Differences in Western Boxing and Wing Chun

Discussion in 'Boxing/Kickboxing' started by wingchun100, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. wingchun100

    wingchun100 Senior Master

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    I was watching some shadow boxing videos to get tips on how to create a shadow boxing routine for myself, when I noticed something in one of the videos. Now I don't know how good the boxer was, and I am no boxing expert myself, so take all of this with a grain of salt.

    The gentleman was demonstrating how to do the jab with a forward step. From what I was observing, it looked like he threw the punch at the same time his foot came down. Then he also slid his rear foot up, so that his feet maintained the same distance apart.

    My main focus here is on the step-punch part. In Wing Chun, we step and then pull ourselves forward with the front foot while throwing the punch. (We think of it as being pulled by the front, rather than pushing off from the back.) The purpose of doing this is to get our entire body/stance behind the blow.

    I'm not sure I am explaining the differences properly. It might very well be something that has to be demonstrated side by side, rather than explained in words. Or at least, the visual could AID the words.

    Anyway, the reason I bring it up is because it struck me as two different approaches. It made me wonder if I was observing and judging the Western Boxer's approach properly. If so, is this standard for how Western boxers punch?

    And if it IS standard, I wonder: what are the pros and cons of each way of hitting? I wonder what the Western boxer would say is a pro of doing it their way, and what they'd say a con of the Wing Chun approach is.
     
  2. DanT

    DanT Black Belt

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    It really depends on what type of wing chun you're doing. For example in my lineage we push off the back leg, keep the weight distribution even between legs.

    -The fighting strategies are slightly different, with Wing Chun emphasizing fighting on the outside gate, but boxing emphasizing coming up the middle more.

    -The stance in boxing keeps the back heel off the ground. The wing chun stance emphasizes both feet planted on the ground when engaging.

    -in boxing the shoulders are up to protect the jaw, in wing chun the shoulders are down to keep the spine erect.

    -the punch in wing chun emphasizes keeping the elbow down (low elbow power).

    -wing chun emphasizes elbows when in close, boxing favours hooks and uppercuts.

    These are all based on my experiences.
     
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  3. wingchun100

    wingchun100 Senior Master

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    -The stance in boxing keeps the back heel off the ground.

    I haven't noticed, but is this true even when a boxer is in close?

    -Wing chun emphasizes elbows when in close, boxing favours hooks and uppercuts.

    Yes and no. I believe that the double lan sao with pivoting in Chum Kiu could be interpreted as hook punches. Heck, even the motion of pulling the double fak sao back in during Sil Lum Tao could be interpreted as a hook. (Then again, that is my humble opinion.)

    Also, are uppercuts really favored all that much? I watched through quite a few videos and fights. Seems like it is the least used punch, but again that is only from what I have observed.
     
  4. CB Jones

    CB Jones Senior Master

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    i don't understand how you can put your weight behind a punch if your front leg is pulling your back leg forward.

    Seems inefficient. Pushing from your rear leg make more sense to generate power and explosiveness.
     
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  5. DanT

    DanT Black Belt

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    Yes, the truth is from a kinesiology perspextive, the legs are not good pullers, they are good pushers. When you want to move a table, your legs push, even when walking backwards. Try hooking your ankle around the table leg and pull, not easy right? Even when you walk backwards, your legs don't pull you, they push. Although I understand the idea of the pulling footwork, in MY OPINION, based on my knowledge of anatomy and physiology, it's an inferior method TO ME.

    I can only speak for my wing chun, but I do emphasize elbows when in close. I know that there are hook punches, and I know what motions you're talking about, but I prefer elbows. I have over 12 hooking motions in Shaolin so I'll just use those if I'm going to hook.
     
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  6. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    Its not "pulling", its a weight shift.

     
  7. CB Jones

    CB Jones Senior Master

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    I'm just going by what was described

     
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  8. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    Ah! Gotcha! My apologies! Didn't follow the context close enough and thought you were referring to boxing! But yeah...the way some Wing Chun lineages keep the weight on the rear leg, through the lead leg out and then use it to pull the body forward has never made a lot of sense to me.
     
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  9. Martial D

    Martial D Master of Arts

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    It's actually quite powerful. As the front leg pulls, the back leg shifts forward, with the body erect and the punch coming vertical from the sternum. It's more of a push until the loose snapping punch is factored in. You get the snap from the arm punch, driven forward by the shifting body mass.

    I guess it's hard to describe, but I can fold a bag with it from <2 feet away.

    With boxing, the power comes from pivoting on the front leg, so you can generate more power from angles but from close range boxing straight punches are actually not as powerful as WC punches, as boxing straight take distance to push and rotate.

    Your milage may vary.
     
  10. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Yeah I don't know why someone would do that.

    Maybe it gets the front foot out a bit quicker?
     
  11. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Boxing does short straight punches. lead rights tend to follow straight line principles. these get a bit stretchy. But still.

     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2017
  12. Martial D

    Martial D Master of Arts

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    I know that. I'm no Muhammed Ali, but I am a student of the game for some years.

    I am only saying that with my current skillset, I can generate more power from 'phonebooth' range with a WC straight punch than with a boxing cross.
     
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  13. DaveB

    DaveB 3rd Black Belt

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    As long as the body is still moving forward at the point of impact it will add significant power. Timing this element of the strike is the crux and point of failure for both versions of the technique.
     
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  14. TMA17

    TMA17 Brown Belt

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    Lately I’ve been interested in the history behind martial arts more so than anything else.

    I assume it’s hard to really know where boxing started. Some accounts trace it back to Greece. I just read something I was not aware of:

    “China has a centuries-old boxing history, yet it was rather different from boxing today.

    The history of China's boxing dates back 3,700 years, when China was in the Late Shang Dynasty, and the sport was one of the subjects for military training conducted by aristocrats.

    By the Han Dynasty (206 BC - AD 220), boxing became the mandatory subject for soldiers.

    Unlike boxing of the early-times in western countries which was a mixture of both the boxing and wrestling, boxing in China was apparently distinct from wrestling as early as 3.7 thousand years ago.”
     
  15. TMA17

    TMA17 Brown Belt

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    *duplicate post
     
  16. marques

    marques Master Black Belt

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    Yep. I think the power in boxing comes more from inertia (and body rotation) than from the ground (as in WC).
    I am no boxer, but I noticed sometimes my rear foot was out of the ground at the moment of the impact and the punch was still powerful. If there was no base, it must be inertia.
     
  17. Martial D

    Martial D Master of Arts

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    Naw, in boxing most of the power comes from the ground. A solid base is pretty critical.
     
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  18. marques

    marques Master Black Belt

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    Look Mayweather in the video above. First right punch, at the moment of the impact, only the toe is on the ground. The base still seems to me a bit more important in WC than boxing. Perhaps I am wrong...
     
  19. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    I remember a JMA using this at a seminar I attended (Yanagi-ryu). It made sense from a conceptual standpoint (to avoid jumping), but not from a literal standpoint.
     
  20. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    But realize that the Chinese words for martial arts was often westernized to "boxing" when historians wrote about it. So in this context, "boxing" just means the same as "Kung Fu". It doesn't imply western-style sport boxing or anything really like it.

    Now, as far as the history of it....its long been thought that martial arts started in India and was taken to China. I've heard of no connection between the martial arts of India and Greece. Likely every culture has had a pretty sophisticated martial art at some point. People think of the "headhunters of Borneo" as primitive tribesman when in truth they practiced a pretty sophisticated from of Silat.
     
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