Wing tsun demo ellis island


Ip Man style Sifu demonstrates practical Wing Chun for self defense

Welcome to my website. My new location is Staten Island, a/k/a “the forgotten borough”.

I have studied numerous martial arts systems and styles over the years, including Wrestling, Karate, Bak Mei, Balintawak, Muay Thai, Tae Kwan Do, Bagua, Hung Gar and Wing Chun. Since 2005, I have mainly concentrated on Wing Chun kung fu training.

Although it is difficult to find a good Wing Chun martial arts school in many parts of the US, I have been fortunate to have lived in New York City for most of my adult life and, as a major US City, I was able to find several well-established martial arts schools with dedicated Sifus who have trained extensively in Wing Chun. These schools used traditional teaching methods, emphasizing the basic concepts, principles and techniques of Wing Chun, and some used modern training methods.

Wing Chun kung fu is a rich Chinese martial art self-defense and combat fighting system, which is much more than just throwing chain punches, and comes in different lineages or versions, of which I have studied three and have been qualified as a Sifu in one.

I am a semi-retired attorney. At the present time, I can take up to 3 or4 students for a semi-private class. Students must be adults (ages 18 and up). Although I like children , many of the techniques are just too deadly for children. This class will be modeled on the way Wing Chun classes are taught in many Hong Kong schools.

Wing Chun, unlike other martial arts, is primarily based upon touch sensitivity, not sight, and sensitivity cannot be seen. Instead, it must be felt and taught by physical contact between your arms and those of an instructor or senior student. It is thus best taught in private lessons or very small groups.

Anyone with Wing Chun experience is welcome, regardless of lineage. If you feel that your progress has stopped, so that you haven’t been able to reach your goals, or if you are interested in learning different applications or movements, this may be just right for you.

I will also accept beginners with no experience in Wing Chun, if they have studied other martial arts, and are highly motivated to learn.

As I have studied, learned, and trained, I have become interested in understanding which martial arts self-defense systems are best for real world combat situations, and why. This website and blog is intended to focus on the arts that I believe are the most practical self-defense systems, which I believe include Wing Chun Kung Fu, Bak Mei Kung Fu, Western Boxing, Kickboxing, Muay Thai, Silat, Hapkido, escrima,  and  Kajukenbo. Other martial arts  such as krav maga, capoeira, and ninjutsu, while interesting, in my opinion are not really practical, at least not in today’s modern age. 

I focus on striking systems because , if you are attacked on the street, most of the time it will be by multiple attackers, and with multiple attackers you want to be as mobile as possible. Therefore, grappling arts like Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Aikido, Judo, Sambo, and the various forms of Wrestling, often will not work on the street.

This page will focus on Wing Chun Kung Fu (also spelled Wing Tsun), which I believe is one of the best arts for self defense. However, I no longer believe that Wing Chun is the be-all and end all for self defense. I do believe it is an excellent art for self defense, and, just as importantly, it is the most fun martial art to learn and train. It is also easy on the body and promotes health without causing debilitating injuries.

Wing Chun (Ving Tsun) by another Sifu in the Ip Man lineage

Wing Chun (variously spelled Wing Tsun, or Ving Tsun) is a Chinese martial arts combat system which is said to have been invented by a Buddhist nun in southern China around 250 years ago. It is believed that when Wing Chun was invented from predecessor art or arts and shortly thereafter, the founder or founders de-emphasized internal martial arts principles in favor of a simpler and more practical style.

Wing chun does, despite being largely an external martial art, incorporate Taoist principles and philosophy.

Wing Chun was designed to train fighters in a much quicker time than it took in the traditional Shaolin kung fu styles. Practicing kung fu movements can build physical fitness, which has benefits both for self-defense and for health and long life. Because this art has an emphasis on concepts, principles, and skill, rather than on strength and brute force, it can be practical for people of any sex, age, or size.

Like other arts which are typically taught in more traditional martial arts classes, wing chun also trains your mind to become more focussed and disciplined, while providing a workout. 

In Hong Kong, where grand master Ip Man had his school, Wing Chun used to be called “gangster fist” because criminals trained in it to be able to learn how to fight in a relatively short period of time. Nowadays, the “good guys”, including many special commando military units and swat teams around the world, train Wing Chun.

Train realistic Kung Fu – learn the Wing Chun fist

Wing Chun, if trained diligently from a good instructor for a certain period of time, can be extremely effective for real world self defense. Wing Chun emphasizes efficiency and uses simple but effective straight punches, palm strikes, elbow and knee strikes, joint locks and throws. Kicks are thrown to no more than waist height so that they work in regular street clothes without having to stretch or warm up beforehand.

While the beginner will have to spend time practicing form, stances, how to deliver force at close range, and how to use relaxation to deal with incoming energy, this practice will ultimately pay off in the ability to respond fluidly and instinctively to an attack.

Unlike other traditional martial arts , whether they are Chinese , Japanese or Korean martial arts, Wing Chun only has 3 forms, along with the wooden dummy (mook yah jong) form.

Wing Chun uses touch sensitivity, using a unique exercise caled chi sao, to train reflexes that make it possible to react at top speed to the opponent without having to think. Experts develop this touch sensitivity up to the point where they can beat their opponents blind folded.

Bruce Lee , the most famous disciple of Grand Master Ip Man, used Wing Chun as the seed art for his Jeet Kune Do. Prominent Sifus of Wing Tsun include the world famous Ip Man, and his top students Moy Yat, Wong Shun Leung, Leung Ting, Chu Shong Ting, Wan Kam Leung, and others.

While Wing Chun has had periods of great popularity, both in the United States and world wide, following the release of the Yip Man movies, there have also been numerous criticisms of the style, largely due to some Wing Chun fighters being annihilated in the UFC.

In almost all videos of Wing Chun fighters competing against other styles, there is actually very little Wing Chun visible except for the chain punch and the front kick. It is actually quite hard to find any video on the net where a Wing Chun fighter going against boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai, or MMA, looks half way respectable.

Haters have claimed that the chain punch lacks enough power to work even against untrained street fighters, and that Wing Chun fighters can be easily taken to the ground where they are helpless against any thug, street fighter, or other opponent who is either bigger, stronger, or has ground fighting training.

My own opinion, after having studied martial arts for many years, and watching thousands of videos of real fights in UFC, Pride, K1, Glory, etc, is that Wing Chun can be a very good style for real world self defense, if learned from a good teacher in a good Wing Chun school, and the Wing Chun training is modified to be more realistic. Realistic training would include more emphasis on power and explosive footwork, as well as training more intensively for power, and training to fight against other common styles like boxing, kicknoxing, and wrestling.

Unfortunately few Wing Chun schools teach it that way

While you can develop fighting skills from Wing Tsun within about a year and a half to two years, mastery of the art takes years of very intense study which includes learning the entire system including the wooden dummy and a lot of sparring.

Training for self defense

I believe that adding a few selected techniques from martial arts such as Western Boxing, Kickboxing, Jeet Kune Do, and Bak Mei can make Wing Chun even more effective for real world self-defense.

Western Boxing has perhaps the best footwork of any martial arts, with the possible exception of Jeet Kune Do, which combines boxing footwork with fencing footwork. Boxing punches can have 1 punch knockout power.

Kickboxing is tried and true in both the ring and the street, while Bak Mei includes extremely dangerous, indeed deadly strikes for self defense.

For more information about instruction about private and semi- private lessons in Staten Island, New York , please feel free to call me at (347) 461-0760.

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