Wing Chun Rings – What are They For Anyway?

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Wing Chun (or Ving Tsun) is one of the most recognized and efficient forms of combat in the Kung Fu community. The speed, body structure and sensitivity training are known by almost every hard-core martial artist.

Is it necessary to practice Wing Chun to gain these qualities? No, but it helps to use some of the same tools Wing Chun practitioners use to develop their coordination, sensitivity, structure and  body conditioning. One of those tools is the Wing Chun ring.

Are the Rings Only Good for Wing Chun?

The simple answer is: No, though – in all honesty – it does help. Any system and style can use the rings to develop good coordination, sensitivity, use of both hands and forearm conditioning. Everyone has a body.  That is obvious. Almost every martial system has some type of form or “kata”. By adding the rings into the practice of those forms increases the effectiveness of the system.

Using the rings is a great way for a person without a partner to practice the arm and hand postures that are commonly found in most quality martial systems.

Having an object that restricts movement and separation of the hands trains muscle memory and promotes the use of both hand simultaneously. Using the rings regularly will help condition the forearms and make them more resistant to the effects of rubbing, friction and impact.

How to Use the Rings if I Don’t Practice Wing Chun

There are several uses for the Wing Chun rings; rattan or stainless steel. Try going through the forms or katas from your chosen system and use the ring around both hands.

Though it will be strange at first, repeated use of the rings will help you develop a body structure that is sound and stable. Your arms will gain a posture that not only promotes stability, but places you hands in better positions to attack and defend faster than you previously would.

By going through “blocking” motions, you will notice that the other hand is usually in a “cocked” or prepared position for a strike. You will notice that your elbows naturally lower and protect your ribs and your wrist, elbow and shoulder aligns perfectly.

Still not sure how to use them? That’s quite alright. There are tons of books out there that gives step by step instructions on the usage of the rings. There are even some DVD’s you can find – if you look hard enough – that you can play, pause and follow as you train.

With diligent practice and a little patience, you will notice a distinct positive change in your skill level.

Personal Findings

Though commonly advertised for Wing Chun practitioners, I have found the ring (both rattan and steel variants) help improve my structure, ability to defend multiple point simultaneously, movement economy and a whole LOT more.

The ring is compact in the sense that it doesn’t take up much room in a suitcase. The rattan version is legal on flights. It is ideal to have with you so you can practice your forms without the benefit of a training partner.

If you DO practice Wing Chun and cannot get to a Mook Jong (wooden dummy), you can use the ring and practice your Mook Jong forms and get a good training session in. The price point is low enough – as far as martial arts training equipment goes – that you can get both variants without breaking the bank. I high recommend the serious martial artist has at least one of these rings in your training toolkit.

Author: Brent Duncan

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