The Problem with Bruce Lee’s Jeet Kune Do Martial Art


Bruce Lee’s Martial Art Defined

Bruce Lee, the Martial Arts icon of the last century, created his own martial art, which is called Jeet Kune Do, or the Way of the Intercepting Fist.

Bruce wasn’t just a movie kung fu item, he knew what he was doing, and this is especially obvious when one examines Jeet Kune Do.

matJKDcovWhat most people miss, and this includes martial artists and even the students and instructors of Jeet Kune Do, is that there is a weakness in the art.

This weakness is understood only when one understands what Bruce did. He codified the initial punch of a fight.

The initial punch is the most important, but it ignores other strategies, which strategies are presented in more classical martial arts, such as Karate or Kung Fu.

To explain this further, Bruce dissected the initial punch of a fight. He looked at the specific stages of the punch, so that one could understand how to ‘beat’ the punch. This one item can be understood thusly:

Do you punch before the attack?

Do you punch during the attack?

Do you punch after the attack?

To be precise, he breaks it down further, i believe there are five specific stages at which one could ‘attack the attack,’ but this will simplify for the purpose of this article, and make it easy enough to understand.

And, he followed this same, simple logic in describing methods of attacking the attack.

Do you attack directly?

Do you attack by combination?

Do you attack indirectly?

And so on.

The result of this magnifying glass approach is that one REALLY understands the opening punch of a fight.

The problem comes about when the fight goes past one punch. (Or one kick, one strike, etc.)

Now one must consider strategies of setting up for the second strike, strategies for handling two attackers (two potential first strikes), and so on.

To be honest, Bruce understood this, and this writer has no doubt that the advanced practitioners, which means the ons trained by Bruce himself, understand such points.

But as the art of Jeet Kune Do expands there is degradation, concepts are lost, and these advanced theories are ignored.

This highlights just one of the many potential problems in Jeet Kune Do, the Art of Bruce Lee.

Al Case began martial arts in 1967, became a writer for the magazines, and had his own column in Inside Karate. If you wish to explore more concerning the strengths and weaknesses of Jeet Kune Do, from the viewpoint of one who has studied martial arts for nearly fifty years, take a look at his book, ‘How toMatrix Jeet Kune Do,’ which is available on Amazon, or at Createspace. The author’s website is monstermartialarts.com.

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