Unlike it’s Japanese rivals – Wing chun Punching Power comes less from the twist and torque of the body – instead coming from Fa-Geng, explosive energy first and foremost.
Read on to find out more about Fa-Jing – the magic, the myth and reality.
Fa-jing is more commonly found and referred to in the internal martial arts. The four most popular of the internal arts are Tai Chi Chuen, Hsing-i and Ba-Gua Chang.
The martial arts (in general) focus on the generation of power – primarily through the recruitment of joints and rotation of the body.
As you push from the floor energy is transferred through your ankles, knees, hips, spine, shoulders, elbows and wrist before landing a shot on your poor opponent.
Fa-jing on the other hand is less concerned with the generation of power and energy – it’s focus is on the RELEASE of energy in a destructive way as you hit your opponent.
Unknown to many – the human body can generate elastic energy from tendons and connective tissue. Tendons can store and release this energy which can be harness to hit harder, faster and release massive amounts of power.
The kind of power Kung Fu flicks would love!
Conventional approaches to tendons see them only as a means to attach muscle to bone. More recent evidence now suggests that tendons – together with other elastic components – play a role in storing elastic energy. And – the important part – providing energy and increasing muscular efficiency.
This is particularly so when you finish powerful isometric or eccentric contractions.
Isometric contractions are where the joint angle and the muscle length stays the same during the muscle contraction. Eccentric muscle contractions are where you lengthen the muscle as you keep it contracts (ie. your arm moving away from you under a lot of tension).
What relevance is this to the modern day Kung Fu student looking to maximize their Wing Chun punching power?
Wing Chun forms incorporate both isometric and eccentric movements – to strengthen your tendons and connective tissue to build faster arm movements with explosive energy.
The Siu Nim Tau form – the first training program for new students – does exactly this as you work your arm, wrist and forearm under maximum tension to develop tendon strength.
Many styles of Wing Chun wouldn’t just have you training the Siu Nim Tau form for years to test your dedication – the masters of old knew that extensive training was necessary, moving your arm as slowly as possible to build the strength of your connective tissues and help you become more powerful.