Dim Sum and JKD, by Tim Becherer
Dim Sum and JKD.
Had to make a stop and pay our respects to Sigung Bruce's original Chinatown LA JKD School.
After our third day of a FMS (Functional Movement Systems) seminar, Alvin Catacutan, Paul McCarthy and I stopped in Chinatown (2 days in a row in Chinatown) for some lunch. Being just a few blocks away, we decided to stop by the location of Sigung Lee's Chinatown school.
More on Functional Movement Systems coming up. This is something that is a game changer for martial artists in my opinion. For current Association Instructors, I'm sure that myself, Alvin, Christopher and Dr. Mark Cheng(our association movement advisor) will be discussing this on the Instructors exchange page with some regularity.
Wake Up! By, James Eke
By James Eke
Wake up. Two words I say to myself like a mantra. Wake up!
For most of us waking up in any real way is something that we think we are doing but never really get around to. Think about how many times you’ve said you want to get more fit. Think about how many times you’ve said you want to lose weight. Think of how many times you’ve said you want to be the endless grocery list of happier, healthier, more peaceful and so on. For me there is just one simple and profoundly difficult thing – Wake Up!
What does that mean? It is my endless dose of reality. It is the fire that I let my life burn in. The embers of that fire is what keeps me going.
So what does that mean? Simple – you’re going to die. We all are. Life is not a circle but a straight line that can be somewhat long (in human terms) or very short. But positive and powerful thing is that this line is filled with possibilities.
You want to meditate and have more peace and calm in your life? Then do it. A friend recently mentioned that they want to meditate and wanted some advice, knowing I’m a long-time meditator. My response was simple “Do it. Every day. Set a time and just do it. Be regimented. Ruthless. Do it. Or you won’t.”
After I said this I realized that this is my view at pretty much everything. Exercise – don’t play at it, live it, breathe going to the gym and beasting yourself. You want to be healthier. Be healthier. Too many of us play at things. We want to be good at the martial arts but we don’t put in the time. We spend it watching others. “Oh wow, that guy is so great. I love the way he moves. Wish I could move like that.” But we aren’t willing to put in the sweat equity. We aren’t willing to do whatever it takes to be the best.
We tell people we are grapplers but we never get on the mats and grapple. We tell people we are strikers but never hit anything. Or worse, we never do any of it with any type or resistance. We are asleep. We lie to ourselves. We pretend. We are just dreaming. When we see that we are not really living, that we are just wandering around through our lives like it is all some kind of foggy dream we realize that we need to do something about it.
If you knew you were going to die next year or five years from now, ten years from now – if somehow you had a date and you knew when it would all end would that change the way you do the things you love and want to do? Would you make sure you made all your dreams come true? Would you waste away and let it all just slip and slide away?
I would like to think that all of you would do the same thing – Wake Up!
Now, waking up and living doesn’t have to be a huge thing. It does however have to be progressive. You have to be honest. You have to be brave. You have to have courage. You have to be strong. You have to have compassion. But most of all, what you have to do is see things as they really are and realize that you already have all the amazing attributes of those great people who have gone before you. You can be the kind of amazing person that you yourself have looked up to. The only difference is the work that you need to do. The only difference is waking up and realizing you can’t put things off, you can’t become this person you want to be ‘someday’ – you have to wake up and realize it has to start today!
Now here is the hardest part of all – you have to see your life as it really is, not as you think it is. If you believe you are fit but would rather take an elevator than the stairs, guess again.
If you think you are a well-rounded martial artist but won’t show up and roll and be willing to be tapped out guess again or if you think you don’t need to work your kicks, punches and weapons and that you’ll grapple your way out of a confrontation, again, wake up. But hey, maybe none of this matters to you. Maybe you are content floating through life oblivious to the reality that is all around you.
Maybe your view of yourself and your life is that mediocrity is ok. Maybe you think that when you are stretched out on your deathbed thinking about the things that could have happened but didn’t you’ll be ok with having not even tried.
For me though it is a constant drumming in my head. Wake Up!
When I think I’ve done enough, Wake Up!
When I think I’m worn out and beat, Wake Up!
When I think I’ve worked hard enough, Wake Up!
When I think I’m fit enough, Wake Up!
When I think I’ve done something because of a certificate on a wall, Wake Up!
James Eke served as a Combat Arms Army captain and owns and runs a martial arts academy, Eke Academy of Martial Arts, in Victoria, BC, Canada. He is a Certified Instructor of Jeet Kune Do, Kali/Filipino Martial Arts and Maphilindo Silat/Majapahit Martial Arts under Guro Dan Inosanto as well as an instructor in the JF/JKD Grappling Association. Eke also has black belt ranks in Karate and Iaido, and is a blue-belt in Machado Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Prof Gary Padilla, head BJJ instructor at the Inosanto Academy.
