FAQ v.1.1 Table of Contents
1. What Is Wing Chun?
2. How much does it cost?
3. Where are the locations of your clubs, schools, academies?
4. Who can train in Wing Chun?
5. Will Wing Chun teach me how to fight?
6. Should I have previous martial arts experience?
7. How long does it take to learn the complete art?
8. Are there any kicks in wing chun?
9. Is wing chun a good martial art for women?
10. Does wing chun have any ground fighting?
11. Are wing chun attacks only straight in?
12. How many forms are there in wing chun?
13. What good are martial arts forms? I heard they were useless.
14. Is there qi gong involved in wing chun?
15. Is wing chun an internal art?
16. Is Wing Chun Kung Fu different from other martial arts?
17. What are some Wing Chun principles?
18. What are the benefits of studying Wing Chun?
19. Is Wing Chun the same martial art that Bruce Lee studied?
20. What do you do in kung fu class?
21. Is kung fu hard to learn?
22. How long does it take to become an expert in Wing Chun?
23. Is there a belt or ranking system?
24. Can kids learn kung fu?
25. What kind of uniforms do kung fu students wear?
26. What training equipment is used in a kung fu school?
27. Does the School offer instruction in other martial arts systems?
28. What is the kung fu lineage of sifu Z's School?
29. Why is "Wing Chun" spelled differently" ie "Ving Tsun", "Wing Tsun" "Ving Chun"?
30. How can I learn kung fu?
31. Is there sparring in Wing Chun?
1. What is Wing Chun? [back]
Wing Chun is a form of Kung Fu martial art from China. It is believed to be around 400 years old and is a derivative from the Sholin methods of Kung Fu. The Snake and Crane forms are obvious relatives of Wing Chun. Mantis, Monkey and Dragon style elements have also found their way into the Wing Chun system. Wing Chun is also known as Chinese Boxing. It is a close range or inside fighting system that lies between boxing and grappling. In modern terms Wing Chun could be considered a form of clinch fighting. On a more esoteric level Wing Chun is used to develop energy and balance between body and mind. Many practitioners of Wing Chun do not engage in competitive or sport fighting activities but would rather use their training for other life endeavors. Wing Chun is best suited as a practical and efficient method of self defense that can be learned and applied in a relatively short amount of time. Bruce Lee made Wing Chun world famous and inspired his friend Grand-Master Chris Chan to be the first in America to teach Kung Fu to non-Chinese.
2. How much does it cost? [back]
Group classes will cost anywhere from $40-$125 a month for 2-7 classes per week. Private instruction is $60-$125 per session which lasts 1 to 3 hours. Seminars are priced in the same ballpark range and depend on amount of participants and level of class being taught. Each WCCI club or school may have a slightly different fee schedule and policy which is dictated by region. Drop-in fees are typically $10. Most facilities allow you to train free of charge for the first class as long as you sign a liability waiver.
3. Where are the locations of your clubs, schools, academies? [back]
WCCI has facilities located in Hawaii, Northern California and Colorado. Our Grand-Master Chris Chan has schools and Sifu's all throughout the US and abroad. It is our mission to spread Wing Chun Club's throughout the world. Contact us if you would like to start a Wing Chun Club Chapter in your town.
4. Who can train in Wing Chun? [back]
If you can stand, you can train and become stronger using the Wing Chun system. Wing Chun training is designed to make you incredibly strong with absolutely no negative impact on the bones, joints, muscles or tendons. In westernized fitness all exercise produces a certain amount of negative impact; ie running impacts the spine and knees. Wing Chun's main form called the siu nim tao produces zero negative impact which makes it practical for almost anyone at any age to train in Wing Chun Kung Fu. Always consult your physician before participating in martial arts. Always let the instructors know (if possible in writing) what your physical and/or mental limitations are. It is not necessary to touch anyone in order to train in Wing Chun. Typically the age range for WCCI members has been 18-35 year old. Our youngest student to date has been 7 years old and our most senior 70 years young. Children 17 years of age or younger must be accompanied by an adult and must have parent or guardian co-sign our liability waiver.
5. Will Wing Chun teach me how to fight? [back]
"Fighting is to martial arts what proof reading is to literature."
Yes, if that's what you're looking for. Our schools are more focused on building energy but practical combat application is a solid component to our training.
