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Wing Chun Kung Fu

As taught by Sifu, Andy Di Guiseppi

 

Wing Chun FAQs
 

How do you pronounce this art?

"Wing Chun Kuen"  In Cantonese Chinese

(Wing Chun terms are taught in this language)

“Yong Chun Chuan”. In Mandarin Chinese



What does that mean in English?

Its most authentic translation is:  "The Eternal Springtime Fist"
A common Wing Chun Martial Song:

"Wing Yin Chi Ji - Mo Mong Hong Juk - Dai Day Wu Chun"
Translation:

(Always speak with determination, don't forget the Han nation, for we will return in spring.)

Wing Chun Kung Fu's name is a testament to the fallen Ming dynasty, formed by Ming Loyalist who hoped their dynasty would return in spring. Springtime represents being reborn, and coming back to life.  The word Wing can mean chanting, humming or singing. There is another pronunciation that holds a different significance, "Weng". It means always, or eternity.  Both spellings represent this Southern Chinese Style. 
 


What kind of Martial Art is this?

Wing Chun Kung Fu is a Southern Chinese style of Kung Fu.  The style's techniques are derived largely from Shaolin Snake and Shaolin White Crane. The theories and principles are based predominantly in these two arts. However, a deeper analysis arises the question as to whether the style also includes principles and techniques found in other Chinese arts such as Ba Gua, Tai Chi, Hung Gar, Southern Mantis and others.

Wing Chun is not practiced for sport and not meant for tournaments. A Wing Chun stylist's training will encourage better performance in an environment where rules are not applicable.

Wing Chun Kung Fu is meant for self defense in an unregulated environment.

In Wing Chun One of the most prominent theories of the style is to maximize efficiency and effectiveness in every move including the amount of damage inflicted.  One way this is achieved is by selecting vital targets. These targets are hit to quickly win a fight as quickly as possible.

These primary targets include, but are not limited to: Eyes, Nose, Throat, Solar Plexus, and Groin.   A strike to these zones will render the receiver stunned and/or with out the ability to breath and see, quickly and suddenly putting the fight in your favor. 

Common tournament rules eliminate the more lethal targets to protect the human body. These gaps in the human anatomy are identical regardless of size, strength, or gender.  These target areas are not available in competition settings due to the injury the athletes would suffer. 

It is important to note that we train in a some what controlled environment.  We train carefully and with great emphasis on control and safety.  Controlled sparring is practiced up to a very high level of speed and movement.  Full contact sparring is practiced with head gear, mouth piece, gloves and groin protection.

Please note.  The Wing Chun method requires a good deal of training before full contact sparring is allowed. Also not all students are required to participate in full contact sparring, it is left to students discretion.

 

 

So what is the Bruce Lee connection everyone’s talking about?

The Bruce Lee connection begins with a Wing Chun Sifu, named Yip Man.  In 1950, Yip Man fled main land China for Hong Kong, during the communist take over. 
While in Hong Kong, Yip taught hundreds of students until his passing in
1972.  Among these students was the famous Chinese actor and martial artist
Bruce Lee, Lee Jun Fan. It is well known and accepted, that Bruce Lee did not reach mastery level in Wing Chun. As a Wing Chun expert myself, I can say that Bruce did utilize many of its theories and techniques with quality, and efficiency.
Most Wing Chun available in the world today can claim a direct lineage to
Grand Master Yip Man.


 

How far descended is your Wing Chun, from Yip Man’s Wing Chun?

I am a 5th generation descendant of the Yip Man style of Wing Chun.

My branch on the family tree stems from a student of Yip Man who predates the Bruce Lee era. A sifu named Leung Sheung, who was Yip Man’s first student when he arrived in Hong Kong.

The style of Wing Chun I teach is a precisely well rounded system, with all
footwork, handwork, reflex training, and traditional drills intact, preserving the tradition.

 

Lineage is as follows: Yip Man - Leung Sheung - Ng Wah Sum - Chum Kwok Chow - Kevin Becker - Andy Di Guiseppi
 

 

What is included in a typical class?

Each class is 1 hour and ½. long.

1. We begin with a 20 minute warm up.

It is my opinion, that a warm up should not only warm the body, but also improve a students strength, flexibility, balance, symmetry and their ability to calm them selves through breath control.

Our warm up is derived from Wing Chun techniques and traditional Yoga Postures.

 

2. Forms training. 

In Wing Chun there are 6 forms to the traditional system.

There are:

3 empty hand forms,

1 wooden dummy form

2 weapon forms. 

The forms are text books and are trained to program the muscle memory of the limbs. One technique is strung together neatly with another, each teaching strategy and structure the whole way through.  When a student's form looks clean, they will then be shown application technique, thus bringing their comprehension full circle.

Forms training is typically 10 min - 20 min, depending on level.

