JKD was created by the late Bruce Lee. Lee felt discontented with the traditional martial arts. He felt that the traditional styles were unrealistic and more ornate than pragmatic. One story has it that Bruce Lee was challenged by a member of the Chinese martial arts community because Lee was openly teaching caucasions his unique brand of Wing Chun, Jun Fan. Lee accepted the challenge under the conditions that if he lost he would stop teaching caucasions martial arts, and if he won, he would teach whomever he pleased.
Lee eventually won the fight, but he felt the fight took too long. It was at this point that Lee decided to revolutionize the martial arts world and make history. Lee began investigating and researching, and eventually he developed many principles and techniques based upon these principles. In the end, Lee blended the footwork and combinations of western boxing with the principles of fencing, Wing Chun and Jun Fan Gung Fu, and Northern Style kicking. What he developed he later coined, “Jeet Kune Do,” or “Way of the Intercepting Fist,” translated from its native cantonese.
The Most Important Principle in Jeet Kune Do is Simplicity! If you train in Jeet Kune Do, you will learn a core set of techniques, and the rest of your training will be spent in a “daily decrease.” Jeet Kune Do practitioners refine and remove excesses. Hack away the inessentials! Efficiency is the calling card of the Jeet Kune Do artist.
An unusual, but scientificly grounded principle, is that of putting your power side forward. This means that right-handed individuals will lead with their right foot and right hand, unlike traditional orthodox boxing. Yes, it is possible to hit incredibly hard with your power hand without a wind-up! Put your closest weapon to use on the opponents closest target. “Intercept them!”
Foot work is essential! Mobility is of the utmost importance. A great example is that of the foot soldier: he is constantly in motion, never staying static. A static target is always easier to hit than a moving one. Without foot work, techniques are worthless. A martial artist without footwork is a car with no wheels. The car may be powerful, fast, or even beautiful; however, it won’t take you to your destination.
Jeet Kune Do bends to fit you, you do not bend to fit the art. Learn a core set of principles, and then use what works best for you. Use what is most effective and suits your unique characteristics the best.
Jeet Kune Do was developed to fight in all three ranges of fighting:close, medium, and far. Its principles apply equally well in any range.
Jeet Kune Do was developed for the street! Jeet Kune Do is not a ring or tournament art. It is brutal, it is lethal, it is efficient. You do not just practice against your own art. We have street confrontations in mind. We train against everything from the “haymaker and biscuit cutter,” to traditional karate, softer kung fu, and even western boxing.