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Understanding The Differences Between JKD Concepts and Original JKD


Chris Kent's statement at the beginning of the Jun Fan / Jeet Kune Do text book summarizes my understanding of Jun Fan Gung Fu and JKD as it's been passed to me through training with Paul Vunak, Tim Tackett, Dan Inosanto, Burton Richardson, Daniel Sullivan, Ron Balicki. I will say it this way: "Jun Fan Gung Fu is the foundation upon which the Jeet Kune Do house is built."


As Dan Inosanto has said "There isn't any difference between Jeet Kune Do, Original Jeet Kune Do and Jeet Kune Do Concepts. Whatever you want to call it. It's the same. To understand the JKD Concept, you have to be trained in the Original JKD or Jeet Kune Do that Bruce Lee trained. As he says, JKD is a path to personal liberation."

Paul Vunak has said that Original JKD isn within Contemporary JKD / JKD Concepts. I've heard Paul Vunak state a few times he has more in common with those who call themselves Original JKD. Even as one of the pioneers and catalyst of what's been called JKD Concepts. As Mike Blesch points out in his article "The JKD Filter" for those of us who continue to explore and adapt martial arts using Jun Fan Gung Fu and JKD as the filter or lense to refine and adapt Original JKD is central and essential without it, one is merely doing eclecticism not JKD, the confusion between eclecticism (or MMA / Blended Martial Arts) and what JKD is confusing to some. It is sad that many don't understand the foundation of what is called JKD Concepts as Original JKD. And that some in Original JKD thinks that JKD Concepts rejects or doesn't include Original JKD. This isn't intended to be a JKD politics post but and educational one regarding what JKD Concepts actual is. As a legitimate expression of JKD, it is only rightly done and seen on the foundation of Original JKD. For those who argue Original JKD versus JKD Concepts don't seem to understand or seem unwilling to acknowledge that within proper "JKD Concepts" as taught originally by Paul Vunak / Dan Inosanto and others Original JKD is central, necessary and essential. For me as a student and instructor of both Original JKD and JKD Concepts, my desire is that both learn to value and respect each other's contribution. As Bruce Lee says under heaven we are all but one family. For those who understand the foundation and development of JKD Concepts, Original JKD is it's right and proper foundation, and as Paul Vunak has said "it is in there" within JKD Concepts. For those who teach mere eclecticism aren't teaching JKD Concepts but simply an eclecticism, and it is unfortunate when people who teach eclecticism call it JKD Concepts for they misunderstand that JKD Concepts only rightly works with OJKD as it's foundation. I really wish this error in understanding could be adjusted for those who misunderstand this. Hopefully those of us who practice Original JKD within JKD Concepts maybe we can find a better way to inform those about this. I feel that making the Original JKD as the foundation for JKD Concepts is important. I always start my students teaching Original JKD, Jun Fan Martial Arts. And when I transition to JKD Concepts or further Contemporary JKD I tell them what I'm doing and why. I was told it this way by Paul Vunak in essence that Jun Fan Gung Fu was created in a responsive environment to Full Contact Karate, that JKD Concepts was developed in the environment of American Full Contact Kickboxing / Karate that came out of Bruce Lee training group with Bob Wall, Joe Lewis, Chuck Norris and Mike Stone, and that for Paul Vunak he equates what he does now in the environment against MMA versus BJJ and Muay Thai and that the final evolution of his JKD, is thus called Contemporary JKD, he still asserts that Original JKD is within it and that as far as JKD people go he feels more connected with the Original JKD group as far as fighters. At least that is what I've come to understand from listening and learning over the years. I hope this insight helps being some clarify to issues some have misunderstood. Hopefully this will help some understand the nuance and differences. I still hold Original JKD as foundational to JKD Concepts / Contemporary JKD or using the JKD Filter to study and adapt fighting arts as we explore Truth in Combat. Combat continues to evolve, Bruce Lee created a living, alive martial art. Let's not simply become a mausoleum to the past.

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