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  1. #11
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    The thing I valued most from my decade of CMA was push hands, from a place that made it a major component of their tai chi. I'd say I still use attributes I learned there. For example, in a stickfighting comp a few weeks ago, I lost one of my sticks and when I ran to pick it up the guy chased me, so I knew as soon as I stood up I'd be getting hit, so as I rose I stepped into him with a shoulder press which sent him to the mat. Without the CMA background I doubt I'd have the structure and rooting to do such a move.

    At the end of next month, I'll be teaching a push hands seminar at a hippie festival, since they were looking for flow instructors and I convinced them that tai chi was a flow art. So to me, CMA is also a method to introduce martial arts to hippies and burners, although I'm pretty explicit that a few hours of push hands with me won't make you a fighter.

  2. #12
    Ice Hole's Avatar
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    I will say one tiny thing about traditional vs. modern programs, too.

    There is a reason everyone promotes Sanda. It's the closest thing to real old school kung fu fighting without going to jail or seriously injuring each other on a regular basis.

    What's missing from many trad. CMA programs is that (mutually beneficial, ego free) dueling aspect of kung fu, the most important one for hammering the nail home.

    What is my favorite thing I learned from CMA?

    I credit CMA for helping me whine less about my jiu jutsu boo boos.

    That, and Monkey Steals the Peach.

  3. #13
    FinalLegion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by W. Rabbit View Post
    I will say one tiny thing about traditional vs. modern programs, too.

    There is a reason everyone promotes Sanda. It's the closest thing to real old school kung fu fighting without going to jail or seriously injuring each other on a regular basis.

    What's missing from many trad. CMA programs is that (mutually beneficial, ego free) dueling aspect of kung fu, the most important one for hammering the nail home.

    What is my favorite thing I learned from CMA?

    I credit CMA for helping me whine less about my jiu jutsu boo boos.

    That, and Monkey Steals the Peach.
    I'm a little confused about Sanda. Is it a training method that you can incorporate into a traditional CMA or is it system all unto itself?

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by FinalLegion View Post
    I'm a little confused about Sanda. Is it a training method that you can incorporate into a traditional CMA or is it system all unto itself?
    it's a competition rule set. some people have abandoned any training that isn't specifically for that rule set and therefore would be running a sanda gym, but it's not a system, it's just a set of rules to hold fights under.

    when checking out a CMA school you should be looking for places that compete in sanda or lei tai (another rule set.)
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  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by FinalLegion View Post
    I'm a little confused about Sanda. Is it a training method that you can incorporate into a traditional CMA or is it system all unto itself?
    What Ming said, and if you want to know the brief history of why...

    The words san da come from the terms for traditional kung fu sparring rounds where training brothers try to hit and evade each other "free form". San da might have a different feel/look depending on the art involved. The more contact, the more gear.

    The modern combat sport also takes its name from san da, but Sanda (capital S) contains a specific mix of Chinese and non-Chinese (e.g. Russian) elements carefully put together. There are a few differences between civilian and military versions.

    What this means is that quality kung fu schools will include san da sessions that generally resemble Sanda, with varying degrees of contact with the "best" schools actually traveling to compete, etc. Anyone claiming that kind of "best" title had better have such a record.

    One big difference between Sanda and san da, is Sanda (big S) is really a rule set as Ming pointed out. san da (little s) is whatever you agree is ok with your partner, you can punch, push, breakfall, choke, crab fu...whatever floats your boat. You can just box, or you can grapple.

    San da is kung fu horse play, in a nutshell. It's all fun and games until somebody gets hurt, but that's what the jow is for.
    Last edited by Ice Hole; 5/19/2014 3:09pm at .

  6. #16
    FinalLegion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by W. Rabbit View Post
    What Ming said, and if you want to know the brief history of why...

    The words san da come from the terms for traditional kung fu sparring rounds where training brothers try to hit and evade each other "free form". San da might have a different feel/look depending on the art involved. The more contact, the more gear.

    The modern combat sport also takes its name from san da, but Sanda (capital S) contains a specific mix of Chinese and non-Chinese (e.g. Russian) elements carefully put together. There are a few differences between civilian and military versions.

    What this means is that quality kung fu schools will include san da sessions that generally resemble Sanda, with varying degrees of contact with the "best" schools actually traveling to compete, etc. Anyone claiming that kind of "best" title had better have such a record.

    One big difference between Sanda and san da, is Sanda (big S) is really a rule set as Ming pointed out. san da (little s) is whatever you agree is ok with your partner, you can punch, push, breakfall, choke, crab fu...whatever floats your boat. You can just box, or you can grapple.

    San da is kung fu horse play, in a nutshell. It's all fun and games until somebody gets hurt, but that's what the jow is for.
    So, if I understand correctly...

    You could attend a school that teaches, say, Mantis Style and includes san da (little s) as part of it's training...but you could also attend a school that teaches Sanda (capital S) as a modern combat sport.

  7. #17
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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    So, to be safe, ensure your CMA school includes a Sanda clause.
    "Systema, which means, 'the system'..."

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  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by FinalLegion View Post
    So, if I understand correctly...

    You could attend a school that teaches, say, Mantis Style and includes san da (little s) as part of it's training...but you could also attend a school that teaches Sanda (capital S) as a modern combat sport.
    It's easier to show you the difference.

    This is Sanda/San Shou training



    This is a Hung ga school with a San da program


  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by W. Rabbit View Post
    It's easier to show you the difference.

    This is Sanda/San Shou training



    This is a Hung ga school with a San da program

    Ahhhhhh....okay, I think I understand now. Thank you!

  10. #20

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    Thanks to everyone who has replied so far! This has all been super constructive and valuable.

    I actually started looking into San Da before it was mentioned here, and I think for me it would be the most logical choice.

    So to clarify, if San Da is a rule system, each individual school of Kung Fu may have its own San Da practice? Or what Kung Fu system is used the most within San Da?

    I was reading an article in Black Belt magazine about a guy who went to train in China at a Shaolin Temple in San Da. So are what they are teaching, Shaolin Kung Fu that has been adapted to fit within the rule set of San Da? I'm a bit confused.

    Also, I've seen some pretty cool Mantis Style stuff on Youtube. Particularly a video originally posted by Jack Rusher in the "Here's all the full contact Kung Fu" thread which had two Aussie Mantis players sparing.


    So, how legitimate is this Mantis style? Is it functional? I also saw some Polish Tanglangmen videos (what is the difference between Mantis and Tanglangmen?) which looked pretty interesting.

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