DAY 168: Kung Fu fighting

15 Feb

STAB with your fingers, smash with your palm, lunge with your front leg, keep your weight on the back leg, go “fft”, go “hngh!”… Every martial art I’ve tried so far tells me something different.

Today it’s, “Punch with your last two knuckles.” The instructor shows me how the bones leading up to the knuckles of the forefinger and middle finger slant at an angle into the arm and are thus more easily broken. By using the knuckles of the little finger and ring finger, you’re keeping everything dead straight.

The vibe in this Wing Chun school is quite mystical, and I’m not talking about the earnest men with ponytails and ornamental beards. You get them everywhere. No, there’s a pledge on the wall, curious, ancient-looking, human-sized wooden mug trees to slap, and lots of bowing.

As we’re not padding up and actually hitting each other today, I’m finding it impossible not to say “doof doof doof” when I throw punches, as though I’m eight years old and watching The A-Team, bouncing on the sofa and taking a flying leap over the coffee table.

 The enthusiasm’s a bit much, actually, as I get reprimanded for leaping nimbly around like a mountain goat when I’m supposed to be merely stepping aside. I might need a bell on my neck for next go, to warn me when I’m doing it.

Keeper? Yep – signed up for 10. Ask to see my clap and punch.

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