By Ray Van Raamsdonk

There are pros and cons to giving credits. If you DO, then some people will say that you are trying to elevate your own status by mentioning famous people. If you DON'T, then people will say that you are ungrateful and disrespectful because you didn't acknowledge the source of your learning. So having covered that, here are my credits:

The Wing Chun Viewpoints are the result our experience both in learning and in teaching the art of Wing Chun. For us, Wing Chun is an ART which can be studied for a lifetime. The following is a list of some of the people who influenced our ideas either through courses, seminars, phone discussions or from correspondence. Future Viewpoints will, I am sure, also be influenced by the various people on the Internet Wing Chun newsgroup.

My own introduction to the art came in the early 1970's when the Wing Chun book by Bruce Lee and James Lee came out. My next introduction came from Leung Ting's (big) book and the various articles he wrote in a Hong Kong magazine called Real Kung Fu. Finally my real start to learning came in 1976 when someone by the name of Patrick Chow introduced me to the "Little Idea Form." After that I met various Wing Chun students from different family lines until I was fortunate to meet Dr. G.K. Khoe who taught Yvette and myself a complete version of the Wing Chun art in 1982. After that, over the years we have been fortunate to have been in contact with many good Wing Chun people who all know more than me. From memory here is a list of those people:

Many other good Wing Chun sifu, we were only able to appreciate through books, videos or stories.

Obviously you can't learn from all these people. But each one gave us just a little more insight and made us feel part of the Wing Chun family. I would say that the most valuable thing I got from all these people was the realization that the thought "only my Wing Chun is good, and everyone else's is bad" is a non-useful and incorrect thought.

For a while our club also became seminar bums and came to realize that even non-Wing Chun people have a lot of interesting things to say and show. Some people in this list are:

Now, I am forever trying to tell students that it is better to concentrate their studies on one art. I tell the student, after you achieve something in your main art, then it is useful, from the point of view of not being narrow minded, to listen to other martial arts teachers.

I would also like to give credit to Herb April who has given me many lengthy detailed letters discussing the pros and cons of everything in the Wing Chun Viewpoint newsletters. Herb learned from many people including Jesse Glover, an early student of Bruce Lee. Lately various people on the Internet Wing Chun newsgroup have also provided me with further insights into the Wing Chun art. Two notable writers are Marty Goldberg from the William Cheung branch and Mike Adams from the Emin Boztepe branch of Wing Chun.

Finally, a teacher (from my experience) also learns a lot from the students and from failed attempts to teach what you thought were simple things. Teaching is a whole enjoyable art by itself.