Anyone who has spent time training with Paul Vunak can tell you that it is an intense and unique experience. He stands out in the world of Jeet Kune Do and street fighting.
Vunak's willingness to explore and create in the dark places that very few will even think about created some of the best training methods for fighting. His many years of training with masters like Dan Inosanto, Rickson Gracie, Daniel Duby and others, as well as his real-world experimentation, are potent ingredients in the methods he created in order to teach others how to become a decent, or even legendary, fighter in a relatively short time.
Vunak's teaching style was ahead of his time and some of the best teachers out there have integrated his training methods into their schools over the decades like we have here at Cultivate Power Fighting Arts.
As we witness the teaching-style renassaince that is currently unfolding in the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu world where Ecological Dynamics and the Constraint-Led Approach is finally being integrated and implemented, us JKD folks smile; we've been using those methods for years thanks to brilliant minds like Paul Vunak.
CPFA Instructors Darrell and Jennifer were very fortunate to have begun their Jeet Kune Do journey during a special time when Vunak partnered with his dedicated student, friend and co-creator of the Descendants of the Masters program, Harinder Singh Sabharwal (you can find his Black Belt Magazine podcast here).
Together, Vunak and Sabharwal were the perfect blend that embodied the spirit of Bruce Lee's Jeet Kune Do: athleticism, creativity, exploration, passion, progression and a willingness to understand violence in a way that opened the door to unbridled human expression.
Paul and Singh were like yin and yang; two very different individuals that came together for a short time, creating a special opportunity for hyper-advancement for those willing to embrace the work. It was an amazing few years.
They say "all good things come to an end", but the other half of this statement that is left out is... "in order for progress to continue".
When Vunak and Sabharwal parted ways, the progression of Contemporary Jeet Kune Do continue. Singh started JKDAA, the Jeet Kune Do Athletic Association, based out of the Bay Area and a source of some of the most amazing martial artists and teachers you'd be honored to spend time learning with.
In the few years we trained with Singh, our athleticism and JKD attributes got a serious upgrade. Over many years of self-development and self-healing after tragic events in his life, Singh developed his unique Action Strength program. A car accident had left him paralyzed and his choice to overcome it led him to master various strength and physical arts. Using the JKD philosphy, Sabharwal put together the most powerful methods he had learned on his rehabilitation journey with heavy focus on developing the sharpest attributes of a JKD martial artist.
The Four pillars of Action Strength
Gada (Indian Mace)
Mala Vidyea (Singh's term for martial/warrior yoga methods originating from The Great Gama and his world-famous wrestling village in India).
The Action Strength system has been so effective and complimentary to the Contemporary Jeet Kune Do we learned from Paul Vunak that it remains a staple in our dojo... and always will.
There are only a handful of people that had the opportunity to train with Vunak and Sabharwal during those special years, and even fewer who still teach that unique combination of their respective areas of expertise that were blended during that time. Those who have had the desire, willingness and drive to do the work and "take the medicine", so to speak, can attest to the power these training methods have cultivated in their lives.
Our Jeet Kune Do roots are alive and well here at Cultivate Power. We continue this journey learning from JKD Legends like Erik Paulson who share our deep appreciation for the creativity and wisdom of this lineage.