Sifu Thomas Hippmann
Sifu Thomas Hippmann
5th Master degree
School(s) in: Krems (A)
School Owner since: 2000
WingTsun is like life. Soft or strong, it’s not the force that counts, but the right moment.
Why did you start with WingTsun?
Martial arts had always interested me, but like very many, it was limited only to visual “training sessions” in front of the TV. But then an event happened that made me reconsider my hitherto rather passive and theoretical know-how.
The incident was an armed robbery, in which I escaped only by chance without major damage.
I had to do business in Vienna. Sometimes it happened that the working day lasted a little longer. So it was already very late on that day when I was on my way home. In a subway station, a young man suddenly stood next to me and held a knife to my side. With the words: “Calm down, otherwise I’ll stab you,” he pushed me into a corner. There he demanded my wallet. Unable to move or even say a word, I could not comply with this demand. To emphasize his words, he stabbed me in the direction of my belly with his knife. But before he could repeat the threat, he heard people approaching and disappeared.
Still shocked by my experience, it took me a few minutes to regain my composure. Only then did I realize that he had hit my hip when he stabbed me. The cut, which fortunately turned out to be relatively superficial, burned and bled.
The next few days and weeks were a nerve-wracking time for me, because in order to prove a possible infection with HIV through the knife, I had to wait for the test results, which proved whether my body developed antibodies. But fortunately, the test proved negative.
Never again did I want to be so helplessly exposed to such a situation. That is why I decided to become active. Since I now lived in St. Pölten, the capital of Lower Austria, I first visited the karate school located there. After a rather poor introduction and a trial training, I decided that karate did
not meet my needs. So the search continued. One day I saw a brochure in a video store. Interested, I took it with me.
At home I began to read it with increasing enthusiasm. In it, I learned about a martial art that wasn
‘t sportified and prepared one for real combat. That was what I was looking for.
Why are you still doing WingTsun?
Because every training session, whether I’m teaching or learning, still excites me after all these years.
What was your standout WT experience?
On September 27, 2016, when I was awarded my master title by Grandmaster Dr. Oliver König.
What changed for you when you received the 1st HG or 5th MG?
People’s reaction changed. I never “worked” towards the 1st HG or later the 5th MG, because each degree is for me a step towards a better understanding of WingTsun. But when I received the 5th MG, that’s when things really took off: at the ceremony, on the phone, by mail, and even on social media. I was overwhelmed by the sympathy I received. Congratulations were sent from my own students, colleagues from Austria and Germany, as well as from other continents. One can proudly say, “We are family.”
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