Tag Archives: wing chun

The Original Wing Chun

I’m looking for the original Wing Chun.

I’m looking for the complete Wing Chun.

This is a common goal/question I’ve encountered over the years talking to prospective students and art lovers regarding Wing Chun Kung Fu (aka Wing Chun Kuen). It’s a very reasonable question— but a question with no answer. Wing Chun has its history, just like everything else in life.

To illustrate my meaning, let us start with the premise that Wing Chun Kung Fu, as taught by Yip Man is the original and complete Wing Chun. Yip Man had hundreds of students who learned Wing Chun. So who learned the original and complete Wing Chun? Let’s say for the sake of argument, the best of the best learned the original and complete Wing Chun. Does this mean they learned everything Yip Man knew? Does this mean they would do everything Yip Man would do? The answer is obviously no. Yes, they learned Wing Chun. Yes, they learned what Yip Man taught them. But it is never original or complete. The student will take the concepts and drills they learn, study, and apply them to the situations they face. They will learn from their mistakes and improve upon what they learned, and always continue learning. It is in this way that Wing Chun is constantly developing and evolving.

Repeat and apply this to every generation and the situations they encounter, and you will quickly see that its hard to know what is the original and complete Wing Chun.

For those curious to know how large the Wing Chun Pai (family) really is, read [amazon_link id=”0804831416″ ]Complete Wing Chun[/amazon_link] by Robert Chu, Rene Ritchie and Y. Wu. The Yip Man side of the family is one branch of a long and broad family tree.

Yes there are many great SiFus out there that come from a stellar lineage and training history. Yes there are many SiFus that are world renowned and famous in their own right. They all have my highest respect and gratitude for learning and passing on the art of Wing Chun. Yet, in regards to prospective students seeking the art of Wing Chun, my recommendation is, and will always be, to be less concerned with names and more concerned with substance. Wing Chun is an applied martial art. So the questions you should ask yourself are, “What will I learn?” and “How applicable do I think this is in what I might encounter?” Having the proper questions will keep you true to Wing Chun.

Find the Wing Chun Kung Fu for you and sing the coming of spring…

SiFu James Sasitorn

Wing Chun for Inner Strength

Wing Chun Gave Me The Stregnth To Overcome My Addictions

In the nineties, Robert Downey Jr. was arrested multiple times for drug and alcohol-related crimes. He was quoted as saying,

“It’s like I have a loaded gun in my mouth and my finger’s on the trigger, and I like the taste of the gunmetal.”

Whether it was driving naked with a loaded gun down Sunset Boulevard or breaking into his neighbor’s house by accident, Robert Downey Jr. was out of control.

In 1999, the actor was arrested once more and spent the better part of a year in jail. He was such a loose cannon that filmmakers who wanted to hire him were forced to take out massive insurance policies or withhold his salary to get their films made. He was fired from Ally McBeal after another drug infraction and chose to take a few years to get his life together and re-evaluate his priorities.

It was during 2002-2003 that he began practicing Wing Chun, a form of kung fu which he credits for giving him the strength to overcome his addictions.

Sometimes referred to as “a martial art for the mind,” Wing Chun is a powerful new (yet very old) Chinese art known to increase focus, concentration and relaxation.

In 2003, Downey started working again, and released a string of well-received movies like The Singing Detective, Fur and Zodiac before landing the key role of Tony Stark in Iron Man, which was released in May of 2008 to record-shattering returns.

With Iron Man, the resurgence of Robert Downey Jr. is now complete. He’s on top of the box office with a blockbuster franchise, clean and sober, and happily married. With his drug demons behind him, his legend is only beginning. Downey is now working on Iron Man II which is set to be released in 2010 as well as starring as the Victorian-era detective in the upcoming Sherlock Holmes film.

The concepts and philosophies found through Wing Chun training bring about a new way of looking at life’s challenges helping you to deal with situations in whole new way – things you don’t usually find in other activities.

But what is this Chinese martial art called Wing Chun? Wing Chun (Wing Tsun / Ving Tsun) is a highly effective combat-tested system of self defense, fighting skills and defensive tactics. It has been taught and integrated into the training programs of hundreds of military & law enforcement agencies around the world such as the US Navy Seals, FBI, CIA, French RAID and German SEK units.

