Martial Sport or Martial Arts Classes in Phoenix AZ

Among martial arts classes in Phoenix AZ, where does Wing Tsun Arizona fit in to the picture? In today’s world of martial arts, the view of what a martial art actually is has been blurred with the advent of new kinds of martial sports.  The phrase “martial sport” is itself a new word.  Many of the events involving these martial sports are quite brutal which gives the arts being shown an aura of effectiveness.  The public can now see what the effect is of a well-placed punch, kick or choke.

Many people view the combined martial arts events as an improvement, combining the techniques of so many martial arts.  It is like a new invention.  Actually, part of the improvement in the area of entertainment.  With so many techniques at the fighters’ disposal, the audience is always surprised and kept entertained.

Any event which pits two fighters in an organized contest must have rules.  Without rules there would be no entertainment.  A story can illustrate this. One story recounted in the book Wing Tsun Kuen by Leung Ting, Wing Tsun 10th Level Master of Comprehension describes a ring fight between the late Wing Tsun Grandmaster Yip Man and a boxer from northern China named Kam Shan Mao.  At first Yip Man did not want to participate but at “the earnest request of Lee Kwong Hoi, a famous herbalist physician of Fatshan, he eventually agreed to the fight.”  The short version is that Yip Man knocked boxer Kam down within one minute.  Boxer Kam was declared the loser.  This short event almost caused a riot because the crowd wanted to be entertained for an afternoon!

The contradiction that lies with some of these matches is the length. The promoters would like a long match, extended to its limits for the benefit of the audience. Self defense demands that the fight be as brief as possible. A long period only serves to allow an attacker more chance to hurt you.

The lesson in the above story is that Wing Tsun™ is not and never has been a sport.  The goal is to destroy one’s attacker as soon as possible.  Modern boxers have powerful, fast hands.  However they are covered by thick gloves.  If the fights were bare knuckle affairs as in the 19th century, there would be much more permanent injury to fighters and much shorter fights.  If boxers were allowed to kick the legs of their opponents, there would be many retired fighters after one or two fights. This is not tolerated in western cultures.  Of course it is different in one eastern culture sport, Muay Thai (Thai Boxing), a national sport of Thailand.

Similarly, in the multiple martial art contests, if their rules allowed groin shots and attacks to the eyes and throat, you might see deaths and then it would mean the end of the sport.  On the street, you can use these techniques to save your life (you win).  In order to win a contest in a ring fight, you have to stay in the ring and finish.  You cannot run away.  On the street, you can run away to win.  There are no time limits and no rounds.  In the contest ring, you are not allowed to use a chair to hit your opponent over the head.  On the street, you can use a chair, pepper spray, fist, knee elbow, teeth, etc.

In a contest ring, if one fighter has difficulty finishing his opponent, he can stretch out the contest and win on points.  On the street, a defender DARES NOT to stretch out the fight thus giving the attacker more opportunities to hurt or kill!  There are many strategies in a ring fight that make it a game rather than a life or death encounter.

Athletic Skill

Multiple martial art contests are contests of a person’s athletic skill and their naturally high pain thresholds.  Somebody skilled at these kinds of fights are doubtless pretty tough customers on the street.  However if they are not trained to think like a street fighter, they can lose just as easily as a non-martial artist. In a street encounter, the best athlete is not the natural survivor. The survivor is the smartest fighter. Techniques that are praised in a ring fight are not suggested in a street situation.  Techniques such as kicks above the waist (too slow), lots of time spent on the ground (the man’s friends or bystanders can jump you), spins or techniques done on one leg or that sequence you just learned at class last night are just a few.

Some might have the verbal or mental argument that “when will I ever have to defend myself for real?”  We hope that you will never have to defend yourself for real. Leung Ting WingTsun® is a complete martial art with close and long-range hand and foot techniques, anti-grappling techniques and anti-ground fighting.  It is a sophisticated martial art descended from Shaolin kungfu but trimmed down to focus on the practical considerations of real self-defense. The training is so thorough as to accelerate the hand-eye coordination skills many times, two-handed coordination, the hand-foot coordination, and the general flexibility and mental clarity that you get when solving a difficult puzzle.  Breathing, balance and many other skills too numerous to mention are covered in the training because it all concerns itself with self-defense.  All the time you have the contest, not with another person but with yourself:  am I going to see this through and how far can I go?  Do I have the patience and the faith in myself?

If you want to test yourself on how tough you are, how strong you are, how much pain you can stand, how you measure up to other people of your size, how many injuries you can get and heal, there are many activities for that including martial arts classes in Phoenix AZ. There are plenty of physical disciplines that strengthen the large skeletal muscles. If you want to attack the core of your being and get the details right, WingTsun is it. If you want to test your inner self, your inner strength, your will power, your patience and your perseverance, you can practice WingTsun and have benefits that last a lifetime.

Chi Sau

This author exaggerated the fact that WingTsun is not a sport.  WingTsun does have a fun, relatively safe game we call chi sau.  Chi sau (sticky hands) is the biggest ace card in the WingTsun deck.  With chi sau skill, a WingTsun practitioner can know what his attacker is going to do almost before he knows himself by feeling his arms and legs at the MOMENT he tries to use them.  The physical contact allows the WingTsun defender to use the force of his attacker against him.  In its highly developed form, chi sau becomes like the ultimate martial arts video game without the XBox or computer.  The “game” of chi sau is relatively safe because the wrist contact allows the players to control their strikes and punches.  Several tournaments have been held by pitting two chi sau fighters against each other.  A few other Chinese martial arts have a chi sau-like drill but WingTsun chi sau is the highest level and expression of this concept.

Chi sau finds its real life application in self defense when a defender makes contact with an attacker.  By feeling his arms, the defender experiences no reaction time delay.  In coordination with WingTsun’s highly developed footwork, an attack can be nullified in an instant with sophisticated pinning of the attackers arms and lightening-like counter strikes. There are very few places to receive similar training in martial arts classes in Phoenix AZ.

© Copyright 2009-2016, Keith Sonnenberg.  All Rights Reserved.  No Reproduction without permission.