3 Most Common Reasons People Study Wing Chun Kung Fu

The always-enthusiastic Master Wong demonstrating a Lop Sao (grabbing hand) and chop to the neck.

In this day and age where it seems like everyone and their mother owns a gun, what are some of the applications and uses of Wing Chun? What purpose could it possibly serve? Well, let me tell you: martial arts isn't JUST about self-defense. There is much more to it than that. If there wasn't, then everyone would have stopped going to class as soon as the first automatic weapon came off the production line.

Use #1: Self-Defense

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this IS the most common reason people decide to learn Wing Chun, even if you consider what I said above about firearms.

Wing Chun is designed to help a small person overcome a larger opponent. This makes it ideal for children who are bullied in school. After all, it usually is a bigger child using their size to intimidate a smaller one.

Bullies believe "smaller" automatically equals "weaker." While this is true, some Wing Chun training can help level the playing field.

Use #2: Focus and Discipline

This holds true of all aspects of Wing Chun, but it is especially true during forms training. When you pay attention to your techniques, making sure you are doing it 100% correct, figuring out what you could do to be better, Wing Chun can take you into another world. Nothing else exists or matters.

The late Ip Man practicing on the wooden dummy. I can guarantee you: he didn't even know the photographer was there.

You will get out of Wing Chun what you put into it. Therefore, if you don't train, if you don't practice your forms, if you don't put yourself through a constant process of doing, analyzing, and reevaluating, then you will get very little.

If that's what you want, that's fine. Maybe you started attending classes just because you didn't feel like sitting home and watching SURVIVOR every night. However, if you want to master the art, then you need to get up off the couch and practice.

Use #3: Self-Confidence

As you get better at Wing Chun, you will realize you can actually handle yourself in a physical confrontation. This will come through in your attitude and the way you carry yourself. In time, you will develop a "vibe" that will act as a sort of warning signal to anyone who would dare confront you: "Move on. This one is NOT a target."

Having said that, I must say that a person with poor self-esteem might not be able to develop self-confidence. No matter how good you do in the art, you will never have any faith in your ability if you have that void inside you.

There is a distinction between self-confidence and self-esteem, which we will cover in another section of this site. In fact, it will be an ongoing concern because I believe mental fitness is one of the most neglected aspects of training.

3 More Uses

There are a few other ways in which Wing Chun can be used, although we are going to devote separate pages to them. See the links below for more information.

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