Kung Fu?

wowzer77

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Hi, I'm new to these forums and seeking some advice. My ultimate goal as a martial artist is to become a Jeet Kune Do expert. But I don't want to take a formal class for it. Instead, I want to study a variety of other martial arts and combine all their best aspects to create my own interperatation of Jeet Kune Do. I currently have experience in some great defense drills, basic kicking and punching techniques, and some breathing techniques...In a few months I am starting Wing Chun classes to improve my speed with my hands/arms. I have heard that the northern styles of kung fu focus on the legs and kicking, and I've been wondering which style would be best for me. I've heard of Northern Praying Mantis and Mei Hua Quan. Any advice for which style I'm looking for? I've looked on Wikipedia and seen that there are MANY kung fu styles. Just trying to narrow things down a little. Thanks in advance.
 

Drac

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I believe that you need formal classes just to have a base to build on , meaning a good working knowledge of strikes, blocks and movement..That's my opinion for what its worth...Once again welcome to MT...
 

7starmantis

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Welcome to MT. Its an oversimplification to say Northern styles focus on kicks. I practice northern praying mantis and while we do use alot of footwork and kicks, its really not the focus. Also, just to clarify, all the kicks are low, not high jumping spinning kicks to the noggin. If your practicing WC you should learn good low kicks.

7sm
 

Kensai

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7starmantis said:
Welcome to MT. Its an oversimplification to say Northern styles focus on kicks. I practice northern praying mantis and while we do use alot of footwork and kicks, its really not the focus. Also, just to clarify, all the kicks are low, not high jumping spinning kicks to the noggin. If your practicing WC you should learn good low kicks.

7sm

Agree with this 100%. Also with what Drac said. It's all well and good to try and create your own concept art, but if you're going to "draw together" bits from different arts, you need to have an understanding of them in the first place. BL was able to do what he did, due to a not unreasonable level of knowledge of the MA.
 

Jade Tigress

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First of all ~ Welcome to Martial Talk. :)



Drac said:
I believe that you need formal classes just to have a base to build on , meaning a good working knowledge of strikes, blocks and movement..That's my opinion for what its worth...Once again welcome to MT...


I agree. It's important to get some "formal" training. It will take many years of hard training in multiple arts before you will have the skill and knowledge necessary to develop your own style. I wish you luck in your journey.

This board is a great source of information to help you get started in finding the training you desire to accomplish your goal. Investigate the CMA forums here and keep us posted on your wing chun classes. :)
 

Flying Crane

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Very few people are able to successfully accomplish what you are envisioning. In my opinion, you would be better off just training solidly in one or two arts for many years and getting very good at them. Eventually if you are able to take them in your own direction that is fine, but don't even think about being able to do that for a long (LONG LONG) time.
 

still learning

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Hello, You may also want to look into a Kempo/Kenpo schools around your area. Kempo/Kenpo. Check it out anyway.

My suggestion is start with Judo first learn how to fall and throw(3 areas-throws,grappling,chokes) ...branch out to other martial arts..get the ground work first....Aloha
 

JBrainard

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wowzer77 said:
I want to study a variety of other martial arts and combine all their best aspects to create my own interperatation of Jeet Kune Do.

Very cool idea. You will have to build a great deal of martial knowledge, though.
 

bladenosh

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Jujutsu is a great background to add to your abilities. Many fights end up on the ground, and to know submissions is a great way to end it, or turn the tides. One thing UFC taught us is the amazing abilities of leverage in jujutsu. Kung Fu is very tied up into tradition and benign old philosophies. Although a beautiful art, perhaps not the best of fighting styles to study for effeciency. Wing Chun is quite effective and fast to learn. Dabbling all around is a great idea. I started in kickboxing, added elbows and knees... Then realized a need for jujutsu due to most fights going to the ground and strikes aren't quite as effective from your back. Fortunately, I learned the lesson of getting that into my arsenal fast; it has ended more fights than striking due to spontaneity in stand up.
 

7starmantis

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bladenosh said:
Kung Fu is very tied up into tradition and benign old philosophies. Although a beautiful art, perhaps not the best of fighting styles to study for effeciency.
bladenosh said:
Wing Chun is quite effective and fast to learn.

Eh? :idunno:
 

Kenpojujitsu3

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bladenosh said:
.....Kung Fu is very tied up into tradition and benign old philosophies. Although a beautiful art, perhaps not the best of fighting styles to study for effeciency. Wing Chun is quite effective and fast to learn....

Can I get a "Uuuuuuuuuuuh What?"
 

Kensai

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Kenpojujitsu3 said:
Can I get a "Uuuuuuuuuuuh What?"

I'll 3rd that. I think it's a helluva misnomer to believe that ALL kung fu styles are only theatrical, sure there's a lot of performance, but I think it would be wrong to believe that there's nothing of value under that.

I'll also not mention the fact that Wing Chun is actually...umm...kung fu also. :whip:
 

stone_dragone

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Again, greetings wowzer.

wowzer77 said:
My ultimate goal as a martial artist is to become a Jeet Kune Do expert.

Admirable and reasonable goal with a long future of hard work ahead of you. Good choice in arts/schools of thought.

wowzer77 said:
But I don't want to take a formal class for it. Instead, I want to study a variety of other martial arts and combine all their best aspects to create my own interperatation of Jeet Kune Do.

