YIP MAN

(mid)1890's -1972

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Yip Man, born in the mid-1800s, began his tutelage of the martial arts as a teenager when he became the last student of Chan Wah Shun. When Chan Wah Shun passed away a short time later, Yip Man continued his martial arts education under the guidance of his teacher's senior disciples.

A popular story related that while Yip Man was in Hong Kong during the early 1900s for schooling, he was introduced to man who was reportedly a master of the martial arts. Being young and brash, Yip Man challenged and lost to this older gentleman. Yip man later found out that this man was in fact Leung Bik, the son of his grandmaster, Leung Jan. For the next several years Yip Man improved his own Ving Tsun skills under Leung Bik's guidance before moving back to his hometown.

Due to the Communist Party takeover in 1949, Yip lost his wealth and status. He was forced to relocate to Hong Kong. Without his family fortune, Yip Man luckily found shelter at the Restaurant Workers Association of Kowloon and began teaching Ving Tsun to its members. His first student was a man named Leung Sheung. Leung Sheung was teaching another style of martial arts at the time, but after being defeated by Yip Man in a challenge match, Leung Sheung immediately became his student. In a short time, Yip Man's classes grew to attract members from outside of the association. Yip Man went on to teach thousands of students, among which included the famous Bruce Lee and Wong Shun Leung.

Please see the Ving Tsun history section for more details.

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