The White Tigers Back fist 白虎背拳
Early in my martial training I was introduced to what I now like to call the “Bak Fu Bei Kuen” or ,
The White Tigers Back Fist 白虎背拳. The Sinking Dragon or the sinking elbow back fist is a technique that literally pulls your opponent into the back fist with little recourse once initiated. I have been practicing this unique strike since i was personally introduced to it in early 2001 by my Sifu, Alan “Bak Fu” Vasquez, Captain US Army (Retired), Branched Infantry, and Military Intelligence; Viet Nam Combat Veteran, with Recon Ranger, and Special Forces duty, started studies with Yeung Tin Yao, aka Robert “Yeung Biu” Yeung’s Hawaii Wing Chun Association in 1977. After serving his country and being injured in paratroop exercise that would ended his military career and almost took his life, “Bak Fu Sifu” Started teaching Wing Chun Kung Fu in 1979. The Orange County Wing Chun Association was founded in 1979 and is still located in Lake Forest, Orange County, California. I myself had met Sifu Bak Fu in 1994, 95 during a time where our daughters attended the same grade school, but started formally training under him in 2001. During the many years of training that followed there were countless times I had seen this “Bak Fu Bei Kuen” flying at me from out of nowhere only to stop an inch off my face. “Use the cats whiskers”, “keep changing”, “move like a dragon”, “be soft” or “be like water” would be the phrases that would usually follow the delivery of the famed strike, but it would years before I would come to terms, get my head around these ideas, and fully understand exactly how to “Use the cats whiskers”, “keep changing”, “move like a dragon”, “be soft” or “be like water”. I was told until learn to use the cat whiskers to stop you will never truly learn how to go. How would do you put this into context to actually teach someone to actually do this? In reality you cannot, it is movement your body must feel many countless times until in is ingrained into muscle memory, and movement becomes instinct and natural action, not re-action. I believe it was not until I had begun teaching that I came to realization and understanding of these and many other terms and ideas I had been taught in the years I spent training with my Sifu, my Kung Fu Brothers and Sisters.
There were times when only Sifu and I were in the Kwoon, he would make tea and I would work. As I hit the Mook Yan Jong or practice Baat Chaam Dou he would tell me story of his training days and of his military days. He would always catch my mistakes no matter how in depth his description of adventure had gotten. On one particular day I remember him telling me of his reoccurring dreams of engaging great Gung Fu warriors in battle, I asked how the dreams ended, he said he had always won. I truly believe he was using the “Bak Fu Bei Kuen” in these magnificent battles, and I know these great warriors were looking at them as I had once long ago.
I have graduate students of my own now and I see them training the younger and newer students. They now are asked the same questions and have to explain these theories and principles as I had taught them, just as I was in turn taught by my Sifu. Time is the best teacher, with time that which is cultivated manifests, and if cultivated, Gung Fu only grows with age.
I now have my own dreams of battle, and you know I will be throwing a few “Bak Fu Bei Kuen” in the mix to ensure my victory.
Train well, much respect,