Bruce Lee Fighting Mans Exercise

Bruce Lee fighting mans exercise


The Fighting Man Exercise

Stamina Exercise

Although you have the right attitude,

It’s not enough to avoid a strife.

Although you have a heart of fortitude,

It’s no assurance of saving your life.

You may have spent years in training

In the art of fighting you love so much.

But if you are winded in a sparring,

It proves that your condition is such

You need plenty of workout on the road,

Running two, three or more miles a day

Until your body can take more load.

Then comes a day you see the light,

You look up at the sky and then replay:

“Skill in performance is all right,

But it’s not enough to prove you might.”

Aerobic Exercises

One of the most neglected elements of martial artists is the physical workout. Too

much time is spent in developing skill in techniques and not enough in physical


Practicing your skill in fighting is important, but so is maintaining your overall

physical condition. Actually both are needed to be successful in a real fight.

Training is a skill of disciplining your mind, developing your power and supplying

endurance to your body. Proper training is for the purpose of building your body

and avoiding activities or substances that will deteriorate or injure it.

Bruce Lee was a secimen of health. He trained every day and consumed only the

proper food. Although he drank tea, he never drank coffee – instead he normally

consumed milk. He was a martinet who never let his work interfere with his

training. Even when he was sent to India to find suitable locations for filming, he

took along his running shoes.

Lee’s daily training consisted of aerobic exercises, plus others which were

patterned to develop his skill in fighting. He varied his exercises to avoid boredom.

One of his favorite exercises was running four miles a day in 24 to 25 minutes. He

would change his tempo while running – after several miles of constant, even

strides, he would sprint several feet and then return to easier running. Between

changes in running tempo, he would also shuffle his feet. Lee was not particular

where he ran: at the beach, in parks or woods, up and down hills or on surfaced


Besides running, he also rode an exercycle to develop his endurance, legs and

cardiovascular muscles. He usually rode full speed – 35 to 40 miles an hour

continuously for 45 minutes to an hour. Frequently, he would ride his exercycle

right after his running.

Another aerobic exercise that Lee scheduled in his routine was skipping rope,

which you can adopt. This exercise not only develops your stamina and leg

muscles, but also improves you, makes you “light on your feet.” Only recently,

physiologists have learned, by several tests, that skipping rope is more beneficial

than jogging. Ten minutes of skipping rope is equivalent to 30 minutes of jogging.

Both are very beneficial exercises for the cardiovascular system.

Skipping rope properly is one of the best exercises for developing a sense of

balance. First, skip on one foot, holding the other in front of you; then rotate your

foot, skipping on the alternate foot with each revolution of the rope, from a gradual

pace to a really fast tempo. Minimize your arm-swing; instead, use your wrists to

swing the rope over. Lift your foot slgihtly above the ground, just enough for the

rope to pass. Skip for three minutes (equivalent to a round in a boxing match); then

rest one minute only, before you continue for another round. Three rounds of this

exercise are sufficient for a good workout. As you become conditioned to skipping,

you can omit the rest period and do the exercise for as long as 30 minutes straight.

The best rope is made of leather with ball bearings in the handles.

Additional endurance exercises are shadowboxi ng and actual sparring.

Shadowboxing is a good agility exercise which also builds up your speed. Relax

your body and learn to move easily and smoothly. At first concentrate on your form

and move with lightness on your feet until it becomes natural and comfortable- then

work faster and harder. It is a good idea to start your workout with shadowboxing to

loosen your muscles. Imagine your worst enemy stands before you and you are

going to demolish him. If you use your imagination intensely, you can instill into

yourself an almost real fighting frame of mind. Besides developing stamina,

shadowboxing increases your speed, creates ideas and establishes techniques to

be used spontaneously and intuitively. Going several rounds is the best way to

learn proper footwork.

Too many begineers are too lazy to drive themselves. Only by hard and continuous

exercise will you develop endurance. You have to drive yourself to the point of

exhaustion (“out of breath” and expect muscle ache in a day or two). The best

endurance training method seems to be a lengthy period of exercise interspersed

with many brief but high-intensity endeavours. Stamina-types of exercise should be

done gradually and cautiously increased. Six weeks in this kind of training is a

minimum for any sports that require considerable amount of endurance. It takes

years to be in peak condition and, unfortunately, stamina is quickly lost when you

cease to maintain high conditioning exercises. According to some medical experts,

you lose most of your benefit from exercises if you skip more than a day between



Bruce Lee fighting mans exercise

Warming Up

To warm up, select light, easy exercises to loosen your muscles and to prepare

them for more strenuous work. Besides improving your performance, warming-up

exercises are necessary to preve nt injury to your muscles. No smart athlete will

use his hand or leg violently without first warming it up carefully. These light

exercises should dectate as closely as possible the ensuing, more strenuous types

of movements.

How long should you warm up? This depends on several aspects. If you live in a

colder area, or during the cold winter, you have to do longer warm-up exercises

than do those who live in a warmer climate. Longer warming -up exercises than do

those who live in a warmer climate. Longer warming-up is recommended in the

early morning than in the afternoon. Generally, five or ten minutes of war-up

exercises are adequate but some performers need much more. A ballet dancer

spends at least two hours. He commences with very basic movements, gradua lly

but consistently increasing the activityand intensity, until he is ready to make his



Bruce Lee learned that certain exercises can help you greatly in your performance,

and others can impede or even impair your execution of techniques. He found that

beneficial exercises are those that do not cause antagonistic tension in your


Your muscles respond differently to different exercises. During a static or slow

exercise such as a handstand or lifting heavy weights such as a barbell, the

muscles on both sides of the joints operate strongly to set the body in a desirable

position. But in a rapid activity such as running, jumping or throwing, the muscles

that close the joints contract and the muscles directly opposite elongate to allow

the movement. Although there is still tension on both muscles, the strain is

considerably less on the elongated, or lengthened one.

When there is excessive or antagonistic tension on the elongated muscles, it

hinders and weakens your movement. It acts like a brake, causing premature

fatigue, generally associated only with new activity-demanding different muscles to

perform. A coordinated, natural athlete is able to perform in any sporting activity

with ease because he moves with little antagonistic tension. On the other hand, the

novice performs with excessive tension and effort, creating a lot of wasted motions.

Although this coordination trait is more a native talent in some than in other, all can

improve it by intensive training.