Three Forms – Part 1
Most people would know that in Wing Chun there are only three bare hand forms. The first is Síu Lihm Tào 小念頭, the second is Tsum Kìuh 尋橋 and the third is Bīu Zī 標指. We only have these three forms. We do not have four, five or six forms. Most people will think that more is better, but let me tell you a story my Sīfú 師父, Ip Chun 葉準, told me a long time ago.
Over 100 years ago, Sījó 師祖 Lèuhng Jan 梁贊 had a very high level of Wing Chun and his Wing Chun Pole skill was particularly good. The Wing Chun Pole is called Lùhk Dím Bun Gwan 六點半棍 – Six and a Half Pole. It is a Dāan Tàu Gwan 單頭棍 – Single Headed Pole, which means that we only use one end of the pole. This is because the pole is very long and can be eight to twelve feet long. Since it is so long we use one end to attack and defend with, and we hold the other with both hands. It is not like the more usual Sēung Tàu Gwan 雙頭棍 – Double Headed Staff, which is much shorter, held more in the middle and can use both ends. So, the Wing Chun pole is long and has six and a half techniques. The techniques are: Bīu 標, Tīu 挑, Tàahn 彈，Tāan 攤，Dēng 釘， Bāng 崩 and Làahn 攔 (this is half technique)
One day Sījó Leung Jan met another pole master who’s skill was called Tīu Chàahn Gwan 挑殘棍 which was also a long pole as like Wing Chun pole. His pole only had two techniques, one for attacking and the other for defending. After they had compared techniques, might be they has fought with the poles. Leung Jan said to the other master, “Your pole is better than mine. You only need two techniques and so your skill is shorter and simpler. My pole has six and a half techniques, which is still too many.”