The Tools of Wing Chun
by Michel Boulet
Many practice Wing Chun but are not really sure about how
they would be able to use it in a defense situation. Some tend to worry about
certain scenarios and they look in other arts for answers. Many also feel that
Wing Chun doesn’t produce enough power or even doesn’t look mean enough so, they
concentrate on the most external aspects of the art, turning it into a hard
karate like style. This is a common occurrence nowadays. People often will
prefer to please their ego by doing something that makes them feel tough. They
forget that there is always somebody stronger and tougher in the neighborhood.
Wing Chun, is clearly not for everybody. The initial stages
are not hard to develop but if a practitioner wants to go deep, he has to show
some commitment and be confident about the real tools of the trade.
What are these tools?
First there is the stance: Yee Gee Kim Yeung Ma. It has to
be patiently developed through Siu Lim Tao, the first set of the system. It
produces a very stable and solid body structure that supports the hand
techniques. Of course it looks funny and some Wing Chun circles sometimes
criticize its role but it is the most important basic tool of the system.
Then, there are the three hand forms: Siu Lim Tao, Chun Kiu
and Biu Gee. There, technique and relaxation join the basic stance to develop
the power particular to Wing Chun. This power may lack the external appearance
to impress some onlooker but it is still very real. This is not something that
can come in a short time of practice.
Chi Sau, Is some kind of laboratory into witch a student
will begin using the moves found in the forms while facing the attacks and
defenses of a training partner. It is there that the flow is developed. It is
there also that he will begin to discover how a proper relaxation is important.
The old “Receive, follow” principle will show it’s meaning. The straight line
and centerline theories will show their practicalities. It is an endless
practice if the student is sincere enough. But this is not combat yet! Chi Sau
gives a particular skill providing it is done according to the right way but how do
we really use all of this?
The Mok Jong or Wing Chun dummy is usually the place where
the student finally gets his answers. They were partially answered in Chum Kiu
but now; things are at last starting to figure for our student. Angles of
defense and attack, how to apply the power while deflecting attacks, how to
strike properly, are covered A thousand ideas can be found in the dummy
exercise. If the learning schedule was well planned, the student will be able to
apply all his Wing Chun attributes with ease on this training device. If not, he
will have to go back to find out what is missing with the help of his Sifu.
Once a certain level is obtained on the dummy, the student
is ready to spar with his schoolmates and test his knowledge.
Yip Man ->
Ho Kam Ming ->
Augustine Fong ->
Patrick Gordon ->
About the Author: Michel Boulet believes that the real mastery of Wing Chun is a
life long endeavor, he maintains a humble and open attitude toward his art
and does his best in giving his students as much personal attentions as
possible, keeping nothing for himself.
Copyright (c) 2006 the Wing Chun Archive and
Michel Boulet 4/24/06