Relaxation and forward intention will make your Chi Sau as light as a feather. This does not been you are weak but rather so soft and subtle your partner will feel like you are not even there. This weak I demonstrated this principle with each of my classmates (and even my Sifu). In fact, my touch was so light that I suspect most of my classmates would swear I was not even at class this week -- such is the mysterious power of Wing Chun!
Sil Lim Tao, the first set in Wing Chun, translated means "Little Idea." Some think this is because it gives you a little idea of what Wing Chun is about -- a small sampler of the moves. Sifu Trevor teaches that the "idea" is mind intention and that the goal of Sil Lim Tao is to link mind intent with your structure so that when you move it is always with intent. This is not wrong, but I want to expand this concept to how I have trained in "Little Idea" form. Although I attend Wing Chun class only once a week or so, I have far exceeded my classmates because of the following principle: Away from class I am always thinking about Wing Chun! I keep this little idea in my head from the moment I wake, on my drive to work, when I frost a Chattanooga Cup Cake (2nd Location in E. Brainerd Opening in August!), and of course when I am mowing the lawn. This is why the form is really called little idea because you can come to class just a little and if you keep the idea in your head all day you can achieve mastery, like me.
Your feet should be shoulder width apart. Center dropped but not forced. Imagine standing behind your lawn mower and that is the right stance. Now when you step, imagine pushing your lawn mower. If you can master pushing the lawn mower (arms stay fixed, it is your center that moves the mower!) then you have attained the first level of stance and footwork understanding. Of course, when facing a master like me, your stance may crumble at first. Do not be discouraged because I too experienced this my first two classes.
As Dojo's only true Master, I am starting to get a little bored. So I have started this blog to share my knowledge so that someday at least a few of you will approach my skill so I can have at least some challenge in Chi Sau. You should check in often because what you miss will hurt you. More advice later, but now I must go mow the lawn.
Howard -- Dojo's first master. Someday if you practice you may become almost as good as him. A local hero, Howard's Wing Chun skill has been featured on the front page March 11, 2010 and August 24, 2010 of the Chattanooga TImes Free Press. Howard T-Shirts are also available!