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Jeet Kune Do Terminology used at the PSDTC

          These are the most common Chinese words used in the Jeet Kune Do classes at the Practical Self Defense Training Center as I learned it from both Sifu Dan Inosanto and Sifu Larry Hartsell. The terms in Chinese shown below are written the way they learned them from the late Si Jo Bruce Lee.  Probably the most controversial part of this list is the spellings of some of the words. These spellings are taken from my personal notes that I have been taking over the many years I have been involved in Jeet Kune Do. 

          You have to remember, if you speak or write any language outside of the Chinese language, you are taking their method of writing and translating it to mine or your way of writing. And obviously sounding it out to the best of our abilities and writing it down to make it sound the way Bruce Lee pronounced these terms when he taught his students. This is done to keep his Chinese heritage alive in Jeet Kune Do due to the fact that many Chinese martial arts were researched by Bruce Lee at the beginning of the evolution of his ideas that put his Jun Fan Gung Fu/Jeet Kune Do fighting method together. All students in the study of Jeet Kune Do at the Practical Self Defense Training Center should know these terms to understand the “style” completely along with its historic value. Here are all the terminology used in Jeet Kune Do classes at the PSDTC in alphabetical order:

  • Bai Jong - Ready Position
  • Biu Gee - Thrusting Fingers
  • Biu Sao - Thrusting Hand
  • Boang Sao - Deflecting Hand (Raised Elbow)
  • Chi – Has a Few Definitions such as “Energy,” "Spirit" or "Breath,"
  • Chi Sao - Energy Hands also called sticky hands
  • Chop Choi – extended knuckle punch
  • Chung Choi - Vertical Fist
  • Cup Sao - Scooping hand
  • Doan Chi Sao – one hand Energy hands training
  • Da – Hit or strike
  • Do – or “Tao” Meaning “Way”
  • Dum Tek - Stomp Kick
  • Fon Sao - Trapping Hands
  • Fook Sao - Horizontal deflecting hand
  • Gin Lai - Salute
  • Go Da - High Hit
  • Gon Sao - Outer Wrist Block
  • Gua Choi - Back Fist
  • Gua Tek - Inverted Hook Kick
  • Gum Sao - Pinning Hand
  • Ha Da - Low Hit
  • Ha Pak - Low Slap
  • Hay - begin
  • Hou Juk Tek - Back Side Kick
  • Hou Tek - Back Kick
  • Huen Sao - Circling Hand
  • Jang - Elbow
  • Jao Sao - Running Hand
  • Joap Hop - Line Up or Group Together,
  • Jeet - Stop or Intercept
  • Jeet Gurk - Shin Block
  • Jeet Kune Do - Way Of The Intercepting Fist
  • Jeet Sao - Intercepting Hand, as used in the shoulder or bicep stop
  • Jeet Tek - Intercepting Kick
  • Jern – vertical Palm strike
  • Jik Chung Choi - Commonly Known as the Straight Blast Meaning Straight Vertical Fist. Used For Overwhelming an Opponent With Vertical Fists Down His Center to Find the Opening Using Forward Energy
  • Jik Tek – Straight kick or Front Kick With Toe
  • Jin Choi - Uppercut
  • Jong Sao - Dummy Hand
  • Juen So Tek - Spinning Heel Kick
  • Juen Tek - Spin Kick
  • Juk Tek - Side Kick
  • Jung Da - Middle Hit
  • Jut Sao - Jerking Hand
  • Kow Tao - Head butt
  • Kune (Kun) - Fist
  • Kwoon – School
  • Lao Sing Choi - Lateral Hammer Fist Strike or a Chop With a Closed Fist
  • Lee Jun Fan - Bruce Lee's Chinese Name
  • Lie Sao - palm up pulling deflection using the edge of the thumb/wrist area (sometimes confused with Tahn Sao, though they do look similar) to redirect the force of a linear strike always done from the outside line.
  • Lin Sil Da - Simultaneously defend and hit  (Lin Sil Die Dar)
  • Lok Sao - Rolling Hands
  • Lop Sao - Pulling Hand
  • Maun Choi – Jab (lead punch)
  • Maun Sao - Front Hand, Inquisitive hand or asking hand
  • Mook Jong - Wing Chung Dummy
  • Na – Locking or submission
  • O'ou Choi - Hook Punch
  • O'ou Tek – (sometimes spelled “now tek” due to the sound of the word with an almost silent “N”) - Hook Kick (commonly known as a round house kick in other martial art styles) Bruce Lee referred to the round kicks as Hook kicks
  • Pak Sao - Slapping Hand
  • Ping Choi - Horizontal Fist
  • Saat Da – Knee Strike
  • Si Bak - Your Instructor's Senior
  • Si Dai - Your Junior
  • Si Fu - Teacher or Instructor
  • Si Gung - Your Instructor's Instructor
  • Si Hing - Your Senior
  • Si Jo - Founder Of The System
  • Sil Lim Tao - First Wing Chun Form Called “The Little Idea”
  • Si Mo – Wife of Your Instructor or Female Instructor
  • Si Sook - Your Instructor's Junior
  • So Tek - Heel Kick
  • Sut Sao – Slicing hand or commonly known as to Chop  
  • Tahn Sao - Palm Up Deflecting Hand
  • Tek - Kick  
  • Tok Sao - Lifting arm or lifting hand (lifting under the elbow(s) like you would see in the way the Mook Jong forms end)
  • Tow Dai - Student
  • Tow Suen - Student's Student
  • Wong Pak – Outside Cross Slap
  • Wu Choi – Cross (as in Jab, cross)
  • Wu Sao - Rear Hand or Protective hand
  • Wu Tek - Rear leg
  • Yu Bay - Ready 

I will be putting a better description with pictures soon; just be patient!  You will really enjoy this information that much more when that is done. 

If you are going to copy and paste this on your web page at least have the courtesy to give me credit for it by putting my link in your web page. There is no other web page so far to cover this much information on Jeet Kune Do terminology that I know of so far. I have done a lot of work by going  through many years of notes from many note books to put this all together...thank you!

Jun Fan Gung Fu/Jeet Kune Do
847 Hamilton Ave (Rt 69).
Waterbury, CT 06706
203-596-9073 or 203-802-8533





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Copyright 2001, Ron Kosakowski
Practical Self Defense Training Center
847 Hamilton Avenue
Waterbury, CT 06706
203-596-9073 or 203-802-8533
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