Muk Yan Jong literally: “wooden dummy”). The Muk Yan Jong form is performed against a “wooden dummy”, a thick wooden post with three arms and a leg mounted on a slightly springy frame representing a stationary human opponent. Although representative of a human opponent, the dummy is not a physical representation of a human, but an energetic one. Wooden dummy practice aims to refine a practitioner’s understanding of angles, positions, and footwork, and to develop full body power. It is here that the open hand forms are pieced together and understood as a whole.
Muk Yan Jong is a wooden dummy used in Chinese martial artstraining. It is associated with the martial art of Wing Chun and other kung fu styles of Southern China. Traditionally made from wood, the dummies are now also made from synthetic materials such as steel and plastic.
Wing Chun Dummy
The Wing Chun wooden dummy is the most popular form of wooden dummy. A popular legend says it came about when 108 separate wooden dummies from the Shaolin Temple were combined into one by the nun Ng Mui to make training more efficient and effective.The Wing Chun wooden dummy uses an arm and leg configuration designed to cultivate fighting skill and chi simultaneously. The Hong Kong wooden dummy is a wall mounted version of the Wing Chun Wooden Dummy that hangs using two wooden slats through the body of the wooden dummy.
Older versions of the Wing Chun wooden dummy were originally placed in the ground. The modern design was created by Yip Man in Hong Kong to fit the needs of living in an apartment. The Wing Chun version of the muk yan jong has three arms and one leg, which represents an opponent’s body in various positions and the lines of force the body can give out. The wooden slats on which the muk yan jong is mounted has a springiness that is similar to a human opponent’s involuntary reaction and allows the user to practice absorbing energy into his/her stance. Due to this springiness, this type of dummy is considered an “alive” dummy. Therefore, the older version of the dummy without mounting is commonly called a “dead” dummy.
Bruce Lee, a student of Yip Man, had also made and modified a Wing Chun wooden dummy for his martial arts philosophy of Jeet Kune Do which had a modified neck and a metal leg. Many of the principles of Wing Chun are central to Jeet Kune Do.