Interview with WingTsun grandmaster Leung Ting
Health & Lifestyle Channel
Hostess Zhao Ling
Hong Kong Cable TV Channel # 27
*The opinions and views expressed are those of the authors and participants of the TV show and do not necessarily state or reflect the views of the trainer team at Wing Tsun Kung Fu Vancouver.
Starting at 2:37
Host: We were just with Sifu Leung and his two “toe soon” - Bin Jai and Ah-Ming chatting. It turns out Bin Jai is a 2nd dan black belt holder in Taekwondo.
(They are laughing because the Hostess mixed up her words between “Hei dai” = black belt and the words “Tai Quan Dao” = Taikwondo. Instead she said “Hei dao” which is one way to say “Mafia” or “under world”. Her guests quickly corrected her).
Sorry. There are too many technical terms. I am not entirely familiar with Martial Arts.
LT: That was his rank (in another martial art) before he learned Wing Tsun.
Host: So that was before he began learning WT from you he already has another kungfu rank?
LT: Yes. Already instructors rank.
Host: Instructors rank. Bin Jai, why did you decide to learn WT?
LT: Because he thinks WT is great. (laughing)
Bin (Chinese name Tsang Ho Bun): Because when I was learning TKD, whenever I came across opponents who were larger than me then…(interrupted by Host)
Host: Hey you are fairly big size.
Bin: Yes. But there will always be people who are bigger than me. So I was a little worried about fighting them. But WT… because being physically bigger.. won’t ensure a win. So in the end I choose to learn WT.
Now I also teach many students and some of them are physically big in build … (interrupted by host)
Host: You teach TKD or WT ? Now.
Bin: I have not taught TKD because I think WT is more useful … (interrupted by host)
Host: “Yi Rou Zhi Kang” (using gentle power to subdue greater strength)? That is the attraction? I know you are an instructor. Do you mind performing a bit for the audience?.
Bin: This is the TKD kick.
Host: This is TKD’s most basic kick right?
Bin: High kick
Host: High Kick. Is the high kick hard to learn /practice?
Bin: Yes it is hard to learn.
Host: If you are a bit overweight, that would be difficult.
Bin: Yes. You have to be balanced.
Host: So you must be in good shape then to do this? I know Sifu Leung in WT you often practice rolling your arms like this.
LT: We call it Chi sau (sticking hands)
Host: Oh. It is called Chi Sau.
Host: In Mandarin it is also called “Chi Sau” ??
LT: Wing Tsun is Guangdong style martial art. The word “Chi” basically already existed in Kangxi era dictionaries. It is not exclusively a Cantonese word. It existed in ancient Chinese. Later on, it was replaced by “Nian” but we Cantonese still use “Chi”. You know in Cantonese, we are (Zhong Zhou Gu Yu ).* So the word “Chi” can still be found in dictionaries.
*[ Tony’s comment: Cantonese can arguably be said to be more “pure” as a Chinese language compared to modern Mandarin because Cantonese still use many “ancient” Chinese characters that are not used or known today in modern spoken Mandarin. Ancient invaders of China tended to come from the north whereas the south of China was usually the last hold outs to invaders, authority and influence from the north. So, it is not surprising that the father of modern China – Dr. Sun Yat Sen was a Cantonese along with many of his supporters. I am not sure how to translate the phrase that LT said, but it basically means “we are an ancient language”].
Host : Can you demonstrate what is Chi Sau? In the movie Yip Man, we see the hands are like this (she waves her hands around)
LT: It is almost like Taiji. But in WT …. we shall demonstrate a bit. (Struggling with the wire of the mic). Taiji pushes like this. While WT… can you see it (in the monitor)? It flows forward.
Host: It flows forward
LT: Also most important is Guo sau. The space here is small so I cannot really hit him.
Host: Wow. I can hear the booming sound from here.
LT: Our control is the most important.
Host: Wow. So fast! . I just saw you do I slow.
LT: I was going slow already.
Host: Once again but slowly.
LT: See very slowly.
Host: I saw you were going very slowly and then suddenly “pop”
LT: Do you see it?
Host: Beginning was slow and gentle. Wow.
LT: It is like this. It boils down to these two simple movements but in reality it is many more movements. Wait a second I will get the both of them to show it slowly.
LT: Look how it is constantly adjusting / transforming. Right.
Host: This is called Chi Sau?
LT: See, it is continuously adjusting / transforming
Host: The female can also attack?
LT: Yes both male and female can attack. Actually, they are instructors.
Host: Ah-Ming is also an instructor?
LT: She has been practicing for a long time. Also she teaches all female classes.
Host: She sticks hands and ultimately strikes at the chest?
LT: Hit the chest because it is just part of the action (in the exercise) but we actually hit the head, ears, the chest, and many other places…the weak points in the body.
Host: How long does she stick hands before she has to strike?
LT: It is not fixed because we do not have a pre determined form. If you have a pre determined form, then it is not real combat. Speaking of real combat, you basically are going by feel, right?
Host: Wow. It is like in the movie.
LT: In the movie, that is using the camera …(interrupted by host)
Host: Wow. That was really impressive. Your two Toe-Soons are really impressive. Lets give them a hand of applause. Better than the movie.
LT: This was real……Thank you, thank you
Host: Leung Sifu, why don’t you make your own movie (a biopic)?
LT: Make a self documentary? xxxx
Host: If you make your own movie, you must have a lot of stories to tell the world.
LT: It should be that I am the only one….currently there is…… in the mainland telling journalists that “our Wing Chun has spread to 65 countries”. Now it is not just 65 countries. It is we now actually in 66 -67 countries. (hostess tried to cut in)
Hostess: That is your association’s branches are in 66 countries?
LT: It is “my wing chun”, not “our wing chun” (that has spread to 67 countries). Now many on the mainland misunderstood. They think a certain wing chun sifu (on the mainland) has spread his art to 65 countries. That is B.S. It is actually “my wing tsun” that has done it
Host: So you are actually the innovator?
LT: In the world, actually I am the only person who has gone out there to promote thru out the world.
Host: Yes to promote. Leung Sifu..you are the innovator. Promoted in 66 countries now.
LT: about 4000 branches/clubs.
Host: Your membership now number how many ??
LT: Over 1 million. Now some people claim over 2 million and that is also BS. You can work out the numbers…. (clip cut off)
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