JKD without Wing Chun?

Discussion in 'JKD / Jeet Kune Do' started by Thunder Foot, Aug 29, 2012.

  1. simplicity

    simplicity Green Belt

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    Jeet Kune Do is very much alive & well in Detroit, Michigan - USA
     
  2. Xue Sheng

    Xue Sheng Sr. Grandmaster

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    The Kali JKD combo I find as an interesting point of discussion and it may be the stuff of anther thread but I was wondering how you feel about it.

    I like JKD and I like Kali and there were 2 JKD schools in my area and one combined JKD and Kali and he was a student of a student of Dan Inosanto, (In CMA terms Inosanto is his Shigong)

    The other had no mention of Kali at all they were just JKD and he was a student of Jerry Poteet

    There is another school south of me I know you went to a seminar at and as far as I can tell there is no Kali and he was a student of Ted Wong. But I have never been there so I could be wrong.

    Now I like Kali and I like JKD and I have nothing against the first school that teaches it combined but it was that combination that made me choose the other school since I wanted to check out JKD. But I should also say I think the school that is combining JKD and Kali is also throwing in a lot of other stuff from other styles as well.

    How do you feel about that combination?
     
  3. Thunder Foot

    Thunder Foot Purple Belt

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    Xue Sheng,
    Well no offense to anyone but I believe that it goes against Bruce's progression of what he was doing (his Martial Art) as well as his philosophy. This is my observation after learning it for several years and becoming confronted with a different frame of thinking. JKD and Kali are separate arts that may have some commonalities (as with all Arts), but Bruce spent more time training Wing Chun, Boxing, and Fencing than any other art. We should understand the integral structure that Bruce discovered among these and continue his selective progression of simplification. If we are adding more things to teach, then we are moving away from that. People misunderstand Bruce giving an art a "look" to find strengths and weakness against training an art extensively to develop some attribute he may have been seeking.
     
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  4. wingchun100

    wingchun100 Senior Master

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    In my opinion the most brilliant thing Bruce did was combine the boxing stance with the fencing stance: strong side forward. As far as I'm concerned, that was genius.
     
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  5. simplicity

    simplicity Green Belt

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    I study with many of BLS... But that is just the start of things and in mobility everthings "changes", but start again from the structure... MU, one of the best things Bruce Lee did was "modified" Fencing - Boxing - WC... They are not the same as the arts by themself... If people tell you in order to understand Jeet Kune Do, you need to train Fencing - Boxing - WC they don't understand the modification of Jeet Kune Do plain & simple...

    p.s. wingchun100- that was done way before Bruce Lee started it... There was a book written in 1906 here in America, that I'm sure Bruce Lee read... Which clearly states strong side foreward and even talks about longest weapon to the nearest target, low line kicking... Bruce Lee just brought it to the fore front again in modern times...
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2014
  6. Thunder Foot

    Thunder Foot Purple Belt

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    I agree you may not need to train them extensively, but you do need to be experienced in them to a comprehensible extent in order to understand how their influence was placed on what you do. We can't have a modified anything without possessing the attributes and skill sets that were built training the originals.
     
  7. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

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    The "strong side forward" is the general wrestling principle. In wrestling, you have

    - attacking leg (front) and rooting leg (back).
    - major hand (front) and minor hand (back).

    You can twist your body in such a way that you have attacking leg (front) and rooting leg (back), and major hand (back) and minor hand (front). That will be called "cross stance".
     
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  8. Thunder Foot

    Thunder Foot Purple Belt

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    Is it possible for someone to evolve past something they do not know our understand?
     
  9. simplicity

    simplicity Green Belt

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    Yes... "Simplicity is such that, smiple....You do not have to understand everything just universal principle.. Efficient is anything that hits it target, effortlessly with fast, extreme power. Which belong to the individual, not any one art… Which is becoming & being a Jeet Kune Do man or women, this founding principle will be understood if you are"... John McNabney
     
  10. Thunder Foot

    Thunder Foot Purple Belt

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    Hmmm... to me, if you understand an Art's universal principle AND ARE efficient with it... then you have Mastered that art. And I'm not one to believe that everyone can "simply" be masters without immersing themselves in a chosen art, let alone multiple arts. After all, isn't that how we come to understand their principles? Through devoted training?

