I remember when I first started training in martial arts, someone told me that he had to learn 50 hand locks for his next test. How impressed I was that his system was so extensive to have so many locks to cover so many situations. The same went for knowing a vast array of armbars and kicks, it seemed that knowing more was better. As I progressed in martial arts and started training in Wing Chun Kung Fu, I found that more became confusing. Wing Chun was concerned with concepts , levers and angles. As one advances in the system, the realization that acquiring less techniques while simplifying what you have is more preferable in combat. Being able to react instantaneously , becomes easier when you are not having to worry about choosing from a large arsenal of techniques.
The trouble with knowing a lot of different martial arts , is that we get lost in the variety of movement. Especially in the early years of training, with all the excitement and glitz of some exotic style we can’t help but get caught up in the latest trend in combat. Too much money is spent on seminars teaching new techniques rather than learning how to hone what you already have. It takes experience and maturity to separate what is essential in combative martial arts, after all there is so much to choose from. To often we get caught up in the aesthetics and we get lost because the practical seems too simple to be effective.
When explaining what Wing Chun Kung Fu is you can’t help but appreciate its simplicity. When actually spending time learning Wing Chun, its sophistication and methodology seem genius.