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Wing Chun Kuen (traditional Chinese: 詠春拳), usually called Wing Chun (詠春), is a concept-based traditional Southern Chinese Kung fu (wushu) style and a form of self-defence, also known as "beautiful springtime", that requires quick arm movements and strong legs to defeat opponents. Softness (via relaxation) and performance of techniques in a relaxed manner is fundamental to Wing Chun. According to legend, it was created by Ng Mui, an abbess who taught it to her student Yim Wing-chun as a means to defend herself against unwanted advances. The martial art is named after her. According to Ip Man, "Chi Sau in Wing Chun is to maintain one's flexibility and softness, all the while keeping in the strength to fight back, much like the flexible nature of bamboo". Notable practitioners of Wing Chun include Ip Man, Bruce Lee, Brandon Lee, Jackie Chan, Donnie Yen, Robert Downey Jr, and former UFC Interim Lightweight Champion Tony Ferguson.
|Also known as||Ving Tsun, Wing Tsun. Ving Chun|
|Focus||Striking, Grappling, Trapping|
|Country of origin||China|
|Creator||Ng Mui of the Five Elders|
|Parenthood||Fujian White Crane, Shequan|
|Descendant arts||Jeet Kune Do|
|Hanyu Pinyin||Yǒng Chūn|
|Cantonese Yale||Wihng Cheūn|
|Literal meaning||"beautiful springtime"|
Wing Chun favors a relatively high, narrow stance with the elbows close to the body. Within the stance, arms are generally positioned across the vitals of the centerline with hands in a vertical "wu sau" ("protecting hand" position). This style positions the practitioner to make readily placed blocks and fast-moving blows to vital striking points down the center of the body; neck, chest, belly and groin. Shifting or turning within a stance is done on the heels, balls, or middle (K1 or Kidney 1 point) of the foot, depending on lineage. Some Wing Chun styles discourage the use of high kicks because this risks counter-attacks to the groin. The practice of "settling" one's opponent to brace them more effectively against the ground helps one deliver as much force as possible to them.
Softness (via relaxation) and performance of techniques in a relaxed manner, and by training the physical, mental, breathing, energy and force in a relaxed manner to develop Chi "soft wholesome force", is fundamental to Wing Chun. On "softness" in Wing Chun, Yip Man during an interview said:
Wing Chun is in some sense a "soft" school of martial arts. However, if one equates that work as weak or without strength, then they are dead wrong. Chi Sau in Wing Chun is to maintain one's flexibility and softness, all the while keeping in the strength to fight back, much like the flexible nature of bamboo".
See also Glossary of Wing Chun terms
|小念頭||Siu Nim Tau (Little Idea)||The first and most important form in Wing Chun, Siu Nim Tau ("The little idea for beginning"), is to be practiced throughout the practitioner’s lifetime. It is the foundation or "seed" of the art, on which all succeeding forms and techniques depend. Fundamental rules of balance and body structure are developed here. Using a car analogy; for some branches this would provide the chassis, for others this is the engine. It serves as the basic alphabet of the system. Some branches view the symmetrical stance as the fundamental fighting stance; others see it as a training stance used in developing technique.|
|尋橋||Chum Kiu (Seeking Bridge)||The second form, Chum Kiu, focuses on coordinated movement of bodymass and entry techniques to "bridge the gap" between practitioner and opponent, and move in to disrupt their structure and balance. Close-range attacks using the elbows and knees are also developed here. It also teaches methods of recovering position and centerline when in a compromised position where Siu Nim Tau structure has been lost. For some branches, bodyweight in striking is a central theme, either from pivoting (rotational) or stepping (translational). Likewise for some branches, this form provides the engine to the car. For branches that use the "sinking bridge" interpretation, the form takes on more emphasis of an "uprooting" context, adding multi-dimensional movement and spiraling to the already developed engine.|
