the practitioner acquires startling speed and focused strength with superior ability to apply effortlessly the six basic principles unique to the Yon Ch’uan System. These basic principles are redirection, evasion, quartering, entrapment, absorption and reflection. These basic principles are able to be applied to both the practioners life experiences and self-defense training. The system teaches students to avoid physical force, whenever possible, but when unavoidable, how to utilize the escalation of force to insure personal safety.”

Older students will demonstrate skills they have learned with respect to escaping, blocking, striking, kicking and throwing an opponent.

Our Bible verses for the upcoming testing is Ephesians 2:8-9:

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

Our Christian Character Qualities are “Honor, Faith, Power.”

Even as we come to another time of testing, we also come to an opportunity for new students to join Grace Martial Arts classes beginning on Monday, March 4th. Classes are free and every new student will receive a free uniform and school patch. The address is 801 E. Hillsborough Avenue in Tampa (Seminole Heights Baptist Church), at the corner of Hillsborough and Nebraska avenues. So, please invite your friends to join us beginning next month!

Mark McGee

Senior Instructor

Grace Martial Arts

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