Variations on JKD

KPM

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We all know that JKD can be rather difficult to actually define. There are several versions from "JKD Concepts" to "Original JKD" to "Chinatown JKD" to "Jun Fan JKD."

One possible version would be simply taking a good background and knowledge of Wing Chun and overlying it on a boxing foundation. In other words....adapting Wing Chun to be done with boxing biomechanics and punching rather that classical Wing Chun biomechanics. Then use the JKD concepts that Bruce Lee derived separate from Wing Chun such as the 5 ways of attack.

Do you guys think this would be something that could be called "Jeet Kune Do"? Why or why not?
 

Xue Sheng

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JKD is rather easy to define and all of it has lineage back to Bruce Lee and all have the same exact base that starts of with what Bruce Lee taught as JKD. And I was under the impression that Chinatown JKD was in the same camp as the original JKD. And Jun Fan is what Bruce Lee called his style of MA prior to coming up with JKD, which is a bit different ...so no I don't think you can simply take a good background and knowledge of Wing Chun and overlying it on a boxing foundation thereby adapting Wing Chun to be done with boxing biomechanics and punching rather than classical Wing Chun biomechanics and then use the JKD concepts that Bruce Lee derived separate from Wing Chun such as the 5 ways of attack and call it JKD.

You could come up with something that is possibly a good MA but it is not JKD anymore than learning Shaolin Long Fist and then slowing the forms down is Taijiquan, or learning Judo and combining it with BJJ and then calling it Shuaijiao
 
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KPM

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JKD is rather easy to define and all of it has lineage back to Bruce Lee and all have the same exact base that starts of with what Bruce Lee taught as JKD.

But what Bruce Lee taught varied at different stages of his career. So it isn't that easy. And Bruce Lee essentially took his knowledge of Wing Chun and "kickboxed" with it. But I do understand what you are saying about lineage. But I also bet Bruce would be rolling in his grave to see the emphasis people are putting on lineage in his system today. ;)
 

Xue Sheng

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To be honest I think he would be rolling in his grave at the thought of people trying to take some of the things he did and then call it JKD without any real link to him. And IMO the only reason I can see for someone doing this is for monetary gain and making it sound like they are doing JKD from Bruce Lee. Otherwise, they would not care about the name at all.

But he did not appear to want it to become a style at all.


I have not invented a "new style," composite, modified or otherwise that is set within distinct form as apart from "this" method or "that" method. On the contrary, I hope to free my followers from clinging to styles, patterns, or molds. Remember that Jeet Kune Do is merely a name used, a mirror in which to see "ourselves". . . Jeet Kune Do is not an organized institution that one can be a member of. Either you understand or you don't, and that is that. There is no mystery about my style. My movements are simple, direct and non-classical. The extraordinary part of it lies in its simplicity. Every movement in Jeet Kune-Do is being so of itself. There is nothing artificial about it. I always believe that the easy way is the right way. Jeet Kune-Do is simply the direct expression of one's feelings with the minimum of movements and energy. The closer to the true way of Kung Fu, the less wastage of expression there is. Finally, a Jeet Kune Do man who says Jeet Kune Do is exclusively Jeet Kune Do is simply not with it. He is still hung up on his self-closing resistance, in this case anchored down to reactionary pattern, and naturally is still bound by another modified pattern and can move within its limits. He has not digested the simple fact that truth exists outside all molds; pattern and awareness is never exclusive. Again let me remind you Jeet Kune Do is just a name used, a boat to get one across, and once across it is to be discarded and not to be carried on one's back.

– Bruce Lee

However I am glad there are those teaching it. In my short time in JKD I learned an awful lot about the other martial arts styles I have and do train. And part of that brief exposure to JKD included Jun Fan Gong Fu which was much more like Wing Chun than JKD and to be honest I liked it more than Wing Chun or JKD. It was incredibly aggressive.
 

Juany118

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To be honest I think he would be rolling in his grave at the thought of people trying to take some of the things he did and then call it JKD without any real link to him. And IMO the only reason I can see for someone doing this is for monetary gain and making it sound like they are doing JKD from Bruce Lee. Otherwise, they would not care about the name at all.

But he did not appear to want it to become a style at all.




However I am glad there are those teaching it. In my short time in JKD I learned an awful lot about the other martial arts styles I have and do train. And part of that brief exposure to JKD included Jun Fan Gong Fu which was much more like Wing Chun than JKD and to be honest I liked it more than Wing Chun or JKD. It was incredibly aggressive.
It's that quote that always made me more a fan of Guro Dan's JKD Concepts. Here is my understanding. Bruce basically had a philosophy and using that philosophy taught his students to what he and the particular student saw as their strengths. He also continuously tinkered with his personal style and expected them to do the same. Now I have a friend that is an "Original JKD" guy. He says everyone is taught the same thing and it's up to them to even tease out what works best for them and that what is taught to them is what was taught to Wong and really doesn't change. Well to me that sounds like what any martial artist does.