|標指||Biu Ji (Thrusting Fingers)||The third form, and the last form Biu Ji, is composed of extreme short-range and extreme long-range techniques, low kicks and sweeps, and "emergency techniques" to counter-attack when structure and centerline have been seriously compromised, such as when the practitioner is seriously injured. As well as pivoting and stepping developed in Chum Kiu, a third degree of freedom involves more upper body and stretching is developed for more power. Such movements include close-range elbow strikes and finger thrusts to the throat. For some branches this is the turbo-charger of the car; for others it can be seen as a "pit stop" kit that should never come into play, recovering your "engine" when it has been lost. Still other branches view this form as imparting deadly "killing" and maiming techniques that should never be used without good reason. A common Wing Chun saying is "Biu Ji doesn't go out the door". Some interpret this to mean the form should be kept secret; others interpret it as meaning it should never be used if you can help it.|
|木人樁||Muk Yan Jong (Wooden Dummy)||Muk Yan Jong is performed on a wooden dummy which serves as an intermediate tool that helps the student to use Wing Chun Kuen against another human opponent. [N/A 1] Muk Yan Jong is demonstrated by using a wooden Wing Chun dummy as an opponent. There are many versions of this form which come from a variety of Wing Chun Kung Fu lineages, however, the most common version of this form dates back to Yip (Ip) Man (October 14, 1893 to December 2, 1972) Wing Chun. Yip Man was the descendant of a wealthy family in Foshan, Southern China. He was one of (the iconic) Bruce Lee's teachers. [N/A 2]|
In popular cultureEdit
Donnie Yen played the role of Wing Chun Grandmaster Ip Man in the 2008 movie Ip Man, which was a box office success, and in its sequels Ip Man 2, Ip Man 3, and Ip Man 4. Max Zhang (Zhang Jin) who played the role of Cheung Tin Chi in Ip Man 3 starred in a spin-off and direct sequel movie called Master Z: The Ip Man Legacy, which follows the events after the end of Ip Man 3.
- Anderson Silva former UFC Middleweight Champion. Considered by many to be the greatest mixed martial artist of all-time.
- Brandon Lee actor & son of Bruce Lee
- Bruce Lee (Chinese: 李小龍) learned from Sifu Ip Man & Wong Shun Leung
- Chu Shong-tin, wing chun Grandmaster and Yip Man's student, Yip Man called him "King of Siu Lim Tao".
- Tony Ferguson, former UFC Interim Lightweight World Champion (and currently #1 ranked} UFC lightweight mixed martial arts fighter.
- Donnie Yen (Chinese: 甄子丹) learned from Sifu Ip Chun & Leung Ting to prepare for the role of Ip Man.
- William Cheung (張卓慶, pinyin: Zhāng Zhuóqìng closed door student of Ip Man
- Eric Oram
- Felix Leong
- Leung Sheung, one of the best students of Yip Man (known as the senior most student in Hong Kong)
- Geoff Thompson (England) learned from Sifu Wong Shun Leung
- Wong Shun Leung, one of the best students of Yip Man, called "Gong Sao Wong", the king of talking hands.
- Moy Yat, one of Yip Man's closest disciples, and the youngest sifu promoted by Yip Man at age 24.
- Philip Ng (Chinese: 伍允龍) learned from Sifu Wong Shun Leung
- Leung Ting, a disciple of Yip Man and head of the International Wing Tsun Association (IWTA).
- Keith R. Kernspecht, highest-ranking disciple of Leung Ting, and head of the European Wing Chun Organization (EWTO).
- Ip Chun, eldest son of Ip Man
- Ip Man, Wing Chun Grandmaster
- István Simicskó, current Minister of Defence of Hungary
- Jackie Chan (Chinese: 成龍) learned from Sifu Leung Ting
- Michelle Yeoh (Chinese: 楊紫琼)
- Nicholas Tse (Chinese: 謝霆鋒) learned from Philip Ng
- Ray Sefo
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