What is this stance called? How do you train it step-by-step?

Donnie Yen in a squatting stance in Ip Man 3

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    Strength-show-off-stance? Why do you want to train that stance, which quite obviously has no fighting applicability? Aug 17, 2022 at 6:48
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    @Philip Klöcking in my country quite a lot come to us for TV shooting and interview .. perhaps sometime need some stance that audience would like to see :D Aug 17, 2022 at 6:49
  • perhaps some motivation to train more too with some targets Aug 17, 2022 at 6:50
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    @Philip Klocking Actually just about every style has stances that have no fighting applicability. Bowing in Judo for example is not a combat stance but there is still a perfectly good reason for doing it. See also press-ups.
    – Huw Evans
    Aug 17, 2022 at 13:58
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    There's really only one practical purpose to this stance. And that's to increase muscle strength. It's a pistol squat. With a complete calisthenic program, which includes these squats, you can adapt to disadvantageous positions much more quickly. Some may actually put themselves in such a position to execute a surprise move, a la capoeira. These are risky moves, though, and if it goes badly, the result can be a snapped knee. Not for everyone! For the young and athletic, perhaps. Aug 17, 2022 at 20:39

3 Answers 3


It's (a very exaggerated) cat stance (Mao Bu - Xuán Jī Bù)(玄機步)

Instructions from Skimble:

Place entire body weight on a single leg like a squat and extend the other leg in front to lightly touch the ground. Since the frontal leg has no weight placed on it, it can be used to launch fast kicks. It is sometimes used in conjunction with other stances for evasive actions. Switch sides halfway through if possible.

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    As I think the description is a bit off/incomplete: Any kick you can launch from there can only be an interruption/distraction since there cannot be any power behind that. This stance is usually not held in fighting - and if so, certainly not as deep as in the OP and some of the pictures on this site - but used as a short transitional state when you e.g. move back to evade a kick but want to go back forwards fast. That being said, one-legged deep squats with the other leg forward are a standard strength exercise for the gluteus and quads in many martial arts. Aug 17, 2022 at 9:17
  • @PhilipKlöcking Agreed, that's why I wrote it's exaggerated. Aug 17, 2022 at 9:43

While it's not Wing Chun, we call that stance negativa (negative) in Capoeira, specifically the Régional version. We typically have one hand on the ground for support (on the side of the extended leg), the other guarding the head, and a slight tilt forward of the torso. It's used as a dodge, typically combining both moving backwards and down to avoid a kick, and it's often followed by a rôle, a roll, with the raised arm parking across the body to support the capillary straw in an inverted position, and is sometimes also used to start the momentum for a spinning kick.

Ask for how one trains for the position, a lot of it is very similar to learning a pistol squat, or just a regular body weight squat. You need to have some degree of flexibility of the ankles and knee, as well as a decent amount of leg strength, especially if you plan to lower into the position, or rise from it, using that bent leg as the support with minimal use of your hands. We usually start by having people go down into a squat, and then extending one leg, to get used to having that one leg bent underneath you, and supporting your weight. As the legs strength and flexibility increases, we have people transition from a stance with one leg forward to shifting their weight backwards into the negativa. For descending straight into it, we typically use the same methods as with pistol squats, starting out by using the arms more to absorb going down, and working towards going down more slowly.

As a side note, where the supporting leg is placed varies based on flexibility. I personally use something closer to what's shown above because my knee tends to get strained as my calf and thigh meet, but the classic position involves being up on the ball of the foot with the supporting leg underneath your hips to make it easier to shift forward if you desire.

  • This is not negativa. Other than the supported hand, the negativa is dynamic, while the stance is static. Aug 17, 2022 at 12:44
  • @AlaychemgoestoCodidact {waggles hand} no stance should be truly static, except perhaps when training, to develop muscular fitness and endurance. Aug 17, 2022 at 14:10
  • Yeah, but you might wait on cat stance for opponent's move, but you never wait on negativa Aug 17, 2022 at 20:25

I believe the closest of this is the pistol squat.

Here is the video and how to train step by step

Pistol Squat Step by Step

Pistol Squat

Benefits are training to be more focus and balance which align with Wing Chung teaching.

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