*Written by Grand Master Chu Shong Tin
Stance and Activate Nim Tao
Chu Shong Tin points out that if one can understand, and is able to activate the thought/mind (Nin Tao), then all the movements and techniques can generate a lot of force without using much physical or brute strength.
To bring Nim Tao up:
1.Basic Stance: (Measure stance with feet) Keep body as one by aligning the spine and the thighs in a straight line. The knees are slightly bent to so that they are vertically above the toes. The knees should be kept springy. The knees and toes point and focus on the attack point, that, is the vertical point where the kicks from both legs can reach. This position requires the least effort for us to stand on our feet.
2.Tai Going: in order to activate the Nim Tao, you first have to do “tai gong”(internal contraction). It is like lightly contracting your anus and is like not letting yourself go to the bathroom, but you shouldn’t do it with too much effort. It’s just a feeling and idea, this is not to be done too physically. Just use the mind to do it lightly.
3.Flow: Once you can comprehend tai gong and are able to do it in a relaxed manner, the front part of your thigh muscles should feel like they are raising up and the back part of your thigh and buttock muscles should feel like they are dropping down. Make sure you are dropping those muscles with your mind and relaxation: not with physical force.
4.Point the tail bone: Point the tail bone down as you are dropping your buttock and thigh muscles.
5.Rotate the tail bone: Once you can do that, then you rotate the tail bone inward and upward. This should again be done with your mind and relaxation, not with physical force.
6.Raise the Spine: Then you ‘raise up’ through your spine from the end point(tip)of the tail bone. This is very difficult to do and you probably won’t know how to think this at the beginning stages, but just imagine raising it up and keep practicing this.
7.Activate Nim Tao: Once you can do this very well there will be a force expanding the gaps between each vertebrae, it will keep raising through the neck and all the way to the top of the head. If you can do this well, you can feel that there is something, maybe it’s called Chi or whatever, I don’t quite know how to describe it. So let’s say we call this Chi. This Chi will then expand the gaps between each vertebra as you raise up your spine. You should feel that you have become taller. The Chi then goes all the way up to the top of the head. You will then be able to activate the Nim Tao and be able to generate a lot of force without using physical brute force. Once you can activate the Nim Tao you can then control the muscles that you wouldn’t normally be able to control.
Don’t be discouraged if you don’t succeed in doing it, just be persistent. It is a difficult exercise and impossible for anyone to achieve at the beginning stage.
The process above is the basic process to activate Nim Tao. We now think that this may be the Nim Tao (the thought/mind) that Ng Mui(the founder of the style) was referring to.
*About Chum Kiu - Written by Mark Spence
Chum Kiu movements are more easily recognizable as fighting applications. In this, the 2nd form, the structural qualities developed through training Siu Nim Tao are combined with stepping and pivoting, which of course, is necessary in real fighting. While in Siu Nim Tao, the centre line is held on the practitioner's body as a line that bisects the body into two symmetrical halves, in chum Kiu the body is sometimes turned, so that the centre line is simply the shortest distance between the student and their opponent. The guard is raised to protect that line.
Chum Kiu guard, (top view).
In Siu Nim Tao, the student delivers force from their centre of mass. In Chum Kiu the student learns to move that same point, in order to increase power and achieve mobility. As well, there are certain arm movements in Chum Kiu that do not appear in Siu Nim Tao. Some of these involve the arm being moved from a 90-degree angle at the elbow rather than the more extended, optimum angle that is more predominant in Siu Nim Tao. Chum Kiu also introduces the Wing Chun kicks,
*About Biu Jee - Written by Mark Spence
Just as Chum Kiu builds upon the skills developed in Siu Nim Tao, Biu Jee adds to the abilities acquired in the two previous forms. Accordingly, as the Chum Kiu form adds more vectors of force to the movements of Siu Nim Tao, Biu Jee allows for extra force vectors in addition to those available in Chum Kiu. In some ways the movements are more natural as they involve twisting at the waist and bending, which an untrained person will generally do to increase power.
The rotation in Biu Jee is intrinsic in the releasing of energy. This type of force is found in nature in spiral structures such as whirlpools or tornadoes, (twisters). However, without first developing the structural qualities of Wing Chun through Siu Nim Tao, and then learning to move that structure as a cohesive unit in Chum Kiu, it would be difficult, if not impossible, to apply the movements of Biu Jee correctly.
Another important objective of practicing Biu Jee is to learn to perform the movements with speed. This aspect is not emphasized in the other forms. Obviously correctness should be emphasized initially, but once the movements have been practiced to a degree where they are instinctive to the student, then speed should be added.
*About Mook Jong - Written by Mark Spence
The movements in the Mook Jong form can all be found in the three empty hand forms; Siu Nim Tao, Chum Kiu and Biu Jee. The wooden dummy itself should be considered as training equipment and the Mook Jong form provides a template in which to practice fighting moves.
The moves are not necessarily sequential and should not be thought of as combinations in the way that a boxer may practice a set of punches. However moving from one position to another in the most economical and direct way, is important, and will be enhanced through practicing this form.
Having a solid object to strike provides an opportunity to cultivate power. The way that the wooden dummy is built is quite ingenious, as the springiness of the construction, and the way the arms project from the trunk, form a structure that responds to force in a way very similar to the human body. Owning a wooden dummy is like having a training partner that is willing to stand there all day long as one practices Wing Chun.