Jeet Kune Do (JKD) is a martial art created by the late Bruce Lee. Some say that someone challenged him that martial artists couldn't handle a street fight, and Lee responded by creating JKD. It is an amalgamation of various martial arts, with the underlying philosophy of Lee's methods. It evolved while Bruce taught Jun Fan Gung Fu (as he insisted on calling it) in Seattle, Los Angeles (Chinatown) and Oakland. JKD's greatness lies in its directness and down to earth approach. This means that you don't have to jump six feet in the air, turn three somersaults, a double back flip, and then punch your opponent. It should be absolutely spontaneous and to the point, so that if someone grabs you, you punch him. It's like when someone throws a ball at you and you catch it.
Basically, JKD has grown to incorporate many other styles, including Philipino Kali, French Savat, Brazilian Ju Jitsu, and American Kick Boxing. Individuals can select the elements that suit their own particular body style, aggression, and personal preferences.
Main ideas of JKD
In Cantonese, Jeet Kune Do means 'The Art of the Intercepting Fist'. The name also shows the fundamental tenet of JKD-interception. The idea is to stop the opponent's attack before he starts it, or while it's in progress. Simultaneous attack and defence is the idea here. If someone punches you, you parry by pushing it aside and at the same time, retaliating with an attack of your own. This isn't like the usual format of attack, block, counter, but is much more effective and direct. Since the aim of JKD is self-defence, it favours the parry over the block, since you can get hurt by simply sticking your hand in front of the attack. Rather, the attack is guided away by force, but this force is never in direct opposition to the attack, but at an angle to it. Bruce Lee stressed the importance of being proficient in striking, kicking, grappling and trapping, and this is what JKD does.
JKD is considered by many to be the greatest martial art in existence at the moment, because its practitioners are never bound by any fixed set of rules. Once you learn Jeet Kune Do, it's yours. You can change it to suit your needs or just improve some part that you think is neglected. This is the greatness of JKD. It is always changing to suit the needs of the situation. This was Bruce's personal philosophy of life, and the one he imparted to all his students.