Wednesday, 6 September 2017

What to expect when joining our Wing Chun classes

When a new student or prospective student comes along to try a martial arts class, often getting them through the door is the hardest step for them to take.
Our classes are adults sessions but on occasions we do accept members as young as 13 if they have the right training mindset and behaviour and the self discipline to concentrate and improve but everyone works with each other to some degree and helps each other to learn and improve regardless of ability or experience.
We currently take new members in our main classes in Sudbury and Bury St Edmunds all year round.
First 4 sessions can be on a taster basis Pay as you Go £10 per class, after this the monthly fee applies to everyone, ideally via standing order.
(*Private one to one tuition is also available on request in Sudbury*)

So with this in mind here is a brief rundown of how we structure our classes and what to expect when you join us to learn Wing Chun Kung Fu.

Wing Chun Fundamentals:

It is important at first to develop a basic understanding of how Wing Chun works and what its key principles and concepts are, so the early weeks of training will comprise of setting up stance for optimum balance, the way we use our guarding hands and punching method and footwork methods.
At this stage you will also be introduced to some partner drills that begin to develop coordination and control and a respect for your training partners in class (many of the wing chun drills help you build an optimum training partner)
Striking to pads and tag type sparring development drills will also be introduced alongside the first Wing Chun practice form Siu Nim Tau (little/young idea) and its sticking hands counterpart Dan Chi Sau (single sticky hands) as well as a double sticking hands drill called Poon Sau (rolling/folding hands) which develops the correct use of the elbow and force exchange, both of which act as punch development tools and linking the upper half to the stance via the elbow and waist.
In our club we also get the beginning level students to learn the key Wing Chun actions in combination drills with a partner and learn basic Wing Chun self defence scenario training, how to deal with common street level type attacks and situations in a fixed and more random, but controlled format.


Wing Chun Intermediate Level:

By this stage you may be a few months into your Wing Chun training and have a good basic grasp of the Fundamental level training...we never fully move on from these basics as advanced Wing Chun is simply the basics done to a high standard, but there are more forms, drills and a deeper understanding to be worked on from this stage.
The second form is introduced here Chum Kiu (seeking/sinking the bridge) which involves turning the stance, stepping, kicking and begins to focus on a moving target and training the body to work as one unit. Chum Kiu has its own complimentary drill in the form of Laap Sau (warding off hands) that primarily works on the Wing Chun core actions contained around Bong Sau (wing arm deflection) and how it may be used to open up a new attack line if our wrist is controlled in some way.
You will also learn how to deal with grabs and holds at this stage of training and be introduced to our Level 1 Free Sparring programme and begin to learn to apply your wing chun against more random pressure in a controlled environment .
Sticking hands training is a large focus in Wing Chun due its close quarter suitability so this will be bedded in within most sessions to some degree as Chi Sau practice works to stage of an encounter where hands and arms often get jammed up and entangled so the Chi sau helps us find a way back to being able to use our main Wing Chun punch or diffuse a situation enough to control or escape safely if possible.
After this maybe 2 to 3 years have passed depending on how often you train and how diligently you practice at home to improve.
The next stages to come involve the third practice form Biu Jee (thrusting/pointing fingers) as well as the famous Wing Chun Wooden Dummy training Muk Yan Jong as well as two weapons forms, the long pole Luk Dim Boon Gwun and double knives/short swords Baat Jaam Dao

Chi sau and sparring get more intense as your skill and control improves and the early drills become pivotal now as you find some of the mistakes you make under this pressure can be rectified using a return to the drills. In this way the Wing Chun system is constantly being refined as you become programmed to respond in a more efficient way for close quarter fighting always referring back to the foundation level as your root.

In over 20 years I am still amazed at how much Wing Chun teaches me about myself and as martial artists we constantly strive to learn, dvelop and improve ourselves and others through the training habit.