Wing Chun emphasizes aggressive tactics, direct/scientific movement and realistic training. It prepares its trainees in the subjects of self-defense, self protection, fighting and combat skills, as well as skills to defend others. A practical and scientific system, Wing Chun teaches how to prevent, deal and overcome all kinds of violence and attacks.

But what really seems to have caught the attention of Robert Downey Jr. is the art’s ability to go well beyond fighting. It encompasses the full mind, body & spirit of martial arts. The concepts and philosophies found through Wing Chun training bring about a new way of looking at life’s challenges helping you to deal with situations in whole new way – things you don’t usually find in other activities.

Hope all is well.

Happy Holidays!

Adam Williss

Off the Centerline

Centerline is an important concept in Wing Chun Kung Fu. As with all Wing Chun concepts, its imperative to understand the little idea (or big picture) behind the core concept before moving to the details of who, what, where, why, how, and to what extent. Simply stated,

Centerline is a core path/region of influence.

-SiFu James Sasitorn

With this guiding thought, it is then easy to discover and understand the most common incarnations or examples of centerline:

  • Centerline is the imaginary vertical line down the middle of your body, and includes many sensitive striking targets that you need to protect.
  • Centerline is the imaginary vertical line down the middle of your opponent’s body, and includes many sensitive striking targets that you would like to attack.
  • Centerline is the imaginary horizontal line of attack and defense from you to your opponent.

However, there is more to the story than the who and what. Centerline is more than a line that bisects a space or a line that connects two points. The key word is influence. If your opponent is behind you, is it as important to protect your eyes, nose, and throat?

It is.

Yet, you aren’t protecting them from a frontal assault. The fight is behind you, and if the opponent is bridged, he is also all around you, as well… Where is the centerline? Or more to the point, how do you protect yourself? Use your hands or feet to attack the rear or side, and if his attacks are reaching around you, attack his his hands and legs (attack the attack). You can bend and move to place yourself in a better position and angle and your opponent in a worse position and angle. Given enough time, you should always turn around to be best equipped to defend yourself.


There is no time for mysticism in self-defense.

-SiFu James Sasitorn

Now if you are facing your opponent’s side. Should you go for the floating rib, side of the face, or go for a hit to the groin or nose? Apply common sense. What’s the answer? The answer is not known beforehand. Where are you? Where are your hands? Where are your opponents hands? What is open for attack? What region do you have the greatest influence. What path can you inflict the most damage in the least amount of time? Training provides you the experience and understand to analyze these factors. When it is all going down you have to fight for your life.

Rather than chase the shadow of an idea. Seek the core little idea, and then you will never be off center.

Learning isn’t just connecting the dots.  Have a little imagination… and own what you do…

SiFu James Sasitorn



10 Reasons to Learn Wing Chun Kung Fu and its Applications For Self Defense

Now a days, there are as many martial art schools and styles as as there are fast food places. Unlike a greasy burger which hits the spot in seconds, it takes several months to years to get the gist of what a martial art is about. So how do you know which one is the right one to learn FOR YOU?

Wing Chun Kung Fu was developed by two women over 300 years ago to be a highly effective form of combat and self defense able to deal with bigger, faster, and stronger assailants in any and all situations. Here are ten of the many reasons to learn Wing Chun Kung Fu and its applications for self defense.

  1. Reality-based, street tested, and appropriate for today’s world.
  2. Effective against bigger, stronger, and faster assailants.
  3. It works against unarmed and armed assailants.
  4. Works against single and multiple assailants.
  5. It works when you are prepared or surprised.
  6. Works any time and place. Works inside, outside, in the parking lot, woods, living room, bed room, gym, or office.
  7. It is concept based. So it simplifies your thinking, and you can apply it to new situations.
  8. It builds natural instincts and reactions.
  9. It develops situational awareness.
  10. Teaches you to fight for your life— physically, mentally, and spiritually.

There is no one size fits all for anything in life. Each person walks their own path. If this is what you are looking for in a martial art, then seek out Wing Chun Kung Fu.

Just my opinion…

SiFu James Sasitorn