T Nation

Bruce Lee Is Great!! (Yawn)


You guys are impressive; I could hear the collective groans of boredom coming through my computer speakers. Well, not to worry. This post isn't about Bruce Lee, but it is about Jeet Kune Do.

I was cleaning out some old files on my computer and I found a video of a JKD instructor named Tommy Carruthers. I think he is from Scotland. Anyway, This cat has some serious skills. Very impressive. So I posted it on YouTube. Check it out if you want.

I am not a fighter myself, but I have respect for people that can move their bodies in that way. And I know that it is useless to try to say someone is "powerful" just by watching a video. But that fucker sure is fast.

Maybe some of the fighters here can comment on what they see, as I really have no idea what I am looking at.



I like the traditional jeans. He looks speeded up. He's got the economy of motion thing going on, none of this theatrical kick shit. But that's JKD in its essence.


I don't know...NO disrespect to him. It ends up looking like some point karate or something similar. It is strange that Bruce Lee said to use what is useful. Have no style etc, but JKD guys look the same. So it has become a style.
Sure he is pretty quick. Watch a young Roy Jones. Mayweather Jr. Even Judah is super quick.
If it is simply stand up then a guy like...Andy Souwer or Ernesto Hoost would be a good example. An elite boxer would be a good example of somebody who can punch great. Buakaw or Mirko Crocop or Francisco Filho an example of somebody who can kick great.


To be really honest (not meaning to sound arrogant, but it may come across like that):

Yes, he's very fast. But I've seen faster.

Something is really bugging me about this...but I can't put my finger on it at the moment.

It could be partly his lack of guard...perhaps his "air" of arrogance.

And I agree with someone before me (sorry, I missed the name) who mentioned he seemed like a point fighter. Perhaps that is what led me to wonder about if he can actually take a punch and keep on going...I mean, all of those clips didn't seem to show anything else except him attacking/showing off. His FACE/neck is ALWAYS open.

If you've ever been a real fight, I think you know what I mean.

Personally, i'm tired of that low kick to the knee...i SWEAR that is SO used up. Anyone who has any real amount of time into his/her training has been exposed to it.

To be fair, he IS fast and his diagonal movement is VERY fast and fluid.

I guess, in a nutshell...it seems more show (movies, videogames) than useful (self defense in a REAL situation).


It is all very interesting to me. Hearing your points of view, I mean. As I said earlier, I am not a fighter in any way, so the comments help me to see it differently. Of course, one-arm pull-ups, wide grip P.U. (at the end of the video), are impressive to me, it doesn't make someone an impressive fighter.

As far as the comment about "being open", or not protecting himself, it is interesting. Someone told me that Carruthers does not teach those sort of things; i.e., how to "protect" yourself. His idea is to keep moving on the opponent. I cannot verify that though. I can't remember who told me.

Also, in one part of the video, he says that he doesn't teach his students how to spar. He says something after that, but I can't make it out on my shitty sound system.

What's up with that? Is that just a semantic thing, or would it make sense that his students do not spar at all? Seems a bit out there to me. (as if I know what I am saying anyway).

Thanks for your comments. I look forward to more. It is a learning experience for me.



I wonder how he'd fair against Bas Rutten's tactics. (Love the way Rutten ridicules his opponent)


Let's be realistic, if he does that to most people they're going to get their asses handed to them.

Not every Joe Schmo knows how to fight and is going to be overwhelmed when this fella is on top of them with a flurry of punches.

Sometimes the best defense is an outstanding offense.

I'd say it seems pretty useful for self defense, if for nothing else than he knows his body.


Check it out:


Yeah I'd let him be my bodyguard. Then again, he is kinda small. I guess that's good for his sport, but I'd like to see him if he WASN'T starving for the cameras.


That video cracks me up everytime...


Many of those techniques are right out of Kung Fu San Soo....


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Yeah, the problem with this whole "just attack and he wont be able to attack you" doesnt really work. Someone is either just going to start swinging back through your attacks or cover up and swing back occasionally. Either of which can put you down fast. Naturally a skilled boxer would just take you apart. The fact that his students dont spar reinforces this. Why not pressure test your abilities? You would find out real quick that his theory is crap.



Is bas joking?


Well Bas is a retired MMA badass (well soon coming out of retirement..but that's another story). But is he joking? Yes and no- showing real technique in a comical, 3 stooges kinda way.


You've got a good eye.


I thought that video was way cool and entertaining. Yes he is showing real and "real world" techniques, and yes he is also having a lot of fun/putting some personality into it.


but how does your critique of the first vid not apply here ?


Can you be more specific with what you mean? I'm not quite understanding where you are coming from.


Looks more like Wing Chun than JKD.

He is very fast and snappy, however he doesn't put his weight behind his strikes as others point out. HOWEVER, he is just demonstrating, and putting weight behind the hits would not be possible. Then again, there is no sign of body movement at all at the right times, which makes me think, here is yet another stupid Wing Chun idiot who mistakes speed for ability. Note I have nothing against Wing Chun but have seen too many people come out of it with a lot of snappy speed and no practical ability.

Furthermore there are bad habits in his style. His chin says "please hit me", for one thing.

You can get away with fighting like this in the real world if you are coming up against people who don't know what they are doing / do not expect it. But the bad habits shouldn't be instinctive. What if you are drunk, tired, dazed from a hit or wotnot then you want your reflexes and habits to be bulletproof.

Not training sparring is also stupid.

Most people's responses to slappy slap hits in the face like that are ducking back and kicking. OR any of many other things.

The thing with all martial arts is that you can pick the stupidest, most ineffective ridiculous technique, and if you master it for a looong time, you can make it work for you. That does not prove the technique is a good one in the first place (many think it does), because in the same amount of time the same person could have been a lot better using a different system. But you can make really stupid systems work. It just is not as efficient.

But when you get someone who has dedicated so much time to such a system, then they demonstrate under controlled situations that THEY control (not tournaments etc..) then you can suck in all kinds of kids into wasting their time as well.