Mantis Boxer

Countering the Clinch (Lǒu 摟) - FRAME! FRAME!! FRAME!!!

Countering the Clinch (Lǒu 摟) - FRAME! FRAME!! FRAME!!!

The clinch can be a nasty place to be stuck. When our opponent is larger, and/or stronger, and has their hooks on our neck, some of our escapes can be difficult to…

Tear Down the Monkey

Tear Down the Monkey

A critical analysis of the fighting stance we've been using for years. And why I got rid of it.

I recently went through some changes in my teaching and practice. One of these recent changes was in our fighting stance. The reasons for these are many, and too lengthy to explain for these purposes. However, the root of any changes I make are always born of a desire to improve things for myself and my students.

Let’s compare the stance we were using for years, the Monkey Stance, with the…

Mantis Captures Prey Takedowns

Mantis Captures Prey Takedowns

Trapping the elbow as our opponent shoots for the underhook. They go for the position under the arm to try and set up a variety of throws, or gain positional control. What we have lying in wait for them…

Change Moon

Change Moon

Change Moon is an alternate throw from the clinch. Sometimes our attempts at…

Diagonal Flying

Diagonal Flying

When grappling in the flank position, and tied up, Flying Diagonal showed up as a good counter to our opponent’s counter for Double Seal Hands, or in general -

Double Seal Hands

Double Seal Hands

It may not happen often, but when it does, it's good to have an answer for it. We're in the flank position, and our opponent is holding our wrists to shut down strikes. We're not in a good position for knees, elbows, or kicks. Many of the throws (Shuāi 摔) in our arsenal are shut down. What do we do?

Seize Leg - Mantis Heel Kick Defense

Seize Leg - Mantis Heel Kick Defense

I absolutely love this heel kick defense. My favorite one to practice, as you'll see in the video; thank you Thomas! There are two variations of this depending on…

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

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…

ADHERE (Tiē 貼) - 11 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

ADHERE (Tiē 貼) - 11 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

Adhere (Tiē 貼) - space management. Creating space when on the defense, and removing space from our opponent when on the offensive. If you want to reduce the level of control an enemy has on you - framing them, slipping the hooks, and increasing distance can help keep you from getting toppled.

On the inverse, when attacking the opponent, removing their…

STRIKE (Dǎ 打) - 10 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

STRIKE (Dǎ 打) - 10 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

Strike (Dǎ 打) - at it’s root, Mantis Boxing is a style of stand-up grappling. However, we need tools to get to the clinch and then throw; especially against an active and violent opponent. The style includes strikes and kicks to either...

CRUSH (Bēng 崩) - 9 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

CRUSH (Bēng 崩) - 9 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

Crush (Bēng 崩) - to ‘collapse and fall into ruin’. Also known as 'crushing' in many Chinese Martial Arts usages. Bēng is used to attack the vital targets in the midsection of an opponent. Effective strike targets such as: the liver, stomach; ribs, and the real treasure - the solar plexus, or central palace in Taijiquan. All of these targets can…

ENTER (Jìn 進) - 8 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

ENTER (Jìn 進) - 8 of 12 - The Keywords of Mantis Boxing

Enter (Jìn 進) - or advance. This encapsulates a variety of ranges in a fight. Starting from the furthest range to the closest. Check out this article and video for details on how ‘Enter’ works with Mantis Boxing…

Going Nerd Level on Blocking

Going Nerd Level on Blocking

Today I'm going NERD LEVEL on blocking. This is an interesting detail I found that can make or break your blocking. I can't explain the why, so I'm calling on all…

HEAVY ASSAULT! - Circle and Chop

HEAVY ASSAULT! - Circle and Chop

HEAVY ASSAULT - Go heavy, or go home! This striking combination, plucked right from the catalog of Mantis Boxing techniques passed down for centuries, is to overwhelm the opponent with big, destructive, blows. Connecting with the first one is ideal and effective, but if they duck, or move back, the second…

Whipping Fist

Whipping Fist

Light, fast, yet highly effective'; the Whipping Fist is a great punch to have in your arsenal. Check this video out for more on how to throw it, and pad drills, and bag drills that you can use to perfect this sneaky shot.

Guest Appearance: Fight for a Happy Life with Sensei Ando

Guest Appearance: Fight for a Happy Life with Sensei Ando

I had the honor of being invited onto Fight for a Happy Life martial arts podcast with host Sensei Ando. The episode just released today. 

Check out our conversation on topics like - freedom, defining success, barriers to students progress, living life, and weird questions about what I want on my deathbed/tombstone (is this guy planning to kill me???), and lots of laughter.

Monkey Grips! How I Strengthen My Grips and Keep Them Healthy

Monkey Grips! How I Strengthen My Grips and Keep Them Healthy

Fingers hurt after training? Grips not strong enough to hold on when grappling? Check this out.

Grip strength and health can be a really important thing for martial artists. Grip intensive arts such as Judo, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Shuai Jiao, and other Grappling Arts, all require/build grip strength, and put a great deal of wear and tear on the fingers. Today I'm going to show you the methods I use to keep my grips not only strong, but healthy. For strengthening: exercises like rope...

Guest Appearance: The Strenuous Life Podcast w/ Stephen Kesting

Guest Appearance: The Strenuous Life Podcast w/ Stephen Kesting

On the latest episode of his podcast - 'The Strenuous Life' - BJJ Black Belt and founder of Grapplearts, Stephen Kesting and I debate the value of Kung Fu, and if it can coexist with BJJ and MMA. I think you are going to like this! I highly recommend his channels if you haven't already found him!

"Can Kung Fu, BJJ and MMA coexist? Maybe they can, and maybe they can even learn from each other.

This is a conversation I had with with Kung Fu stylist (and BJJ brown belt) Randy Brown in which we touched on the history of Chinese martial arts and what made them less effective over time, what traditional martial arts look like when you start training them with resistance, and much more. I think you’ll like this one!"

The Tiger Tail - My Most Hated Throw!!!

The Tiger Tail - My Most Hated Throw!!!

This was truly one of my most hated throws. In 2009, on one of my semi-annual sojourns to San Diego to train with my Mantis Boxing coach at the time, I was introduced to this personal menace. 

The primary purpose of this trip, was for my teacher to share with me the 20 throws of Mantis Boxing that his 8-Step Mantis Boxing teacher had...