Has anyone had to use Wing-Chun for self-defense ?

marvin8

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If you train the

- northern CMA, you are good in open but bad in close.
- southern CMA, you are good in close but bad in open.

If you train both, you can be good on both. It's always good to look at one thing from different angles.

Also, it's good to look at from both a striker point of view and a grappler point of view. Should I knock my opponent out, or should I take my opponent down and then knock him out? It may take you 10 punches to knock your opponent down. Sometime a simple foot sweep on your opponent's leading leg can take him down. If you are a pure striker, when a foot sweep opportunity presents to you, you may not recognize it and a fight may last unnecessary long.

If you train MMA, you can get good in learning to integrate kicking, striking, throwing and locking. You also have opportunity to test your training in fights/competition.

It's good to understand attack and defense in all ranges. In MMA, high level grapplers still learn the striking art to integrate their wrestling. Striking art is not only about KO. It's about attacking, defending, bridging the gap from outside range to trapping/grappling and finishing. Foot sweep tends to be a lower percentage technique (e.g., smaller window) than kicking the lower leg, etc.
 
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Oily Dragon

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Good Points. Wing Chun came from the Red Boat Opera. Problem is that there we over 40 Opera troupes in Foshan . Troops gathered in winter and went their own ways in summer. Many members had martial skill. Wing Chun was not a religion then so 1 troop might combine more crane and another might cross with other arts based on the skills of those in that particular troupe. Then it spread but that led to the next problem .Some say their wing chun was learned from painted Face Kam for example. Question is which one there we over 40. Stories say Leung Yee Tai sang female roll others say he was a pole man. Both could be right and talking about different people. So this is a core reason there is no one format wing chun never had one strict beginning. Even the base art was not called wing chun it was a form called SLT.

Second reason is that wing chun developed as an elite martial art. Not elite as in skill but elite as in who was taught. It became the art of the business and upper middle class . It was very expensive to learn. Not like the large CLF or Hung Gar schools. For whatever reasons many wealthy business owners hired private wing chun instructors for their children. Most of these people never went on to teach and never wanted to so there was very little sharing across the different styles during the late 1800's early 20th century. Leung Jan and his students were the most widely known but Leung Jan never claimed he was the only source. The largest standerization period happened in the 1920's when Ng chun So was teaching at Yui Choi's brothers business and for the first time wing chun had its own gathering place where practioners hung out. This is when the 3 form platform became as close to a standard as there is although the composition of the 3 forms varies.
"Very expensive to learn".

This is a really important insight, because by expensive you mean cash, and in Chinese terms around the times we are talking cash was a string of copper coins, unless you were wealthy and had more precious metals or trade goods.

But earlier on, from the time Wing Chun draws its legends from, this kind of knowledge really came FREE from very select places: a monastery, a pilgrimage, a military trainer, and often a combination. Or maybe traveling artistic nomads, like you say, that sort of bridge that gap between the Ming-Qing era. By the 19th century, things were commercialized. By the 20th, national politics ruled.

But there is no cost in the early Shaolin traditions other than submitting to Buddhism. You could be as poor as dirt and still learn art forms that survive to this day.

But today 2023, this knowledge doesn't come cheap, does it. You need cash.

And I think, pet theory, this is why Wing Chun also dominates cinema today, out of all of the kung fu styles.

But it wasn't always that way. To this date, the Hung Ga Kuen still dominates historical cinema. I forget the exact number but more than 100 movies about Wong Fei Hung, but a fraction of that with Ip Man Wing Chun has made, money wise, boat loads at the box office.
 
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Oily Dragon

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If you train the

- northern CMA, you are good in open but bad in close.
- southern CMA, you are good in close but bad in open.
This is a dualism I don't think is accurate, it's more of a folk wisdom. And often wrong, depending on who you listen to.

There is plenty of "northern" CMA in southern CMA. And styles in the south didn't stay there, they made their way back north. They didn't make the movie "Once Upon a Time in Southern China".

The Hung Kuen saber forms contain tornado kicks. All 5 southern family styles contain Henan Shaolin training, especially in the form of Qigong.

