by Jon Sattler
Photo courtesy of Bruce Lee Enterprises LLC* – Yesterday
Bruce Lee demonstrates jeet kune do side kick techniques.When you study violent encounters, one fact tends to stand out time and again: The prepared fighter almost always wins. But being prepared requires more than just training.
Long before self-defense experts and military analysts adopted the phrase “situational awareness,” Bruce Lee taught us that we must always be aware of our surroundings. Or as Lee would say, “The best surprise against a surprise attack is not to be surprised.”
To help us develop our alertness, Lee provided us with four surprise-attacker counters in the book Bruce Lee’s Fighting Method: The Complete Edition. Today, the Little Dragon will teach us how to counter an ambush with a side kick combo.
Bruce Lee’s Side Kick Combo
Walking down the street, Lee notices someone standing at the corner, as in photo 1. Instead of walking near him, Lee leaves enough room to defend against an ambush, as in photo 2. As the assailant attacks, as in photo 3, Lee counters with a quick and powerful side kick to the forward knee, as in photo 4. The kick is followed through completely so it causes the assailant to reel backward, as in photos 5. Lee counterattacks with multiple hooks and straight punches to the face, as in photo 6, keeping the assailant off-balance.
Note: You have to constantly practice the side kick on a heavy bag — preferably about 70 pounds — to develop good power. Notice that Lee delivers his kick while keeping his body away from the assailant.