Kung Fu – Does It Work?
Study a martial arts? Have you doubted your fighting style? Ever thought what if……
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It’s almost 1 year into my re-ignited love for martial arts and my journey down the path of hopefully earning a black belt in Wing Chun. My quest for knowledge, fast tracking my development and sheer addiction of the art has in some ways contributed to the disease of doubt.
Does it work? Will it would hold up in real life situations?
Curious of skill level that’s out there and the hope that someone will control and destroy an opponent, I find myself trawling through countless youtube videos.
I am disappointed from what I see, my heart has a sinking feeling like a favorite sports team is about to lose a world cup game. I am frequently let down by individuals who start off in a perfect opening stance only to drop everything they have learnt the moment a punch comes in their direction. Is it to say that traditional kung fu can be easily overwhelmed by some fighting styles? Have times or mind sets changed from a way that accommodated traditional martial arts nicely.
There are definitely awesome practitioner’s out there but I am not seeing any of them in action that would cement for me that Wing Chun can live up to its hype.
I have come to know that yes some fighting styles do perform better in some situations, for instance Jiu Jitsu may work well as a sport in a ring with a mat but maybe not so good in a crowded nightclub, whereas a Muay Thai fighter might feel uncomfortable on the mat rolling around.
After much thought & more Youtubing, I have come to the conclusion that…… it is the practitioner.
The practitioner is the one that makes the martial arts work but also the way we train. What i think lacks is the real life situations and being pushed to your limit and also learning to fight against other fighting styles. We can get so use to fighting say…. Wing Chun vs Wing Chun that we forget some people have a different mentality and they are not going to stand there like a sparring partner and throw punches in a particular safe manner. Because we run drills with controlled watered down attacks, muscle memory can be trained wrong and we are not mentally prepared when someone exceeds our comfort zone level. I speak more on this topic in this post here: Learn Martial Arts – The Core Principle
Opponents are going use 100% of power to your face not 20% power and speed at you chest. If you train to swing a ping pong paddle and get really good at hitting ping pong balls, on game day someone throws you a softball, i think you are gonna react wrong and hurt yourself.
So I say yes to martial arts, yes to traditional kung fu, getting smacked in the face once in a while is good for you. Take time out mentally & physically to prepare yourself for a brutal shin kick or a hard swinging hook. Understand that an opponent may not stand at arms distance swinging punch for punch. Yes you may have to learn an additional martial arts to accommodate any gaps eg. Wing Chun with Jiu Jitsu but most of all…. remember that your opponent won’t be mirroring your fighting style.
Either way, if I’m wrong, at least I know that I am now alot better off than defaulting to my bad habits of closing my eyes, hiding my face and throwing arms like i’m swimming. My confidence is 100 times more then what is used to be.
Final words, train hard, train right & push outside of your comfort zone.
Related Reading: Learn Martial Arts – The Core Principle
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