Wing Chun (literally “spring chant”), also romanised as Ving Tsun or Wing Tsun, is a concept-based Chinese martial art and form of self-defense utilizing both striking and grappling while specializing in close-range combat.
The history of Wing Chun, like most of other martial arts, has historically been passed from teacher to student as an oral history rather than through written documentation, making it difficult to confirm or clarify the differing accounts of Wing Chun’s creation.
The common legend involves Yim Wing Chun (beautiful springtime), a young woman who has rebuffed the local warlord’s marriage offer. He says he’ll rescind his proposal if she can beat him in a fight. She asks a local Buddhist nun to teach her boxing. The style they develop enables Yim Wing Chun to defeat the warlord. She marries her sweetheart and teaches him the style. Her husband names it after her.
Wing Chun boxing emphasizes speed of play, keeping fists and feet close to one’s body for better protection, as well as to prepare for attacks and fighting the opponent at close range. When fighting, Wing Chun boxers contain their chest, arch the back, close their elbows and knees, draw in their ribs, and keep their thighs closed to protect the groin. When they use their feet for attack, they must also use their hands in cooperation. When they kick they do not expose their groin and when they deliver fist blows, their hands do not leave the front of their body.
Tenets of Wing Chun include practicality, efficiency and economy of movement. The core philosophy becomes a useful guide to practitioners when modifying or refining the art.
Wing Chun techniques emphasize practicality and effectiveness. Most strikes have the intention to injure the target. Wing Chun concept is based upon the fact that the closest distance between two points is a straight line. In addition to efficiency being understood as the “shortest distance to the opponent’s core”, it is also important to understand the importance of energy efficiency within Wing Chun.
Wing Chun believes in using the least amount of required force in any fighting situation. It believes properly, correct timed position and movement can and should be used to defeat their opponent. A person using Wing Chun is said to be able to defeat a stronger person, but this is achieved through balance, body structure and relaxation.
Balance, Structure and Stance
Wing Chun practitioners believe that the person with body structure will win. A correct Wing Chun stance is like a piece of bamboo, firm but flexible, rooted but yielding. This structure is used to either deflect external forces or redirect them into the ground.
Balance is related to structure because a well-balanced body recovers quicker from stalled attacks and structure is maintained.
Structure is viewed as important, not only for reasons of defense, but also for attack. When the practitioner is effectively ‘rooted’, the force of the hit is believed to be far more devastating.
by Xiao Xiao @ InteractChina.com
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