The effectiveness of Wing Chun is in its inherent simplicy.
…few of us these days have the “luxury” of testing our fighting skills in real combat situations. As such, we are usually unable to duplicate the enormous amounts of emotional pressure that accompany a real fight…
David Peterson has performed the invaluable service of preserving Wong Shun Leung’s wisdom, derived from his decades of training and teaching. But most importantly, this wisdom was built upon a foundation of pragmatism. Pragmatism is the opposite of fantasy or wishful thinking, neither of which last long when tested in street fights or Beimo.
Wong didn’t just take Ip Man’s word for what worked. He fought Ip Man and lost. Then he tested out what he was taught in fights. This is the key to Leung and his philosophies on fighting.
If you are not a fighter, but wish to be prepared to fight, what do you do? You must find someone who has fought and you ask them what to do.
Wing Chun is a system that was developed by men who were fighters. Who fought in challenge matches, in street fights, in police actions and wars.
They tested the Wing Chun principles out and if something didn’t make sense, it was dropped. A good system provides just enough to win, and no more. A good system shrinks more than it expands.
Stephen Crane, the author of The Red Badge of Courage, wrote that Civil War novel in his early twenties, when he had no experience of war. He had to use his imagination to write it, in combination with stories from veterans and written accounts. He took these sources and his own knowledge of human nature and he came up with a story of fear, cowardice, and surprising bravery.
Later, as a war corespondent during the Spanish American war, he experienced battle and said, “I got it right.”
Short of fighting to knockout (or death) ourselves, which these days involves a lot of legal and medical risk (and lets admit, perhaps more pain than we want to experience regularly for the sake pf preparation), we can only try and use our imagination.
We need to listen to the advice of men who have fought. We need to study systems created by fighters and use the principles they have tested in battle.
Then you have to train it – a lot. Throw in some high pressure training that steps as close as possible to actual battle, without causing any permanent damage to ourselves or our training partners.
Then you have the best you can do.