Seattle Wing Chun logo

Why Choose Seattle Wing Chun?

Here are frequently asked questions by people interested in studying at SWC.

Why practice Wing Chun?

People have their own reasons for doing Wing Chun. Here are some benefits that many students get out of their practice:

  • Personal self-defense
  • Physical conditioning and improved health
  • Increased confidence
  • Camaraderie
  • More energy
  • Stress release
  • Joy of a well executed movement
  • Increased focus & effectiveness at work and in relationships
  • Challenge and sense of accomplishment
  • Sense of empowerment & self control
  • Increased self-esteem & assertiveness
  • Less intimidated by others and situations
  • Positive learning environment
  • Ability to remain calm, think clearly during stress or crisis

Before you begin Wing Chun, think about your reasons for practicing.

How do I get started?

You can start your training anytime. Please make an appointment first ( or 206-992-0919). When you come in you will need to fill out an information and waiver form. Class payment is due on the 1st of the month. If you start in the middle of the month we prorate the dues so you can start paying on the 1st of the following month.

How much does it cost? Do I have to sign a contract?

Please visit the class info page for exact cost information. You can choose from 1 to 3 classes a week which range from $50 - $95 a month. There is no contract to sign, no uniforms, or belt testing. We certainly prefer long-term students but we understand that Wing Chun is not for everyone and you may stop attending at any time.

What do I wear?

There are no uniforms so just come wearing something comfortable. We do wear shoes in class. The floor is cement. You should wear flat bottom shoes that don't grip the floor so you can practice the footwork correctly. There are class shirts available.

What makes SWC different from other Wing Chun?

Root and heavy elbows.

I was thinking about calling my school "The Heavy Elbow Academy" because that is what makes what we do stand out. We achieve heavy elbows by sinking the elbows, shoulders and shoulders blades down and inward slightly. We develop this in order to be more solid and develop close range power. It also involves having forward intent with a relaxed chest and bicep.

Root is developed by rotating your knees and hips inward and forward slightly and sinking downward and lowering your stance downward. This is one of the most challenging aspects of Wing Chun because when done correctly, it burns. Many practictioners abandon this because it is not very comfortable to do it correctly. At SWC, we do not.

If you want to develop quickly in Wing Chun, your focus should be on developing a substantial connection to the ground and solid structure.

Is Wing Chun useful for self defense?

Yes, Wing Chun is a very effective and efficient fighting system. If you can develop your "rooted" stance and become proficient at chi sao (sticking hands) then you should feel comfortable defending yourself against most unarmed attackers.

What is chi sao?

Chi sao, or otherwise referred to as sticky hands, is an partner exercise used to teach correct positions and level of tension, to be aware of your opponents position and intent, and how to use your whole body together by sinking into your knees with heavy elbows. This is where you gain proficiency in understanding the centerline and using both sides of your body together in combat. In chi sao we work to develop "listening skills". We must first know what our opponent is doing before we move if we are to be sensitive. This is why very small people can learn to be excellent fighters. If you know what your opponent is going to do, and you have good structure, you can be at the right place at the right moment.

Is Wing Chun a good martial art for women?

Wing Chun was co-developed by a woman and named after a woman. What makes Wing Chun so effective is that it is not dependent on muscle and size. Its focus is developing position, sensitivity, timing, and then speed. Power is a bi-product, not the means to the skill. Yim Wing Chun was a woman very small in structure but also developed amazing and dominant fighting skill in a short period of time.

Does Wing Chun have any ground fighting?

As for specifically dealing with ground fighting, chi sao teaches the student how to stick, whether that's standing up or on the ground, it can be applied regardless of the situation.

How long does it take to become proficient in applying the Wing Chun techniques in self defense?

While it depends on the student's dedication and aptitude, 2 to 3 years is a conservative length of time to become competent in its base techniques. The length can be shorten to one year for those who are able to diligently dedicate practice time and have the aptitude to learn quickly.