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During a team event, we discovered that one of our colleagues, Alban, Senior Consultant, was also a Kung-Fu teacher in his free time. We jumped on this opportunity to A) exercise and B) know more about a Chinese martial art made famous by Bruce Lee. Alban kindly proposed to give an initiation of Wing Chun, one of the southern style of Kung-Fu he is specialized in. Over lunchtime, 20 consultants, developers and designers, were gathered for one hour to learn and practice this discipline.

David, Consultant at OpenWT, testifies: “I really enjoyed this Kung-Fu initiation. Personally, I practice Judo, a Japanese martial art, so it was interesting to discover a Chinese martial art too. This initiation was also a good opportunity to share a quality time with my colleagues and it revealed another side of Alban I did not know!”

Next on the list is an initiation on meditation and mindfulness by Romain, Manager at OpenWT.

What to know more about Kung-Fu ? Here is what to remember:

  • Kung-Fu (correct pynyin form Gongfu 功夫) is a generic term in Chinese that is not limited to the martial art practice
  • Bruce Lee gives a very nice definition of Kung-Fu: "The word Gongfu originally means accumulation of work or training. However, in the sense of martial arts, it means training and discipline towards the ultimate reality of the object, whether the object be health promotion, cultivation of mind or self-protection." (extract from the book Tao of Gung fu)
  • What is proper to the style of Wing Chun compared to other styles like northern Kung-Fu, is that it focuses on close range. Emphasize is put on hand techniques, sensitivity in close combat and effectiveness, in the sense of "the least effort for the biggest effect"
  • The most important concept of Wing Chun is the central line, vertical, on which all human vital points are aligned (eyes, throat, solar plexus, genitals). Almost all techniques in Wing Chun either apply for the defense and/or the attack on this central line

If you are visting our office on the EPFL Campus between 28.04.2018 and 12.08.2018, be sure to visit "Kung Fu in Motion", a fascinating expo hosted in the ArtLab EPFL building. For a more hands-on approach, you can sign up to Kung Fu classes and maybe meet Alban!

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