6. Should I have previous martial arts experience? [back]
No previous martial arts experience is needed to get started in Wing Chun Kung Fu training. In fact many people that come in with previous experience tend to initially have a harder time picking up the art. However, most experienced martial artists appreciate the direct nature of Wing Chun's techniques and are able to refine their martial art skill to a whole new level.
7. How long does it take to learn the complete art? [back]
Six to nine months. If you have experience with choreography you might be able to learn it in less than a week. However it is common for proficiency to take about 6 to 9 months. The techniques of the Wing Chun system can be applied in a self defense manner after just one session. Mastery of the system can take a lifetime. The Wing Chun system also grows in detail and refinement.
8. Are there any kicks in wing chun? [back]
Yes. The leg work of the Wing Chun system is highly advanced. Strikes with the legs include low knee, side and front stomp. Kicks above the waistline are uncommon. Roundhouse kicks and flying snap kicks are practically nonexistent in Wing Chun.
9. Is wing chun a good martial art for women? [back]
Wing Chun was invented by women. It could be said that it is ideally suited for woman and small framed men. But Wing Chun is usable by anyone regardless of sex or size.
10. Does wing chun have any ground fighting? [back]
Wing Chun is not known for it's ground fighting but the trapping elements of the system transition perfectly to ground work or grappling. However most Wing Chun practitioners prefer to train standing. Typically we do not cross train in jiu-jitsu, muay thai or sport fighting.
11. Are wing chun attacks only straight in? [back]
Wing Chun is famous for it's straight in forward attacks. But Wing Chun has round and outside punches as well as kicks.
12. How many forms are there in wing chun? [back]
Three standing forms. One wooden man form. Two weapons forms. And one partnered exercise.
13. What good are martial arts forms? I heard they were useless. [back]
There is a common perception that martial arts forms are a waste of time. This mostly stems from mma (mixed martial arts) practitioners and other tma's (traditional martial arts) that don't place emphasis on forms or katas. These fighters prefer to engage in sparring (ie boxing) and rolling (ie wrestling) in order to develop a high level of fighting ability.
To say that any form or kata will teach you how to fight would be erroneous. If you want to be a good fighter you must fight... often. Wing Chun forms represent perfect martial arts angles and techniques that help to perfect your movements in battle. I've seen great fighters utilize these angles innumerable amounts of times in practically every type of martial art. From Mike Tyson to Rickson Gracie, you could freeze frame their fights and see the commonality within the angles which Wing Chun forges. Training in Wing Chun forms helps to make a fighter more efficient. However, if you are not a fighter the forms maintain their value as a low impact method of maintaining fitness. In fact, constant practice of the Siu Nim Tao form alone is capable of making the body extraordinarily strong and seemingly impervious to attack.
It is also worth noting that most Wing Chun schools focus more on self defense than competitive fighting. The argument is that there should be no difference. I find this point of view to be exclusionary toward people that are not interested in sports or competing yet have a passion for being fit and being able to defend one's self in the event of unprovoked attack. The goal of self defense is much easier than the goal of sport fighting. You are not trying to attack your assailant as much as your trying to defend yourself against attack.
14. Is there qi gong involved in wing chun? [back]
Wing Chun is the most powerful form of chi development in the world. Some practitioners use the chi gong (qi gong etc...) system alone to increase health and develop fitness and do not train in hand to hand combat.
15. Is wing chun an internal art? [back]
Some people refer to martial arts as soft and hard styles, or internal and external. Wing Chun is both. It is up to each student as to how much emphasis they wish to place on their training.
16. Is Wing Chun Kung Fu different from other martial arts? [back]
Wing Chun Kung Fu tends to be different from most martial arts. However, many high level martial artists from various disciplines will recognize similar elements from the wing chun system to their art. Although Wing Chun is a lethal martial art form, it's main form (the siu nim tao) has less movement than Tai Chi! Wing Chun is very famous for developing incredible core strength.
17. What are some Wing Chun principles? [back]
The centerline principle, four quadrants, grounding, one inch punch, trapping (standing submission locks), iron shirt and iron fist training are just a few principles all employed in the wing chun system. The immovable elbow is also a key component of our techniques.
18. What are the benefits of studying Wing Chun? [back]
Wing Chun training can help you to become the strongest person that you are capable of being. It will help you to overcome personal and social obstacles. It is a safe and efficient method of developing health and fitness and it is a highly practical system of self defense that can be learned and applied in a short amount of time... even after one lesson!
