If you are not familiar with Samuel Kwok, he is considered one of the best sources to learn proper Ip Man Wing Chun. From what I understand, over the course of his life he managed to study with a number of people who were direct students of Ip Man, including both his sons Ip Chun and Ip Ching, allowing him to pass on a perspective that was once taught by the Grandmaster himself.
Sections I Enjoyed:
According to GM Kwok, Ip Man only taught a handful of people the knife form and Ip Ching is one of those people. As you may have guessed, the form was passed on from Ip Man to Ip Ching, from Ip Ching to Samuel Kwok, and if you decide to watch the DVD, from Samuel Kwok to you. If your goal is to learn proper Ip Man Wing Chung, this form is something like a small piece of Wing Chun history you cannot pass up.
In one of the first sections of the video, GM Kwok gives you a very general idea of the type of sword you will need for Wing Chun. If you are new to the BJD, you might not know the swords come in a number of different styles. Some are intended for Wing Chun, while many others are not. If you want to learn this form, you should ensure you have the proper artillery.
One aspect of the DVD I enjoyed is that he taught not only knife/sword applications for weapons fighting, but also it how it applies to non-weapon fighting. In other words, how to apply knife training when you are not physically holding a weapon. In today’s “gun world” I personally believe this is an aspect of traditional training many people overlook. Most folks believe in order to apply weapons fighting in “real life,” similar to the movie Highlander, you have to carry around a pair of swords in your trench coat. This is simply not true, as GM Kwok demonstrates in this video, it is possible to apply weapon concepts to non-weapons fighting.
Another chuck of the video I feel is worth mentioning is the section on footwork. He goes into how to properly generate power, another aspect I feel is also important for non-weapons fighting. He also points out that the footwork changes in a live blade situation. Basically if someone is swinging live weapons at you, you cannot step back and forth like we are all taught when we learn the basics of footwork. Although it is hard to describe in writing, you basically have to take larger steps forward and back, as opposed to dragging your back leg forward and back.
The filming is very good, clear video. The sound is also great, easy to follow. Grandmaster Kwok filmed the DVD in a professional environment with no background distractions.
This DVD is a really good overview of the BJD. Grandmaster Kwok carefully reviews everything from how to hold the swords, properly attack, stand, and all the basics you need to know. He teaches each section of the form followed by a slow motion preview (so you do not miss anything,) how the sword applies from attacking defending oneself against weapons, and finally how they apply to hand to hand combat. This DVD is definitely worth adding to your collection, especially if you are a fan of Grandmaster Kwok.
Samuel Kwok – Mastering Wing Chun – Ip Man’s Kung Fu DVD 6 – Baat Cham Dao – Wing Chun Butterfly Swords
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Running Time: Approx. 60 min.
Number of Discs: 1
Availability: DVD or EWC Instant Access Download
Review by: Scott Moses