Q&A with Larry Hartsell
A Venture into Jeet Kune Do, Grappling and Open-Mindedness
(from Black Belt Magazine, April 2004)
For years, martial artists have associated Larry Hartsell with two ultra-effective fighting concepts: grappling and jeet kune do. Bruce Lee’s system will forever stand at the forefront of martial arts popularity, and now that proponents of Brazilian jujutsu have focused the world’s attention on the effectiveness of ground fighting, grappling has come into vogue. This naturally brings us to Hartsell—an expert in both ways of fighting—as he twists Black Belt into a knot and chokes us into submission. At the mercy of his elbow lock and hook punch, we bring you the following interview. —Editor (more…)
Larry Hartsell – An American Icon
Larry Hartsell reaches out his hand and as mine comes in contact I am impressed at the power of his grip. It is not the bone-crushing squeeze of someone who has something to prove but rather the subtle touch of a man who is wonderfully in control of both his physical and mental being. Hartsell is not threatened by anyone and for good reason.
He is the JKD world's premier grappler and an American icon when it comes to ground fighting.
Less than 72 hours before I was being gently introduced to the Jiu Jitsu of Rickson Gracie at a seminar in Eugene Oregon. Today contributing editor Don Smith and I are standing in the parking lot of our hotel in Milton-Freewater, Oregon chatting with Larry and his wife and business associate, Debra. Jim Keating is hosting a Hartsell fighting seminar in nearby Walla Walla and FULL CONTACT couldn't pass up the opportunity to observe and work out with the man who both Ed Parker and Bruce Lee earmarked as their "hit man."
Hartsell, recently married and pursuing a rigorous fitness program and diet, looks like every top-notch 1st Sergeant with whom I have ever served.
His time in the Army includes combat in Vietnam where he served with the military police.
Larry, already an accomplished Judo man enjoyed sparring with soldiers from the elite South Korean ROK division stationed nearby. "They were tough:' he recalls with a reserved smile," and always got mad as hell when I'd straight blast them." The war taught Hartsell a great deal about himself and his fellow man, and there's a veteran's pride in his eyes when he shares such experiences with those who've served honorably.
Our first day in the gym was spent introducing the students to what grappling is all about. Hartsell was a patient teacher and makes good use of such training aids as a large chalkboard, upon which he outlined the flow of the class for the benefit of us note-takers. He is a quiet man by nature, and upon seeing this, I repositioned myself so I wouldn't miss anything he had to say. Debra, an intelligent and attractive woman, sat nearby where she artfully laid out her husband's books, t-shirts and other seminar goodies. They make a good team, both respectful of the other's talents and presence. (more…)
An American Martial Arts Icon: Sifu Larry Hartsell
(This article originally appears in AMAM Magazine)
Forward provided by Richard Bustillo
Larry Hartsell is considered to be among the premier Jeet Kune Do fighters in the world. Larry began his martial arts training by studying Judo in North Carolina from 1957 - 1960. He then moved to California, and for the next four decades, studied exclusively with his mentor and personal friend, Guro Dan Inosanto.
During the 1960's, Guro Dan Inosanto introduced Hartsell to the famed Sensei Edmond Parker, Sr., and began his studies in Kenpo Karate. Shortly after receiving his black belt in Kenpo, he went into the army and served in Vietnam from 1966 - 1967. After his discharge, Hartsell returned to California, at which time, Guro Dan Inosanto re-introduced him to Si Gung Bruce Lee. Hartsell is an original student and member of the Los Angeles Chinatown Group founded by Si Gung Bruce Lee, for which Guro Dan Inosanto was eventually appointed the head instructor. Hartsell was also accepted as a private student of Bruce Lee's, and trained privately at his home in Bel Air, California and also became a close personal friend to Bruce Lee. Lee considered Hartsell to be his "Premier" JKD fighter. (more…)
What Yoga Does For Me
"yoga is as yoga does" (Elvis Presley Lyrics)
There’s nothing youthful about having a sore back, feeling overwhelmed, or losing flexibility. Whenever I don’t do yoga for a few days, I start to feel all of these. For every day I don’t do yoga, it takes two or three days to get me back on course… which is a good reason to never stop!
It is learning to stay strong even when its the most difficult thing to do. Like George Washington Carver said, "how far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving, and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in life, you will have been all of these things." I try to see life from everyone's perspective, like MLK said, "an individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity." I am just trying to start living.
Q1. What are the physical benefits of practicing yoga?
Yoga is a powerful discipline that can improve health and fitness. Regular yoga practice has been known to increase the stamina, flexibility, stability and strength. Practicing of yoga postures also brings a feeling of well-being to the entire body by stimulating the organs and improving the circulation. As the body works more efficiently, problems like headaches, back pain, stiff hips and digestive disorders can all be alleviated. Pranayama, the breathing techniques can lower the blood pressure, increase cardiovascular efficiency and aid relaxation. (more…)