Everybody Tries to Make Martial Arts Complicated

“Everybody tries to make martial arts complicated,” something Grandmaster Leung Ting Ting has often stated. The Wing Tsun idea starts with simplicity. This martial art started out 300 years ago as a martial art of change. The developers thought that existing martial arts were too complicated.  They wanted to change the prevailing approach which was teaching numerous predetermined sequences of movements to make the learning faster and simpler and retain effectiveness. Learning numerous forms was and is considered a distraction. Predetermined poses, sequences and techniques can greatly slow a martial art student’s path to effective self-defense abilities, many of which have no relevance to today’s applications. Many old martial arts were designed for military battle where the weapons were halberds, swords, and soldiers on horseback on uneven terrain.

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Because of the idea of simplicity, Leung Ting WingTsun® affords the beginner the realistic opportunity to become proficient at a whole kung fu system.


WingTsun, which is a southern Chinese kung fu system, is simpler in several ways than Shaolin kung fu. WingTsun has just three forms (kuen, in Chinese kata in Japanese, hyung in Korean). Many different Shaolin systems have anywhere from 9 to 50 different choreographed forms which form the ‘shape’ of the system. A student might learn all of the forms and still not be able to defend or fight effectively since forms are not the path to fighting skill or self-defense effectiveness. Applying the techniques of the forms through practice drills and fighting training is the way. The founders of WingTsun recognized the real purpose of forms which is to build the shape of the system at each level within the student’s muscle memory and quite often to perform a meditation and breathing exercise. The forms also represent an important mental ritual.

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