Punchers Are Made; Not Born - instruction must be systematic and scientific in order to develop an effective fighter.
It is always a highlight for me as well, if one of the members of our Wing Tsun Kung Fu schools celebrates a personal achievement. Mike started his Wing Tsun training in 1999. Family and job commitments required him every now and then to pause his training for several months at a time. Did he give up? No, absolutely not. He always came back and restarted his training. His commitment, his very analytical and practical approach has its roots in his early boxing days in the 1970's.
To quote Mike after a recent intensive seminar: "Always rewarding when a newcomer “lights up” when they learn how to hit harder and commit to their punches. This is not the first time I find that students with little experience CAN tremendously improve their structure, upper & lower body movement integration, and power delivery – all in one session! Especially if they are encouraged to turn it loose. Great to see."
Instead of working just on his own progress, Mike has always been committed to support others in their training. Some might underestimate him, he is also used to take strikes and even if he rarely shows it, he can deliver very hard punches. After all, as we always say, there are certain similarities between Eastern and Western boxing.
Going towards the last student grade in Wing Tsun Kung Fu, I have been observing Mike for the past 3 months. I teamed him up with certain training partners, watched his performance during particular exercises. As for the theoretical part: He e-mailed me over the years numerous times his feedback, his annotations and has often talked about the parallels between Chinese Wing Tsun and Western boxing.
He worked his way through Jack Dempsey's 1950 book "Championship Fighting - Explosive Punching and Aggressive Defense" and added notes throughout the book to similarities as well as particulars to Wing Tsun and Western boxing. His paper examined Jack Dempsey's fighting principles as they relate to Wing Tsun Kung Fu.
During a recent intensive Wing Tsun seminar in October of 2010 on Vancouver Island, Mike successfully passed the 12th Student Grade of Wing Tsun Kung Fu.
Congratulations to Mike on his amazing accomplishment!
A little bit, it reminds me of a moment about 18 years ago. I had just received my first Technician Grade (instructor) certificate from my Sifu, Keith Kernspecht. All the students and assistant trainers were standing and applauding, and my Sifu whispered in my ear" "Now you are ready to learn Wing Tsun!"
To new beginnings! To turning into a knockout-puncher and discovering the martial ART of Wing Tsun!
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