Martial Fighting Arts

Fighting Arts: What Will Work For Me?

This article is subjective and based on my own experiences over the past twenty years. It should not be considered as the definitive opinion on the content, but rather as the personal journey of one man and what was found to be his personal truth based on his specific situation and frame of reference.

What works? Well, it depends on what you as an individual are looking for. Fitness, street savvy, fighting ability, competition, discipline, sport? These are all valid reasons that would attract various people to the fighting arts. Cage fighting for example encompasses many of the above but is in my humble opinion not necessarily street savvy although it should be rated that the practitioner may well be.

The competencies required in a pub fight where multiple parties are involved are somewhat different to what is required in a one on one situation. Grappling skill is awesome and a crucial component in mixed Martial Arts, but may not be prudent against multiple opponents if the proponent finds him/herself on the ground chocking an opponent. It is all too easy in this instance to be kicked by the opponents mates while in a mounted position on top of the opponents. In the same light, it is my view that correct Wing Tsun techniques are not necessarily effective as a sport or in a cage. Despite the fact that the rules are kept to a minimum they do still exist and they negate much of what Wing Tsun is all about. Such comparisons can be made with practically every fighting art.

If a good boxer does not spend much time learning to grapple, would this mean that he is not able to fight. I think not. One simply has to choose the Art that fulfils your particular requirements.

My route has taken me among others through the domains of Karate, Boxing, Ninjutsu, Jiujitsu, Escrima, Wing Tsun, Wing Chun and Wah Lum Tan Tui (Praying Mantis). I have learned that for me, taking my physical size and strength and temperament into account, I am best suited to Wing Tsun. The principles work for me and allow me to work towards my personal goals and requirements. I found that the psychology and street savvy is exceptional. My personal needs involve understanding how criminals operate and what their rituals entail. I want the ability to stand a very good chance to deal with them on all levels. This is why my search ended with Wing Tsun answered all my questions. It is practical and efficient and allowed me to feel confident and capable in those numerous instances where I had to call on what I have learned.

To determine what works for you, you need to ask yourself:

What is my reason for being interested in the fighting arts?
What goals do I want to reach through the fighting arts?
Which fighting arts are suited to me physically AND mentally?
Is there an instructor of the right pedigree available to me in my choice of fighting art?

Sifu Kevin Stewart

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