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G. K. Khoe

Random Notes from some of Dr. G.K. Khoe's classes in 1982, by Ray Van Raamsdon

The Bong sau angle is always greater than 90 degrees.

Make sure the power at the wrist goes straight to the opponent's centerline.

All forms can be changed to all other forms.

The straight punch in the first set is level, not at the nose.

Always use the combined force of two hands. When you hit, use the other hand as a reaction force.

When you switch from inside to outside in the double sticking hands, keep the elbow in or you are open to a hit. Also don't forget about the forward force in the other hand. Keep the force straight forward to the opponent's center, not to one side or the other.

Wong Shun Leung was famous for being able to change in the middle of a movement. Wang Kiu was famous for his variety of techniques. The first generation were all noted for different things.

The punching bag is necessary until the power comes. After that it is not so important.

At home you can still practice the mechanics of Chi sau even without a partner.

Pay attention to the Yin and Yang when practicing the Chi sau sentences.

Use the pivot or else the deflect and strike action will be too weak.

Don't think, just react, thinking is too slow.

Practicing Chi sau with the eyes closed will enhance your sensitivity.

In the middle of a technique, many people are just too tense. So you constantly have to monitor your own tension level. Even in the middle of a technique, if you find you are to tense, don't continue the technique without first relaxing, then continue the technique.

When you practice the Poon sau or rolling, watch that all the gaps are closed or else you are just wasting your time.

When you practice free style Chi sau, may sure you are working on something. Don't just fight with no purpose in mind. Wild fighting does not develop a good skill. Pay attention to form and feeling.

If the opponent blocks your hit, this is like a present for you. Just apply a Lap sau or a Pak sau to this blocking hand.

There are several kinds of chain punches. One kind drags the opponent's arms down, or crawls on top of them.

The real Lap sau is very lively, not dead. When it is applied to you it feels like an electric shock.

Holland has a woman who wins all the time using Wing Chun against the other styles. She uses very little technique, mostly a little kicking, Tan sau and a lot of charging in with chain punching.

There are two paragraphs in Wing Chun. One is the contact fighting (from a sticking position), and the other is the non-contact fighting (starting from a distance). The wooden dummy teaches the non-contact fighting. The real wooden dummy was in a box with sand.

In Chi sau, when you are hit, hit back right away. This will keep you more relaxed than when you worry about the fact that you got hit.

Don't push the opponent away, then you have to get him back again before you can hit him.

A good exercise is to practice the symmetric two arms in and two arms out Chi sau.

With the weapons you keep yourself thin, with the hands you don't.

Wing Chun does not just rely on one technique.

Don't lean forward.

In the Chi sau, only apply the elbow if there is a reason to apply it. Otherwise you are open to many quick counters. An example is to use the elbow if the opponent drifts off the center.

If the opponent attemps a high kick, immediately lift the foot and counter kick, then the opponent will not be so anxious to apply the high kick.

Wing Chun theory can also be used to analyze other styles. You can analyze the other style and know that they are doing it wrong and you will know the reason why they are doing it wrong. Wing Chun theory can enhance the skill of another style whether it is a punching, kicking style or a grappling style. Some styles are just large collections of techniques. There is hardly a point for these styles to have forms.

Many styles have great difficulty with the rapid close range punching technique of Wing Chun.

Wang Kiu just taught 12 students when I learned from him. He taught only privately, 2 students a night.

Practice a lot of sticking hands and changes.

The Wu sau should be high enough to protect the throat.

Wing Chun is really Chinese boxing, which can be seen especially in the Chain punching technique.

In Wing Chun, advance slowly then suddenly charge in (according to timing). Constantly pressure the opponent to make them tense. Use psychology to tense the opponent, then to relax him and then attack when he relaxes or lets the guard down. There are many strategies for getting in.

Get the body weight behind the Chum sau by relaxing the knees.

A rock solid stance and a supple top is very important. Without a good stance the top cannot be supple.

Keep the pressure very even and continuous at all parts of the rolling cycle. There should be no gaps or holes in your defense. You could defend by just sticking.

The Bil Jee is the enemy of the Chain punch but the crossed Tan and shocking Lap works even better. The dragging chain punch can counter the enemy of the chain punch.

Wang Kiu has a very tight stance on the ground with the pigeon toed stance. He is very rooted and not possible to move. Fighting with Wang Kiu is like fighting with someone who has ten arms. Wang Kiu's fighting is like a symphony orchestra, everything from all sets are blended smoothly into the Chi sau. Pushing, pulling, jerking, slapping, sweeping, chopping, punching all come in a carefully orchestrated manner and in a continuous non-stop flow.

Against the double grab, you can apply the shoulder attack, but the pull has to be a real one, otherwise you will get elbowed.

Practice the empty hand version of the knife set first because the weapons are just extensions of the hands.

For demonstrations you can have a more elaborate opening for the staff set or wooden dummy set.

The Chinese broadsword can be used to train the Baat Jaam Do (eight cutting butterfly knife). The broadsword is always cutting, there is never a dead point. The Japanese sword is also a good weapon to practice against for Butterfly knife technique.

The Hung style should have the same knowledge as Wing Chun because it comes from the same place.

Wang Kiu speaks English, Japanese, Dutch, Cantonese and Mandarin. He works as a translator in Holland.

Lok Yiu had a Chum sau like an earthquake. It was Yip Man who said this.

The Thai boxers have very tough shins and can withstand most blocks. To fight them, you have to have breaking power with your hands. Thai training is more realistic than Karate. They also have a good two sword art. But Karate is actually much richer in technique. The Thai's carry their arms on the side of their head to block the roundhouse kick and turn slightly to block the center punch. But a TaeKwonDo instructor in Holland managed to beat a good Thai fighter with a well placed toe kick to the open spot (in the center).

The fights in Hong Kong always had a referee. You flip a coin for who attacks first. Usually one person ends up bloody and the fight is stopped.

Wong is Cantonese. Wang is the Mandarin way to write Wong. Wang Kiu is pronounced Wong Kiu.

In real combat you do not worry about just hitting a special target. You hit whatever sticks out. If the knee is forward, kick it. If the hand is forward, hit it.

Don't rely on strength in Chi sau training.

You should learn Wing Chun as an art, not just to fight. Only then will you be able to see the whole structure of the art.

In class, have a proper opening and closing to the session. Have questions at the end.

Yip Man taught very slowly and meticulously. That is why the first generation was good.

You can go in two directions in Wing Chun, the hard external way or the internal way. Wang Kiu is able to do both. Wang Kiu said at least the internal way of training won't hurt you.

There is little point in sparring with other styles until you have mastered the wooden man techniques. Sparring at too early a stage develops many bad habits which become impossible to correct. If you spoil the student, they will just want to spar and nothing else. Entering tournaments before you have really mastered the Wing Chun way is a painful way to learn martial art.