Skill Or Force?


A topic which is a particular favourite of mine


I always tell my students, ‘Never sacrifice technique for speed and power’, technique is key, and unless perfected all you will do is speed up a probably already telegraphed and overcommitted technique.

Lose the speed and power, perfect the technique, and then reintroduce the speed and power afterwards.


Now I’m not saying that technique alone will defeat sped and power, it will not.

What I am saying is that you need all three.


Animal instinct will tell us fight or flight, a phrase we hear all too often, and rightly so.

We also should be aware that just because you can do something doesn’t always mean that you should.

I could stick a fork in my eye, but I’m not going to.


In life there are employers and employees, and that’s fine, we all need to work and be able to work, some people may wish to call the shots and take that responsibility, whereas some may choose to simply know what they have to do, get on with it, get the job done and take home a regular wage.

But whichever of those two you may be, why work hard when you can work clever?


This would be the difference between the Wing Chun practitioners approach and that of the brawler.


Many people have the ability, without any training, to be able to just grab hold of a person and go on the attack, but if you DO NOT have a muscular physic, the heart of a lion and the stamina of a spaniel, ok so the last one is not so impressive, but still;

What do you do then?


Then my friends, you have to fight with your head not your heart, think about what you abilities are and improve upon them.


There is a saying,

‘I can teach you all the moves but I cannot teach you how to fight’.


Don’t be too confused by this, basically all it means is that if you do not have aggression, use skill.


And it this skill that we are learning to use when we play Chi Sau, and is the reason we focus on precision and sensitivity.


Keeping yourself and your skills in balance.

Having the ability lets say, to push a football under water using just one finger, and not just grabbing at it with both hands and forcing it under, this is the difference between skill and aggression, and if you’ve not tried it, do, and you’ll see what I mean.


And that my friends, is the only balls I’m going to talk.


Do not get me wrong, if you have strength then this can be a good thing, all I am saying is do not allow, try, or even attempt this as your only mentality.


Used properly muscle can be a great advantage, in the same way as seasoning with salt through cooking, but used too much or in the wrong way and it can be your ultimate downfall.



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