Karate and Wing Chun/Tsun?

Discussion in 'Wing Chun' started by geezer, Apr 25, 2009.

  1. geezer

    geezer Grandmaster

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    I just finished wading through the last bits of the Aikido vs. Wing Chun thread and noted that several people posting also study some ryu of Karate (or similar art) as well as WC. Now many of us study other arts or do some cross training. But most of the folks I know do either Karate or WC/WT. Few continue to train in both as there are a lot of really fundamental differences between these two arts. If you train both, what is the benefit you see? And, how do you handle the contradictions in approach?
     
  2. geezer

    geezer Grandmaster

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    Hellooo...? Anybody there...? Kaaa...mon..., Cuong Nhuuuu...kaaa? ....K-man? This thread is so empty, I think I hear an echo!

    Ok you Chunners who also do Karate. I'm callin' you out. Karate is bad for WC/WT. It is too rigid, and teaches a contradictory way of moving and using energy. Like blocking rather than deflecting. Like two-count block and counters, rather than one-count simultaneous defense and counterattacks (tan-da, gaun-da, punch to deflect punch, etc.). And, although it contributes longer range techniques such as long kicks to your toolbox, the way Karate kicks are chambered, snapped out and then withdrawn pulls energy back into your body. This contradicts the forward pressure trained in WC/WT, where every kick is a step, and every step can be a kick. So, training Karate style kicks will create problems for your WC/WT...especially if you go up against a practitioner who has good chi-ghurk or sticking leg technique.

    There, I've made an opinionated *** of myself. Now prove me wrong.
     
  3. KamonGuy2

    KamonGuy2 Master of Arts

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    Didn't even see this post!!

    I train karate primarily for fitness. I used to do pure Kyukoshinkai karate (BKK) with Steve Arneil and in all honesty that would have been very difficult to train alongside wing chun, because it had a very rigid and 'hard' way of doing things

    The art I currently study is a form of Kyokushinkai karate, but is more flexible with regards to sparring and movement. Although we still have to train fixed movements and positions, these do help my wing chun - developing both a soft and hard version of movements

    Karate is a very contrary style to wing chun and that is mainly due to the difference in cultures of the originating countries

    Karate is very disciplined, has big lunging movements and has a strong presence about it

    Wing chun is a little more relaxed and 'smoother'

    Both styles are great. And generally good martial art practitioners can make them work together.
     
  4. geezer

    geezer Grandmaster

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    Good practitioners eh? Well that's my problem. I have my hands full trying to internalize the feel of WT. I really couldn't switch from one to the other at will. OK, maybe in drills and forms. But what happens when you spar? I'd fall into the stances and positions that were most instinctive or deeply trained. I do successfully cross-train with a style of escrima, but it's an eclectic system that allows me to incorporate my WT instincts. So Kamon, what happens when you free-spar? Do you ever find yourself falling into WC mode when doing Karate?
     
  5. CuongNhuka

    CuongNhuka Senior Master

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    Calling me out by name, hu? Thats cool. I wanted to wait until someone else posted something I could respond to. But, I realised I had nothing to say. I really don't combine the two very much, so I'll just bow out and leave.
     
  6. geezer

    geezer Grandmaster

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    Actually, you just did say something relevent. You said that you keep the two approaches separate. Do you use them at different ranges? For example, Karate at a longer range and then switch to a Wing Chun approach when you get in close? I could see how that might work.
     
  7. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

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    Sorry Geez, I must have been sleeping. I do that every night. [​IMG]
    I haven't trained WC/WT at all. Have played with a few guys who have and because of the aikido have no problem adapting. I have been looking for the Ju side of Goju for some time and believe I have found it in the Aikido. I think that the softness obviously practised in the WC/WT is probably the same as was present in the original Goju developed by Miyagi but lost in the century since. So I see no contradiction, but then I can get on with nearly everyone. [​IMG]
    I don't teach hard blocks any more. I believe that all the hard 'blocks' in Goju are preceeded by a deflection and the block is actually the strike. So my interpretation of Goju has similar principles to aikido which absorbs and changes the direction of the attack before delivering the atemi. From what I have seen of WC/WT this would be similar as well. Therefore, for me, I reckon cross training would be beneficial. The thing that would stop me training both on a permanent basis is that both are 'complete' systems to my mind. Goju, as mainly practised, needs to be massaged a bit, hence some aikido or jujutsu to keep us in the picture. :asian:
     
  8. CuongNhuka

    CuongNhuka Senior Master

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    You cann't turn Muscle memory on and off. I make no real attempt to combine Wing Chun and karate. The closest is adding karate kicks in sparring.
     
