Master Tse’s Wing Chun Notes #8

Teacher is a Compass

There are many things in the world that we can learn by ourselves, like cooking, gardening, making furniture and even a language but we cannot learn Wing Chun without a teacher. The teacher is a compass to guide you in the right direction and without it you will arrive at the wrong destination. Therefore you need to make sure you also choose a good compass, choose a good teacher.

Wing Chun is different to a lot of other martial arts. Many other martial arts just need you to be strong and powerful but Wing Chun is different. Wing Chun requires you to be gentle and precise, to read your opponent’s energy as well as the whole situation. At the end, you can use less energy to defeat your opponent.

A bad compass will give you the rough direction but not exactly the right point. I am sure we all have experience to ask someone directions when we are lost. If someone gives us a wrong direction, at the end we have go back the same place to start from the beginning that is very annoying. If this happens in studying Wing Chun you will have wasted a lot of time and have to start again with someone else. The wrong teacher might also give you bad habits that can damage your health. Some bad habits you can never change. I am sure you have the saying, “bad habits die hard”, and that is very true.

How can you know what is a good teacher? One easy way is to look at their students. You will be able to see from the students’ skill and behaviour what the teacher is like as the students will eventually be a lot like their teacher. A good teacher will have good students. So if you want to be good, then find a good teacher.

Michael Tse