20110720

Bruce Lee

In memory of the greatest martial artists to have ever set foot on this Earth!

  Lee did not believe in training in Kata, or solo practice of precise movement and forms. He equated it to learning how to swim on dry land. Combat was dynamic, changing from second to second, and a series of rehearsed routines were inadequate in preparing the practitioner to fight. The martial artist needed to forgo a plan to adapt to the combat in front on him. “Be like water.” Or to put it another way, Mike Tyson said once, “Everyone has a plan til they get punched in the mouth.”

  Jeet Kun Do believed in combat ranges, which is something that Tae Kwon Do in particular has never gotten over as a combat art. Kicking, punching, and then grapple. Lee was a big proponent in learning how to fight at all of these ranges, including head butts, elbow strikes, and more. In fact, Bruce was training in Jiu-Jitsu with legendary teacher Master Wally Jay from the age of 22. Because anyone that has fought in the real world, knows that 80% of fights go to the ground.

  If Lee had been alive today, he’d be a ferocious cross-trainer in every art that had value – Muay Thai for striking, BJJ for grappling, etc. Based on his own unique and original philosophy of JKD that is undeniable. So to assume that Bruce was a one-dimensional fighter is ridiculous.

  Let’s examine Bruce Lee the man. As an athlete, he was gifted with lightning speed equal to no one. In addition, he possessed uncanny accuracy with his kicks. One story about Bruce is that he liked to sneak up on people on his movie sets and flick their ear to get their attention with his high kick.

The feats of strength and ability that he performed routinely are almost too hard to believe. 
  • Lee’s striking speed from three feet with his hands down by his side reached five hundredths of a second. 
  • Lee’s combat movements were at times too fast to be captured on film at 24fps, so many scenes were shot in 32fps to put Lee in slow motion. Normally martial arts films are sped up. 
  • In a speed demonstration, Lee could snatch a dime off a person’s open palm before they could close it, and leave a penny behind. 
  • Lee could perform push ups using only his thumbs 
  • Lee would hold an elevated v-sit position for 30 minutes or longer. 
  • Lee could throw grains of rice up into the air and then catch them in mid-flight using chopsticks. 
  • Lee performed one-hand push-ups using only the thumb and index finger. 
  • Lee performed 50 reps of one-arm chin-ups. 
  • From a standing position, Lee could hold a 125 lb (57 kg) barbell straight out. 
  • Lee could break wooden boards 6 inches (15 cm) thick. 
  • Lee performed a side kick while training with James Coburn and broke a 150-lb (68 kg) punching bag 
  • Lee could cause a 300-lb (136 kg) bag to fly towards and thump the ceiling with a side kick. 
  • In a move that has been dubbed “Dragon Flag”, Lee could perform leg lifts with only his shoulder blades resting on the edge of a bench and suspend his legs and torso perfectly horizontal midair. 
  • Lee could thrust his fingers through unopened steel cans of Coca-Cola, at a time before cans were made of the softer aluminum metal.Lee could use one finger to leave dramatic indentations on pine wood.

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