    I don't know, I just can't agree with the "everyone is their own master" trend these days. If it were true, there would be no need to seek out Sifu and everyone would be as good or better than the prodigal Bruce.. To me honest expression means not lying to oneself in that simply because Lee acquired a certain level of mastery with JKD and Wing Chun, does not mean that we are products of that in training JKD.

    95% of our community can't even execute the Wing Chun tenets half as good as your average WC guy, and we claim to have evolved past it? Hmmm...
     
  11. Gung Fu Man

    Gung Fu Man White Belt

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    In Enter the Dragon there is a scene that was not in the original release, but was later restored on DVD. It is the scene after Bruce Lee's sparring match with Sammo Hung. The monk is questioning him about the fight and Bruce Lee refers to his fist " hitting all by itself ", and " there is no opponent ", etc. In Bruce Lee's book , The Tao of Gung Fu, he uses some of these same phrases in the chapter on Chi Sao . In the Way of the Intercepting Fist episode of the Longstreet T.V. series Lee tells James Franciscus to " be water my friend ". Again , this same language is used in the Tao of Gung Fu to describe Chi Sao. One scene in Longstreet has Bruce lee doing Chi Sao with Franciscus. I have seen photos of Bruce Lee doing Chi Sao with John Saxon on the set of Enter the Dragon. After Lee moved to Hong Kong to pursue his movie career, ChiSao was still taught in both Taky Kimura's and Dan Inosanto's schools and they taught what Bruce Lee told them to teach.

    I heard one Wing Chun instructor say that Chi Sao is the " heart and soul of Wing Chun " It is my opinion that much of the philosophy of Jeet Kune Do comes from Chi Sao. The late Jerry Poteet said that when Lee taught Chi Sao, he would get very serious and it was then that he became very philosophical. I think it was Dan Inosanto who said that Lee was able to apply Chi Sao to long range fighting. If Chi Sao is the " heart and soul of Wing Chun" then it is my opinion that Bruce Lee didn't abandon Wing Chun. He expanded it and expressed it in a way which was all his own and that had never been done before.
     
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  12. Thunder Foot

    Thunder Foot Purple Belt

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    I have to agreewith you there! I also believe that its one of the reasons why many have found it so cohesive to train Kali. Because Wing Chun's butterfly swords aren't present, yet in still the fighting method embodies the essence of them while also infused with fencing.
     
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  13. Transk53

    Transk53 The Dark Often Prevails

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    Well from what I have experienced from JKD, it fit with me. Nothing against concept's at all. The time around I felt I was being exposed to higher techniques, ones that had been stripped of all before. The second time around was boxing based. I realized I don't need or want that. Back to beginning as it were for me.
     
  14. Thunder Foot

    Thunder Foot Purple Belt

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    Very interesting. My experience has been similar, in being simple in the beginning... then complicated with higher techniques like you mentioned, and now back to simple again. It took me awhile to understand and I'm still getting it, but as many great minds have echoed including Bruce when he said, "Simplicity is the key to brilliance."
     
  15. Transk53

    Transk53 The Dark Often Prevails

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    Yes it was very strange to me. The first experience involved TKD concepts. To this day I have no clue what that means. TKD magic kicks I cannot do. The FMA knife concept was good, but that was all it was. The second time around was better, but quite there.
     
