Mantis under Wing Chun shadow

26 01 2009

I started out to visit an old school-mate’s school last week. That did not turnout as planned, then what does. The smoothness of life like sailing is dependent on one’s ability at adapting. This past Sat. it worked out. I was able to make it by the school/dojo/kwoon. ( to view the Wing Chun class.


The class was small, but a good size. They were working on some drills when I arrived. My friend welcomed me as said. “please feel free to join us if you like” I laughed and said “ thanks, but I do not want you guys to hurt me”. He “G” said “nah it is all about Love”. I was impressed, this is the same thing my elder brother says, the one who just came back from Canada. I laughed again and told him that is the same thing that R says. As G is a Zen instructor as well, it should have not been surprising for him to have that mind set. Zen is about love. Many think it is all about enlightenment and ascension. It is really about love and compassion to all beings, all of the Universe’s/God/ the Great Spirit/Allah’s varied expressions.

We chatted for a while and he went back to teaching. I watched and listened. I had always had an interest in Wing Chun but was never able to take any serious instruction. I watched them go through various drills and compared it to Mantis and Tai Chi in my head. The angles, power development, feel, some of the footwork, because it does not have a lot since most of their work comes from center line work, compared to Mantis, where ours works from the angle. Their move-in/closing the gap step is the same. The wooden man drills, we also have in Tai Chi Mantis, which our grandmaster developed from Wing Chun, so it was especially interesting to watch and listen.


Watching the Chi Sao drill was also interesting, very similar to some drills Shifu has us do and also in a way push hands from Tai Chi. I was also surprise with hearing the Wing Chun fighting Philosophy of no blocks. Somewhat like ours Mantis but with some difference. We have also not real blocks, we have deflections and are also willing to take a hit in order to give a better hit(s) and stay in close to neutralize the opponents’ power and attacks. Both systems are two handed strikes. Meaning defense and offense are done at the same time.

After the class I got to speak with a couple of his students a bit, one of which also studied Escrima from the line of my Kali/Escrima teacher. Just when I was close to leaving G said he would check to see if our other classmate who was the Master of the dojo their was upstairs. This Dojo is also a live-in quarters for several the head instructor included. Just as he was about to check, our other classmate M comes down.

It was good to see him, we all sat and talked for a while about old classmates and life. It was a good mini reunion. My next visit there in a few weeks will be to watch M teach the Aikido class. Another art I had always had a strong interest in. G had studied with Steven Seagal, who G says is an intense person to training with.  Anyway M teaches and I will go back to watch his class. Who knows maybe once life settles down I will take a few basics from him. One can never have too much education.




5 responses

27 01 2009
Rick Matz

I understand that Wing Chun is closely related to Southern Mantis. Does a relationship exist with Tai Mantis?

27 01 2009

No, Southern Mantis is not really Mantis, and Mantis is older than Wing Chun. It maybe and is likely that Wing Chun has some Mantis influence. Mantis has what is called monkey footwork there is no rules that say other style cane not use it or part of it. Also since many many styles had at some point had some association with Shaolin there is some influence. Southern styles tend to have similar aspects, like White Eyebrow and Hung Gar have a lot of similar moves. The southern Styles it is said developed out of the northenr style, changed fro the soutehrn people, as Karate was developed out of Kung Fu. My friend said that he notice alot of similar things with Southern White Crane and Wing Chun. I feel things that work humans use over and and over, with some modification for the person , or area and change the name.

13 02 2009
18 02 2009
Shang Lee

I’m starting to realise the similarities of Wing Chun with Tai Ji as well after watching Ip Man. I’m surprised because all I’ve heard of about Wing Chun is popularised by Bruce Lee, which is nothing like the Wing Chun shown in the film, and the Wing Chun you’re saying here.

1 03 2009

Thanks for information…..

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