Wing Chun- " Eternal Spring Time"
Wing Chun is a Chinese martial art derived from Southern Style Gung Fu. Wing Chun emphasizes on close quarters combat, utilizing grappling, trapping( which I will explain in an on going series), kicking, and punching which all revolve around the notion of realistic and practical combat. It is one of the only styles Gung Fu to utilize straight punches like a boxer's jab in contrast to a vast majority of styles which used indirect strikes that generally resemble an animal. The art of Wing Chun also stood the test of time as many other equally as potent styles of Gung Fu disappeared off the face of the planet due to their refusal to evolve and share their knowledge. Although identified as a minor style at first, it soon reached popularity by Bruce Lee who incorporated the concepts of Wing Chun into his own martial art of Jeet Fan Gung Fu. However, the most notable master of Wing Chun, who also taught Bruce Lee the art, is none other than Yip Man. His contributions, undisputed skill, and commitment to preserving the art solidified the presence of Wing Chun among Gung Fu practitioners and paved the way for Wing Chun to be recognized as a prevalent martial art of this century. Although this does not relate to Bruce Lee directly, Bruce's training on Wing Chun under the teaching of grand master Yip Man( http://thetkdkid1.blogspot.com/2013/11/yip-man-origins-of-bruce-lee.html) gave Bruce the foundation in creating his own style of Jeet Fan Gung Fu and also developed his fighter's mentality of being aqueous in combat. Many of Bruce's moves that he displayed in his movies, besides his awesome kicks, directly come from the six forms of Wing Chun. I will discuss the connection that Bruce Lee had with Wing Chun in later installments of this on going series. This does not mean I will stop posting new volumes of the JKD method for dummies. I am just putting it on a haitus for a period of time.
* Bruce Lee and his master Yip Man engage in a exercise called sticky hands to improve and practice transitions from one technique to the next as well as trapping. This exercise is primarily designed to relax the arm joints to allow fluid, non stiff movement when applying techniques. Also, the exercise allow the practice of trapping which redirects a strike to allow the practioner to counter-act.
A closer look on the stance.
The Gee Kim Yeung Ma Stance used commonly in Wing Chun. In this picture, Bruce Lee positions himself in this stance in the movie Enter The Dragon as he is forced to fight O'Hara( played by Robert Wall) in a game of reflexes.
The status of Wing Chun increased even further when the Ip Man and Ip Man 2 films were released. The biographical action films on Yip Man showcased the sheer brutality of the discipline as well as expressing it's traditional roots.The effectiveness of Wing Chun was challenged twice in both movies when Yip Man was pitted against ten Karate black belts( he had to fight them all at once) in the first film and a notorious British boxer with a keen resentment towards Chinese people. In both of the fantasized fights( as they have not been confirmed), Yip Man managed to prevail no matter how high the stakes were. Ironically, these film's violent approach towards capturing the true essence of authentic Wing Chun contradict the philosophy and morals of the art itself as Wing Chun share many similarities with the soft technique oriented/ grappling martial arts of Japan. Wing Chun was actually invented by a Chinese woman holding the name of Yim Wing-Chun during the Qing Qynasty. Like Judo and Aikido, Wing Chun emphasizes on redirecting your opponents energy and use minimal force through small. controlled movements and perfect positioning. The general purpose behind the creation of WIng Chun is so that weaker people could defend themselves within striking means. The eccentric combination of brutal techniques and graceful qualities makes Wing Chun a martial art to be reckoned with.
Here is a quick fact biography on Wing Chun, courtesy of Wikipedia:
A wing chun front kick (right) against a turning kick. This illustrates the principles of centerline and simultaneous attack and defence.
|Also known as||Wing Chun, Wing Tsun, Ving Tsun|
|Country of origin||China|
|Famous practitioners||Sum Nung, Yip Man,Bruce Lee|