This is what concerns me. You can gain alot of knowledge from "non-standard" training (i.e. books, video, etc) but that should all be supplemental to formal training in your given art. Just because you try to do the same thing that BL did to create his method (JKD) in studying other arts doesn't mean that you will come to the same conclusions that BL did based on his experience. 1) He was a phenominal physical specimen who devoted more time to exercise and developing his body than most people devote to sleeping, eating working and reading combined. 2) He had the benefit of training and sharing ideas with some incredible people. 3) He was an original individual who has been imitated but never duplicated.

wowzer77 said:
...In a few months I am starting Wing Chun classes to improve my speed with my hands/arms.

Good choice. Let us know how it turns out!

Any advice for which style I'm looking for? [/quote]

As far as chinese styles...no help here. Sorry! Good luck in your search, however.
 

pstarr

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I agree! You really need formal training under a qualified instructor who can show you all the hundreds of "little things" that aren't presented on videos and/or can't be adequately explained in a book-
 

Shaolinwind

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wowzer77 said:
Hi, I'm new to these forums and seeking some advice. My ultimate goal as a martial artist is to become a Jeet Kune Do expert. But I don't want to take a formal class for it. Instead, I want to study a variety of other martial arts and combine all their best aspects to create my own interperatation of Jeet Kune Do. I currently have experience in some great defense drills, basic kicking and punching techniques, and some breathing techniques...In a few months I am starting Wing Chun classes to improve my speed with my hands/arms. I have heard that the northern styles of kung fu focus on the legs and kicking, and I've been wondering which style would be best for me. I've heard of Northern Praying Mantis and Mei Hua Quan. Any advice for which style I'm looking for? I've looked on Wikipedia and seen that there are MANY kung fu styles. Just trying to narrow things down a little. Thanks in advance.

First.. Look hard, ask why, and don't lie to yourself.
 

jks9199

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Kensai said:
Agree with this 100%. Also with what Drac said. It's all well and good to try and create your own concept art, but if you're going to "draw together" bits from different arts, you need to have an understanding of them in the first place. BL was able to do what he did, due to a not unreasonable level of knowledge of the MA.
I agree. It's often overlooked, but even Bruce Lee spent many years learning his base style before he went off on his own. There are very few people who can really take a bunch of disparate pieces grabbed here and there and meld them into something effective... and I've gotta wonder why you'd even bother to try? Why re-invent the wheel? Instead, learn a base, then work from there. If you learn a system that teaches 9 ways to punch, and you feel 2 are enough -- fine. Pare it down for yourself, after you've learned 'em. Or, if you start in something that's mostly kicks (like several Korean styles), and decide to add in hands from boxing, at least wait long enough that you've got the kicks down well!

Also -- it often takes years to earn a teacher's trust enough to really learn the system. If anything, this is probably more true of the heavily commercial schools; I hope a point comes when students have stuck around and they start learning more than what I'll call the "contract curriculum" designed to feed the belt mill and keep the paying students coming back!
 

mantis

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wowzer77 said:
Hi, I'm new to these forums and seeking some advice. My ultimate goal as a martial artist is to become a Jeet Kune Do expert. But I don't want to take a formal class for it. Instead, I want to study a variety of other martial arts and combine all their best aspects to create my own interperatation of Jeet Kune Do. I currently have experience in some great defense drills, basic kicking and punching techniques, and some breathing techniques...In a few months I am starting Wing Chun classes to improve my speed with my hands/arms. I have heard that the northern styles of kung fu focus on the legs and kicking, and I've been wondering which style would be best for me. I've heard of Northern Praying Mantis and Mei Hua Quan. Any advice for which style I'm looking for? I've looked on Wikipedia and seen that there are MANY kung fu styles. Just trying to narrow things down a little. Thanks in advance.
I like your approach to Jeet Kune Do, it tells that you do understand the philosophy behind it.
On the other hand you have to note that ALL kung fu styles, including wing chun, do have a nice balance of footwork and handwork. I would not agree with the statement that northern styles focus on kicks necessarily.
If you live in the US i would say the style of kung fu you are looking for depends on the location, depends on what's available in your area. Unfortunate but true!

northern mantis balances kicks/puches and if you go that way you will understand a lot about smart and low kicking.
good luck
 

Kensai

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jks9199 said:
I agree. It's often overlooked, but even Bruce Lee spent many years learning his base style before he went off on his own. There are very few people who can really take a bunch of disparate pieces grabbed here and there and meld them into something effective... and I've gotta wonder why you'd even bother to try? Why re-invent the wheel? Instead, learn a base, then work from there. If you learn a system that teaches 9 ways to punch, and you feel 2 are enough -- fine. Pare it down for yourself, after you've learned 'em. Or, if you start in something that's mostly kicks (like several Korean styles), and decide to add in hands from boxing, at least wait long enough that you've got the kicks down well!

Also -- it often takes years to earn a teacher's trust enough to really learn the system. If anything, this is probably more true of the heavily commercial schools; I hope a point comes when students have stuck around and they start learning more than what I'll call the "contract curriculum" designed to feed the belt mill and keep the paying students coming back!

Agree also. Why indeed re-invent the wheel, and be prepared for the long haul if attempting something like this. It's not for me, I don't have the time or inclination to "develop" my own MA, or even attempt it, I'm quite happy cross training, but I'm all for people trying to find their own "way". Good post! :asian:
 
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