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Mook Joong - Wing Chun Wooden Man

Mook Joong - Wing Chun Wooden Man

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Published by Nathan Bennison
A short history of Wing Chun and the Wooden Man accompanies a plan and bluprints for the construction of your own Wooden man.
A short history of Wing Chun and the Wooden Man accompanies a plan and bluprints for the construction of your own Wooden man.

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Published by: Nathan Bennison on Dec 19, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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What is Wooden Dummy (Muk Yan Jong)
Even though a variety of martial arts nowadays employ a wooden dummy for training, it is usually morerecognised as being (associated) with the Wing Chun kung fu system and it is generally accepted that itoriginated from the Shaolin temple. A 'live' dummy is one which is mounted on the wall or a portable stand;whereas a ‘dead’ dummy is one which is sunk into the floor or ground. Prior to Yip Man’s era, mostdummies were 'dead' dummies.There is a story that goes as follows, when Yip Man moved into his Hong Kong apartment, there was nowhere to 'sink' a dummy into. So, he put the dummy to a wall-mounted frame. With this new mounting,there was also a type of 'give' to the force being exerted since it would move slightly, and it was foundthat this type of mounting was actually preferable to the non-moving "dead" dummies. A dead dummy iscompletely non-moving so you need to move more around the dummy. Practising with a 'live' or 'dead'wooden dummy requires a person to have a good command of their structure. Yan Chong Fa represents abig strong opponent, which you must move yourself around, or try to go behind him.The Wooden Dummy also precisely develops hands strike lines, footwork, two handed movement, correctbody structure, hand conditioning power (hand strikes & kicks). The Wooden Dummy is the mostprestigious of the empty-hands Wing Chun combat techniques.The Wing Chun kung fu system comprises three empty hands boxing forms (Siu Lim Tao, Chum Kiu, BiuGee and a set of 116 wooden dummy techniques). The wooden dummy set is divided into eight sections.Muk-Yan Jong means Wooden Dummy. Yan Chong Fa means Wooden Dummy Techniques.Usually Wing Chun practitioners refer to the dummy set as 108 wooden dummy techniques (Yan ChongFa). (The number 108 is preferred by the Chinese culture as it corresponds to a special set of stars and isa lucky number)The Wooden Dummy is a progression after the three boxing forms. In the Wooden Dummy form youpractice the applications of the three forms in addition to extra moves that are not contained within thethree empty hands boxing forms.The Wooden Dummy (Muk-Yan Jong), is a very skilful set and is one of the main forms for advancedpractitioners of the Wing Chun system. Unfortunately, many people have misunderstood or have beenmislead into thinking that the dummy is only used to develop power (for example, like that used to break wood and bricks) and it is because of this that they have to try very hard to break a piece of wood. Doingso, either you damage or break your hands or the dummy. That should not happen!
The Wooden Dummy definitely develops the advanced fighting aspects of Wing Chun. Lots of hours arerequired to make your body, hands and legs listen to you. You should not get hooked on how fast you canlearn all of the above forms. Learning the forms fast is not important if your body has not matured into theWing Chun concepts and you don't have good command of your structure. Don't mislead yourself.
How to Make a Your Own Wooden Dummy
Muk Yan Jong - literally translates "wood man post", but is generally called a "wooden dummy" in English,or "jong" for short. The dummy consists of a body with two upper arms at shoulder level, a lower arm atstomach height, and one leg, suspended on a framework by two crosspieces. As easy at it might looks tomake a real wooden dummy is an extremely difficult task. For some this task has an incredible end result,a training partner with your sweat, blood and qi.
Teak was often traditionally used for all parts of the dummy. But, since solid blocks of this exotichardwood are increasingly hard to find, you can use almost any strong hardwood - one that's heavy,strong and dense, but not brittle. Some softwood may not have enough strength to withstand the forceapplied to a dummy, or have the proper weight. Another problem with softer wood is that over time, asthe arms and legs are struck repeatedly, they become compressed and more "sloppy" in their movement.Because it's difficult to get hardwood in a piece large enough, you might try laminated wood (although thelook will be different with all those lines running through it). Avoid wood with pitch in it, and the wood should be well seasoned - dry all the way through - to avoidcracking. Try to find wood native to your area since transporting it from a different climate, especially withdifferent humidity, can cause cracking. Even with these precautions wood will still sometimes check orsplit, in which case you might use a wood fill or banding.
Use hardwood for the body so its weight will correspond to that of a human body. This way if you canmove the dummy you can also move a person. The body has a round cross section of about eight inches

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