19. Is Wing Chun the same martial art that Bruce Lee studied? [back]
Yes. Bruce Lee and our Grand-Master both trained under Great Grand-Master Yip Man during the same era. Bruce Lee enticed Chris Chan to move to from Hong Kong and become the first to teach Kung Fu in America. Chan and Lee were friends and sparring partners.
20. What do you do in kung fu class? [back]
A typical class starts out with a warm up before an extended form exercise. After form training student have the option to engage in partnered training or continue to practice forms. Partnered exercises consist of varying degrees of close contact with multiple levels of controlled intensity.
21. Is kung fu hard to learn? [back]
No. But training in Wing Chun does take some patience and understanding. Anyone can learn this valuable art form regardless of aptitude or natural talent.
22. How long does it take to become an expert in Wing Chun? [back]
Training at 7 days a week for 8-14 hours a day; about 9 months to a year or more. This is relatively a short period of time compared to all other traditional martial arts which often take 10 years or more to become proficient. Of course mastering the art of wing chun can take a lifetime but gaining a high level of ability in Wing Chun happens in a short period of time.
23. Is there a belt or ranking system? [back]
No. Some Wing Chun schools have belts and ranking but most do not. Wing Chun Club International has 3 basic levels of participation: student, instructor and sifu (master). It is the hopes of our club to bring everyone up to instructor level.
24. Can kids learn kung fu? [back]
Yes. However, children under 14 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. Students under 18 years of age must have parental consent to train.
25. What kind of uniforms do your kung fu students wear? [back]
Our uniforms are a black or white (depending on the Chapter) long sleeve tee shirt with our organizations emblem printed upon it, available at cafepress.com/wingchunclub. Long black or white loose fitting pants such as gi pants, preferably with a gusseted crotch.Black flat rubber soled shoes (ie Adidas Samba Classics or a wrestling style shoe). We do allow lenience toward students that can not afford uniforms.
26. What training equipment is used in a kung fu school? [back]
No equipment is needed to practice forms and partnered exercises. We also use sandbags, long poles, butterfly swords and a wooden dummy. Mirrors and a wood floor is common at most of our locations.
Although it is not common in WCCI, some chapter's may have full contact sparring which require a mouth piece and groin protection. Additional protection includes mma training gloves, head gear, various body part protective padding, eye protection and mats. Even with protective gear, students must exercise control and not injure their partner.
27. Does the School offer instruction in other martial arts systems? [back]
No. We may cover elements from other martial arts in relation to wing chun, but Wing Chun Club International do not cross train. Wing Chun is a complete martial art system with it's own take on punching, grappling/trapping and kicking. We train in traditional Wing Chun and do not incorporate Bruce Lee's Jeet Kune Do.
28. What is the kung fu lineage of sifu Z's School? [back]
2nd generation Yip Man. Sifu Z was taught by Grand-Master Chris Chan whom was taught by Great Grand-Master Yip Man.
29. Why is "Wing Chun" spelled differently" ie "Ving Tsun", "Wing Tsun" "Ving Chun"? [back]
There are a few different spellings of wing chun that represent different factions of the Wing Chun system. Not all forms of Wing Chun stem from the Yip Man lineage. Also some schools desire to differentiate themselves from one another for various political purposes. Most schools share a common approach to the art with differences being in the detail. Some schools are vastly different in their training and philosophy. As with all institutions, not all wing chun schools are equal.
30. How can I learn kung fu? [back]
Kung Fu is a way of life. But you can schedule time to learn this "way of life". The main key is being consistent in your practice. Wing Chun Club International was formed to offer future Kung Fu masters an intelligent approach to their training. We will help you to begin training, find a legitimate instructor and how to establish dependable training partners. The internet has made it possible for anyone regardless of location to learn real Kung Fu right from your computer to our Kwoon (class room).
31. Is there sparring in Wing Chun? [back]
Wing Chun has a system of partnered training called chi sao or sticky hands. This is often confused with sparring. Some schools actually use chi sao as a basis for a type of sparring. Our club utilizes a form of chi sao which is used as a control mechanism to prevent injury in close quarter sparring. We do not engage in uncontrolled striking, kicking or grappling. Chi Sao is not mandatory in Wing Chun Club.