Not San Shou...
San Soo (Jimmy Woo lineage).
Other than websitess by & devoted San Soo practicioners, i cant seem to find a history regarding the existance of this system. Could it be that is is Hung Gar & Choy Li Fut mixed together minus the forms?
thanks in advance
I took San Soo for a few months a while back, it really didn't spark my interest to much. From what the instructor told me, yeah it pretty much is a mix of choy li fut and hung gar. San Soo does have forms but they don't do very many. The main emphasis was on self-defense drills with a partner.
I did San Soo for a few years and stopped at brown. Studied under Jerry Petersen (of SCARS fame or infamy, however you see it), Tony & Chris Buhr, and a few others for brief periods in San Diego and near San Luis Obispo (California).
San Soo has some magnificent self defense ideas but does not train attributes, fitness, or have any competition against a resisting and countering opponent.
The bickering in some circles can be absurd, too, but that is not unique to San Soo. People argue about who was closer to Jimmy Woo's "original" or "true" style and don't get on the mat and compete to find out what really works and what doesn't, which is tough to do with a San Soo skillset since it revolves around causing pretty grievous injury.
One of San Soo's greatest flaws is that it assumes that a strike will get the results you predict and that the opponent will react in a certain manner. This is not real life. While many of the autonomic reactions will happen if you strike someone hard enough in the right spot, real life does not lend itself to such accuracy or potency.
In all the time I was doing San Soo, we never worked against an opponent who threw combination attacks (jab/cross/roundhouse kick) and we never worked against someone who struck back or wiggled free during the series of attacks we were delivering.
I see it as a great supporting MA but not a good primary because of these reasons. You will learn a lot of neat ideas for striking locations, leverages, some takedowns, and you will become very comfortable getting inside a guy's immediate zone (you engage up close and personal) and it will help you with other MAs. You will learn quite a bit about the human body - where it breaks, about each bone or joint, how to mangle them (if the guy stands there like a dummy), and you'll be nice and sore a lot. You will also learn to make false assumptions about what each strike, leverage, twist, pop, and snap really does to the human body.
It will NOT train you to fight despite the pumped up "I can take anyone, anywhere, anytime" culture of San Soo. These guys would be knocked silly in MMA - or even if someone just throws a heavy, fast combo that takes the initiative away from you.
To really fight there is no substitute for working against an opponent who is trying to work against you. BJJ, Judo, Thai Boxing, and some others have this. San Soo does not.
When I was a bouncer (after my San Soo training) I used judo, Greco-Roman, BJJ, and a lot of high school wrestling moves when there was a drama at the pub. San Soo taught me a lot, though, to show me how bodies move, where they are vulnerable, how they usually (not always) react, and got me comfortable working 2" from my opponent and taking his center, so to speak.
Good luck if you get into it. It's pretty cool but really bloodthirsty. A lot of San Soo guys need a reality check on their skills - some of them will wind up either in jail or toast.
Thanks for the info guys.
and got me comfortable working 2" from my opponent
One of the only GOOD things I got from doing SCARS... comfort with proximity. Said comfort with proximity was nothing compaired to working in systema or sambo, but the ability to get close was something the other styles I had worked with had not really addressed.
this was actually one of the arts i was going to ask about for info purposes, My instructor has taken a good deal of different arts and San Soo being one of them. he also took it in California back when he was 18 Erik. The brief description my instructor gave me was that it is a "dirty type of fighting" I think Erik was right in saying it would compliment other arts.
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