W.C.W. 25 – 11 – 2015


Don't say that!!!!
Don’t say that!!!!


This post may annoy some people slightly due to the fact that I refute some idea’s that have been getting recent Web time, ideas put forward by prominent members of the Wing Chun community, people worthy of respect, I am not trying to say they are wrong, it is quite possibly just very bad film making, I obviously think differently to them but I do believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinion of what works in Wing Chun, this is my opinion based on experience of what happens in a Street Adventure, I grew up amidst a lot of violence.

I have some new students and so I am going through all the usual chat that we give new students, some of it is plainly just not 100% correct and we all know it, it is Spin that we use to boost the profile of Wing Chun, especially the Genesis Story, I never use the Genesis Story.

The standard rhetoric in Wing Chun is that it is a style for Street Fighting and not Match Fighting but it does not take too long, you do not have to dig too deep before someone mentions that Wing Chun was forged in the fire of Biemo, the unofficial inter Kung Fu school tournaments {Match Fights} that proliferated in H.K. through the 1950’s. And it is this thinking that is running most Wing Chun Schools, there is nothing wrong with this if you plan to have a Match Fight but often the strategies are not up to the cunning of a sneaky Street Kid that hits strangers as part of his weekend jollies.


Continue reading W.C.W. 25 – 11 – 2015

W.C.W. 18 – 11 – 2015



I have recently accepted some new Students, the first time in quite a while, and I am faced with the task of trying to help them understand this whole RELAX idea, and also trying to help them see that a Martial Art is not a Spiritual endeavour.

Thanks to movies and comic books and more lately the advertising arm of the Shaolin Monastery there is a perception that to do a Martial Art well you need to meditate and become a spiritual being, people tend to buy into the thought that the Shaolin Monks where warriors that achieved enlightenment, when the truth is that they were genuinely spiritual people that learned how to fight, there is a HUGE difference.

The Monks had no choice really, they lived in a time and place that was extremely violent, Monasteries were frequently attacked simply because they had a regular stock of food and fresh water { not to mention the Golden Statues}, the Monks knew that because of their choices, because they had stepped off the “Path of Righteousness” they would not escape reincarnation, for them it was a truly noble gesture.

Our choices come from a very different place.

Continue reading W.C.W. 18 – 11 – 2015

WING CHUN WEDNESDAY 11 – 11 – 2015.


I am often asked by new Students “How long will it take until my Wing Chun is good enough to truly defend myself”?

This is a difficult question to be any kind of accurate about, even without the whole emotional requirements to injury people deliberately.

So many Schools approach the work from different perspectives, some focus on Forms some focus on Chi Sau some focus on the Fighting, unfortunately quite a few Schools teach a form of Wing Chun that is never Combat Ready, but in general if you are competent at Chi Sau and have a so / so understanding of Chum Kiu you have all the Tools needed to come out victorious against the vast majority of people that may attack you, irrespective of the ability of that person.

The length of time it takes depends a great deal on how your School sets out its agenda, most Schools are teaching the same things, just in a different order of importance, with me it takes about 18 months  2 years to reach this level of competency,  not because I am any better than anyone else, simply because I focus on the fighting aspect first.  When all is said, and all is done if you wish to have the ability of a 20 year Wing Chun Master you need to train for 20 years, it makes little difference where you begin, only where you end up.

Continue reading WING CHUN WEDNESDAY 11 – 11 – 2015.

WING CHUN WEDNESDAY 04 – 11 – 2015



Being the subject of a Street Attack is like being in the Ocean, waiting for a wave, like Surfing, the sooner you can become aware of the movement of the Wave the sooner you can choose to go with it or let it pass, you can choose to jump up, drop in and rip it but if you do not move with the wave, if you try to force it…….


A Martial Art is Fear Management and not  Danger Management, to think otherwise is foolish and leads us astray.

To differentiate, Fear Management is when you are training for “IF” you get attacked, whereas Danger Management is when your lifestyle dictates that you will get attacked and you are training for that specific event.

Many people can understand this on an intellectual level if you are sitting chatting but it all goes to shit once they begin training and the Ego takes control.

