Great Grand Master Ip Man
The Master Lineage of Leung Jan (Doctor ) and Son Leung Bik – Master lineage of Wing Chuns Legend History via Crane Temple and Shaolin.
Grandmaster Ip Man was born in Foshan (China) in 1893 to a wealthy merchant family and lived to the age of 79. He passed away at his home in Hong Kong in December 1972.
Ip Man began learning Wing Chun sometime after 1906 under Chan Wah-Shun who was said to have been teaching out of the Ip Family Ancestral Temple at the time. In spite of the family connection Grand Master Ip Man was charged the joining fee of two and a half houses. Ip Man valued the opportunity and paid the price through his own hard work to attain the skills famously known through Shaolin Masters.
Ip Man became Chan Wah-Shun’s youngest and last student, as Chan was old and nearing the end of his teaching. Around 1908 Chan suffered a stroke and retired, leaving Ip Man’s kung fu instruction to be continued by his senior kung fu brothers such as Ng Jung-So.his senior kung fu brothers such as Ng Jung-So.
After Chan Wah-Shun’s death in 1911, Ip Man went to Hong Kong and attended St. Stephan’s College. There Ip Man met his true Wing Chun Teacher, Leung Bik, who was the second Son of Lueng Jan, (The Doctor who reluctantly taught a slower version to Ip Mans previous Teacher Chan Wah-Shun). Ip Man apprenticed himself to Leung Bik, and looked after him learning Wing Chun for another 7 years and polishing his skills to the most advanced level.
Sifu Ip Chun (Ip Man’s oldest son) quotes his father as having said that he received a good foundation from Grandmaster Chan Wah Shun, but learnt sophisticated techniques from Master Leung Bik.
Sifu Chan Wah Shun and Sifu Leung Bik were both doing two different variations of Wing Chun. Through learning Ip Man returned to China and developed an extraordinary reputation for his great Wing Chun skill. He even joined the Chinese army for a time. He did not however teach for many years. In 1942 his home and family wealth was taken by the Japanese occupation of China and he took on some students in Foshan. from both, Ip Man acquired complete mastery of Wing Chun of Yin and Yang.
Ip Man returned to China and developed an extraordinary reputation for his great Wing Chun skill. He even joined the Chinese army for a time. He did not however teach for many years. In 1942 his home and family wealth was taken by the Japanese occupation of China and he took on some students in Foshan.
What is apparent though is that all Wing Chun’s learnt from Ip Man are variations of the two versions of Wing Chun that Ip Man himself originally learnt (One from Master Chan Wah Shun and one style from Master Leung Bik). These two versions are often called traditional and modified (or advanced) Wing Chun. Leung Biks Legendary Dad, Leung Jan, taught outdoor version to Master Chan Wah Shun. Ip Mans closest lineage teachings is Legendary Master Leung Jan, to Son Leung Bik, to Master Ip Man, to Sons Sifu Ip Ching and Sifu Ip Chun, to Sifu Tony and students.
Wing Chun as taught by Grandmaster Ip Man has three empty-hand forms, a wooden dummy form, and two weapons forms. Integrated into drills and sticky hands practice, Chi Sau, the motions of the forms are the Wing Chun practitioners self-defence and fighting skills.
Many of Ip Man’s students including his sons - Grand Master Ip Ching and Grand Master Ip Chun, have gone on to teach new generations of excellent Wing Chun practitioners, making Wing Chun into the fastest growing martial art in the world.
In 1949, GrandMaster (Yip) Ip Man, fled the Communist rise in China to live in Hong Kong where in 1950, he began teaching his Wing Chun for a living.
In Hong Kong he accepted his first batch of disciples in on a professional basis. Over his long teaching career in Hong Kong Ip Man taught many outstanding and famous students. The most recognized being Bruce Lee who was taught by Ip Man for 5 years before Bruce Lee went to America.
Ip Man taught all of his students differently, depending on their natural ability, personality, understanding, how he felt Wing Chun would best suit them and the level of trust that he had with them. Hence all the Wing Chun’s being taught around the world today vary from each other depending on which branch of the Wing Chun family tree you are learning from.
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|Master Bruce Lee|
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