More detailed discussion of "Empty-Full" principles and problems with "50-50 stance" Weight Distribution
The presence or absence of “empty-full” determines if arts such as ba gua or t’ai-chi won’t work in real combat. The principle points out why some practitioners ARE effective in close-combat with their IMA. “Empty-full” allows the practitioner to move rapidly, and change position, between attackers that are closing quickly from different positions. However, when “empty-full” is absent, a defense is static, a “defense” will only work if the attacker stands still in one positIon. Combat is chaotic and attackers in a real fight do not stand still!
Develop your "Empty-Full" Abilities
1. Develop an "eye" to see empty-full principles at a glance
2. Train yourself to move in an empty-full way
3. Study Examples on Youtube and other media
(Here are some random examples)
Empty-Full issue no. 1: Hips and Upper Body become fulcrums
Three random examples of ba gua stylists from YouTube. Note the three vertical red lines superimposed over the practitioners.
These illustrations show the most common mistake made by the majority of ba gua artists. It is also the most limiting physical error Why? Because when an athlete is in a 50-50 weight distribution, the large muscles of the shoulder and waist become dominant and force is applied through a fulcrum. Effective use of ba gua in real combat requires a different approach. One that allows quick movement when in close contact and allows power to be expressed without a solid two-legged base. The below examples are of three different ba gua artists, demonstrating combat applications of their art from a wide and stable stance.