There are many paths to the mountain top, some are better than others. our path, although difficult at times, is well trodden, well marked out and our guides know every step of the route. The only absolute, is your ability for achievement, even the smallest step, is a positive result. the path you choose is your journey and ultimately your choice.
Wing Chun Kuen Gung Fu is a southern Chinese martial art and is often referred to as Southern Shaolin Boxing. The name Ving Tsun was the preferred name given to the system by the late great Wong Shun Leung, although I have no chosen preference. Wong was an early student of Ip Man and eventually went on to teach within Ip Man's school. Wong went on to refine this fighting style to an incredible depth, making it more simple, direct and efficient. Practioners the world over still call it Ving Tsun in honour of his name.
The name Wing Chun Kuen roughly translates as Everlasting or Beautiful Spring Fist. Wing Chun comes from the heart and is considered by many to be part of the beating heart of Chinese ancestry, a time of golden opportunity, of passion and pride. A time before the oppression of the Manchu invaders, a return to the Everlasting Spring.
The character "Chung" means central, and the characters for China (Central Kingdom) also reflect this. So Wing Chun could be considered the empty handed "Eternal Spring", Southern Shaolin Kung Fu boxing system. Wing Chun is so much more than just a martial art. It is like a way of being, in keeping with the essence of Taoism. Wing Chun (particulary the WSL VT variant) is widely recognised as one of the most devastatingly effective self-defence arts in the world today.
Wing Chun is often referred to as the "science of combat", due to its practical, efficient and logical approach. The saying "economy of motion" is a well known maxim as is "minimum effort, maximum impact". This is certainly true to a certain extent, although little thought goes to the student that has trained hard for years to achieve said result.
Wing Chun uses simultaneous attack and defence concepts, deployed at very close range, based entirely on natural body mechanics and musculoskeletal framework. Because of this efficiency, the body's size and strength is not a limiting factor and the art lends itself to any age, gender or physique. Wing Chun teaches the student how to move more efficiently and how to produce more power through focused co-ordinated correct use of body structure.
Wing Chun training consist of:
Solo Training Fitness, health and well being. Focus, drive and determination.
Forms to learn the concepts, body shapes and techniques. Forms can be likened to the Wing Chun alphabet and contain the shapes (letters) with which to form the words of the Wing Chun system. Forms are considered the path to freedom, not restriction. You can express your skill and interpretation in a way that suits you. The functional possibilities, just like words, are many.
Partner training Training with partners, not on partners. Partners give valuable feedback and response to an individuals chosen specific medium. Bag, mitt, stepping, intelligent arm work.
Drills to learn application and how-to (form the words) from the forms (which technique works best ) by training set and live patterns into muscle memory. In order to still be able to function under pressure during a real attack, any techniques learned must be stored in the motor areas of our brains, filed deep in our sub-conscious and be immediately accessible.
Chi Sao. Unique to Wing Chun, Chi Sao has been likened to a blank canvas, upon which the art can be applied. Students are able to practice forming the shapes, maintaining 'the triangle', learning sensitivity and contact reflexes in a safe enviroment whilst developing speed, distance, timing, accuracy, stepping and clean lines. Chi Sao is considered by many to be the genius of Wing Chun, enabling the practioner to perceive and deflect the opponent's force immediately as soon as contact with the opponent has been made. All the skills of a Wing Chun practitioner can be polished and honed through the medium of Chi Sao and to a certain extent all the drills found within the system can be given a live edge whilst being applied during the roll.
Learning Wing Chun is not a process of collecting techniques; it is a process of stripping away the unnecessary, until the true beauty of the form is revealed.