Wing Chung - Making Karate More Than Just A Sport

While most people envision that karate and kung fu are dramatically different they are really not that far apart. The basis of them both is for self defense. Wing Chun is actually a special technique that uses a combination of hitting (using both hands and feet) as well as "grappling" with your opponent, much like in a wrestling match. This technique was developed to deal with close combat. However why is this so important to individuals when training in karate and kung fu. The reality here is that close combat is inevitable in self defence.

Why Karate and Kung Fu Wing Chun is more than just a sport 

Picture yourself in a position where you genuinely need to ward off an attack. Would your knowledge and skill be enough to do the job? 

If the answer is not a resounding “yes” then maybe it’s time you rethink your training. It’s surprising the amount of students who wait around for the next “self defence” seminar in order to brush up on their skills. Karate was born out of a need for self defence. The more time you spend at the dojo practicing, the better prepared you will be to face up to “come what may” - be it at school, on the street or a quiet evening out with friends. It’s not good enough that you simply look for your next grade without first looking for the right amount of improvement. In order to become proficient and confident in your ability to defend yourself you’ve got to become proficient and confident in Karate. With the right amount of focus and training you will carry something as equally reassuring as being in a large group of people. There are many aspects to learning the “art of self defence” but it all begins with the right frame of mind. 

Approach your training with the right attitude. Too many people these days including some major styles view karate as not much more than a sport. An attitude such as this could one day cost you a lot more than a few points in a ring. 

Repetition is the mother of skill and perfect practice makes perfect. When it comes to your training, every punch you throw, every block you practice and every kick you deliver must have your heart and soul behind it. Improvement comes from a genuine desire to improve. 

Stances are vital to your survival. They help with your balance and execution of both attacking (sometimes attack is the best form of defence) and defensive movement. The stronger your legs and the more balanced you become, the harder it will be to overcome you. 

Train your mind to absorb some pain. This is easy enough to do. Simply push yourself a little harder every class and don’t allow yourself to take it easy. The more classes you do the better. It’s not good if you can’t take some pain. It may sound a little corny but there truly is no gain without pain. Quite often it’s not so much about what you can give that matters, as much as what you can absorb. The rule of the jungle definitely applies - and that is “only the strong survive”.  Mental toughness is a powerful weapon. With the right amount of mental toughness and focus you can achieve anything. 

And lastly, think constantly about what you would do if…. Prepare yourself mentally by running different scenarios in your head. Kumite is an excellent arena to practice your interactive skills. But be warned, the bad guys won’t play by dojo rules. Wing Chun has certain rules in place to promote discipline and keep injury to a minimum. However when it comes to defending yourself leave those rules where they belong, and don’t hold back! 

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