It is the IDEA of how a spring works that we are after and not any specific mechanisms.

In training, we will focus on a certain aspect or concept, such as Springy Force, and describe it in a certain way, but the ultimate learning objective is to see how it works with everything we do all of the time.

Wing Chun is a multi-layered system, and like any system for it to work correctly and effectively every part of the system must interact with every other part of the system.

If just one part does not work then the whole system breaks down.

It is not practical or in fact useful to think along the lines of ‘this does that’ as all aspects can be used in numerous different ways, everything we do, every shape, every posture, and every action can be used for defence or attack, and as such requires us to be able to see things through a different lens in training and yet the learning objective is to combine both visions into a new and unique version of itself.

Although when working on and through Chum Kiu we explore Wing Chun’s defensive IDEAS this does not mean that Chum Kiu is exclusively defensive.

And when working on and through Biu Gee we explore Wing Chun attacking IDEAS it does not mean Biu Gee is exclusively concerned with attacking.

This is just a teaching protocol, a linear progression that is easier to navigate and understand than trying to explain the circular, multi-layered reality that is Wing Chun in an application.

As we all know if we are using Wing Chun to its optimal we are using simultaneous attack and defence and to be expected we are using both sets of IDEAS, both attack and defence, both Chum Kiu and Biu Gee.

Chum Kiu and Biu Gee are multi-faceted, the IDEAS and actions are many layers deep and while we may approach the IDEAS in a single-minded way the outcome we are after is a dynamic, constantly mobile combination of all the things introduced in both Forms.

Like a Lego set that moves in cycles of construction, de-construction and re-construction, the combinations are restricted only by our level of understanding and creativity.

To be expected this is also the case with Springy Force.

It is the IDEA of how a spring works that we are after and not any specific mechanisms.

The more we can understand about springs the more we understand about Springy force.

At times this can be a little confusing as we introduce explanations to fill out the IDEA, explanations that may in isolation look contradictory.

Finding comparable examples of the central IDEAS of Wing Chun in the real world can help us get a quicker understanding of what might appear to be vague concepts.

I think that most of us have an IDEA of the function of a car’s shock absorbers and how they can be adjusted to affect the height and quality of the ride, this is usually a function or quality based upon the stroke length.

As an analogy we can look at the tension in our body, be it intentional or residual, as creating a change to the stroke length and a change to the overall action of the Shock absorber.

A shorter stroke length is returns force harder and quicker, while a longer stroke length returns force softer and slower.

If you do not have this understanding ask Dr Google.

Power is described as the result of energy spent over time, the less time spent releasing a set amount of energy creates more power than the same amount of energy spent over a longer time period.

With the shock absorber the shorter stroke results in a harder result than the longer stroke.

The way we strike is a perfect example of a short stroke issuing more power.

As always the purpose of these videos is to help you all dig deep into the theory side of this thing we do, and of course, to hopefully inspire those of you that fell away during covid to come back to training, you know who you are and I know you still clock the videos.

While it is essential to understand the theories if we wish to be competent at Wing Chun, and watching these videos and reading the post will most certainly help, nothing beats the feedback that comes from supervised training and touching hands with your Wing Chun brothers.

 “Tomorrow’s victory is today’s practice.”

Chris Bradford

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