Monday, November 23, 2015




It was extremely exciting getting ready for my 6th “Roots of Wing Chun” Tour. This tour would concentrate on Wing Chun outside of China, namely Singapore and Taiwan. Also, I wanted to visit the Southern Shaolin Temple, having already visited the Northern Shaolin Temple in 2012.

The Southern Shaolin Temple, according to Experts today, state that Wing Chun’s origins comes from there.

I do not believe this story. If there is any truth about wing chun originating from the southern temple, then I firmly believe there were two factions. One from the northern temple and one from the southern temple. Grandmaster Lo Man Kam from Taipei, whom is Yip Man’s Nephew believes Wing Chun’s roots come from the Northern Temple. More about that in a later blog.

Our first stop was Singapore. Wow, what a hot and humid City! I am very fortunate to live in Melbourne’s Climate.

Sifu Joel Lee’s lineage stems from Leung Ting whom taught Tam Hun Fan. This lineage is very interesting as it was taught to Leung Ting during Yip Man’s final years alive in Hong Kong.

Sifu Lee style of wing chun produced different forms to my system. They also had different stances. Jee Shin Wing Chun has 50/50 stances where Sifu Lee’s students assumed a 60/40 stance with more weight on the back leg.

My Lineage being Traditional Wing Chun has its roots with Leung Bik / Yip Man.
My wing chun system has different forms, footwork and science, so it is fascinating to research other expressions of wing chun kung fu.

Grandmaster Lo Man Kam also indicated that his Uncle Yip Man did train under Leung Bik. He stated that Yip Man had 3 teachers but only one Sifu, being Chan Wah Shun. The other 2 teachers were Leung Bik and Ng Chung So.

Wing Chun is classified as Soft, Soft and Hard and Hard. Traditional wing chun is Soft and Hard.
It appears that Leung Tings expression of wing chun is Soft. Soft doesn’t indicate weakness. “Soft in training but very powerful in application”.
Our next stop is Taipei, the Capital of Taiwan. Taiwan always had an intrigue for me due to its history with Chiang Kai Chek being driven out of China by Mao Ze Dong, in the late 1940’s.
Lo Man Kam trained with his Uncle Yip Man in Hong Kong after the Communists took control of China in 1949.
Lo Man Kam moved to Taiwan in the 60’s.

It was very hot and humid arriving at Lo Man Kam’s school in Taipei. His apartment is on the 4th floor and his school is on the rooftop of the Building. 

Grandmaster Lo Man Kam was extremely friendly and hospitable. He shared his knowledge on wing chun. He gave me one of his books on wing chun and I was very privileged to touch hands with him and do Chi Sao.

There style of wing chun training is also relatively Soft.

I did a lot of rolling arms with the various students training there. We were fortunate to also meet some students from Hungary, whom were staying there and training for a couple of months.
There stances appear to be 50/50 but there lead leg is turned in quite far towards the centre.
I am a firm believer of a natural 50/50 weight distribution, stepping toe first as not to be over committed which will have a major impact on speed and of course interrupt ability. 

After we left Taiwan, we stayed in Fuzhou, preparing to travel to Putian to visit the Shaolin Temple.

I am slowly posting photos on my facebook wall. Please feel free to go there and make a comment or just have a look.

Stay tuned to my next post on the Southern Shaolin Temple.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Wing Chun Blog - Guarding Arm

Wing Chun Blog – Sifu Garry

 Wing Chun Guard

(Wu Sao)

There is much debate about the wing chun kung fu guarding hand.
Different lineages of wing chun generally demonstrate different arm positions for their guard.

Why, should there be so much disagreement with a simple arm position.
A protective guard is hardly used in a real combat situation.
Try it out!

Someone shoulder butts you as you walk past. You turn and he pushes you back with a single arm push. As you step with his force, he throws a punch which you block. You are not aggressive so you decide to be defensive. He throws several more punches and you block them easily. On the third punch you block and counter with several punches and a takedown.

Where was the guarding hand? It wasn’t used at all! In a real street situation, if somebody harasses you the last thing you should do is put up you guard.

This will tell your opponent all there is to know about you and how you fight.

(art of war) “to defeat your enemy, you must know everything about him”

If my attacker faces me with a guard, I will know if he is a boxer, muaythai fighter, karatedo, kick boxer, etc. This is actually what I want, but I don’t want to give him information about me.

A fighting guard is conceptual in wing chun kung fu.
If you opponent is a huge guy, your guard will be higher to protect you head and brain. If your opponent is smaller than you, you can afford to lower you guard.

So, you see, a wing chun guard should be very adaptable.

The wing chun guard does have a deficiency, though, as do all guards.
In wing chun kung fu, the Guard protects our Centreline. Therefore, our flanks can be open to attack.
Most other martial arts guards tend to protect their flanks but leave their centreline exposed.

Another example:

A person walks up to you and accuses you of chatting up his Girl. He throws 3 punches at you. You step back and block each one with Bill Sao and then finish off with 3 wing chun punches.

Where was the Guard?

As you can see, a guard is hardly used in a real situation.

In Competition, guards are used all the time.

If several perpetrators are attacking you simultaneously, you will use both arms to protect your head, but this is not a formal martial arts guard.

It’s easy to be a critic or couch professional, but, I have real life experiences to call on.
I am an expert in street survival, street tactics and the psychology of fighting.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Wing Chun Blog - Wing Chun in Competition

Wing Chun Blog – Sifu Garry

 Traditional Wing Chun Competition

When entering a Tournament, a Competitor must play by the rules of the day, or LOSE!

