An Easier Way


Time to work some magic


As we all know, there is far too much waste in the world, mass farming, over production, quick changing fashions and worse of all, the seas filling up with plastic.


For these reasons, myself, my wife and my children have always tried to do our best to help the planet, buying local sustainable produce, organic food and recycled toilet paper, with one of my favourite things being, to try to reuse (or up-cycle) timber.


I have never been a DIY person and therefore do tend to make mistakes, but I do learn from them, and this is where the connection with Wing Chun comes in.


Time consuming


At present, I am working on turning some old wooden pallets into covers for our vegetable plot, to hopefully keep the chickens from hopping in there and scratching everything to ribbons.

My plan was simple, to build a frame to sit over the plots, with chicken wire across but easy to lift off when we need to tend to, or pick, the veg.


The plan was simple, making it was not, remember I did say that I am not naturally a DIY person (but I am getting better), the main issue being that none of the pieces of wood I had were long enough, which meant me cutting two half lengths and an adjoining piece in the middle (more cutting, more nails, more work).

Added to this was the fact that many of the panels I tried to rescue would break due to their age and that they were riddled with SO MANY three-inch rusty nails, which seems to be taking up most of the work time.


So here we go, when I started this mission, I used thick pieces of wood, a few nails and some big ass screws, just to make sure it all held together, and although this worked, it took a long time to make and was heavy to manoeuvre.

With each of the following covers I made, I used thinner panels of wood and more nails than screws, all while still having the same affect (less work, less time).


Yay for nails!


As a Wing Chun practitioner, I cannot help myself but see Wing Chun in everything we do, and in no way more than my attitude through teaching.


For the last 30 plus years as a Wing Chun Sifu and disciple of Grandmaster Ip Chun, I have always tried to take the simplest approach for my students to be able to see the fastest results, probably no more so than when I teach in Hong Kong.

I have lost count of the amount of times I have been to Hong Kong since 1990 (I stopped counting after 40) and whenever I am there, I will visit schools to ‘Share my experiences’ as it is asked, which I do, whilst all the time trying to take away the mystery of the art for favour of understandable technique.


My ethos is simple:


‘If it’s not comfortable, it’s not right’


So, to the point of this story…


At the start of this week, I began making ‘plot covers’ (if that’s what they’d be called?) and found it time consuming, painstakingly laborious and not really knowing what they would look like, but now…

I know exactly what the measurements are, how many nails I will need (not screws) and how to fix them all together, and more importantly, in half the time!


So, when you are training your Wing Chun, you will always find something that you find tricky, and on occasion it may even make you feel like giving up, but stick with it, because what you think is difficult today, will be much easier tomorrow, and before you know it you will be doing that thing without even giving it a thought.


Wing Chun is designed to work in harmony with your natural body reactions, but sometimes, YOUR body may need to tackle a technique from a different approach, so make your Wing Chun work for you, not the other way around, and remember…


‘If it’s not comfortable, it’s not right’


Many times I have explained to my students that…


“I am a lot better teacher today than I was ten years ago,

But not as good as I hope to be in another ten years time”.

(Oh, and I’ve been saying that for the last 20+ years).


This is what we strive for at to get the best out of you, with the simplest approach, which in turn gives a deeper understanding, getting you where you want to get to, so much faster.


I got there in the end.  🙂 


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