Sifu – Darryl Moy, Sigong – Grandmaster Tse, other students, and instructors from all over the world joined the zoom call. Some faces were familiar while others were completely new, adding to the increasing intensity of being on the instructors’ course for the first time. However, seeing the number of people who joined across vastly different time zones, greatly exemplified the true dedication to Wing Chun that is so well reflected in Sifu and Sigong. At that moment, my feelings of anxiousness and nervousness were replaced with that of inspiration and motivation. Sifu and Sigong spoke to us briefly and explained to the first-timers how each day was going to go, and with that, the course was underway.
The first day of the course started with Sigong demonstrating each of the forms and exercises in the Wing Chun syllabus: Siu Lim Tao (the first form and everyone’s favourite), Dan Chi Sau, Seung Chi Sau, and Tsum Kiu. The preciseness and naturalness with which Sigong performed each form and exercise highlighted how detailed one needs to be to truly master each form. Each form or exercise was broken-down into 3 sections where Sigong welcomed questions after each section and answered them in great detail. After Sigongs first round of demonstrations, we joined breakout rooms that were assigned to the different forms and exercises. Each breakout room allowed students to polish their form either for testing or to further their own personal development. After 20 minutes in the breakout rooms, we came back to the main meeting room for a subsequent round of demonstrations. This continued until Sigong had gone through all the forms and exercises in significant detail. By the end of the first day, there was such a vast amount of knowledge that I had to write down close to 2 pages of intricate notes! Which was especially useful in preparation for the following day.
After the first day and lots more re-reading through my notes, it was time for day 2 of the course, testing day. Sifu and Sigong joined early to take a group photo and to wish us good luck with our tests. The feeling of nervousness was quickly coming back. Each of us was designated to a tester at an allocated time during the 1 of the 3 sessions. While waiting to be tested, we could join the polishing breakout room to brush up on our form and knowledge. In the polishing rooms, there was a great deal of help and feedback (thank you Andrew!), and much of my nervousness faded again. Upon testing, we had to join the testers’ zoom meeting and were assessed to a high degree of scrutiny. Testers then pointed out any improvements or corrections to our forms at the end of each test, and regardless of passing, everyone was given feedback and felt motivated to continue developing their skill. A massive thank you to all the testers as everyone left their tests with improvements and corrections that will aid in their practice to reach a higher level!
Once all the tests had completed, Sigong asked us to come back into the main meeting room where Sifu and Sigong explained the benefits of teaching and how rewarding it can be for our own development. Afterwards, Sigong asked questions about Wing Chun to test us and as an opportunity to learn and discuss the different responses. In the final parts of the course, and as Sigong and Sifu emphasize every class, the best way to improve your Wing Chun skill is to continue to Chi Sau with as many people as often. So, you know how to deal with a wide variety of people of different sizes and styles. This year’s instructors’ course was extremely insightful and lots of fun. I am sure everyone enjoyed it and is even more motivated to continue developing their Wing Chun skill. Thank you so much Sigong and Sifu for passing on this skill and for showing us the true spirit of Wing Chun!
by Teck Chow Teah