Let’s Talk About Pak Sau

Today we talk about Pak Sau!

Pak Sau is only about deflecting a strike away from my centerline but I need a follow up or else I lose momentum. I create the momentum for myself by closing the distance and disrupting my opponent’s centerline by stepping in on them and using the Pak Sau to move their body away from me. Now if they want to try to resist, that’s not a problem because if I initiated my step correctly, they’re in a bad position. Now if they choose to step back, then they are adding to my momentum allowing me more options to follow up with.

This may not always be the case when I use Pak Sau but the key principles that I try to always remember is to disrupt my opponent. And for me, stepping in usually does that 🙂

I talk about how I had to add on to my Pak Sau to make it effective for me but how about you? Do you have to change the way you do the technique to make it effective for you? It doesn’t have to be Pak Sau, it could be any other technique. If so, let me know in the comments!

Guard Up and Wu Sau

Today we talk about keeping your guard up with Wu Sau!

Wu Sau is one of the first hand techniques we learn and it’s also our most versatile because Wu Sau can transition to any of our hand techniques for defense OR offense.

Ultimately, Wu Sau should always be up and on guard. And unless both hands are being used, one should always be in Wu Sau, ready to defend in case anything passes the forward arm.

So keep your Wu Sau up!

Trust Your Bong Sau

Today we talk about the benefits of trusting your Bong Sau.

In my last class, I had the opportunity to really observe my fellow classmates (Sihings) and I noticed one common pattern…they didn’t trust their Bong Sau the same way I trusted mine.

Here are the 3 common mistakes I saw when Bong Sau failed:

1) Bong Sau was being pulled down.
2) Bong Sau collapsed so it was no longer effective.
3) Not trusting the Bong Sau enough to maintain it and letting it drop.

I use Bong Sau in 80% of my defense. I always trust my Bong Sau and have confidence that it will block whatever is coming at me when I use it. When I defend with my Bong Sau, the Bong Sau gives me a lot of options to counter strike. Bong Sau is definitely one of my favorite techniques.

Here are my suggestions to keep a good Bong Sau and trust it.

1) Know that Bong Sau is only the first line of defense and that there should be a Wu Sau behind it in case the Bong Sau fails.
2) Keep the angle in Bong Sau and don’t collapse it (even when using it to pin or bump opponent).
3) Don’t let Bong Sau get pulled. If it does, use the advantage of the momentum to advance.

Now, my question to you is, how is your Bong Sau? Do you trust your Bong Sau? Let me know in the comments!

Defend and Strike in Chi Sao

Today we talk about defending and striking in Chi Sao, also known as the art of multitasking.

One of the things that my Sifu always says during Chi Sao is, “never defend with two hands”. If a person is attacking me, they’re probably only going to use one arm which means their other arm is free. So if I use both my arms to defend one of my opponent’s arm, right away I’m at a disadvantage. They have a free hand.

The same can be applied for striking. If I’m attacking with both my arms, one of them has to be in guard position or else I open myself up for a counterstrike. And personally, I don’t think a two hand strike is an effective way to attack.

The solution is to always defend and strike. We have two hands so it is possible to do both. It may take time to getting used to it in Chi Sao but if you watch the previous episode (#049), I talk about creating my own Wing Chun form that consisted of my Chi Sao techniques. By having my body memorize the technique, I let my muscle memory guide my body and let my mind think about the next step, whether it’s counter striking or following up with another strike.

What do you think about this idea of always multitasking in Chi Sao? Let me know in the comments!

Create Your Own Wing Chun Form

Today we talk about creating your own Wing Chun form!

What do I mean by creating your own form? It means gathering all the techniques you know and making an actionable form out of them. This is a memorization technique so that once your body is used to doing the form, it becomes natural for you.

In this video I use Chi Sao as an example and talk about creating my own Chi Sao Form which goes through my Chi Sao techniques. The importance of this is so when I go through the techniques, by relying on muscle memory, I have an advantage over my opponent because my body already knows what to do. Instead of spending time on remembering my technique, I spend that time thinking of the next move.

What do you think about this idea? Do you think you can create your own form with the techniques you’ve learned? Let me know in the comments.

Let’s Talk About Lop Sau aka “The Pulling Hand”

Today we talk about Lop Sau also known as “The Pulling Hand”.

Lop Sau is a fundamental technique in Wing Chun but is only notable in the Wing Chun dummy form, more specifically, section 1 and section 6 of the form. The problem is that Lop Sau isn’t fully expressed in the dummy form because the dummy is stationary and the dummy’s arms aren’t fully mobile for pulling. In the video, I show what a good Lop Sau looks like based on how my school teaches it.

A good Lop Sau consists of pulling the opponent’s arm down to waist level and keeping it away from my body (at least 2-3 fist sizes away). The reason for this is to completely disrupt my opponent’s center and to prevent them from charging and taking me down.

If you’ve already learned Lop Sau, do you do it the same way I do? If not, give it a try the next time you practice and let me know how it goes in the comments!

Keep training!

The Only Kicks You Need in Wing Chun

These are the only kicks you need in Wing Chun!

There are four kicks:

1) Lifting Kick – A kick that attacks your opponent’s groin
2) Front Kick – A kick that creates distance
3) Stomp Kick – A kick that cripples
4) Side Kick – A kick to close the distance

Simple and effective.

Do you use any of these kicks in your Wing Chun training? What other kicks are you using? Let me know in the comments!

Intermediate Stepping

I haven’t always been active on my feet during Wing Chun class. For the first few years, I stayed mostly stationary and occasionally shifted or stepped back during drills or Chi Sao. Only in the past two years I started moving more on my feet by stepping in.

Today we talk about an intermediate technique: stepping in.

One of the main weaknesses of my step is that I would put a lot of emphasis on my forward stepping leg. All my weight would go there which made me lunge forward. It’s been a very hard habit to correct…until this past weekend during class when I noticed my Sifu stepping differently than I did. I stepped with the balls of the foot (the front part of the foot) but my Sifu stepped with the heels of the foot (back part of the foot). This changed how I approached stepping because once I tried it, it felt completely different from what I was originally doing.

This was an eye opener for me. One change in placement changed my entire movement and technique. One little change! I go into more details in this week’s episode but has this ever happen to you before? Where one little change improved your technique drastically? Tell me about it in the comments!

Sil Lim Tao Wing Chun Dummy Part 2

This week we go over section 2 of Sil Lim Tao on the Wing Chun Dummy. P.S. If you want to skip over the section 1 recap, go to the 2:50 mark.

You can watch Part 1 here.

Section 2 is much more complex than section 1. It requires the form to be broken down into 9 smaller sections. This also makes it easier to apply the movements to the dummy. If you require more details for each section, let me know!

Also, this Thursday I have a big announcement so please stay tuned for that. Hint: It may or may not be related to the Portable Wing Chun Dummy 😉