So what are you waiting for???? Join us soon in one of our classes and learn for yourself how much Wing Chun Kung Fu has to offer.
For more information call me on 07891699272 or request to join our Facebook page at
"Next Level Wing Chun Academy"

Thursday, 5 January 2017

Sudbury Wing Chun change of training night (January 2017) and Tuition fee breakdown


As of the first week of January 2017 our usual Thursday night training session will switch back to a Wednesday evening 6.30pm to 8pm. 82 Cornard Road, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 2XB (please arrive at least 5 mins early)

This session will focus mainly on one or two areas per session such as a practice form and a partner drill for example or may cover just one area for the entire class, this session will still be suitable for all levels of experience but I would encourage all beginning level students to attend the Monday night session in Sudbury and/or the Sunday main class in Bury St Edmunds and use this Wednesday training as an addition if you have less than 6 months Wing Chun training experience.

I have had a few new enquiries for both the Sudbury shed based sessions and Bury St Edmunds class over the Christmas break  so its possible that I could try again to hire a larger training hall in Sudbury if we get enough committed regular students paying monthly by standing order to warrant it (8 to 10 paying monthly)..although this will have been the fifth time in 12 years I have done so in Sudbury and been let down by lack of dedicated students to cover the hall fees every time so admittedly I am a bit reticent to dive straight in and lose money again...but with enough interest can happen.

Each class in both locations needs to have a minimum of 6 students to keep the sessions open so its more than achievable and my open, lenient approach to tuition fees over the past ten years or so hasn't helped at times.

Every student should have set up a monthly standing order payment within the first 6 weeks of training. Cash payments can be used for tuition as long as the student always pays the first session of each month..once this has been missed a standing order needs to be set up from this point forward to continue training. Standing order details can be sent to you via email or via paper to hand into the bank, please use your name as a reference...should you decide to cease training the first instance is to inform me, then the standing order payment may be cancelled at any time

£10 pay as you go fees are only applicable for the first month of training to enable the student to decide if they wish to continue training in Wing Chun..after this monthly fees apply immediately.

Tuition Fee Breakdown

15 to 18 year olds and unemployed adults: £5 per session/£20 per month

Adults: £10 per session initially for the first 4 sessions then £30 per month in either branch

Family Discount: £60 for upto 3 members of the same family all training

All classes in both locations per month: £40

Private Tuition: £30 per hour held in the training shed, Sudbury

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Closing notes from 2016..and whats to come


Well, 2016 has been a year of many ups and downs to say the least. We started 2016 exploring the "Applied Body Mechanics Ving Tsun" until the end of April when we parted ways.
The few months we did have gave us a fantastic insight in to how to improve some areas our previous training had been lacking in the form of increased mobility, awareness of balance and leverage and targeting as the key factors and this we have kept in mind and training drills in many ways this year.

Following this we spent a period of returning to our core Next Level Wing Chun basics keeping simplicity, directness and efficiency at the forefront, honing the forms and key drills and getting back to working Chi Sau, breaking down and understanding the concepts, timing and coordination involved and being mindful not to chase hands literally or with mind (Nod to Ernie ;))

Following our split from ABMVT we lost a few committed students, as to be expected, who preferred that approach. As always when students leave or move on I try to not take it too personally, martial arts is a journey for all of us and as coaches we don't own students and can only really teach from our own experiences and pass on the skills as we have been taught and interpreted them.
That's not to say that I haven't been disappointed when this has happened after putting so much time and focus into those students in helping them on their path but it isn't or shouldn't be a personal issue and all of those who do move on I hope will always be friends and would be welcome back should they wish at any point. I myself have learnt and taught for a few separate groups over the last 20 years and whatever i've absorbed from that has become part of what I now teach in some way and am truly thankful for those opportunities

The latter months of the year we have been covering all aspects of the system with both our Sudbury and Bury St Edmunds locations, students have had ample opportunity to get training in with the wooden dummy, target balls, pad drills, long pole and knives, timing drills, footwork drills, kicking and counter kicking and Chi Sau. I make accessible over 150 Wing Chun sessions a year..all you need to do is commit to show up and put the work in....short cuts, missed sessions, excuses obviously will detract from your overall understanding and ability and limit how much you take on board...but again..that's your choice and your journey and your decision to make..if you want it bad enough..you will make it happen...if not it will just be a longer road, but as these skills truly take a lifetime of attention anyway to maintain there's no rush...as always you get out what you put in..no more no less.


