About this site

Where traditional martial arts step up to the challenge of MMA…

The title may be self explanatory…but it’s probably still worth pointing out the reference to the four main fighting categories of traditional Chinese martial arts: kicking (Ti, 踢), striking (Da, 打), wrestling (Shuai, 摔) and seizing/ locking, or chin na (Na, 拿).

Because that’s what all Chinese martial arts should include. Very often these days, it seems this is far from the case.

Go onto any forum, and you’ll see the same argument raging: on one side, there are those who say traditional Asian martial arts are a noble pursuit, whose razor edge would only be dulled by exposure to something as brutally unrealistic as MMA.

On the other, there are those who dismiss traditional martial arts as unprepared to deal with even the most basic striking combination, as costumed, hand-waving fantasists who spend far more time dreaming of esoteric energies than facing a non-compliant opponent.

There’s truth to both sides.

In May 2017, Xu Xiaodong made international news when he administered an unceremonious beatdown to delusional Tai Chi ‘master’ Wei Lei.  Traditional martial arts practitioners and true believers analysed the bout  on social media for weeks afterwards. For some, Xu was a hero, administering a much needed kick up the arse of Chinese martial arts. For others, he was a mere hooligan who carefully avoided ‘real’ fighters,  a poor practitioner whose defeat proved nothing.

Whatever. The truth as always lies somewhere between the two extremes. This site is an attempt to highlight a few individuals who train and coach in that middle ground: who have not only explored martial traditions in depth, but also tested them in the harsh laboratory of the grappling tournament, boxing ring or octagon.

If this site inspires a few traditional martial artists to do the same, or simply dispels a few of the misconceptions held about traditional martial arts, it will have achieved its aim.