Wing Chun

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Wing Chun Kung Fu at the Desert Wing Chun

Wing Chun Kung Fu, also spelled Ving Tsun Gong Fu, is a Chinese fighting system that emphasizes close range combat. The style focuses on sensitivity training. Sensitivity is the ability to “feel” the opponent’s energy and redirect its force. Wing Chun, first and foremost, strives to be a practical fighting system. Wing Chun practitioners are not concerned with modifying the art to become a competitive ring sport martial art. There are no Wing Chun Tournaments. The Wing Chun student takes a very logical and scientific approach to fighting. Wing Chun is not just a collection of different techniques but rather a way or method of training that uses a core set of guiding reflexes and principles.

These ideas and principles allows Wing Chun to be a integrated fighting system while still allowing freedom of movement done with expression and refinement.

Being able to “freestyle” while constantly adhering to Wing Chun’s principles is the ultimate goal of all its practitioners. Bruce Lee, one of the most famous martial artists of all time, used Wing Chun as the basis of the art he created and named Jeet Kune Do.

Wing Chun has many characteristics that when put together set it apart and make it a unique and beautiful art. One of these characteristics is that All Wing Chun techniques strive to be effective, efficient and most of all simple. There are no movements that are superfluous in nature.

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What makes Wing Chun Effective

Range

Wing Chun is a close range system. Ideal fighting distance for the Wing Chun practitioner is fist, and elbow range. The style emphasizes being able to stick to your opponent and keep the distance consistent at all times.

Power

Wing Chun values speed over power. A weak fast punch that is too fast to be avoided is better than a powerful slow punch that can be dodged or deflected.

Theory

Attacking the opponent’s centerline whenever possible is another philosophy of the system. The human body’s most vulnerable striking targets, such as the eyes, throat and groin, are considered to be on or near this line.

Distance

Most striking done in Wing Chun Kung Fu is linear in nature. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line. The shorter the distance your hands have to travel, the faster you are. For this reason Wing Chun masters try to move as little as possible, but to achieve the maximum effect.

Efficiency

Most styles block and then strike or step and then strike in a one – two fashion. The Wing Chun student whenever possible uses both arms to block and strike in one movement. This is called ‘Simultaneous’ attack and defense and is twice as fast structurally than their opponents.

Relaxation

The essence of Wing Chun, from its inception, has been in the development of soft, yet penetrating, force. All the movements, without exception, can be performed effectively by a small woman against a larger, stronger opponent. This kind of soft, feminine force does not come from hard external training. It is acquired through repetitive, precise positioning of the body. The positions and techniques are always practiced in a calm, relaxed manner. While the process to achieve this kind of force should be emphatically soft and relaxed, the end result for anyone on the receiving end of Wing Chun can be quite destructive. Ask a Wing Chun practitioner if “dit da jow” is used in Wing Chun training, and he’s likely to reply, “Yes we have dit da jow; it’s for the other guy!”- from Like the Snap of a Whip! – The Soft Force of Wing Chun by Kris Eckert, with Kenneth Chung

Wing Chun as a system will always attempt to teach the reason behind the movement or technique. Thus students of Wing Chun avoid “going through the motions” without ever learning how to apply them in a real life situation. Also, the Wing Chun practitioner does not need to be taught any set, specific sequences of moves by their instructor. Instead the principals of Wing Chun Kung Fu guide the student and permit them to flow and adapt to any situation spontaneously as they occur in the moment.