How Can I Develop Speed Like Bruce Lee

Published by Bruce Lee, Tao of Jeet Kune Do, Edited by Lak Loi

Bruce Lee said,

A boy who is a little slow in reaction time, or in speed of delivery, may compensate for this slowness through quick seeing.

Learning great speed in visual recognitionis a basic beginning.  Your training should include short, concentrated, daily practice in seeing quickly (awareness drills).

High levels of perceptual speed are the product of learning, not of inheritance.

Speed of perception is somewhat affected by the distribution of the observer’s attention –

Fewer separate choices, faster action.

When the cue to be recognised is likely to be one of several, each of which requires a different response, the time is lengthened.  Choice reaction takes longer than simple reaction. This is the basis for training the tools in terms of neurophysiological adjustmenttoward instinctive economy.  Instinctive movement, being the simplest, is the quickest and most accurate.

Progression from volition to reflex controlis when an athlete’s awareness is shifted from small details (mechanical performance) to larger ones, and finally to the whole action, without a thought given to any single part.

A habit of diffusing attention over a wider area helps the offensive passer to see openings more quickly.

For most rapid perception, attentionmust be at its maximum focus on the area of the thing to be perceived (i.e. ‘Get-set!’takes advantage over an opponent who lacks this ‘get-set’ preparation).

Experiments indicate that auditory cues, when occurring close to the athlete, are responded to more quickly than visual ones.  Make use of auditory cues together with visual cues, if possible.  Remember, however, the focus of attention on general movementproduces faster action than focus on hearing or seeing the cue.

Train yourself to cut down unnecessary choice-reactions (minimise yourself naturally) while giving your opponent a variety of possible responses.

A good man is continually trying to force his opponent into the slower, choice-reaction situation.

Strategies of distracting attention (fakes and feints) are athletic devices to direct the opponents attention and to make him hesitate before he can be sure of his cue to act.  Of course, an additional advantage is gained if the opponent can be induced to make a preliminary motion in an appropriate direction.

The offensive opponent who can hit or kick only from one side permits the defensive opponent the faster action of a one-sided focus of attention.

A person reacts to a quick motion towards his eyes by instinctively blinking.  Such instinctive blinking must be controlled in practice or else the opponent, if aware that the fighter closes his eyes when threatened, may provoke this reaction and utilise the moment of blindness for a hit or a kick.

Peace, respect and love, Lak

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