In my last blog I shared a question from someone asking about the origins of the Luk Dim Boon Kwan (i.e., six and a half point pole, or “long pole” in the United States) training in Wing Chun and if that training was still practical today:
“Sifu, I was watching one of the Ip Man movies, and was wondering where the long pole form came from. And, is it still practical way of training today?”
We’ve already discussed the origins, let’s talk about the second question: practicality of this training today.
While it is true that, proportionately, we are not as exposed to these types of long poles as the ancient Chinese were for them to be readily available for us, that doesn’t mean that everything that this form of training offers is impractical. Many kwoons (i.e., learning halls or schools) utilize this training to teach students footwork that is lacking in the other Wing Chun forms; there are ways to teach core-use utilizing the long pole form (and the training that goes along with that form) that are unique to it; there are adaptations that can be used with things in our environments today that if one learns them (like we do at my kwoon) are very useful; this training also offers training in striking in angles lacking in other Wing Chun forms (e.g., arrow punching from Ma Bu (or the horse stance)); . . . . The list goes on and on. And, this is why kwoons all over the world still utilize this training.
So, I encourage you to look past the absence of these poles in your environment and not give into the idea that the training is impractical as a consequence. Hopefully, you have a Sifu that can direct you and show you practical applications for the training. Because, as always, I want to see you empower yourself to life!™ through dedicated training. You’ll get there with the right direction, if you put things in the right perspective and don’t give up.
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