I love it when people argue over which is better, Karate or Tai Chi Chuan, because it is a bogus question. The point I’m putting forth here is that they are opposite sides of the same coin. This is one of those things that most people haven’t really come to grips with. Here’s a video, I’ll tell you more right below it.
To describe the art of Karate one would first think of it as linear, for everyone has the rather false idea that Karate is nothing but straight lines. Second, one would think of explosiveness, for the violence of Karate emanates outward from a central point. And, there isn’t a clearly definable third point to be argued over here.
To define the gentle Tai Chi internal art one would say circular, for the movements of the art loop and twine like a snake in love with itself. Secondly, one would say slow, and here is the first point of comparison to be made between the two arts. For people usually miss out on what an explosion actually is.
An explosion is an outpouring of energy in all directions from a central point. The question I ask here is…how fast is an explosion? We have set ideas, probably couched in the violence we expect from such an action, but the truth is, there is no set speed to define an explosion.
Thus, when considering TCC there is an explosion, but it is slow and sustained. Both martial arts take their power from the explosion. Both have power, but the technical application is where we have the seeming divergence of arts.
Tai Chi accepts the attack, and circles it back into itself, and expels or otherwise handles it. Karate accepts the attack, and destroys it. It may seem rude, but we don’t care about that; we care about the fact that real karate is not herky jerky angles. Bad Karate is, but the real and good stuff is smooth and liquid, and the movements of the body are filled with subtle circles.
The real problem here is that people tend to set their ideas in stone as to what a Martial Art is, and they categorize and label, and they usually miss the point. The best martial arts I ever saw was my Korean Karate sensei, who was as liquid as greased oil. He just used the explosions and circles and angles like a master of TCC, but in a different application.
The real point here is to understand the direction of the attack, and then decide which art is appropriate to your whim and the moment. And, here is something, can you use your Tai Chi Chuan with violent explosiveness? Or, can you use your Karate explosiveness with more harmony?
Which style is better, Karate or Tai Chi Chuan. Mouse on over over to Monster Martial Arts and find out more.