On the other hand JKD Concepts, while still taught in a similar way is often being tweeked. As Guro Dan said in an interview "if someone asks me 'can you teach it?' I say sure I can teach it, but I can't standardize it."

As for Jun Fan, my Guro/Sifu studied it as one of his first Martial arts. It is a traditionally structured MA with Wing Chun at its core. The name Jun Fan JKD is misunderstood I think. The Bruce Lee Foundation back in the 90's decided to refer to all the martial arts developed by Bruce by that name since his traditional Chinese name is Jun Fan.
 

punisher73

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As I have understood it from interviews with Dan Inosanto etc.

Jun Fan Gung Fu was Bruce Lee's "martial art". This is what was taught in his classes. Jun Fan was also the vehicle that Bruce Lee used to teach and introduce people to his idea of Jeet Kune Do. While Bruce was alive, only 3 people were certified to instruct it, Dan Inosanto was one of them.

Jun Fan Gung Fu did have a systematic way to teach it and learn it. If you get Ron Balicki's (Dan Inosanto's son-in-law) series on Jun Fan Jeet Kune Do, he teaches it in this manner. Even shows the wooden dummy drills that Bruce Lee used as part of it.
 

Xue Sheng

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It's that quote that always made me more a fan of Guro Dan's JKD Concepts. Here is my understanding. Bruce basically had a philosophy and using that philosophy taught his students to what he and the particular student saw as their strengths. He also continuously tinkered with his personal style and expected them to do the same. Now I have a friend that is an "Original JKD" guy. He says everyone is taught the same thing and it's up to them to even tease out what works best for them and that what is taught to them is what was taught to Wong and really doesn't change. Well to me that sounds like what any martial artist does.

On the other hand JKD Concepts, while still taught in a similar way is often being tweeked. As Guro Dan said in an interview "if someone asks me 'can you teach it?' I say sure I can teach it, but I can't standardize it."

As for Jun Fan, my Guro/Sifu studied it as one of his first Martial arts. It is a traditionally structured MA with Wing Chun at its core. The name Jun Fan JKD is misunderstood I think. The Bruce Lee Foundation back in the 90's decided to refer to all the martial arts developed by Bruce by that name since his traditional Chinese name is Jun Fan.

The Gentleman I briefly trained with taught Jun Fan as the base and then went on to JKD. But the JKD was from Jerry Poteet and I was very impressed with it. Sadly I did not train it all that long.

And I concur, Jun Fan most definitely has Wing Chun at its core, I use to refer to it as Wing Chun on Steroids
 

Juany118

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The Gentleman I briefly trained with taught Jun Fan as the base and then went on to JKD. But the JKD was from Jerry Poteet and I was very impressed with it. Sadly I did not train it all that long.

And I concur, Jun Fan most definitely has Wing Chun at its core, I use to refer to it as Wing Chun on Steroids

Thanks to both you and @punisher73 for the Jun Fan base to JKD info. My only knowledge of either JKD or Jun Fan itself is indirect either via friends (JKD) or my Sifu (Jun Fan)
 

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Bruce had 3 arts they were or are non classical gong Fu the Tao of Chinese gong Fu and jeet June do. Dan Inosanto and James Yim Lee were the only people ranked level 3 in all of them. You had to be level 3 to teach. Jun fan was the name of the school.

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punisher73

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Bruce had 3 arts they were or are non classical gong Fu the Tao of Chinese gong Fu and jeet June do. Dan Inosanto and James Yim Lee were the only people ranked level 3 in all of them. You had to be level 3 to teach. Jun fan was the name of the school.

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"The Tao of Chinese Gung Gu" was a book that Bruce Lee wrote commenting about various methods of kung fu and it's way of doing things.

"Jun Fan" was Bruce's Chinese name, remember Bruce Lee was born in America and an American citizen. The Jun Fan Institute was the name of the Seattle school while it was open. So, Jun Fan Gung Fu and Jun Fan Institute are just Bruce Lee's name on his school and his style.

You forgot to mention Taky Kimura who ran the Seattle school. He was Dan Inosanto's senior and also ranked/certified to teach JKD.
 

Dong xiao hu

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I did not forget taky he by his own admission said he was not certified in jeet kun do . I know that Bruce's Chinese name was Jun fan but his arts were as I stated. If you look at the certificates handed to his students. There is no Jun fan going Fu or Jun fan martial arts. This was what Dan Inosanto called the non classical gong Fu and Tao of Chinese gong Fu when taught together. This is all information that can be found in various books and interviews. Jkd concepts started with Mr Inosanto looking to keep a promise to his friend and teacher ( not teaching Jkd publicly). His way of doing this was to promote the Filipino martial arts which have many of the same concepts and principles as Jkd. Most of the Chinatown class went on to train in Mr Inosanto s backyard after Bruce directed all Jun Fan Gung Fu institutes closed. Why? Because Mr Inosanto was their main teacher. Many of them went on to train at the Filipino Kali Academy when it opened.

