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The Bay Area Martial Arts Podcast

Mar 20, 2018

This episode, Wade Pitts interviews Sifu Paul Wang — a practitioner of WingChun. Paul has a bit of a “traditional, non-traditional” background in the martial arts. Originally born in Taiwan, his family immigrated to the United States, moving to Utah, then to Chicago. He got his first exposure to the martial arts from Judo, then later moved back to Taiwan where he became more immersed in the martial arts. Moving once more, back to the U.S., he began learning integrative biology with an emphasis on human locomotion, biomechanics, and biodynamics.


While studying to become a doctor, he had taken a class in WingChun and discovered that the style was one of the most efficient translations of body mechanics and results. His interest began to shift to Chinese and integrative medicine which better complimented his interests in martial arts, as they shared many of the same philosophies. He went on to earn his Master’s and Doctorate in Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine, and is now the National Instructor at the International Academy of WingChun, in Berkeley, California.


Wade and Paul talk about Paul’s diverse background in medicine, how his interest in biomechanics blends perfectly with WingChun, how martial arts has helped him explore his spiritual and extroverted side, what the move from academic to instructor of a martial arts was like, his daily practices, and his advice on pursuing martial arts and setting goals for yourself.


Key Takeaways:

[1:25] Paul Wang’s introduction to the martial arts.

[3:33] Paul’s process coming back to the States and transitioning from his original path of western medicine to eastern medicine.

[7:20] How Paul’s interest in biomechanics blends perfectly with the main style that he practices, WingChun.

[10:11] How martial arts helped bring Paul come out of his introversion and help him navigate his spirituality.

[12:01] How Paul got started teaching martial arts.

[14:16] How that transitioned to Paul becoming an instructor at a martial arts school.

[15:58] What the first couple of years were like at the martial arts school.

[21:18] How Paul has seen WingChun developing and where he sees the style heading.

[30:13] Paul’s daily practices.

[39:23] More about Paul’s school and where to learn more.

[41:00] Additional advice from Paul: Where to gather inspiration, how to persevere, and why you should set goals.


Mentioned in this Episode: