by Javier Garcia
Over Extending The Elbows
Tennis elbow is a well known condition amongst amateur Tennis players and surprisingly, amongst many Wing Chun practitioners. The reason is over-extension of the elbows during punching.
Apart from destroying your elbows, fully straightening your arms during a punch will reduce your power generation and more importantly, your coverage, leaving you exposed to counter attacks.
Too much Chain Punching
Chain Punching is not the answer to everything. Within the 3 empty hand forms of Wing Chun, there are many different types of strikes including elbows and upper-cuts. More importantly, these forms are there to help you develop good bio-mechanics, not specific techniques.
Restricting your strikes to only those you think are Wing Chun approved is likely to make you a rigid and ineffective fighter.
Too Much Emphasis on Chi Sao
Chi Sao can be a great tool for development of sensitivity and structure, but the truth is that real fights look nothing like Chi Sao. In reality, people do not follow predetermined path-ways to fight, and will most likely avoid sticking with you.
Over-emphasis on Chi Sao can create a bad habit known in Wing Chun circles as “Chasing Hands” which is likely to get you knocked out against Boxers and MMA fighters.
Using the Yee Jee Kim Yeung Ma as a Fighting Stance
The Yee Jee Kim Yeung Ma stance is NOT a fighting stance.
In reality, this is a power-generating TRAINING stance designed to help the practitioner develop short range power through subtle stretching and twisting of the torso and limbs.
Lack of Sparring
The number one bad habit in Wing Chun is undoubtedly a lack of sparring. Wing Chun practitioners can debate for days on fundamental principles, such as when to use a Tan Sau or a Bong Sau, or how the stance should be executed.
These types of debates simply do not occur in Boxing. Boxers have been fighting in the ring for over 100 years, and by now, the principles of Boxing are well known and agreed upon. Even beginners have a good understanding of when a jab or a hook should be used, and what constitutes a good stance.
A century of fighting has filtered out ineffective and fanciful movements so that only battle tested techniques remain. Sadly, this is not always the case in Wing Chun
In fighting, there should be almost no indication that a fighter trains in Wing Chun because the movements and footwork should be as natural as possible. In truth, there are no styles in a fight. There is only good bio-mechanics and bad bio-mechanics. It should come as no surprise, that all accomplished fighters move in similar ways.