With the advent of the Internet and Youtube, there have been a lot of videos uploaded portraying wing chun fighters against other denominations, eg, muaythai, kickboxing, even Karate and Taekwando.

The biggest mistake I see when viewing these videos is:

1: what experience does the wing chun person have?

2: with boxing gloves, one has to change his tact.

3: you can use wing chun principles when fighting in a full contact tournament, but it would be a danger to the wing chun fighter, relying solely on wing chun without incorporating other ideas.

4: A wing chun fighter must change his guard to cover upper and lower gates and especially the flanks.

5: A wing chun fighter should fight South Paw. Most kick boxers, etc, generally fight in an orthodox position.

6: When preparing for a full contact fight, fitness and power are paramount.

7: If my fighters cannot reach a certain level with VO2max, they cannot compete.

8: Full contact fighters are psychologically prepared for hard hits to the body and face. Wing Chun fighters are not.

9: A wing chun gym is not necessarily geared up for full contact training.

10: A ring is an advantage especially if you are training Muaythai.

So, if you want to put your Ego on the line and prove your wing chun is superior to other martial arts, always ensure you are prepared. Martial arts is only as good as the Individual using it. If he is weak, his martial arts will be weak, also.

Make sure when competing there is equality with experience levels. For example, both have equal time in training experience.

If one is in a Muaythai competition, he or she must utilize take downs, knees and elbows, otherwise he will not win. The Judges and Referees want to see Muaythai techniques.

Martial Arts are about sharing common grounds. It is not about proving which martial arts is better, because it is the Student or Person whom makes the martial art, not the martial art itself.

Let’s face it, if Bruce Lee had been involved with kick boxing, kick boxing would be at the forefront.
Fortunately, Bruce Lee had a passion for Wing Chun Kung Fu.

He did challenge many denominations with great success, but that was Bruce Lee.
Use Martial Arts to help people, not to hurt them.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Wing Chun Blog - Leung Bik Yip Man System

Wing Chun Blog – Sifu Garry

Leung Bik / Ip Man System

Dr. Leung Zan was taught wing chun kung fu by the Red Boat Members Leung Yi Tai and Wong Wah Bo.
Leung Zan had to Sons we are aware off, Leung Chun and Leung Bik.

Wong Wah Bo and Leung Yi Tai were taught by the legendary Yim Wing Chun and her Husband Leung Bok Chow. Yim Wing Chun was taught by infamous female Abbess Ng Mui and her husband was highly skilled in Shaolin Martial Arts.

As one can see from the descendants, Leung Zan was taught and nurtured by very skilful Masters.
Leung Zan decided that his Son Leung Bik was too much of a juvenile, so he would not teach him Wing Chun. Leung Zan stated that wing chun was for helping people not hurting them.

His son, Leung Bik wanted to be a martial arts master and follow in his Father’s footsteps, so much; he would learn bits and pieces of wing chun and southern shaolin kung fu from his friend and peers. He was naturally talented, so his kung fu was still very good.

Leung Bik was a fighter. He was always getting into street altercations and accepting challenge matches to prove his martial prowess.

As time went by, Leung Bik met one of his father’s past teachers, being Wong Wah Bo.
Wong taught Leung Bik the Wing Chun System for about 12 months.
Upon hearing of this, his father, Leunh Zan, thought, if his Teacher decided it was alright to teach his Son, then his Son was ready to learn from him.

Leung Zan spent the next several years passing on his wing chun knowledge to his son, leung Bik.
In the early 1900’s, there emerged a young man by the name of Yip Man. He was studying wing chun in Foshan under Chan Wah Shun whom was a peer to Leung Bik.

Ip Man eventually went to Hong Kong around 1915 to study English.
During his stay in Hong Kong, Yip Man met a Man in an Apothecary, named Leung Bik, the son of legendary Leung Zan.

The Old Man divulged to Yip Man whom he was. As it worked out, Leung Bik and Yip Man spent the next three years together. Leung Bik taught Yip Man the wing chun system as seen through his expression and ideas.
When Yip Man returned to Foshan and demonstrated this new expression of wing chun, his Peers chastised and ridiculed him for breaking away from Tradition. His Peers slowly realized that what Yip Man had been taught in Hong Kong by Leung Bik was definitely superior in many ways to Chan Wah Shun’s Wing Chun.
Yip Man went on to teach Chan’s wing chun in Foshan to, most notably Kwok Fu and Lung Kai, apart from others.

After the Communists took over in 1948, Yip Man escaped to Hong Kong and eventually started up a wing chun school and kept teaching until his demise in 1973.

It wasn’t until the 1960’s that Yip Man finally decided to teach someone the very rare and unheard Leung Bik wing chun system. William Cheung was that person.

Due to Leung Bik’s childhood upbringing and influences from his Peers, his style of wing chun was quite unconventional for its time.

Leung Bik wing chun system incorporated high kicks, elbows to the head, with different footwork and stances. As Leung Bik was a fighter he incorporated a lot of techniques from his experiences as a Child, which broke away from the traditional mind set of wing chun at the time.

It was not until the Yip Man started to teach in Hong Kong to the general public that wing chun was still closed door, only being passed down from Father to Son or Uncle and Cousin.

Leung Zan’s much talked about wing chun manuscripts are on display at the Yip Man Tong in Foshan.
Leung Zan handed them down to his Son Leung Bik, whom in turn handed them down to Yip Man.
Leung Bik’s Traditional Wing Chun System is known in Foshan, southern China as the
“true attack fighting system of wing chun”