Sil Lim Tao Form

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Sil Lim Tao form performed by Aidan Wong in support of the Leukemia Foundation and participated in the World’s Greatest Shave.


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Tao Zen Wing Chun Workshop at Port Macquarie

A Sticky Hand workshop was held at Port Macquarie on the 21 October.  The workshop introduced the deeper aspect of Tao Zen Wing Chun based on Tai Chi, Tao and Zen philosophies at the practical level.

Gaining insight into how to incorporate Zen ‘no mind awareness’ into the whole of Tao Zen Wing Chun art and practices – this has added another dimension to what was already a very satisfying and rewarding activity‘ ……Dino

‘A great system and instructors!  The 2012 Sticky Hands workshop offers an in depth theoretical explanation and practical application that is concisely demonstrated’ …. Cameron

Sifu Richard explaining the importance of harnessing empty space

The Port Macquarie Group

Sinking deep and enjoying the process

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Wooden Dummy Principles

Vol. 10 No.9[/caption]

Wooden Secrets by Richard Wong

Wooden dummy principles encapsulated in the 4 P's

1. Posture, 2. Positioning, 3. Projection, 4.Power

Whilst some practitioners use wooden dummy as a form of toughening tool, we use it to train the 4P’s which constitute the principles of wooden dummy described in the articles published in the Blitz magazine, Vol. 10 No. 9.

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Free Flow Sticking Hands

Sticking Hands in a free flow manner enables practitioners to automate their responses based on all the internal principles. The more controlled and relaxed the sticking hands, the better the flow of internal power.

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Attack is defence and defence is attack

When somebody is going through a difficult patch in life, a friendly word of advice often goes like, “we win some and we lose win”.  It does seem to soothe the rough patch somehow.  We know that there is no such thing as winning all the time. We must go through loses as well.  If that is the case, why don’t we learn to lose in a way that will benefit us.  There is a saying, “when you lose, don’t lose the lesson”. That’s the key to losing so as to win.

A student who studies hard but not getting the desired results needs to examine the reason for the poor results instead of getting depressed.  Instead of being on the defensive and look for excuses for the lack of results, the student needs to attack the problem and find the solution. Is the study method ineffective?  Is there a concentration problem?   Once the true cause is known, the student take action immediately to rectify the problem.  In this case, the proactive action to rectify the problem is the best defense against poor results.

Wing Chun applies this concept very earnestly.  It doesn’t believe in defense only.  Defense without attack does nothing in stopping the aggression.  Yet attacking without defense is equally futile as your opponent can equally attack with aggression.

Wing Chun chain punching is a very good example of how this concept is being applied.  In punching, the elbow is sunk and the arm is powered by the foot. The arm structure with sinking elbow protects the body from getting hit when punching.

In sticking hands, this concept is even more critical. By focussing your forward force towards the centre, all defenses lead you to hitting or capturing the opponent’s centre. It’s like a heat seeking missile. When we get hit we don’t freeze into inaction and lament the fact.  We learn from the mistakes and adjust our arm position instantaneously to launch a counter attack.  So make sure your attack serves the dual functions of striking and defending.

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The Importance of Alignment

Alignment is the positioning of the arms, body and feet so that they are aligned to transfer force to and from the ground. The joints of all limbs are only gently held into position to prop up the whole body as one integrated unit. This allows the arms to be very relax and yet powerful.

Locking the joints up will cause tension in the joints and the muscles locking it. This tension attracts stress as a result of concentration of force in that area. When you are young and strong, you can get away with using strength. There is no skill involved. You might as well go to the gymnasium to increase your muscular strength. However when youth and muscular strength wane with age, you can’t rely on strength anymore. That’s where our alignment approach comes in.

Using Tan Sau as an example, the way it is held will determine whether you are using strength or aligning to the footcentre. The key is in the elbow. The elbow needs to sink down and its angle not less than 90 degree. If the angle is less than 90 degree, you are forced to use your tricep muscle to hold the arm against a force pressing against you. Similarly if the elbow is not sunk, the incoming force gets trapped in the elbow and shoulder. This is quite a common problem with beginners. The sinking of the elbow actually helps draw the force down to the footcentre.

Alignment is extremely important in sticking hands. Wing Chun sticking hands trains the practitioner to sense the opponent force and then take advantage of it. The ability to sense accurately and ahead of time is dependent on how relax the arms are. A relaxed arm is extremely sensitive. Without the power from a strong structurally aligned arms, a relaxed arm will be empty. Being relaxed without substance is like being strong without flexibility. You don’t require skill to be relaxed without substance or strong without subtlety.

The alignment exercise also help you develop a good posture. The interesting thing with the exercise is that the more upright we are the less effort is required to transfer force. The uprightness is a gentle and slightly concave upright posture. It is relaxed and comfortable. However if the uprightness forces the chest to protrude, tension will emerge and it will become more difficult to transfer force to and from your footcentre.

Our power is derived from the life force of the universe called chi. The alignment process facilitates the flow of chi through our body. As the body and limbs are held together in a relaxed and gentle network of inter-linking chi channels, obstacles to chi flow are significantly reduced. The whole body will also become united where the hands are no longer the hands but part of the monolithic powerhouse.

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Self Defense – Tao Zen Win Chun

Get close range combative skills without tough physical workouts.

Use the internal power of the mind and chi to execute lightning speed and powerful moves!

“They laughed when I said I could punch without tensing the muscles and clenching the fist – but when I punch ….”

Dear Friend,

In my early days of practising and teaching Wing Chun some twenty years ago, I met an internal stylist who was very much into using chi to drive his movements.  I showed him my Wing Chun form and he said something that I didn’t understand at that time: “your form blocks your chi flow”.  However that planted the seed within me to look deeper into this chi (life force/energy) business.

Being a cocky young man I didn’t think too much of it then.  Besides the traditional approach was pretty effective – just look at the late Bruce Lee with his power coming from all his muscular conditioning.   One of the Hong Kong big names in Wing Chun also proclaimed that there is no such thing as chi – so what’s the big deal about chi?

Well it makes a world of difference in how well you sense and deflect powerful forces!

When I applied the Chi and Ying and Yang principles into my Wing Chun I found that I was able to detect the other person’s movement a lot earlier and that I didn’t need to use as much strength to deflect his movements.  I am able to generate a lot of internal power where I don’t even need to the clench the fist when punching. Through years of experiments and practices, I have finally made the Traditional Wing Chun chi-friendly and more effortless.  I call it Tao Zen Wing Chun because it relies a lot on the Tao and Zen philosophies which are the cornerstones in developing chi.

Five simple ways to harness the internal power

You can develop the internal energy to power your Wing Chun through 5 simple ways:

  • Align your body structure to transfer power from the ground to your opponent
  • Practise the Qi Gong Set regularly. Go to Chi/Energy Works page.
  • Free the mind to let the body performs at its peak
  • Understand the Yin and Yang of energy and movements
  • Use Mind Intention to project your chi

We are accreditated by the ICL Distance Learning Center (A division of In-Com Link Management Associates Limited in Hong Kong) to teach the practical modules of Wing Chun leading to a degree in Martial Arts Wing Chun in conjunction with West Coast University.

To attend any of our classes, please click Classes. To order any of products that help you develop this internal power, please click Internal PowerBack to top.

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