the biggest mistake most students make is to relax their legs, we need to learn how to add healthy tension into the structure to make it alive
These recent failure of the two Wing Chun Masters against M.M.A. fighters has been making many of my guys reassess their take on Wing Chun, firstly for all of us it is important to accept that they where genuine Wing Chun Masters, the organisers of the event obviously wished to discredit Wing Chun so how could they hope to do that if these guys were not recognised Masters, someone somewhere would of pointed out to the world that this was a set up and called Bullsh*t, but that has not happened.
The reason Wing Chun fighters do so badly against competitive fighters is that they genuinely try to do Wing Chun instead of just fighting. Wing Chun is not really suited to Mano a Mano situations, our main weapon is surprise, followed by a quick finish and off home for a cup of tea, as a result of this if the Wing Chun fighter does not get the quick finish they can struggle quite badly, there is no “Plan B” in Wing Chun.
Wing Chun is a clever martial art but it is not very technical, it is nowhere near as technical as western boxing for instance, a great deal of what is passed on as Wing Chun, even by the very top masters, is naive in respect of fight craft and strategy, the Wing Chun stance and guard is completely ineffective but I do not think that it was ever meant to be used for real, it is just a simple frame of reference to begin training from but unfortunately it has taken on a life of its own and now students try to use it with predictably bad results.
The Yee Chi Kim Yeung Ma is a conditioning exercise for the legs to prepare them for the work to come in Chum Kiu, to condition any muscle it must be activated the biggest mistake most students make is to relax their legs, we need to learn how to add healthy tension into the structure to make it alive. The idea that the Y.C.K.Y.M. is a fighting stance has permeated mainstream Wing Chun and the flow on effect is that everything is being done in the wrong place at the wrong time from the wrong direction, look around, most Wing Chun schools teach only one angle of attack namely front to back and hey diddle diddle straight down the middle, it is great when it works, and it will work against an average street mug, but it will rarely work against an experienced fighter as our two unfortunate Wing Chun masters found out.
The real training in Wing Chun begins with Chum Kiu, everything before that was just isometric exercises, if we can look at the Y.C.K.Y.M as two separate legs, the rear legs of the stances introduced in Chum Kiu we realise that it shows us how to move, not stand still, there is some very clever stuff going on in the Y.C.K.Y.M once you abandon the idea that it is a stance, but only when you know where to look.