There is nothing wrong with training for “IF” and hoping you never need to use your training, it is in fact my own position and has been for the last 20 years.  All the same in that time there have been five occasions that my training made the difference , but of far greater significance there have been numerous occasions that the Intention behind my training helped me to not get involved. Continue reading WING CHUN WEDNESDAY 04 – 11 – 2015

Rory Miller, Chiron Training

The Blog Chiron Training is in my opinion on of the very best out there, this was posted recently it is well worth reading and well worth checking out the Blog.

Thoughts from Today

The class was working on power generation, using the center of gravity to slam extra power up into a strike or down into a strike. Two types of wave power. One man interrupted. Through the translator, he said, “But I don’t want to hit. My reaction will be to defuse and avoid.”

Wrong place, wrong time. The class had voted to work on surviving an attack. Rory MillerOne of those skills is hitting hard. The defusing and de-escalation part had been the focus of the whole morning. The question was good, in a way, and I had to address the whole class.

There are stages in a fight. If you see something that makes you suspicious, something that’s not quite right, you have options. You can gather more information. You can leave. You can prepare a weapon or alert your friends and partners.

If you do nothing, or don’t see it until the person becomes overtly threatening, you have fewer options. Leaving, de-escalating, gathering resources and alerting your team are still on the table, but now they come with extra risk. You will likely set him off, if he wasn’t going before. You will almost surely increase your chances of being suckerpunched if your attention is on resources or you try to leave when you are too close. You can pre-empt here, and I showed a social pre-emption. No injury, but usually even more effective than trying to suckerpunch first.

But once it’s on, once a bad guy has made violent contact with you, de-escalating and gathering resources are off the table. Mostly. By all means yell for help as you defend yourself. But never instead of defending yourself.

By the time you need to hit, it is too late to do anything but hit. And if you are going to hit, you need to hit well. Generally, if you aren’t finishing things, you are escalating them.
Context and timing. Real attacks versus sparring artifacts. One of the common patterns of shanking works from a handshake. The bad guy shakes your hand on some pretext and then pulls you in as he stabs you about in the armpit. I don’t usually teach knife defense for a number of reasons, if you know me, you know the reasons. But if you have certain jobs I’m willing to show you what I know under the assumption that you will think for yourself, adapt, and take responsibility for your own survival.

The best defense I’ve found for the handshake shanking is structural. Very quick. One of the students said, “But all I need to do to defeat the defense is let go.”

Absolutely right. That’s all you need. But that would predicate on a threat, with full lethal intent, grabbing your hand of his own volition and for his own purposes who is savagely using that hand to yank you onto the tip of the knife…and that threat halfway through this fully committed action sensing that you have a defense, sensing that you are applying the defense, completely aborting his own committed action AND doing the one thing that monkeys almost never do under stress– open their clenched hands.

Yes, there is a simple counter and no, you will never, ever encounter it in the field.

There are a lot of things, especially in traditional martial arts, that work great for real situations but are difficult or suck in sparring. The hip and shoulder throws in judo are hard to get and involve turning your back on the opponent, but in real life people jump on your back. Karate’s x-blocks are all but useless in sparring, but they are a godsend when something unexpected and shiny suddenly arcs towards your belly– a big, gross-motor move that covers a lot of area and gives you a lot of close-range options.

There is stuff that works under close-range assault, and there are options that only work with sparring timing and distance. Do not, ever, confuse the two.
“I don’t want to waste time learning power generation because I could never hurt a big man.”
Grrr. I’ve broken ribs on people much bigger than myself. Collapsed a trachea on someone who out-weighed me by over 100%. With an informal survey, we are now at, officially, 119 people who have either used a cup-hand slap to the ear, had it used on them, or seen it used. How many of those 119 incidents have seen the receiver keep fighting? Zero.

Small people can hurt big people. The smart way, of course, is to use a tool. It happens and it has happened. But if you are weak and small, your body mechanics must be superb. And there’s no rule that say big, strong guys can’t have better body mechanics than yours. There are no guarantees in this world.

But how fucked-up is it to say, “I can’t win so I won’t try.” Talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Right now, in your mind and every day in training or in choosing not to train, you are laying the groundwork for your success or you are laying the groundwork for your failure. Winning and losing doesn’t happen on that dark day when you run out of options. Winning or losing is something you are doing right now.