Wing Chun or Muay Thai?

The first ever martial arts movie that I watched was a Bruce Lee movie. I don’t remember what it was called. I just remember that it had lots of fight scenes and that famous Bruce Lee flying kick that many a boy during that era have tried to emulate. It is not a movie I would let my children watch, so I don’t know why the adults in my life allowed me to watch it. Bruce Lee is, of course, the Hong Kong-American martial arts icon and action movie actor who paved the way for other Asian action movie actors in America. Sadly, Bruce Lee died at the young age of 32 from acute cerebral edema (swelling of the brain) caused by an allergic reaction to the painkiller, Equagesic. What a sad end for a man who was credited as the most influential martial arts expert of all time. The particular form of martial arts that Bruce Lee trained in was Wing Chun, a form of self-defence which uses striking, grappling and close-range combat. It involves chi sao (sticking hands) drills, free-sparring and wooden dummy techniques. Bruce Lee later combined Wing Chun with other martial arts influences and philosophy and created Jeet Kune Do.

One of the mothers at my son’s school has been thinking about sending her second son to martial arts class. She feels that martial arts will be good for him because he is so full of energy. The only problem is that with such an array of martial arts classes available, she doesn’t know where to start and what to choose. Her neighbour recommended Wing Chun, espousing it as the form of martial arts that Bruce Lee trained in. Her husband thinks that Muay Thai (Thai kickboxing) would be more useful because their son will learn effective self-defence techniques that will strengthen him as well as condition him through regular sparring, which is vital for learning to defend himself. There are several fitness clubs that have Muay Thai gyms offering Thai kickboxing classes where students can learn to condition their bodies through training exercises such as shadowboxing, body weight resistance exercises, rope jumping, abdominal exercises, medicine ball exercises and weight training in fitness classes in Perth at lower fees. They also have heavy bags filled with sand that clients can practise kicking with their shins so as to strengthen their shins because Muay Thai uses a combination of fists, elbows, knees and shins.

In the end, this lady chose Muay Thai for her son because she concluded that it would be a sport that could help him get fit as well as learn self-defence at the same time. As it turns out, their next holiday will be spent in Thailand, the home of Muay Thai. Apparently, there are holiday packages that offer Muay Thai training in Muay Thai gyms on the beaches of Thailand. How nice; mum and dad can relax on the beach will junior sweats it out in a Muay Thai gym.

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