one fighter stands over the man he has knocked out. There is blood on the cage floor
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Not Deadly, not guilty and not in my Bagua

Edward Hines
4 min readMay 18, 2022

There is a lot of macho bullshit in martial arts and it’s misplaced

Recently a student described himself as feeling slightly ashamed for not having ‘martial effectiveness’ at the top of his practice priorities.

My colleague Dillon Beyer replied that if martial effectiveness was to be a priority there are more expedient ways to go about it than through Bagua* (the kung-fu style we practise), so the student should just chill and enjoy the practice he has.

Dillon added that if more martial artists admitted this to themselves there would be less delusional thinking in the martial arts generally.

Struggling with questions of martial effectiveness whether they have it and what it means if they don’t is a common issue that many traditional practitioners rub up against.

One barrier to getting past it is the ‘seriousness’ of many teachers, who have been ‘honoured’ with a ‘lineage’ and have the weighty responsibility of passing the deadly skills’ to the next generation.

Whether such teachers are deeply invested in their self-image of ‘profound martial mastery’, or are addicted to it for their social media output is another question.

I believe ditching the martial effectiveness burden** can not only brighten a personal practice…



Edward Hines

If you have a body, care for nature, meditate or like martial arts I write for you