The Wing Chun itself system is very small in its’ core teachings and curriculum, and is designed that way for a very specific purpose. There are only three empty hand sets, the muk yan jong or wooden dummy set, and two weapon sets: one for longer range and one for shorter. Together they comprise a complete progression taking one through all facets of self-defense and close-range combat skill. Each one is vital to the mix and contains lessons which will enhance your ability to protect and defend yourself and your loved ones.
Once the foundation and basic principles, techniques and concepts have been ingrained in your muscle memory by way of the forms, dummy and chi sau drills, weapons are introduced in order to reinforce those ideas and key principles by applying them to something outside and independent of your physical body. Continue reading
I have said this so many times thus far, and I will continue to do so until my tongue falls off and I puke up thumbtacks: Wing Chun as an art is based off of structure.
Everything you will do in Wing Chun has its root- literally-in the structure of your body. From solidifying the Wing Chun yee jee kim yeung ma stance to the body unity expressed through the forms, from the reinforcement of basic concepts through the weapons of the long pole and butterfly swords to the application of Wing Chun theory and technique in a combative sense by way of chi sau and sparring training, everything boils down to one thing: structure.
A key component in training your structure is the use of the wall bag. The wall bag is to Wing Chun what the heavy bag is to a boxer. Boxers use a heavy bag to develop power, structure and rooting which forms the bedrock foundation of their entire game plan in applying their skill set. Wing Chun is no different; we need a tool to reinforce our body’s structure, rooting and power generation which will then bleed over into all aspects of training, from our forms to applying the techniques of the Wing Chun system to chi sau, weapons training and sparring. That tool is the Wing Chun wall bag.
Much care should therefore be put into choosing wall bags that most accurately and completely reinforce your structure in Wing Chun training, since the rooting and structure you develop will bleed into every area of your Wing Chun fight game, without exception.
My personal approach to Wing Chun training is simple: closing the gap between the theoretical and the practical.
There are several hoops to jump through in order to close this gap, however, one thing is for sure: in order for true Wing Chun training to occur-and by true I mean effective and practical-the fundamental disconnect between theory and practice needs to be addressed: scenario-based training against an armored assailant.
Being able to train with literally all of your tools at your disposal is a gift, one that the vast majority of Wing Chun folks out there never get to experience. Choosing the best self-defense suit to fulfill your training needs is one decision that, perhaps above all other equipment or training gear, should be approached in the most discerning and thorough manner possible – but first, for those of you who have never done this type of training or who think that merely making heavier and heavier contact is the end-all, be-all of training “reality,” let me explain:
We all know that contact needs to be made in order for us to get a realistic feel for how to apply our Wing Chun in a no-bullshit, “get in-get out” way for self-defense, but there’s much more to it than that.
Contact does need to be made but increasing contact alone, while so valuable for understanding proper application of technique as well as the feel for hitting another person, is not enough. By focusing purely on increasing contact as the sole aim of “realistic training” you are missing the most important attributes of realistic scenario and stress condition training. The value of reality-based training must be viewed as the sum total of its’ parts to make it valuable for us. Continue reading
The final piece of the Wing Chun system that the student learns are the baat jaam do or Wing Chun butterfly swords. The name itself, baat jaam do, when translated means “eight directional cuts of the knife” or “8 slashing blades.” In the Wing Chun system, the learning of butterfly swords/knives rounds out and completes formal instruction in the Wing Chun curriculum.
Given their status as the end of formal Wing Chun training, choosing the right pair of butterfly knives or swords is a decision that, in effect, reflects how far you have come since you began training. Much thought and consideration should be given into choosing which butterfly swords best suit your training needs as well as the direction you would like to take your future in Wing Chun.Continue reading
A New Year is upon us! Most folks will wake up starry-eyed, full of ironclad resolutions to improve “this” or “that” in the next 365 days, and are fired up, pumped and ready to kick ass and make 2020 their bitch…
Sadly, most will crash and burn by Valentine’s Day.
Now that’s not an indictment on anyone-God knows I’ve failed at more things than I can count. One thing I have had to work diligently at, and have encountered more than my share of setbacks towards-is my functional fitness level.
By “functional fitness” I mean carrying myself in a state of readiness to be able to apply my Wing Chun should I ever need it. I do not train for the beach; I train for the street. The worst – and I do mean WORST – position to be in is to be a martial artist who knows techniques but cannot apply them. That is worse than not knowing anything at all.
Wing Chun is based on functionality, practicality and simplicity. Wing Chun works in a real fight and is an excellent system of self-defense due to the above mentioned attributes-this we know, but what you may not be aware of is that the very same attributes that make Wing Chun so effective for both self-defense situations and combat sports participation, when applied to your own personal fitness and exercise program or routine for health & functional combat fitness, can greatly increase your strength, endurance and flexibility. Not all equipment is created equal, however. Choosing the best equipment for functional fitness, both in a self-defense and combat sports (boxing, kickboxing, MMA, etc.) sense requires the idea of fitness and exercise be approached differently.
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