Wu Wei Gung Fu is a modern martial art designed for practical self-defense.
Along with elements that come from the Wing Chun Gung Fu (Kung Fu) method, it includes techniques from various other martial arts, such as Western boxing, Jujutsu, Thai boxing, Sambo and Eskrima.
About The Fighting Art
Wu Wei Gung Fu - The Spontaneous Movement - was founded in 1971 by
Jo-Si (system founder) Joseph Cowles, one of Bruce Lee's
first students in the United States.
The system advocates technical and mental efficiency without unnecessary thought or movement. We aim to internalize the technique until it becomes part of us, ready to be performed without prior planning or thought when the need arises.
The system has been taught in Israel since the 1980s thanks to Si-Jo (head of the system) Eyal Koren, who brought it to Israel and has been working on its development to this day.
What do you learn in training?
We teach the basics of self-defense to men and women of all ages.
Alongside combat techniques, physical fitness and improved spatial control, the training provides tools for dealing with stressful situations, and helps build self-confidence and self-discipline. We develop the ability to persevere, to set our own path and follow it.
The training is suited for both women and men, and no previous experience is required.
No one was born a martial artist!
Desire and perseverance are the only key necessary to gaining amazing abilities.
In the spirit of Bruce Lee's legacy, the method combines various elements in the quest to create a complete martial art, updated with recent research and other innovations in the field of martial arts and training theory.
We strive to provide our trainees with tools for self-defense suitable for varied real world situations. We work on defense, attack and neutralization techniques, and combine hand and foot techniques with locks, throws, and ground fighting. In addition, we specialize in weapons such as nunchaks, sticks and knives.
The challenging aspects of our physical training is designed not only to improve out physical fitness. but also to challenge ourselves, get to know ourselves, face the difficulty and strive for continuous self-improvement - mentally and physically.
What will we emphasize
Learning is gradual, and training is non-competitive. We compete only with ourselves.
Nothing is done without a reason. We seek to reach a deep understanding of every action - anatomically, physiologically and biomechanically.
The trainee does not receive the answers on a silver platter, but is encouraged to explore and expand his or her own understanding. This emphasis is especially important for children and adolescents, who also gain learning habits.
The training focuses on realistic scenarios.
We strive to internalize the techniques in a way which will allow us to deal with the unexpected and the surprising.
We do not cut corners. We do not give up on ourselves. We do not lie to ourselves.
Our values in training are those we strive for in everyday life: thoroughness, determination and respect for others.
Wu Wei Gung Fu and MMA
Bruce Lee was one of the greatest martial arts practitioners of all time and was one of the first to realize the importance of combining aspects from various martial arts. This concept he promoted contributed greatly to the world of martial arts and eventually led to the development of MMA (Combined Martial Arts).
Wu Wei Gung Fu itself was developed by one of Lee’s first students in Seattle, and is being constantly developed and expanded upon to this very day.
Wu Wei Gung Fu is thus a "complete martial art", It includes striking, grappling, locks, throws and the use of weapons such as nunchaku, sticks and knives.
The system is not aimed at competitions like the UFC or Bellator arenas, but for real-life situations.
The System Founder
Professor Joseph Cowles (January 20th 1928 – February 23rd 2014) the founder of Wu-Wei Gung Fu, was a friend and a student of Lee-Jun-Fan (Bruce Lee), and is a friend and a teacher of Si-Jo Eyal Koren (His successor - head of Wu Wei Gung Fu).
Prof. Cowles was born in USA on January 20th 1928. Following a two years service in the US Marines, Prof. Cowles started training in Judo in a YMCA branch in Seattle. In the very same year he met Lee Jun Fan (Bruce Lee), who was yet to open his first school, The Jun-Fan Gung Fu Institute, and became his personal student.
After Bruce Lee had taught Gung Fu in Seattle for several years, Prof. Cowles, who was by then one of his most dedicated students, asked his permission to teach Jun Fan Gung Fu While Bruce would not allow the use of his name, he did tell Cowles he could teach self-defense. Cowles moved to the Dallas area of Texas in 1970, and in 1971 began teaching a few students. In 1973, upon hearing of Bruce’s death, he wrote a few letters to Linda Lee. In one of his letters he mentioned that Bruce had told him he could teach self-defense. In her reply, Linda stated: "I know that Bruce taught you more than self-defense".
This was an encouragement to Prof. Cowles. In order to not encroach upon Bruce’s name or the name of his art, however, he termed his teaching Wu-Wei – the Chinese philosophical concept of spontaneous action. As Bruce had told Cowles when asked if one technique was better than another, Bruce answered: "Nothing is Best; it is WHAT FITS THE MOMENT that that is Best!"
Prof. Cowles always treasured that reply, especially when recalling Bruce’s words in his first book: My action is that of Wu-Wei
Cowles retired from his position as head of Wu Wei Gung Fu on January 1st 2006, naming as his successor his Israeli student Eyal Koren as the worldwide head of the system and Joe Purcell as head of the system in the US.
Prof. Cowles passed away on February 23rd 2014, aged 86.
Degrees and Achievements:
In 1974, Prof. Cowles received a mark of recognition from Prof. Larry Brooks for his exceptional contribution to the Bushido Jiu-jitsu Ryu Society.
In 1978 he received the rank of Shodai for the system he founded.
In 1983 Prof. Cowles was appointed Western States Executive Director for the Society of Black Belts of America by the society’s founder, Robert L. Murphy.
Prof. Cowles is a lifetime member of the Jun Fan Gung Fu Institute and of Kamishin-Kai, and holds the rank of Godan in Kamishin-Ryu.
Head of the system
For more details and to schedule a free training session:
Leave details and we will get back to you for scheduling.
Gift experience training!
Si-Jo Eyal Koren was born on August 7th 1963. He is the father of two children.
Koren was acquainted with the martial arts at the age of 12. He began his training in Gojo-Ryu Karate and in the classical martial art of the Shaolin temple, Shaolin Five Animals.
After years of training, Koren heard word of the non-classical martial art of Wu-Wei Gung Fu founded by Jo-Si Joseph Cowles, a student of the late Bruce Lee.
Koren was taught by the founder of the system, who later authorized him as the system’s delegate in Europe, Australia and Israel. Koren has been teaching in Jerusalem since 1986, with thousands of students on his record.
Koren, who made Wu-Wei Gung Fu his life’s center, diligently developed the system while adapting the training regime to the physical and mental conditions suitable for the Israeli students.
Koren also developed many combat theories and techniques that were later tested and approved by Prof. Cowles.
Head of Wu Wei Gung Fu
In January 20th 2006, Prof. Cowles retired and appointed Koren – who then held a 9th degree black sash – as his successor. Prof. Cowles awarded Koren the red sash and the title Si-Jo, reserved for the head of Wu Wei Gung Fu.
Ranks and Titles
Head of Wu Wei Gung Fu worldwide since 2006.
Lifetime member of the Society of Black Belts of America.
Member of the Jeet Kune Do Association.
Graduate of the Wingate Institute for Trainers.