GERMANY Newspaper - 2018 April

GERMANY Newspaper - 2018 APRIL


[English translation of the German Press article dated 18 April 2018] 
by Sifu Thomas Klüh <>

The man with the snake hands
Only those who know the root of martial arts can really apply their techniques, says Wayne Yung. The Chinese Grandmaster of Snake Crane Wing Chung is currently in Grünstadt, passing on his knowledge to ThomasKlüh's self-defense school.

Grünstadt. One can be fooled so quickly: This friendly, smiling man with the plump belly just does not want to fit into the clichéd image of a martial artist. But when Wayne Yung, 57, grandmaster of Hong Kong's Snake Crane Wing Chun, demonstrates his techniques, he suddenly seems different. His gaze then resolves, the body takes on an elastic tension and his hands become weapons. Always he jumps from one role to another in the conversation, explains, clarifies, wants to lend emphasis. It is important to him that you really understand what makes the fascination of this traditional martial art, which he almost all his life wages.

And indeed, his story sounds almost like a Martial Arts movie. It's 1978, the 17-year-old is fascinated by how many youths of a generation of martial arts legend Bruce Lee and tries out in different disciplines. "At that time in Hong Kong, there were not a lot to do for us youngsters" remembered. Then he met his later Master - an encounter that was to change one's life. "He looked at the lines of life in my palm and told me to follow the Snake Crane school," says Yung. And his future teacher was to be proved right: Yung became the first great grandmaster of this traditional school, who was not introduced to knowledge by his father. Previously, this martial art from Kung Fu had only been passed on within a family.

Meantime, the SnakeCrane Wing Chun has opened - also on Yungs effort. So came the the contact with Thomas Klüh from Grünstadt, who runs the local school. He contacted the Chinese on Facebook and soon flew himself to Hong Kong to visit the Grandmaster personally. "That was totally different from anything I had previously learned about WingChun," says Klüh today. Meanwhile, he too was "adopted" ceremonially, and is now TeilderSnakeCrane's family.

In general, tradition plays a big role. Yung intensively explores the history of discipline, looking for the ancient Ming Dynasty sub-frontier Chinese sub-groups who, with the help of these new techniques, wanted to defy conquerors from the north (cause). For Yung, this is more than just historical research. "One who knows the origins will apply the techniques quite differently",explains and shows what he means by that. "Wing Chun was developed with very specific enemies in mind. " Because they fought with a lot of strength, the lesson is based mainly on taking advantage of this enemy energy and works especially in the close contact distance, where far-reaching movements are less effective. "This clear goal of all techniques used distinguishes Wing Chun from martial arts, where just simply unraveling forms," says Yung.

However, at first glance, with this conviction he does not differ from followers of other arts who, as a matter of course, praise their variant as the most effective. There are numerous videos on the internet, in which representatives of different martial arts compete against each other to determine the supposedly best. Straight Wing Chung often does not fare well compared to boxers or Muay Thai athletes. But Yung thinks nothing of it: "Fighting is an individual skill. Mastering a technique perfectly does not mean that you are a good fighter. "Klüh adds:" It's not about competition or street fighting, but about self-defense. And there Wing Chun is an excellent way.“

To the point: Snake Crane Wing 

At the official inauguration of the nation's first Snake Crane Wing Chun School in Grünstadt, Grandmaster Wayne Yung explained that this martial art had helped the Chinese of the Ming Dynasty in the war against invaders from the North in the seventeenth century. The monks' guards in the Shaolin Temple had been purposefully trained in Wing Chun to kill opponents in close combat. It created a kind of secret society of killers and this special martial art was passed on only in very close family circles from generation to generation.

It was only in 2009 that they decided to publicize the traditional Snake Crane apprenticeship. Other schools, such as Yip Man, have been trained much longer, especially in Western countries. Also, at Kung Fu are many martial arts figures that, according to Yung, are based on their own form of qigong derived from survival strategies from the animal world. The legend that a woman has watched a snake and crane in a fight, and that it is said that Wing Chun was created, is not believed by the Grand Master of Hong Kong.