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punisher73

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I did not forget taky he by his own admission said he was not certified in jeet kun do . I know that Bruce's Chinese name was Jun fan but his arts were as I stated. If you look at the certificates handed to his students. There is no Jun fan going Fu or Jun fan martial arts. This was what Dan Inosanto called the non classical gong Fu and Tao of Chinese gong Fu when taught together. This is all information that can be found in various books and interviews. Jkd concepts started with Mr Inosanto looking to keep a promise to his friend and teacher ( not teaching Jkd publicly). His way of doing this was to promote the Filipino martial arts which have many of the same concepts and principles as Jkd. Most of the Chinatown class went on to train in Mr Inosanto s backyard after Bruce directed all Jun Fan Gung Fu institutes closed. Why? Because Mr Inosanto was their main teacher. Many of them went on to train at the Filipino Kali Academy when it opened.

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I was wrong about the "Tao of Chinese Gung Fu", Dan Inosanto talked about the certificates handed out. These were handed out to students who trained privately with Bruce Lee and were not in public or group classes. Dan Inosanto did also state that Bruce Lee issued certificates in Jun Fan to the public students that were in group class settings.

Dan Inosanto on Ranking in Jeet Kune Do - Jeet Kune Do Library

I would be interested in the interview where Taky says he was not certified in JKD. Every interview I have read lists him as 1 of the 3 people certified. The only interviews I have come across with Taky, he talks about training with Bruce Lee and the development/phases of the art, but no mention either way about being certified.
 

Dong xiao hu

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I was wrong about the "Tao of Chinese Gung Fu", Dan Inosanto talked about the certificates handed out. These were handed out to students who trained privately with Bruce Lee and were not in public or group classes. Dan Inosanto did also state that Bruce Lee issued certificates in Jun Fan to the public students that were in group class settings.

Dan Inosanto on Ranking in Jeet Kune Do - Jeet Kune Do Library

I would be interested in the interview where Taky says he was not certified in JKD. Every interview I have read lists him as 1 of the 3 people certified. The only interviews I have come across with Taky, he talks about training with Bruce Lee and the development/phases of the art, but no mention either way about being certified.
Yup you are correct. I do remember now that it was him saying that he didn't feel he learned as much about JKD as those in the LA school. Or something to that effect. Having been exposed to some people who trained with him. I would say he was just being modest.

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punisher73

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Yup you are correct. I do remember now that it was him saying that he didn't feel he learned as much about JKD as those in the LA school. Or something to that effect. Having been exposed to some people who trained with him. I would say he was just being modest.

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Thanks for the info, the rank of "Tao of Chinese Gung Fu" is new to me. I like learning new things.
 
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To be honest I think he would be rolling in his grave at the thought of people trying to take some of the things he did and then call it JKD without any real link to him. And IMO the only reason I can see for someone doing this is for monetary gain and making it sound like they are doing JKD from Bruce Lee. Otherwise, they would not care about the name at all.

.

Yeah, upon some reflection I think you are probably right. I believe that someone with a solid background in both Wing Chun and boxing will pick up on JKD much quicker than just about anyone else, but he would still need to train specifically in JKD. So I have decided to follow the "Chinatown JKD" curriculum as a model for such training and hope to at some point get some one-on-one time with them.

Because I have to admit......I have pretty much come to the conclusion that traditional martial arts just don't work in a modern fighting context. Go spend some time on youtube searching for sparring videos from about any traditional art you can think of and they will nearly all just look like poor sloppy kickboxing. Except for the JKD guys, because they are one of the few non-sport arts that actually train the way they fight and fight the way they train. So I have concluded that the best way to make use of my Wing Chun background, is to use it to switch over to JKD.
 

Xue Sheng

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How far do you plan on taking the Chinatown JKD curriculum? Because they do get to a point where they want you to show up and test in front of them before they call you a senior student and later teacher..
 

Juany118

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Yeah, upon some reflection I think you are probably right. I believe that someone with a solid background in both Wing Chun and boxing will pick up on JKD much quicker than just about anyone else, but he would still need to train specifically in JKD. So I have decided to follow the "Chinatown JKD" curriculum as a model for such training and hope to at some point get some one-on-one time with them.

Because I have to admit......I have pretty much come to the conclusion that traditional martial arts just don't work in a modern fighting context. Go spend some time on youtube searching for sparring videos from about any traditional art you can think of and they will nearly all just look like poor sloppy kickboxing. Except for the JKD guys, because they are one of the few non-sport arts that actually train the way they fight and fight the way they train. So I have concluded that the best way to make use of my Wing Chun background, is to use it to switch over to JKD.