In 2017 I need to focus on building the club student base in both locations, we dont need earth shattering student enrolment just regular dedicated, committed students who will make the club stronger for the future and give you all people to train with..I am not a commercially driven teacher and keep fees affordable (less per month than I was paying 15 years ago) but at the end of the day it is my profession and job.

Wing Chun wise my drive is to provide you with a good solid base of functional Wing Chun skills that you can take and develop, explore and make your own. A clear path of progression and understanding for training purposes, good mobility and balance with effective striking skills... and more importantly should a situation occur at street level that you are in some ways more prepared for.

For myself, I am hoping to get along to Philipp Bayers weekend seminar in Torquay in August to experience his unique take on WSLVT and am "considering" another return to cross training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu , more for personal interest and fitness than anything else., this year as many of you will know I have increased my running up to around 40 miles a week and dropped almost 2 stone in weight since this time last year...knee injuries can be commonplace in long distance running so BJJ is a very good functional skill that naturally keeps your fitness levels high but has the downside of potential injury as with anything..but the timing, leverage, pressure factors, full body usage are very well aligned with Wing Chun in many ways..for me..if it relates to close quarter fighting it is valid to explore as needed (plus I miss being choked out by everyone on the mats and having to literally fight to survive..keeps me in the white belt mentality so I don't get above myself..always something to learn) ;)

 I may also arrange some more seminar visits to our club from others in the Wing Chun comminity later in the training year as and when our numbers improve, and will organise some additional workshops that I will teach on certain subjects too...perhaps in a Summer Camp type format?? Watch this space...

As always thank you to those students who have put in regular attendance this last year and supported the growth of our small club, without you the club wouldn't exist.

We start back after the festive break in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday 8th January 2017 and the following week Monday and Thursday in Sudbury, usual times apply.

From myself as coach, have a very merry Christmas and a happy new year (get some punching in also) :)

Saturday, 28 May 2016

Wing Chun Kung Fu sessions in Suffolk UK


We are actively seeking new beginning students to start Wing Chun sessions with us in our two locations in Suffolk - Sudbury and Bury St Edmunds - details below available for more details.

Our training sessions have a focus on teaching and practising the complete traditional Wing Chun Kuen system including all forms, partner drills, sticking hands training, wooden dummy, long pole and knives.

Fighting attribute development and strategies for close quarter fighting/self protection is a key area in Wing Chun to include aspects such as:

* Timing
* Balance
* Coordination
* Recovery and error correction
* Power and speed development
* Mindset

Sessions are run in a controlled and cooperative manner to ensure safety and understanding of the skills being taught.

SUDBURY:

Mixed level classes suitable for beginning students

Monday evening 6pm - 8pm at the Training Shed, 82 Cornard Road, Sudbury CO10 2XB
(these sessions can accommodate upto 8 members at a time maximum due to training area  - please book in to check current availability before class or advise if you are unable to attend if expected)

Thursday evening 6.30pm - 8pm

BURY ST EDMUNDS:

Sunday afternoon session 4pm - 6pm at Moreton Hall Health Club, Mount Road, BSE IP32 7BJ
Mixed level session - beginners always welcome

FEES:

We have an introductory fee in the form of Pay as you go charge at £10 per session to try a class before committing to the monthly fee and training

Monthly fees are £30 for all Sudbury based sessions in one calendar month OR only the Bury St Edmunds sessions in that month - payable by standing order ideally after your first 4 sessions training with us

All inclusive fee of £40 per month covers the student for all available sessions in that calendar month
Family discount also available of £60 per month for 3 or more students from the same family (over 18 ideally although we will consider 14-18yr olds)

Private Tuition is also available daytimes, some evenings and weekends at a rate of £30 per hour  - once booked and confirmed this fee is due to be paid even if should you cancel within 24 hours of the arranged time

Please contact me directly if you would like to attend one of our classes and start training with us, whether a complete beginner, an interested martial artist or already training in Wing Chun and are looking to return to training or change clubs.

