LEAN (Kào 靠) - 12 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

Lean (Kào 靠) - to lean against one’s opponent. Due to the heavy reliance upon grappling and clinchwork in Mantis Boxing, Kào is an important keyword when engaged close range with the enemy.

Postural Defense

Once we are entangled in the Clinch (Lǒu 摟), we lean in to protect our position, or risk being taken down, or pushed over. We use our foe as a support structure, leaning against them whilst engaged in grappling and clinchwork. This is synchronous with Adhere (Tiē 貼).

While we Adhere, we shore up our position by using Kào. If this becomes impossible, we should break range and secure a better position. Kào can shut down my opponent’s attempt at hip toss throws; dropping my CG making it difficult for him/her to get their hips (fulcrum) under my CG.

It also reduces chances for them using Crashing Tide; their posture would become compromised simply upon attempt. Another advantage provided by Kào, is buffering the double leg takedown. If we’re upright, our legs are within easy grasp, and shortens the time until their shoot. By leaning, I can sprawl easier and faster by dropping my CG and putting my weight down upon their shoulders.

Overall, if we can stay inside the clinch with a solid posture, and forward lean, we can use this pressure to time takedowns with applied force.

Applied Force

In addition to securing our position with solid posture, we can also use the shoulder to assist in our own throws. The shoulder is used heavily in a lean forward type motion to affect applied force. This assists in the execution of many takedowns such as Crashing Tide, Single and Double Leg Takedowns, Point at Star, Reaping Leg, Crane Spreads Wings, and more.