When translated into English, Jeet Kune Do means «The Way of the Intercepting Fist», where «Jeet» means intercept, «Kune» is fist and «Do» is the way. The fencing technique known as «stop-hit» was what inspired the founder to give this name to his own philosophy of the art of fighting.
Jeet Kune Do is the process of martial evolution that Bruce Lee created based on his own psycho-physical characteristics. And those studies of human mechanics and different forms of combat may be adapted to each student’s personal characteristics.
Bruce originally studied Wing Chun in Hong Kong during his youth, as well as notions of other styles of Gung Fu from both the north and south of China. During his stay in the United States, Bruce began to modify his Wing Chun with the vision of creating a superior style of Gung Fu, which he called the «Jun Fan Gung Fu Method», Lee Jun Fan being his name in Chinese.
As a result of his combat with Wong Jack Man in late 1964, Lee’s approach to fighting changed radically and he reached two conclusions as a result of the fight: it was necessary to be highly fit so as to be able to remain in good physical condition throughout a contest, and to develop his footwork so as to be able to improve his mobility and remain at the appropriate distance at each moment of the fight.
His interest became centred on two western forms of combat: boxing and fencing. It might be said that in the final stage of its evolution, Jeet Kune Do is mainly based on these two arts. The initial influence of Wing Chun lost importance as time went by to more and more refined mobility and footwork, which are typical of fencing, and body positioning and biomechanical principles when striking an opponent more influenced by boxing.