I am trying to learn judo and push hands at the same time as they seem very complementary. Even though everyone says gripfighting is critical, I find fighting for grips is a really weird art unto itself. Ne waza seems much more akin to push hands as the constant contact and sensitivity to movement is there. Gripfighting is so staccato – my sensei says it’s therefore good for striking self defense reflexes, yet it doesn’t really seem like jabbing the way Dempsey advocates. So it ends up being annoying as it seems peculiar to one style and not that applicable to overall ma or self-defense when strikes are happening. Of course I’m trying like hell to get good at it. Plus it’s far less annoying than the 101 annoying things people encounter in crap taijiquan push hands. At the least it’s applicable in self-defense in most contexts (where people wear clothes) whereas most self-imposed crap in push hands is totally inapplicable and people don’t realize or don’t want to care that it’s a drill working toward and helping develop attributes for fighting, not a stupid thing for its own sake. Anway that rant is a digression and is covered well elsewhere, such as on Pushing The Issue.

The overlap seems to get interesting once there is at least one grip. My senseis’ abilities to make you think your grip is helping when it’s not or even if it seems dominant are what I’m after. I should be able to cross-train some of the same body mechanics from push hands and vice versa. If I can get past this first hurdle of confusion, I’m expecting some good returns.

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