Advice on Punching the Mitts

by John Chow of Tao of Tai Chi Chuan Institute for Health, Self Defence and Spiritual Development.


"You can only be a good eskrimador if you are a good feeder"


"Feed properly with care in order not to hurt yourself and your partner"


“Improve your skills and character by feeding your partners with loving care to help them improve.  In return,  their improved skills and character will benefit yourself”


“By executing the striking, punching, kicking, elbowing, kneeing, throwing, sweeping, locking  -  all techniques properly and with a benevolent state of mind,  not only you prevent injury to yourself and your partners,  but you also enable both to advance together”



·         Adequate hand protection must be used!  Mitt-punching gloves must be used for the hands (mandatory).  Elbow guards must be used for the elbows (mandatory).  Knee guards are recommended for the knees.  Sifu/Guro John Chow has these items for sale at competitive prices.  It is highly recommended that you purchase the centre’s equipment as they have been tested for adequate protection.  Please ask prior permission for using your own equipment.


·         Do not use force in punching, and do not punch too vigorously.  Your partner may feel uncomfortable.  You may even hurt your partner.  Moreover,  you might harm your own writ!  (eg.,  sprain, RSI, rheumatoid arthritis etc.)


·         Punch casually.  Do not get excited.  Keep cool.


·         Punch gently.  You only need to make a light but good contact.  A good technique is very much better than brute force.


·         Do not rush in to punch. 


·         Do not chase after the target. Injuries and accidents are more likely to happen when vigorously chasing after objects to hit.


·         Inch your way towards the target, steadily. Take you time in advancing towards the target. 


·         Use a modified shuffle step in advancing towards the target.


·         Do not bully the feeder!  This is your precious training partner.


·         Do not show off how strong and great you are.  You are here to learn, not show off.


·         Modify the force and intensity of your punches to suit the circumstances of the feeder’s size, age, physical strength, physical build, and sex. eg.,  hit the target more gently when your partner is female, weak of old etc. 


·         Relax.  Do not stiffen up during punching. 


·         Punch straight into the target.  Do not graze the target.


·         Align the point of impact with the wrist.  (saves your wrist!)


·         Keep the elbows low at all times.


·         Keep the guard at all times.


·         Use your body to punch.  Power comes from the whole body.


·         Correct technique is all that matters.  Brute force does not. 


·         Listen to and obey the instructions and advice of the instructor.  You are the student.  You are here to learn from him/her.  Just do that and do not think you are cleverer.  Disobedience might cause injury!