Head Coach - Paul Blissett

Monday, 25 April 2016

Club Direction Update

Following conversations with Jason Gowan - Head Coach of Applied Body Mechanics Ving Tsun/London on Sunday 24th April 2016 a decision was made that we sever our ties for the foreseeable future with training the ABMVT method by mutual agreement.

This is mainly due to a personal circumstances change on my part with less weekends being available for me for travel to London for my own training and development with the ABMVT method as well as a lack of finances to attend Training Camps around the country and abroad to fully absorb the system to the best of my ability.

I especially feel, as does Jason, that to really get to grips with the details in the content and develop the skills to a high enough confident level to allow me to effectively coach them and do the system true justice would require very regular attendance which is not at this time logistically possible as it was when we as a club began our ABMVT training 6 months ago.

The split is made with no hard feelings and I honestly cannot fault the support and friendship offered by both Jason, his London crew and Ernie Barrios (via online conversations explaining why their method is different to most Wing Chun/Ving Tsun and offering advice sometimes on a daily basis to assist with our transition)

It has been clear to me that ABMVT has taken a Wong Shun Leung Ving Tsun/Gary Lam Wing Chun base or engine and developed a very effective set of training methods to pass the skills on and has certainly been a positive experience for us all as a club to at least get a taste of where we can improve our Wing Chun approach and training but I will state here and now that I am not about to copy or replicate their training as this is not possible without a one to one feeling and exchange of skills.

I also admit that I found it hard to truly let go of 20 years of training and development in Wing Chun and retrain my ageing brain to adapt to a totally new way of training and thinking and I know many students did also, some to the point of ceasing training altogether.

I'm not one for politics or dwelling on the past, what is done is done and I'm thankful to all for supporting me on my continued journey and I encourage all students to build on what we have for the present and to develop your own Wing Chun and the future of our club, Next Level Wing Chun Academy.

Monday, 14 March 2016

ABMVT Module 1 Training Camp Review - Bury St Edmunds

I was very pleased to invite and host my Applied Body Mechanics Ving Tsun coach and friend Jason Gowan from ABMVT London up to our Bury St Edmunds location this weekend to hold a Module 1 Training Camp for our Suffolk crew.

My day began around lunchtime with Jason coming over to mine early so we could have a couple of hours training before the camp to go through any areas I needed clarification on and to tweak certain aspects of the foundation level.

In this session Jason provided a comprehensive breakdown of the correct stance set up and mechanics needed to fully integrate the stance to the upper half, adjustments to footwork, frame and punch line leverage, full triangle hitting and how those same mechanics are used in the kicking ensuring a direct line from ground to target via power from the waist.

We also worked Dan Chi stationary with the isolated striking mechanics focus, again stance use came to the fore and the clarity of balance, leverage, targeting and recycling apparent - then progressed to adding a step and attacking as one unit.
In this time we also ran through some spine and hip mobility work - activating the whole body but mainly the core and spine fluidity of movement and opening the hip girdle as a pre cursor to the kicking flows.  

Lastly we ran through a small amount of the legacy Pak Sau Timing Drill, Lap/Lop Sau and ABMVT version of Chi Sau or CPT (connected partner training) in which I got to feel a true sense of why I chose to explore this avenue of Ving Tsun development in the first place, effortless power release, core VT concepts such as Taan, Fook, Chiu Ying coming out naturally...Jason is strong, fast and powerful but I must add he didn't use any of these natural and developed attributes when training - in this method there is no arm grinding, no forcing the elbows into uncomfortable and unnatural positions, no hand chasing and no stress at all on the shoulder musculature - just simple full body striking mechanics  and stance supported framework.