  16. KPM

    KPM Senior Master

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    Very Interesting thread here! Figured I give you my thoughts after just reading through the whole thing. ;-)

    First, I recall the oft repeated JKD saying..."Absorb what is useful, Reject what is useless, Add what is specifically your own." Now how in the hell is someone supposed to do that without significant training and experience? How are you going to know that something is "useless" unless you have trained it enough to determine that? How are you going to know that something is "useful" until you have learned it well enough to make it work? I agree with Thunderfoot that if you are going to "evolve past" or "transcend" something you obviously need to start with that "something"! So I agree that JKD, as conceptual as you want to make it, has to start with a base of something! If you want to be true to what Bruce Lee did, then that base is Wing Chun. But I also think that if you have a strong base in something already...then you don't need Wing Chun to learn the concepts of JKD. But what you come up with in the end will be somewhat different from what Bruce Lee was doing, and I think he would be OK with that. ;-)

    You want to see JKD with a kickboxing base? Look at Joe Lewis' student Jerry Beasley. You want to see JKD with a FMA base? Look at Dan Inosanto's student Paul Vunak.

    Absolutely "Jun Fan Gung Fu" was just Bruce Lee's version of Wing Chun. Call it "Jun Fan Wing Chun" if you like!

    The ironic thing here is that even though Bruce Lee was thinking very conceptually and didn't want people to just copy him, wanted them to "freely express themselves", etc.....if his followers hadn't established some kind of curriculum and standard for teaching, JKD would have died and faded away long ago. Things need structure to survive. Since no one was established as Bruce's one and only heir, different followers have come up with their own version of what that preserving structure should be. Hence all the controversies.

    So if you want to be able to do what Bruce Lee did, you better start with Wing Chun? If you a solid background in something and want to be able to be the best as what you already know, then go with the "concepts" guys. But what gets me is a curriculum that tries to include a dozen different martial arts with a "little of this and a little of that" and then call it JKD. It seems like that would be very confusing!
     
  17. Thunder Foot

    Thunder Foot Purple Belt

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    I'm with you on that KPM!
    It's definitely interesting to see all the existing points of view on the subject. The present disassociation of Wing Chun by many within our community is quite disappointing. I just can't understand how some of our brothers and sisters can't digest that it was the attributes that Bruce acquired and improved from Wing Chun that allowed him the avenue to do what he did. But from a different vantage point, not everyone is ready to accept the existence of the anomaly that was Bruce Lee. Even today, many of the stories told by Bruce's friend's and family are being written off as folklore or legend. I suppose i wouldn't be surprised if Bruce's achievements are reduced to mere myth within a generation or two.
     
  18. CatNap

    CatNap Orange Belt

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    I had studied JKD for seven years before I left and returned to Wing Chun. There's a lot of Wing Chun at the heart of JKD. I think it's a beautiful philosophy, but I don't think of it a true martial art style, less than that with Bruce Lee gone. Now it's more people's ego trip and cashing in; to me, if Bruce were alive to see how his art has evolved without him, he wouldn't recognize it anymore.
     
  19. crazydiamond

    crazydiamond Purple Belt

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    I suspect if Bruce had lived - what he would be teaching today would be unrecognizable to his 1967 students. He never stayed still was always studying, growing and adapting (Mixing) martial arts.

    Much is said about Wing Chun in JKD. But I find it interesting how little western boxing is mentioned as well as fencing in his studies and growth of JKD.
     
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  20. Juany118

    Juany118 Senior Master

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    And then you have this guy saying something quite different...


    Not saying who is right or wrong. As a matter of fact I think to say either is right or wrong is to go against the core concept of JKD. If you read the Tao of Jeet Kun Do you see it agrees with what Guro Dan says here "sure I can teach it but I can't standardize it." Politics sadly have taken their toll on JKD.

    On the one hand you have Sigung Ted whose JKD, while I am sure being what Sijo Lee certified him in, is (just my experience) taught in a standardized fashion. Yes you take from it what works when you master it, no doubt so on the student end the JKD philosophy remains. On the other hand I think Guro Dan looks at the philosophy being on the teacher end as well. In order to do that though, have a constantly evolving art, you need a foundation to prevent it from going off the rails (at least imo) so we have Guro Dan seeing Wing Chun as that foundation, as that was the foundation of the JKD Sijo Lee taught him.

    Remember for Sijo Lee to personally certify a student you needed to be a closed door student. With the Philosophy of JKD I would actually be surprised if Sigung Lee actually taught both of his students the same art. What Wong learned later likely had some differences. /Shrug.
     

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