What is Wing Chun?

Grandmaster Jim Fung demonstrates a charging side kick.

Wing Chun is one of the youngest and most modern styles of Kung Fu, having emerged from the Shaolin Temple of Southern China around 300 years ago.

Legend has it that Ng Mui, a Buddhist nun and elder of the Shaolin Temple, used her vast knowledge of martial arts to create an effective fighting method that did not rely on brute strength. She named it after her first student, a young woman named Yim Wing Chun.

Wing Chun is now one of the most popular styles of Kung Fu, with celebrities like Bruce Lee, Robert Downey Jr. and UFC fighter Anderson Silva practising and promoting the art. Donnie Yen's blockbuster series, 'Ip Man', was also loosely based on the life of our Grandmaster, Yip Man, who taught our Masters in Hong Kong.

Learn more about Wing Chun's history

Wing Chun's Core Concepts

Wing Chun is a practical, concept-based martial art emphasising efficiency over complicated and showy movements. Its core concepts, such as centreline theory and simultaneous attack and defence, make it highly effective for realistic self-defence.

Centreline Theory: The shortest distance between two points is a straight line. A centreline punch will land sooner than one that follows a curved trajectory, such as a hook or haymaker.

Simultaneous Attack and Defence: Rather than blocking and attacking in two separate movements, maximise your efficiency by using multiple limbs to attack and defend simultaneously.

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Close-Range Power and Efficiency

Grandmaster Jim Fung demonstrates a close-range palm strike at the International Grandmaster's Exhibition in Adelaide, 1988.

Wing Chun is known for being devastatingly effective at close range. Our founder, Grandmaster Jim Fung's one-inch punch is a prime example. By focusing his stance and body weight down the centreline, he could deliver an explosive strike that would send his opponent back by several metres.

Grandmaster Jim Fung and Guinness World Record Holder, Robert Ardito, in 2005.

Wing Chun's efficiency allows multiple strikes to be delivered quickly using all four limbs. A hallmark of Wing Chun is its 'chain-punching', which enables an exponent to send a rapid burst of powerful punches down the centreline to overwhelm their opponent. Grandmaster Fung's student, Robert Ardito, famously set a Guinness World Record by demonstrating 805 chain punches in one minute.

Watch our Power of Wing Chun web series

The Principle of Skill over Strength

In his book, Grandmaster Fung identified Wing Chun's Five Principles:

  • Simplicity
  • Directness
  • Practicality
  • Economy of Movement
  • Minimum Use of Brute Strength

One of Wing Chun's greatest advantages is that it does not rely on physical size or strength to be effective. Many martial arts advocate hard blocking, which won't work against someone physically stronger - hence the existence of weight divisions in their tournaments.

Instead of hard blocking, Wing Chun teaches you to redirect an opponent's punches and kicks while simultaneously counter-attacking. You'll learn to coordinate your entire body mass with your movements, maximising your speed and power.

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Our Unique Wing Chun System

Our unique system, Grandmaster Jim Fung's Wing Chun Kung Fu®, was initially developed by Grandmaster Fung through his 47 years of experience as one of the world's top Wing Chun masters. It has been further streamlined and modernised by his son, Tristan Fung, who has over 30 years of Wing Chun experience.

Tristan Fung demonstrates a latch and knee strike in a street self-defence scenario.

While many Wing Chun schools shy away from sparring and practical application, we've designed our system to equip you with practical self-defence skills from the first lesson. Through scenario-based training and controlled sparring, you'll develop a robust self-defence foundation that will enable you to defend yourself against larger opponents, multiple attackers, weapons, and on the ground.

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