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If Wing Tsun works, where's the evidence?

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    If Wing Tsun works, where's the evidence?

    After spending years studying Wing Tsun (WT), it one day dawned upon me that there's absolutely no evidence to be found that it's an effective martial arts style. This is strange because the school I was a part of, the largest association in North America, claimed that WT is the best style for self-defense, or street fighting. Now, call me crazy, but if someone is going to make a claim like that, we should see some evidence in support of it; a video, fighting in competitions, seeing it in action on the streets, something. But in all of my years of studying this style, I found absolutely nothing.

    In every other martial art--namely boxing, Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu, judo, wrestling, kickboxing, so on and so forth--there's evidence that these styles work. How do I know that the types of punches that boxing teaches are best? Well, I watch boxing matches and street fights and see people using hooks, uppercuts, and straights, and they work. What about Muay Thai? I can go to YouTube or Thailand and watch fights where participants use elbows and knees to seriously injure or knockout their opponents, and it works. Jiu-jitsu? I can watch old MMA videos of Royce Gracie taking down and submitting larger opponents. I listen to scientists who are also martial artists talk about body mechanics, leverage, physics, and the like, who say that the best way to generate a powerful punch is to throw a punch one way and not another. You get the idea.

    In all of my years in Wing Tsun, all I heard about were secret deadly techniques that would be taught at a much later stage in my schooling (only after I had paid tens of thousands of dollars, of course). I caught a glimpse of them because I became an assistant instructor (and quit soon after), and they were just elbows. I mean, yeah, elbows are dangerous and all, but we see elbows all the time in Muay Thai fights; they're not these secret death blows that were discovered from ancient Chinese scrolls. Whenever I pointed this out to my fellow instructors and practitioners, I always got these non-answers.

    So, this is a request for proof that Wing Tsun works. Technically, I shouldn't have to ask for it, because Wing Tsun people are the ones making the claim that it's such a great self-defense style, so the burden of proof is on them. But let's have it. Where's the evidence? If there is none, then make some. Go down to a boxing gym, Muay Thai school, or jiu-jitsu academy and ask to spar with one of their students or instructors. Get someone to videotape it and upload it online so we can all critique it. What've you got to lose? Even if you get beaten up, it doesn't mean your style isn't effective, but we have to at least see some evidence that it is effective, in the first place.

    Otherwise, we're all quite rational to believe that (1) WT isn't effective at all and (2) its practitioners are deluded and/or operate with the sole intention of getting you to transfer money from your bank account to theirs.

    #2
    You're preaching to the choir.

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      #3
      It seems to me it did a pretty good job of parting you with your money and time.

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        #4
        The real question is, why did you spend years studying that crapfest that passes itself off as fighting?

        I'm embarrassed for you.

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          #5
          Originally posted by BJMills View Post
          The real question is, why did you spend years studying that crapfest that passes itself off as fighting?
          The topic here is whether or not there is any evidence at all that Wing Tsun works well as a self-defense system.

          But to answer your question: because I went into it without any prior knowledge of martial arts, and my ignorance was taken advantage of.

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            #6
            Ok. To answer your question, no. There is no evidence.

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              #7
              Originally posted by BJMills View Post
              The real question is, why did you spend years studying that crapfest that passes itself off as fighting?

              I'm embarrassed for you.
              It happens. I know people who did TKD for ten years before figuring out a decent kickboxer is going to destroy them in any rules set other than bouncy, hands-down, head-foot tag.

              To be clear I am saying it really does happen, often. That is the key to compliant training. It is about isolation of ideas and constant reaffirmation of core concepts and ego stroking. There is a method to it. It works. Same mechanisms as Faith.
              Last edited by BackFistMonkey; 2/19/2016 5:19pm, .

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                #8
                This is the closest thing I've found to "evidence": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSqNRagw0NE

                There are tons of these kinds of videos out there. It's always some guy demolishing a compliant training partner. In addition to the "opponent" being compliant, he is almost always unskilled in any other martial art. I have never seen a Wing Tsun Grandmaster take on a boxer, jiu-jitsu black belt, Muay Thai champion, D1 college wrestler, or anyone who knows what they're doing.
                Last edited by red_cloak; 2/19/2016 5:32pm, .

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by Bneterasedmynam View Post
                  It seems to me it did a pretty good job of parting you with your money and time.
                  Absolutely. It's a scam, I'm almost certain of it. I hate rich douche bags who make a living profiting off of the ignorance of others.

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by red_cloak View Post
                    Absolutely. It's a scam, I'm almost certain of it. I hate rich douche bags who make a living profiting off of the ignorance of others.
                    I don't know if I would call it a "scam" per say, most of them pretty honestly believe what they are telling you.
                    They honestly think they can kick soooooo much ass, and that there shit really is for the mean streets and it would be to dangerous to use in competition.

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                      #11
                      Originally posted by BackFistMonkey View Post
                      I know people who did TKD for ten years before figuring out a decent kickboxer is going to destroy them in any rules set other than bouncy, hands-down, head-foot tag.
                      Joe Rogan said this happened to him.

                      Originally posted by BackFistMonkey View Post
                      To be clear I am saying it really does happen, often. That is the key to compliant training. It is about isolation of ideas and constant reaffirmation of core concepts and ego stroking. There is a method to it. It works. Same mechanisms as Faith.
                      Yeah, I didn't notice it until I got higher up in the organization. Don't ask questions, other people don't understand the art, don't upload videos on the internet of what we do, arbitrary demotions and changes to the "forms," our martial art is too deadly to demonstrate to people, etc., etc.

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                        #12
                        Originally posted by goodlun View Post
                        I don't know if I would call it a "scam" per say, most of them pretty honestly believe what they are telling you.
                        They honestly think they can kick soooooo much ass, and that there shit really is for the mean streets and it would be to dangerous to use in competition.
                        You're right, I was too ambitious in my claim. Is there a way to tell if someone is running a scam or if they truly believe what they're teaching and just happen to turn it into a money making scheme?

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by goodlun View Post
                          I don't know if I would call it a "scam" per say, most of them pretty honestly believe what they are telling you.
                          They honestly think they can kick soooooo much ass, and that there shit really is for the mean streets and it would be to dangerous to use in competition.
                          You're right, I was too ambitious in my claim. Is there a way to tell if someone is running a scam or if they truly believe what they're teaching and just happen to turn it into a money making scheme?

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                            #14
                            What id like to know is would TMAs like WT and TKD be effective or more so if they trained full contact. Like take WT for example, put mma gloves on and a boxing helmet and train. Would this make it better?

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                              #15
                              Originally posted by Kravbizarre View Post
                              What id like to know is would TMAs like WT and TKD be effective or more so if they trained full contact. Like take WT for example, put mma gloves on and a boxing helmet and train. Would this make it better?
                              There are examples of wing chun guys fighting a fairly chun-ish style and winning in lei tai matches (but there's a good chance they're just fighting other poorly-trained fighters who mostly do forms). There are examples of TKD guys adopting some of their kicks to MMA, but generally their whole fighting stance and strategy is overhauled to do so.

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