I am a martial arts instructor. You know, that whole Karate, UFC, chop-chop, kick-kick, beat ‘em up thing. However, there is a lot more to martial arts than the fun and fancy stuff you see on a tv or movie screen.
My primary style, if you can call it that, is Jeet Kune Do. Jeet Kune Do means, “The way of the intercepting fist,” or the straight fist way. It was developed by Bruce Lee. It isn’t really a style as much as a concept. I have belts in several different styles. Okinawan Kempo, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiujitsu, Kali, and Wing Chun. All of these are styles or arts. There are techniques and approaches that are uniquely theirs. They each do certain things, and do not do other things.
Brazilian Jiujitsu, or BJJ, is the best example. It is a ground fighting technique, designed as much for sport as for actual combat. There are no punches, no kicks, no elbow throws or knee strikes. It looks a bit like collegiate wrestling, though it uses various joint locks to achieve its submissions. It is a style, an art, closed within itself, designed to be executed against players in the same or related styles.
Jeet Kune Do, or JKD, is style-less. At least, that was Bruce Lee’s goal. His notation is, “No style as style, no limitation as limitation.” That is, nothing is out of bounds. The limit is only the physical limit of the artist themselves. So it is difficult to call it a style. Any given JKD practitioner may use punches, kicks, elbows, knees and BJJ. My JKD is a blend of all my studied arts. In one combination, I may employ a technique from BJJ, another from Muay Thai, another from Kempo, another from Kali, and still another from Wing Chun.
Of my official styles, I enjoy Wing Chun the most. This is probably because it is the closest to JKD itself. The only art that Bruce Lee officially studied was Wing Chun, under the legendary Wing Chun master, Ip Mann. Bruce Lee took his Wing Chun and expanded it, whittled away at it a little, but also added other things to it. But at its core, JKD is laden with Wing Chun.
Wing Chun is more than a style or art. It is a way of life, a way of looking at things. Its primary principle is called The Center Line, maintaining yourself through your center, and keeping that center pointed toward your goal, as well as keeping that center covered and protected. A great way to approach almost everything in life.
For your enjoyment and edification, below is a wonderful video about Wing Chun. It is about 30 minutes long, so give yourself time to watch it all. It is sub-titled, as it is spoken in Chinese, though there is some English in it. It is a wonderful look at not only Wing Chun as a fighting style, but Wing Chun as a life style. Enjoy.