 

3. For the remaining hour, time is spent working on drills and various training exercises.

Every student follows the same training regimen in order to insure a proper foundation in the Wing Chun method . Each student is encouraged to travel at their own pace.  Some common advice for achieving quality is to: never be in a rush.  Hard work, dedication, and most of all attendance, greatly affect the rate of advancement. 

 

 

I want to know more details about the style itself?
The Wing Chun I teach contains a large variety of training sets...

These sets include:

 "Siu Lim Tao" • (Little Idea)

Our first form, nearly all of the style's hand techniques are found in this form. Great emphasis is placed on learning the centerline structure and proper use of Jing within each technique.  Stance and posture are simple in this form.  The stance and posture trained in this form are the base to which all other Wing Chun stances and postures are derived from. The basic stance must be trained diligently and held for as long as possible, building endurance over time.



"Chum Kiu" • (Seeking the Bridge, Sinking the Bridge)

Our second form, which contains a more complicated variety of combinations than found in the first form.  These movements are based in large from the movements learned and mastered in the first form, and cannot be taught until the first form looks very clean.

In this form, we work on moving the stance and changing of weight. The first kicks are also introduced at this level, side kicks, and front kicks.  Great emphasis is placed on proper weight distribution, body unification and correct angles in turning and stepping with the stance. This form unites and coordinates the upper body with the lower.  The name of the form symbolizes the understanding it provides to the practitioner.  Once this form has been studied and movements are clean and smooth, a student will have great ability in closing the gap and sinking the opponents arm bridges.

 


"Biu Jee" • (Thrusting Fingers)

Our third form, and a form that was very rarely taught to outsiders of the Wing Chun system.

Every Wing Chun Sifu is very selective with whom they share this form with. It is a treasure of a form, containing the more advanced hand weapons of the style.

The skill learned in this form is for emergency only.  When one is out numbered, or out matched in size, strength and skill. 

The life saving techniques found in this form are not to be used in common sparring, as they will leave the receiver with permanent damage and injuries that can be permanent.

If a student makes it to this level, they should use great caution when sharing this knowledge, and great caution when training the techniques with a partner. 



"Mook Yan Jong • (The Wooden Man)

Our fourth form, is practiced using a very powerful training tool unique to Wing Chun Kung fu, often referred to as a "Wooden Dummy".

The wooden man does not move, thus forces our techniques to spill around the arms of our opponent, rather than trying to force our way through, water through the cracks. Proper distance in relation to the opponent and proper flanking angles are a focus of this form.  Upper body and lower body must be in unison, along with stance and immaculate posture.   Without those ingredients the form will lack a certain quality.

The drills I teach from day one are picked out of this form and from various techniques elsewhere in the system. 

When one has mastered 10 or more drills they will absolutely have a jump start on the form.  In addition, mastery of the drills will super charge a students skill, often at a much sooner level than through normal two man drills.

 


"Lok Dim Boon Gwan" • (6 & 1/2 Point Pole, Dragon Pole)

The fifth form, and one of the two weapons trained in Wing Chun.  This weapon is often said to have once been a battle spear without the metal tip.  It is also believed to have been used to push along small rafts and boats in the harbors of Hong Kong.   The pole typically measures between 9 -12 feet in length, heavy at one end and tapered to a point at the attacking end.  Powerful thrusting, dropping, circling and parrying movements are trained here as well as strong horse stances, bracing stances and agile cat stances.  If you can imagine taking someone off a horse with this weapon, being in the front lines of the infantry, then you will have some idea of its purpose.  It is the only long range piece to the Wing Chun system, and it is believed to have been added during the time of the Red Junk Opera. 

Grip, arm strength and the ability to focus Jing are all trained in this form. 

 



"Baat Cham Do" • (8 Angle Swords, Butterfly Swords)

The sixth and final form of the style, the Wing Chun swords are the pinnacle of the system.

Here we train to master the 8 angles of attack and how to relate our existing Wing Chun knowledge to the edge of a blade.  We begin with power training of the grip, wrists, forearms, arms, and shoulders.

The stances are quick and mobile, while the swords chop with incredible fury.  The Wing Chun swords are exactly like the hands, understanding of the sword techniques brings a practitioners awareness to a new level.

 

 

Chi Gung • (Energy Work, Cultivation)

Chi Gung is practiced at all times in all forms.  However, it is focused and found most distinctly in the first form.  Combined with Hei Gung (Breath Work)  Chi Gung is a mind intent and means of transporting energy and life force to every inch of the body.  Chi Gung training is used to cultivate health and build internal energy.  A regular regimen of Chi Gung training encourages health, blood flow and proper electric conductivity through the bodies meridian channels.

 


Fon Sao Training • (Trapping Hands)

Trapping training teaches lines of attack and defense in a close quarter situation. If you are within hands reach, you are in trapping range. We begin this training from a reference point just inches out side of trapping range. Wrists are crossed and one person attacks the other.

In Wing Chun style trapping, we point our center at the opponent in order to give both arms an equal reach.