The only thing that really makes them "southern" is geography and time.
 

marvin8

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Women's UFC Strawweight champion Zhang Weili talks about her CMA background, feelings about the current state of CMA & MMA in China and their shared futures.

 

Mider

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My question is what is considered training other arts?

If I was putting myself out as a professional rather than just a hobbyist I would certainly have put the time in to get a BJJ black belt or similar catch wrestling skills.

As a wing chun Hobbyist when I was young I wanted to learn how to fight with wing chun. To that end I placed adds in newspapers and the like looking for others to spar with. I went to boxing gyms to spar against boxers and would go to other martial art schools and gyms looking for others like me that wanted to learn how to fight or prove how good they were with their chosen art.

I sparred with anyone that would spar no matter what skill level or attitude including bikers,violent criminals that did time, black belts of various arts and was even lucky enough to get in the ring with professional boxers. Most folks were very cool and after we smacked each other we would stop and explain what we just did to each other. I learned a lot.

I think I have a decent understanding of how to make wing chun work however from my pov I never studied another art.
I think some guys can excel at many arts but some can excel at one and use it in many situations

whats sad is Ive mentioned many Sifus who do what youre doing and its ignored. The art of WC is trashed because thats what many look to do
 

hunschuld

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If you train the

- northern CMA, you are good in open but bad in close.
- southern CMA, you are good in close but bad in open.

If you train both, you can be good on both. It's always good to look at one thing from different angles.

Also, it's good to look at from both a striker point of view and a grappler point of view. Should I knock my opponent out, or should I take my opponent down and then knock him out? It may take you 10 punches to knock your opponent down. Sometime a simple foot sweep on your opponent's leading leg can take him down. If you are a pure striker, when a foot sweep opportunity presents to you, you may not recognize it and a fight may last unnecessary long.

I can only reply from a WC pov. I am not qualified to speak about other CMA and this is the WC part of the forum so I like to stay focused on WC.
I understand your points and they are valid however while they may apply to WC they should not. WC was not designed as a primary striking art. If it has to be labeled it started as a standing grappling art. Using your terms it covers close and open, It has sweeps and throws etc. The usage is in the Kuen Kuit. The problem is few actually follow them. As WC evolved in the 20th century the striking was emphasized and the other aspects were left out or reserved for just a few.

This leads to your awareness issue. If you are not training against foot sweeps you will not be ready for one when it comes
 

Kung Fu Wang

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If you are not training against foot sweeps you will not be ready for one when it comes
The "roundhouse kick" is another good example. Whenever your opponent switches sides from uniform stance into mirror stance, your back leg roundhouse kick can always kick at his chest. If you don't train it, when the opportunity arrives, you may not recognize it and let that opportunity to pass by.

 

hunschuld

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The "roundhouse kick" is another good example. Whenever your opponent switches sides from uniform stance into mirror stance, your back leg roundhouse kick can always kick at his chest. If you don't train it, when the opportunity arrives, you may not recognize it and let that opportunity to pass by.


Yes, totally agree. That is why when I was younger I made great efforts to find people from other styles to spar with. If you never have faced a round kick fired with intent you will be very unhappy the first time it happens
 

marvin8

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I can only reply from a WC pov. I am not qualified to speak about other CMA and this is the WC part of the forum so I like to stay focused on WC.
I understand your points and they are valid however while they may apply to WC they should not. WC was not designed as a primary striking art. If it has to be labeled it started as a standing grappling art. Using your terms it covers close and open, It has sweeps and throws etc. The usage is in the Kuen Kuit. The problem is few actually follow them. As WC evolved in the 20th century the striking was emphasized and the other aspects were left out or reserved for just a few.
I believe KFW meant close and long distance. And that, Wing Chun is a close distance art, not long.

Excerpt from the posted Zhang Weili video at 13:11...

Zhang Weili: If you want traditional CMAists to go fight in todays MMA and combat events, they will most likely not be successful and lose. On the other hand, if some MMA fighters studied some essential aspects of traditional CMAs like its method of issuing force. Its footwork. I think it will be very beneficial and implementing it, finding ways to combine these traditional methods in combat sport. This is good. One cannot say these practices are not good. Thats inaccurate. Its ideology is not the same as MMA. Each style of CMA has its own ideology as to how it advances, attacks, etc., although often these concepts arent implemented. And many people simply practice a form of exercise. I mean take for example Tony Ferguson and Anderson Silva. They have utilized Wing Chun methods in the cage in MMA. Their use of fast elbows connected extremely fast. Also, their kicks are like Wing Chun kicks too and they come out suddenly. So, they [MMAists] have taken the essence from CMA styles and combined it in MMA. They didnt say: This is the best. Im not interested in anything else. I think this mentality is incorrect.