  9. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    well, I'm not really a "karate" guy, but I'm a kenpo guy. I guess that's somewhat related to karate but I'd never quite classify them together.

    I don't train wing chun much anymore, mostly I just practice the forms once in a while so I don't forget them. I haven't had a chance to train with other wing chun people, nor do any chi-sao for a few years now. Mostly it's just that I've overloaded my plate and don't have time to fit it in anymore. Sacrifices had to be made.

    However, I did find that elements of my kenpo would give me insights to my wing chun, and vice-versa. I had several lightbulb moments that way. Just seeing something similar but from a different approach, helped me understand something that might have been a bit foggy in my head.

    My kenpo instructor has mentioned having similar experiences when he studied Danzan Ryu jujitsu. It helped him better grasp certain elements of his kenpo.
     
  10. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    I agree with this. I do not combine the different arts that I practice, at least not deliberately in practice. I practice and train them separately, and I have no interest in trying to combine them into one mixed super-art. I don't think that usually works out particularly well.

    However, in actual use, things have a way of blending when necessary, and everything that you train does affect everything else that you train. That is unavoidable.
     
  11. KamonGuy2

    KamonGuy2 Master of Arts

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    Very much so. And the great thing about the club I train in is that they allow it. Like I have said before, under certain conditions, certain arts work. In a sparring situation where you are meant to 'play', you can't obviously use intense wing chun because you would be hurting your opponent. Of course you could tone it down, but it is much easier to use other moves or other arts

    In a boxing ring with 14 or 16oz gloves on, with set rules, facing a light footed boxer, it is difficult to spar using wing chun

    That said however, you can still use aspects of wing chun in anything you do. And this is what happens when I do karate free sparring. I am very used to 'hunting' my opponents centre line and use very quick hands. This is great for blocking your opponent. My pak saos do tend to appear quite a lot. Many karate guys also have a habit of turning their back a lot which allows me to close in very easily

    But you will find that whatever arts you do, things crossover. This can be a very good thing
     
  12. Tensei85

    Tensei85 Master Black Belt

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    Well at one time for a long period (around 6 years) I trained Karate, TKD, Wing Chun, Judo, J.J., and B.J.J.

    I felt that the benefits that I gained were I became more well rounded, understanding of Karate mechanics and Wing Chun mechanics I realized they differed quite a bit but I had to take them for what they are and not over complicate them or get lost in translation. I feel it gave me a better understanding instead of a more sheltered knowledge. (as in being in my own cliche thinking that Wing Chun is invincible, by the way it is
    : )

    All kidding aside, some of the drawbacks were time constraints.

    I was practicing probably 6-7 days a week with training probably in each around 2 days a given week for probably 2 hours a session give or take.

    So my understanding was better, but my general skill in each was lacking in some departments. Gross motor skills were at times a challenge as well, generally the Judo I was the least adept.

    As time progressed I found myself naturally inclement to one or two styles which i focused on for more of a full time basis.

    So I would say if you have the opportunity to or are studying Karate and Wing Chun or whatever I would take advantage of the situation even now today I wouldn't trade the information I gained for anything.

    Even though I'm just studying Wing Chun & Tong Long Quan right now well with Taiji & Bagua on the side and a little dash of Tong Bei or whatever else lol.

    One last point as was brought out before I feel that "fighting" also is a must you can generally adapt what you've learned into these type of environments and over time things become less clouded. (given you begin to understand your own game) I feel some things can only be learned through fighting.

    Hope this helps in some form.
     
  13. qwksilver61

    qwksilver61 Brown Belt

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    Coming out of Kwon Jae Hwa's traditional Tae Kwon Do,no.....I would not recommend mixing the two...there was a lot that I had to un-learn,it just does'nt work that way.....two cents......
     
  14. BradderzH

    BradderzH White Belt

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    I've recently left Karate behind after becoming dissatisfied with my club. I've started training at a Wing Chun club to see how it goes so I can't really speak from exprience yet, but I have no intention of trying to mix the two. I have noticed similar concepts alredy though. Maybe someone could make it work.

    As a side note, Peter Consterdine is a 9th Dan in Karate but also practiced Wing Chun for many years. Here's a quote from an article that I'll link below:

    "It’s necessary with the Chinese systems to extract some broad principles if you’re going to try and incorporate elements into an expanded, Karate-based martial art. Wing Chun and Hsing I are very good additions for Karate people to blister on to their existing foundation."

    ‘Shotokan Way’ Interview | Peter Consterdine.com

    Really old thread I know, but hope that helps!
     

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