Ip Man > Ho Kam Ming > Augustine Fong > Joy Chaudhuri
Teachers instruct on the basis of their learning, practice, understanding and experience. In comprehending what is being taught in a major art, it helps to understand who taught whom and for how long. Lineage helps explain the teacher’s background, and meeting a teacher and experiencing what is taught helps with quality control. Sifu Joyotpaul (Joy) Chaudhuri is the main teacher at Tempe Wing Chun Kung Fu.
Ip Man is the great and honored Wing Chun master who brought Wing Chun from Fatshan to Hong Kong – from where Wing Chun spread to many parts of the world. There are other kinds of Wing Chun besides Ip Man’s, but Ip Man’s Wing Chun remains unique, conceptual, detailed and effective. Although many people claim the Ip Man Wing Chun lineage, Ip Man taught very few people the entire system. Ho Kam Ming is one of those few, and Augustine Fong, in turn, was a prized student of Ho Kam Ming.
Ip Man synthesized hard and soft conceptions into a balanced system. Ho Kam Ming remains faithful to what he learned from Ip Man just as Augustine Fong remains faithful to what he learned, though all teachers have their own unique approaches to teaching.
Ho Kam Ming
Master Ho Kam Ming is a distinguished disciple of Ip Man. He has more than 52 years of Wing Chun experience. He is one of the very few people who completed the entire Wing Chun system directly under Ip Man. Master Ho received more than seven years of formal instruction, averaging four hours daily, from Ip Man, and he stayed in close touch with him until he died. Master Ho always had access to corrections and explanations from Ip Man, including a lot of chi sao. Ip Man did not do chi sao with everyone. Master Ho belongs to a very small group of people who learned the bot jam do, the capstone of a detailed Wing Chun education, from Ip Man.
3 generations: A Ho Kam Ming class photo from the 60's. Ip Man is in the front row- center in dark clothing, Ho Kam Ming is to his immediate right with Augustine Fong in the back row- 4th from left.
Master Ho opened his own school in Macao and formed the Ho Kam Ming Martial Arts Association. He has developed distinguished students who have done well in full-contact matches in Hong Kong, China and Singapore. His system and approach is well-tested. Master Ho moved to Toronto; a couple of his students still teach at the Macao school.
Augustine Fong, formerly of Macao and Hong Kong, began learning Wing Chun around 1960 in Macao under Ho Kam Ming. Master Fong learned from Master Ho for eight years and also taught for him. He had much “practical experience” in using Wing Chun in Hong Kong against other styles. In a major interschool challenge match that he won, Master Fong was the designated representative for Ho Kam Ming. He later went back to learn more from Master Ho and continues to stay in touch with him.
Master Fong and Sifu Chauduri at Fong's Health Center during a Seminar by Master Fong.
Master Fong first began teaching in Nogales, Ariz. In the early 1970s, he moved to Tucson and began teaching there. He continues to run Fong’s Health Center in Tucson, at 920 S. Craycroft, where in addition to regular Wing Chun classes, he teaches yang-style tai chi and consults on Chinese herbs, acupressure, acupuncture and tui na. He holds an annual seminar in Tucson. Visit www.fongswingchun.com for more details. Master Fong’s contributions to the development of Wing Chun include a remarkable systemization of the curriculum for learning Wing Chun.
Sifu Joy Chaudhuri teaches Wing Chun kung fu in the Phoenix-metro area. He has been involved in learning and teaching Wing Chun since 1976, when he lived in Tucson before opening a school in New Mexico and later moving to the Phoenix area, where he is now a professor emeritus at Arizona State University. In the past, he was an associate dean at the ASU College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. His academic field is political philosophy buttressed with a background in comparative cultures. He also has served as an acting director of the Center for Asian Studies.
Sifu Joy Chauduri.
His great fortune was to find his Wing Chun sifu, Augustine Fong, in Tucson, Ariz. Sifu Chaudhuri’s instruction is based on the Fong system of Wing Chun. Sifu Chaudhuri is interested in Wing Chun concepts and in actual applications. Theory and practice are inseparable in his teaching.
His interest in martial-arts disciplines began when he was a youth in India, where he was involved in boxing and Indian martial arts. In the United States, he continued amateur boxing during college and later assisted in coaching boxing while later learning some Okinawan karate and Wado Ryu karate. He also has training in several other styles by excellent teachers including Chen Xiao Wang of Chen-style Taiji. In boxing, he had excellent instruction from several people. In Kolkata, India, his friend Yok Chen and the coach at St. Xavier's School, Ronnie Moore, got him started. In Oklahoma City, heavyweight “Doc” Jack Haskell London sparred with him regularly and taught him at the YMCA. Faron Hottle, who was an AAU champion welterweight and on the US Army team with Pete Rademacher, also sparred with him and taught him.
His boxing, soccer skills and frequenting wrestling "akharas" in India together helped him survive in skirmishes prior to Wing Chun. He also has been taught by several yoga and meditation masters including the late Swami Vethathiri. Sifu Chaudhuri’s martial-arts articles have appeared in various publications including Inside Kung Fu, Kung Fu Taichi and the Journal of Asian Martial Arts.
Tempe Wing Chun remains faithful to the principles while adding its own imprint to the art. Neither Ho Kam Ming nor Augustine Fong are responsible for supervising Tempe Wing Chun.
Wing Chun principles are so thorough that they need no dilution. As Master Fong likes to say, “Against other styles, you play your own game.” It doesn’t matter whether the other stylist is primarily a striker, a grappler or a submissive; the key is to understand, practice and excel at one’s game. Wing Chun is a very complete, yet adjustable, game in specific situations.