Byron: I agree fully匈n the past, China used to have many leitai matches. Many CMA stylists used to participate

Why do you think Wing Chun or CMA stylists are not found using trapping (e.g., lap sau [grabbing hand]) in fights? While, fighters in combat sports are seen using simple trapping,
 

Cynik75

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What criteria have to be met to be called "good teacher" in Wing Chun?
It is easy with combat sports - you are a good teacher when your students win more (matches/fights) than lose.
The same with many other human activities. For example students of good math teacher can solve more complicated math problems than students of average or weak math teacher.
What is the measure stick for Wing Chun?
 

Oily Dragon

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It is easy with combat sports - you are a good teacher when your students win more (matches/fights) than lose.
I don't agree with this. A great teacher's best students can still lose fights.

Lost fights are part of the learning process, and there are plenty of teachers and students out there great at combat sports with so-so "records".
The same with many other human activities. For example students of good math teacher can solve more complicated math problems than students of average or weak math teacher.
What is the measure stick for Wing Chun?
A strong understanding of a blend of several different Shaolin animal styles.

Terminology is important. Some Wing Chun teachers seem to only know a few technique names in Cantonese. Compare them to someone who knows hundreds, and whole phrases, and where they belong.
 
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Gerry Seymour

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What criteria have to be met to be called "good teacher" in Wing Chun?
It is easy with combat sports - you are a good teacher when your students win more (matches/fights) than lose.
The same with many other human activities. For example students of good math teacher can solve more complicated math problems than students of average or weak math teacher.
What is the measure stick for Wing Chun?
There are a lot of ways to measure (either conceptually or quantitatively) the instrructor. Wins is only one of them. Some instructors are very good at helping struggling students learn, but may not be as good at helping those who learn easily. They're probably less likely to have a lot of wins in a sport, since the people who learn quickly probably have the best shot at winning (since they'll reach any given level of competenece somewhat faster).

It also matters what you decide to measure on. Some folks are better at helping folks learn how to learn, than they are at teaching the specific art. Are they good instructors? Depends what you measure. It'd be fair to say they're better instructors than they are [insert martial art] instructors.

I've always been better at helping experienced students progress than I am at getting students started. I did my best when I had instructors around me who were better at helping beginners. Not sure how we'd measure/rate my "goodness".

It probably also matters what the students want, and how good the instructor is at finding the right students.
 

Gerry Seymour

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I don't agree with this. A great teacher's best students can still lose fights.

Lost fights are part of the learning process, and there are plenty of teachers and students out there great at combat sports with so-so "records".

A strong understanding of a blend of several different Shaolin animal styles.

Terminology is important. Some Wing Chun teachers seem to only know a few technique names in Cantonese. Compare them to someone who knows hundreds, and whole phrases, and where they belong.
I'm not sure I'd agree an instructor's value is necessarily tied to use of Cantonese terminology. If somewhere along the line, a line of WC starts using English names for most of the techniques, those names are what the instructors in that line need to know.
 

Holmejr

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Sometimes I think these conversations confuse self defense with sport. I see many videos of staged techniques and mma competitions. I thought the OP question was about using WC in a real life self defense situation. That was 9 pages ago. Ive only used my martial arts skills in a few, non life threatening situations. One semi serious altercation was when I was in my mid twenties, someone tried to hit me with a beer bottle from his back hand. I blocked his arm well and move with his motion. The bottle wrapped around my right hand and nicked my brow. With my left hand I snaked his arm (wing lock?). I moved my right hand to the back of his head and planted his face in the planter box that I was initially sitting on. I asked him if he wanted to continue. By that time his rage was gone and he said no. I let him up and we shook hands. I was training at Inosantos Kali Academy at that time. Long time ago.
 
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