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Thread: Wing Chun: Inside or Outside?

  1. #1
    Sandman2[Wing Chun] Guest

    Wing Chun: Inside or Outside?

    Hey all,
    Just wondering for you fellow Wing Chun'ers out there, when you are engaged with an opponent, do you fight more on the "inside" (staying to the zone between the fighter's hands, facing them dead on from the front) or the "outside" (zoning to one side and coming in over one arm in an attempt to isolate the other side of the body). I'm asking because it seems to me from my own research, that Yip Man focused on "inside" fighting for his first wave of students (Wong Shueng Leung, Koo Sang), but most of his later students (Leung Ting, etc..) focused more on gaining the outside advangate. As such, alot of the Koo Sang techniques I've seen through Alan lamb were way more oriented on Noy activities (noy pak,lap) and were nowhere nearly so concerned with moving to the outside. My current theory is that the first wave of students may have been so good on the "inside", that the later students were forced to shift to the outside to prevent their sihings from beating the snot out of them. This also implies that perhaps the "outside" is a better place to be.... Any opinions? Kinda curious about where people like to be positioned at. Personally, I'm currently way more comfortable being on the "outside", as I like isolating one side of the opponents body. But I've recently started focusing more on the interior fighting, since it is less developed for me. Am I explaining this well? Let me know what you think! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]
    Sandman[Wing Chun]

    From the book "Advanced Wing Chun Kung Fu"
    figure 248a: The assailant moves in to attack with a large cleaver like knife. Fortunately, Master Yim is holding a squash racket.

  2. #2
    Funny you should mention it! I don't know for sure which I logically prefer in the cold light of reason, but I know that I find myself on the outside WAY too much during chi sao.

    I've been making a concerted effort to get inside more AND to be aware of when I'm creeping out. On the plus side, I've had to develop good reflexes and a quick waist to make up for all the beautiful openings my outside positioning is giving my fellow students...I've also got a hern sao/palm strike combo that works for me when I'm "out there."

    Point is, I'm not sure which is better...when other people get inside on me, they can pretty much have their way with my center...

    Reverend Tim

  3. #3
    Hi Sandman,

    In my very personal opinion, both attacking from inner and outer gate has their time, the most important is to understand the concept of "if the center is strong, attack from outside; if the center is weak, attack from inside". Attacking from inside has certain advantages that attacking from outer gate do not have and vice versa. Hence, timing and ability to sense the opening are crucial.

    In Slant body Wing Chun as taught by Mui sifu of Mass., I believe the practitioners prefer attacking from outer gate though combinations like "Lan Sao Chong Chui" is one of their inner gate technique that works rather well. Reverend Tim might be able to elaborate more on this.....

    Hope this helps :-)

  4. #4

    If "Lan Sao Chong Chui" describes what I think it does, then you're on the money. Although I guess we don't do more of that kind of outside attack than we do inside attacks.

    I find myself at a loss, since I only know "side body" wing chun, and not the style that came through Yip Man, so I don't know if I can draw any decent comparisons.

    Reverend Tim

  5. #5
    Sihing73 Guest

    I think that the reason one sees more outside work is that it takes a higher level of skill to stay on the inside. Your opponenets power center is between his shoulders and forward whereas attacking from the outside at an angle makes sense. You are limiting his options and in many cases forcing him to fight you on your terms and with only one side of his body in a good position.

    I don't know if I would agree that the Leung Ting and William Cheung systems place more stress on outside versus inside techniques. I think a high level practicianer will be able to fight from either position. However, cutting someones angle and using mobility usually require one to go to the outside. I know for a fact that Leung Tings' sections of chi sau train one to work the inside as well as the outside. Again, I just think it takes a higher level of skill to go to the inside.

    My philosphy has always been to gain exposure to it all and use what I feel is best for me. I love to incorporate my footwork so I tend to like the outside. However, if I am tired or just p***** off I may stay in one place and make my opponent come to me. In this case I try to stay on the inside. Kind of fun [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]



  6. #6
    Highlander Guest
    Integraman and Sihing73 summed it up pretty good when they said "if the center is strong, attack from outside; if the center is weak, attack from inside" and "Your opponenets power center is between his shoulders and forward whereas attacking from the outside at an angle makes sense".

    I would just like to add the choice to fight from the inside or the outside is determined by your opponent and your situation and is not just our preference. If the person is stronger than you or very agressively attacking, then you will be overpowered if you fight from the inside. Redirecting their energy by going to the outside will give you an advantage.

    A situation to go to the inside would be one where the opponent has to be taken out quickly. I know that it is always the goal to end the fight as quickly as you can, but this is usually qualified by adding "and by doing the least amount of permanent damage". The centerline is the area that contains the largest number of lethal targets and the area where the most permanent damage can occur (eyes, nose, throat, heart, etc.). In a situation where I am facing multiple attacker and I have to reduce the odds at any cost, a centerline strike would be my preference.

    composed (kom-pozd') adj. The ability to keep ones head when everyone arround them is loosing theirs.

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