Without repeating myself the main training camp followed a similar format, Jason presented the information in a clear, concise manner and was open to any questions that arose during the day.
In the same vein as our Discovery Day, it was a sheer pleasure for me to see the guys eyes light up at times and both myself and Jason literally saw everybody in the room improve to some degree from start to finish - that in my experience is special and something I have not witnessed in 20 years of attending these type of workshops or seminars.

This method, as all worthwhile skills, also needs constant attention and hard work, the bigger muscle groups such as the thighs and hamstrings, glutes and midsection get worked to large percent in all we do, cardiovascular conditioning comes as a part of the training process to some degree but assistance work will be beneficial to all training the ABMVT modules in order to maximise your potential, everybody has limitations to some degree, either mentally, physically or time, family constraints..so its uber important to make sure you give 100% effort and focus to when you are at training sessions and try to attend on a regular basis with some ancillary work in your own time ideally - remember these are perishable skillsets - and the magic happens OUTSIDE your comfort zone...as a coach I do my utmost to get one to one training time with you all and help you to understand what we should be focusing on - but for all you esoteric mother hubbards out there - 50% comes from your teacher - 50% must come from yourself - meet me halfway at least and be prepared to work your asses off at times for the betterment of the group - before you even begin swanning on about Bruce Lee, Wong Shun Leung etc remember they put a huge workload in on a daily basis, as did any well known martial artist or fighter who got anywhere...no shortcuts fellas....hard, consistent but enjoyable training..while we were all enjoying our camp content - ABMVT Salisbury coach Adam Gerken was being put through his paces to literally vomiting alongside Kev Bell in Southampton via a prowler session (a very heavy metal sled you load with iron and push across the room) and walking dumbell lunges with 33kg in each hand...leading by example if I ever saw it...



Everyone got to feel and understand their movement and body to a greater degree whilst enhancing their skill development and that of their training partners - make them - don't break them!
A truly egoless training modality...

If you look at pretty much all other endeavours from transport to nutrition, sports science to medicine or computer programming - everything has evolved leaps and bounds from where it was 50 years ago - yet Wing Chun/Ving Tsun is plagued with training that harks back to these times for the sake of tradition and nostalgia more that efficiency and practical evolution...or teachers add other systems in the hope of filling a perceived void, thus complicating and adding skillsets which dont always marry together in a natural harmonious way without contradiction (but may sell like hot cakes as a marketing model)

In my mind ABMVT provides a sane cure to much of this when it comes to modernising the training methods that comprise our front facing, close quarter fighting system that is VT.


For more information please check out the link below for details of the International branches and future training camp information



Friday, 29 January 2016

NEW Martial Arts/Self Defence Sessions - Sudbury, Suffolk



New adult training sessions starting in Sudbury, Suffolk in the close quarter martial art of Ving Tsun Kung Fu (Wing Chun)

We study and practice the modules and training cycles of "Applied Body Mechanics Ving Tsun" with support and guidance from ABMVT London head coach Jason Gowan and all the International ABMVT coaches.

Starting...... THURSDAY 4th FEBRUARY 7PM - 8.30PM

AT...... ST JOHNS METHODIST CHURCH HALL, YORK ROAD, SUDBURY, SUFFOLK, CO10 1ND

FIRST CLASS FREE!!!

Usual class fee is £10 per session or £30 per calendar month - payable by standing order or cash

(Current students in Bury St Edmunds paying monthly can either pay £10 on a pay as you go basis or increase your monthly fee to £40 to cover all sessions in either location)

These sessions are aimed at all experience levels but will focus on the new beginners.

To make this hall option viable we need a minimum of 6 crew members paying monthly to secure this venue use long term.

These sessions are based around a blend of modern and traditional training methods that focus on producing results via development of:

* STRUCTURE
* POWER GENERATION
* REFLEXES
* FOOTWORK
* STRIKING TO PADS
* CONTROLLED, PROGRESSIVE SPARRING

Contact Coach Paul Blissett for further details 07891 699272 or join our Facebook page for regular weekly updates "Next Level Wing Chun Academy"