ONE OF THE MOST COMMON FEATURES OF THE WING CHUN SYSTEM, ONE SHARED ACROSS VIRTUALLY ALL LINEAGES, IS THE DRILL OF CHI SAU, COMMONLY REFERRED TO AS “STICKING HANDS” BY MOST PRACTITIONERS.
There are significant differences in the manner in which it is taught and practised, and how Chi Sau is interpreted as part of the overall curriculum of the system from teacher to teacher. Differences can even exist within specific lineages, with senior students under the same teacher often having a different slant on how it should be done and the purpose of its practice.
There are some who say the drill should be done with extreme pressure and force, whilst others insist it should be light and gentle. Some treat Chi Sau as a form of dynamic combat, akin to free sparring (or as a substitute for it), whilst others view it as a form of active meditation. Some schools insist that Chi Sau is “the be all and end all” for Wing Chun fighting theory, whereas within other schools, the drill is rarely trained and even considered redundant. The extremes are vast and seemingly endless, and each interpretation of Chi Sau is vigorously defended by those who practise it.