Henry James // Age 11 // Wing Chun // December 2021

Henry James has been dedicated to his pursuit of developing skills in Wing Chun Kung Fu. He started classes about a year and a half ago and quickly fell in love with Wing Chun.  Henry James enjoys the effectiveness of Wing Chun.  He began classes as one of only two youth allowed in the program, which is typically for teens and adults.  He trains diligently while still having the creativity and enthusiasm of someone younger.  Henry James did not let Covid-19 squelch the fire inside him for Wing Chun. After not being able to train in person for a year, he returned with tenacity.  Henry James is close to starting the intermediate level curriculum containing the 2nd form of Wing Chun, Chum Kiu as well as two hand chi sau (sticky hands sensitivity training) as well as more advanced reaction drills.  Henry James enjoys sparring and challenging himself to continue to grow, especially with self defense combinations.  He has potential to be a student who the torch of Wing Chun could be passed to one day.

Sifu Alex: Why did you start learning kung fu

Henry James: First off, I was just watching kung fu movies and stuff like that.  Then my big imagination went off like it always does and pictured me as a kung fu master.  I started thinking about all this different stuff and jumping around the house.  Then I found this place (East Cloud Kung Fu).  Everybody was doing cool stuff.  I was most interested in the kicks because that is what looks coolest in the movies. That was fun. As people say around here, with my violent nature, I take stuff I already know and add it to the new stuff, so eventually I’m beating up the wooden dummy for 30 minutes straight doing a different string of combos. So basically my big imagination just ran off and now I’m here. 

SA: What is your favorite kung fu movie? 

HJ: Ip Man, it’s how I got into wing chun.

SA: What is your favorite part of training kung fu? 

HJ: Learning new things.  It’s always fun to learn something new to add on to my violent nature. 

SA: What is the hardest thing about kung fu class?

HJ: The conditioning on your arms and shoulders. As you said during class today, “Are your shoulders broken yet?”  My shoulders are always tired.  (Henry James has started learning two arm sticky hand chi sau which requires a lot of endurance in the shoulder.)

SA: What is a good memory from kung fu class? 

HJ: Probably when I got my first sash, which is yellow sash. I had already been here before coronavirus.  I couldn’t get my sash from online classes. (Henry James had internet/video challenges). So I came back, and I finally did it.  I leveled up after coronavirus. It kept me from getting that sash. 

SA: What are your goals with learning kung fu? 

HJ: I just want to learn the most that I can. I also like learning about culture and pay attention in history class.  

SA: If you could learn any other style than Wing Chun, what style would you learn?

HJ: I think it was really cool with the Dragon style of Shaolin during the summer camp. When you let us go off and learn these other styles during summer camp, I think Dragon style was the coolest because of the name, the ferocity of it. All these things were similar to Wing Chun in a way. 

SA: Is there anything else you’d like people to know about the school, about wing chun, anything?

HJ: Luckily, what I like about Wing Chun, is that I’m not that fast or acrobatic of a kid, so I like how the sturdy and strong aspect of Wing Chun fits me.



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