Well here is the thing on the last bit. Every single experienced MA teacher I have dealt with (and maybe I am lucky) says that many things (say the perfect man/wu), simple stepping/pivoting, is about training principles. After that if you want to actually fight you MUST pressure test. Aikido, Karate, WC, doesn't matter they all said the same.

Remember the video I posted in that thread you started? He is one of my WC teachers. You said you could see the WC there even though it wasn't picture perfect, vs other videos where you saw none. How did he get there? Because he actually incorporates real pressure testing into training.

That is the trick, it's not about the method you chose to use, it's about taking that method and putting it under pressure in training. Not light sparring, I mean put on the gloves and helmet and risk bruises and limping the next morning. I don't care what you study, if you aren't willing to pressure test, when under pressure it will fall apart.
 
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How far do you plan on taking the Chinatown JKD curriculum? Because they do get to a point where they want you to show up and test in front of them before they call you a senior student and later teacher..

Yeah, I saw that. I do hope to make a trip at some point and do that. We'll see how much we like the curriculum and how far we take it. But that is one of the nice things about their program. It is laid out in a very organized fashion with the option to send in video of yourself for evaluation and to train with them directly.
 
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KPM

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Well here is the thing on the last bit. Every single experienced MA teacher I have dealt with (and maybe I am lucky) says that many things (say the perfect man/wu), simple stepping/pivoting, is about training principles. After that if you want to actually fight you MUST pressure test. Aikido, Karate, WC, doesn't matter they all said the same.

Remember the video I posted in that thread you started? He is one of my WC teachers. You said you could see the WC there even though it wasn't picture perfect, vs other videos where you saw none. How did he get there? Because he actually incorporates real pressure testing into training.

That is the trick, it's not about the method you chose to use, it's about taking that method and putting it under pressure in training. Not light sparring, I mean put on the gloves and helmet and risk bruises and limping the next morning. I don't care what you study, if you aren't willing to pressure test, when under pressure it will fall apart.


Oh I get you Juany! :) And of the Wing Chun guys putting up sparring videos I think the TWC lineages seem to do the best. Of those, Phil Redmond's and Keith Mazza's students seem to do the best. But when I do spar and try to pressure test what I've learned, I've discovered that what happens ends up looking a hellavu lot like JKD! I do take seriously the adage of "train the way you fight and fight the way you train." That is the problem I think with the vast majority of traditional or classical martial arts. People no longer fight the way these classical arts were originally designed to work. And these classical martial arts spend 90% of their time training against someone doing the same art. This gives a false sense of effectiveness.
 

Juany118

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Oh I get you Juany! :) And of the Wing Chun guys putting up sparring videos I think the TWC lineages seem to do the best. Of those, Phil Redmond's and Keith Mazza's students seem to do the best. But when I do spar and try to pressure test what I've learned, I've discovered that what happens ends up looking a hellavu lot like JKD! I do take seriously the adage of "train the way you fight and fight the way you train." That is the problem I think with the vast majority of traditional or classical martial arts. People no longer fight the way these classical arts were originally designed to work. And these classical martial arts spend 90% of their time training against someone doing the same art. This gives a false sense of effectiveness.

The only thing I would say to that is that some would argue that JKD is the Child of Wing Chun. When I saw JKD for the first time I said "hmmmm looks like Wing Chun fighting" because the TWC I learn is about moving and stepping when you fight, not forgetting you can kick, changing stances from front to neutral as the fight requires. Heck last week we spent a full 90minutes just practicing dealing with being kicked properly, which means for half the class you were the one properly kicking your partner. You know apparently many of the things a couple WC people around here say isn't WC ;). Regardless of whether you Study JKD Concepts or Original JKD, the core is Jun Fan Gung Fu and that is basically WC on steroids.

What is the point of the above? I use people talking about family resemblance as an example. "Bobby looks just like his father" some will say looking at the son. If looking at the father they may say "You can certainly tell that's Bobby's dad can't ya.". It's all a matter of perspective and I think part of the perspective starts with the WC lineage you study, how it is taught, and the image that creates in your mind when you then see it put into practice. I could go into all the stuff from TWC that informs my perspective but that isn't the point of the thread. If you want I can go over some of the generalities that I learned from my three teachers (Masters Mazza, Devone and my "regular" Sifu) via PM.

Regardless though, I wish you luck in finding what you are looking for, but don't be surprised that once in the door of JKD (depending on which is taught and how) you start seeing more WC than you thought you would. :). That's not to say JKD doesn't work, it does, but we all come from somewhere and we never totally shake that family resemblance ;).
 
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