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#426253 - 04/01/10 04:21 AM kung fu pick'n'mix
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
I had a little discussion with a friend yesterday who was horrified when I told her I was trying to start studying at a a Shaolin/Sanshou/Sanda Kung Fu class, when i already do Wing Chun and have been practising Chen tai Chi form for some years. I'm curious to know what others might think.

The background is a little complicated, so here goes.
I trained in Chang Hon TKD (ITF-style, but not ITF-affiliated) for over 10 years, during which time I also dabbled a little in Backhold Wrestling (2 years), JKD, Ju-Jitsu and Capoiera (only a few months at a time).

About 4-5 years ago I was advised by a back specialist not to continue with TKD because of the spinning putting pressure on my neck (I had a trapped nerve at the time). I hadn't been training regularly for a few years at that time, so it wasn't a hard thing to do. I started learning Chen Tai chi but I've only studied form and push-hands for about 4 years.

2 months ago I started Wing Chun, finding out one of my work colleagues is a WC sifu. We train once a week.

So, until last month, I was training once a week in TC form and once a week in WC. The times of TC classes changed to a day when I can't train. So, I popped into a local KF club which does Sanshou and is Shaolin-based (they also do straight Shaolin, but I'm really just looking at training applications at the moment).

My friend feels I'm doing a naughty thing, picking and mixing like this, but these days I'm never sure if I'm going to be able to continue in any one club for a long time due to changes in times and work etc. While I would like to train long-term and one art, I feel i'm just at a stage to kind of train in what and where i can.

Any thoughts?
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#426258 - 04/01/10 08:28 AM Re: kung fu pick'n'mix [Re: trevek]
MattJ Offline
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Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
I see no problem at all. You have a solid base in your TKD training in which to use as a reference for exploration of other arts. I don't understand why your friend thinks this is bad. Have they given you specifics?
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#426262 - 04/01/10 10:46 AM Re: kung fu pick'n'mix [Re: MattJ]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
I think they weren't totally aware of how long I'd been training in a core art (even if I don't train in it now).
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See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

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#426263 - 04/01/10 01:41 PM Re: kung fu pick'n'mix [Re: trevek]
kenposan Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/23/01
Posts: 633
Loc: Columbus, Ohio
It's your life and you can train in whatever you want. Sure, it's good to have a "core" art, but in reality, it's really up to you to decide what you want from your MA training.
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The angry man will defeat himself in battle, as well as in life. -Samurai maxim

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#426305 - 04/03/10 07:24 AM Re: kung fu pick'n'mix [Re: kenposan]
ShanLongQuan Offline
Stranger

Registered: 03/28/10
Posts: 3
Do you want to be a specialist in one art or explore several arts and distill it into your own style? Both paths are different but they can both "take you to the top of the mountain".

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#426333 - 04/05/10 02:17 AM Re: kung fu pick'n'mix [Re: ShanLongQuan]
IExcalibui2 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 05/20/06
Posts: 961
Loc: New York City
like ShanLongQuan said, both paths are different and can take you to the top, just depends on what your goals are.

Dabbling in lots of different arts may allow you to gain a good perspective on the various aspects of the Chinese Martial Arts. You get to see what one art focuses on vs another.

However, you also won't progress in a certain field if you dabble here and there without any real dedicated time to develop skill. CMA is kung fu, skill developed over time through hard work. You have a solid base in TKD and also a decently well understanding of Tai Chi. But as for the Wing Chun or Shaolin (I'm not sure which you want to persue) but they do focus on different aspects of fighting.

Do you want to learn more bridging and sensivity or more kickboxing type stuff? I do think you should choose 1 over the other. Just so you can developed some more focused skill in a certain area.
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#426337 - 04/05/10 08:43 AM Re: kung fu pick'n'mix [Re: IExcalibui2]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
Thanks for the advice and suggestions, guys.

Thje answer is, yes, I would like to progress solidly in one art, however the way things have worked out over the last few years, I don't see that happening.

For example, my work has a tendency of clashing with class times and, when I've tried to have private classes, the instructors times also change with each semester.

Example: I joined a Ju=Jitsu club a few years ago. After about 4 months, the club either folded or moved and I was not able to trace them (maybe I should have changed my deoderant... or used some). Likewise, I joined an eskrima club and it lasted until the end of the semester, when I then had to change my work hours. Recently met the eskrima trainer (he also trains at the Wing Chun club) and asked him if he was still running the club... he is but the day and hours have changed, which it seems to do often.

What I am finding with the WC is that once I have the hang of the centre-line etc, there is actually a lot of it which is similar to the TKD hand techniques, which I haven't used for a while. Likewise, some of the sensitivity training of Tai Chi come in handy with the chi sau.

With regards to the Shaolin/Sanda, it's pretty much just wanting to practice application and technique, rather than learn a whole style. My time with tai Chi was predominantly form and push-hands, not application. I'm kind of hungry for it and I find my legs are not as felxible... losing all the TKD stuff.

Hence the pick'n'mix approach... I'm just kind of getting whatever pickings I can these days.
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