We parry and attack at the same time, using counter attacking motions and off balancing pulls to aid in taking the opponents structures away. 

Trapping a persons hands by pressing them down and pinning them to open the upper torso for an on coming onslaught. Trapping is not sparring, and it is not true fighting, it is merely a series of drilling methods that teach lines of attack and defense in close range.

 


Dan Chi Sao • (Single Sticking Hands)

Sticking to the opponent is one aspect of Wing Chun that sets it apart from many other styles.  We cling to the opponents limbs developing a heightened sense of touch, or as we call it, a sensitivity.

Sensitivity brings a student's overall skill to the next level. It seams their techniques together and gives a polished look to all motions. At first we train sticking hand drills with one arm at a time. Preparing our coordination and quality of motion for the double handed exercise.



Chi Sao • ( Double Sticking Hands)

Double sticking hands is a higher level of sensitivity training.  Chi Sao begins with a serious of rolling blocks, upper gate, lower gate, and centerline are worked all at the same time.  The triangle structures of the limbs fuse together and spinning in harmony.  One must learn what correct structure looks like before they can learn when it is incorrect.  When an opponents structure is incorrect, one will only see and feel gaps and openings waiting to be attacked.  A well based knowledge of trapping hands is needed to begin Chi Sao training.  Much of the Wing Chun system is refined through Chi Sao and the application of its motions.

Again, Chi Sao is not fighting and it is not real sparring. Chi Sao is designed to build sensitivity and is a logical next step to trapping hands training.
 


Chi Gurk • (Sticking Leg Exercises)

For most of us, our legs are just about half of our body height.  Our legs connect us to the earth and our stance gives us our balance and ability to bring the upper body into the fight.  If we are kicked in the legs, the legs are used to defend. Sticking leg exercises are not only trained in kicking range, but also fighting stance vs. stance. We weave our steps into the stance of the opponent. We must train to have a stable, yet supple stance, our legs must develop a sensitivity if they are to detect oncoming footwork.  Sticking legs work much like sticking hands. Redirecting, guiding, parrying, in an effort to finally creating openings for attack.


 

Kham Na • (Joint Locking and Seizing)

Joint locking and manipulation most often happens as a result of being grabbed.  Wing Chun employs Kham Na when a situation calls for it. Most situations require a combination of striking and joint manipulating.  Joint Manipulation is often used as a non-lethal form of subduing an opponent.

Most Kham Na does not work unless the opponent has been struck first.  Some type of distraction is helpful when seizing the limbs.  If the technique is resisted, it is important that we do not force them into the hold, but rather sense the resistance and use it to flow into another controlling position. 

 


Mui Fa Jong • (Plum Flower Poles, Footwork patterns)

The footwork of Wing Chun originates from the Chinese plum flower.

A 5 pedaled flower that forms many triangles in its geometry.  Traditionally these are poles planted into the ground raised to a height ranging from 2 feet to 4 feet.  They can be posted in one arrangement or several pentagonal arrangements linked together.  Footwork can be trained on top of the poles, or in between them.

Kicking the poles when on the ground and/or isolating stepping patterns when standing on top.  These can also be drawn on a flat surface and are helpful when learning stepping sequences and linking Wing Chun stances together.

 

How long does it take to get good at Wing Chun?

If a student is looking to defend themselves in a street fight, then typically about 6 months of training will provide them with a good deal of skill in this area.  As with anything, the more time devoted to a skill, the greater competence we will have. 

Traditional Shaolin kung fu requires approximately 18 years to produce a qualified warrior. 10 years of a hard style, 8 years of a soft style.

With this in mind, the founders of Wing Chun created a compact system that could be spread and taught with incredible speed.

The Wing Chun method was designed to exploit the "chinks in the armor" of their enemies. In a world of empty hand fighting, street fighting, and self defense, there is no real armor, but rather chinks in the armor of the human body. The skeletal system and muscle system of the human body has many gaps and weaknesses, regardless of height, weight, age, or gender.

The points of the body the Chinese use to heal, they also use to destroy.

The Wing Chun system can be completed in 3-5 years. Both hard and soft are combined in this ultra compact Chinese system.  Please note that although completion of the system can be attained with in a few years.  Mastery can take a life time.

 


How do I get in contact with Sifu Di Guiseppi?

To learn more about our Wing Chung style join the forums and introduce your self!
http://forum.psdtc.com/forum.asp?FORUM_ID=29, my username is, "lightninghands"
http//:www.chisao.com, username is, "lightninghands"

 

Email Sifu Andy any time:  wingchunkuentao@gmail.com 

 

Call the studio: 203-596-9073  



 

Phone contact and Directions all below:

                             Wing Chun Kuen                                
Practical Self Defense Training Center
847 Hamilton Ave (Rt 69).
Waterbury, CT 06706
203-596-9073

                                                                                                                                                                                                    

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Practical Self Defense Training Center
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Waterbury, CT 06706
203-596-9073 or 203-802-8533
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