Guro Dan Inosanto


Guro Dan InosantoGuro Dan Inosanto has over 40 years experience in the martial arts and is a world authority in Jun Fan Gung Fu/Jeet Kune Do Concepts and Filipino martial arts.


Guro Dan was originally introduced into the martial arts at the age of ten. During that summer he was taught Okinawa Te and Jiu-Jitsu by a local from his home of Stockton, California. That experience left a favorable impression on Guro Dan but as boys will be boys he followed his interest in football and track for the next ten years. At Whitworth College in Spokane, Washington he won a track conference with 9.5 seconds in the 100 yard dash. His senior year he was the leading ground gainer for the football team. Later his primary career would be a Jr. High School Physical Education teacher.


After college in 1957 Guro Dan took, up Judo from a man called Duke Yoshimura. He trained in Judo until 1959 when he entered the service to become a paratrooper in the 101st Airborne Division. During his tour of duty he was stationed in Fort Campbell, Kentucky. While stationed there Guro Dan was exposed to various styles of Karate with exposure to some other arts as well. It was at this time Guro Dan got his first look at Kenpo Karate.


In 1961, Guro Dan was discharged from the military service and he moved to Los Angeles, California. He looked for an instructor in the art of Kenpo. This search would lead him to path that would change his life. Guro Dan found the “Father of American Karate”, Kenpo Instructor Ed Parker. For the next several years Guro Dan would train with Ed Parker and attain a black belt in the Kenpo system.


It was Ed Parker that first inspired Guro Dan to study Filipino martial arts. Guro Dan thought the Filipinos had some stick fighting called Eskrima. But Ed Parker informed him that there was a lot more than just stick work to the Filipino martial arts. Guro Dan later went to his father, who in turn introduced Guro Dan to many Escrimadors in the local Filipino community. The three of the most prominent where Max Sarmiento, Angel Cabales, and Johnny Lacoste.

Guro Dan Inosanto & Sigung Bruce Lee


In 1964, Ed Parker was organizing his International Karate Championship. During that time Ed Parker needed someone to escort one of his out-of-town guests around town. So Guro Dan was assigned the task to take care of Sifu Bruce Lee for the weekend. From this meeting Bruce Lee and Guro Dan started a life long friendship.

During the next nine years Guro Dan studied with Bruce Lee up unto Lee’s passing in 1973. During that time Guro Dan gained instructors certification in all three arts (Tao of Chinese Gung Fu, Jun Fan Gung Fu, Jeet Kune Do) that Bruce Lee taught. Guro Inosanto is the man personally chosen by Bruce Lee to carry on the concepts and philosophy of Jeet Kune Do. He was one of the only three persons ever to be certified by Bruce Lee to teach. (The two other persons are Taky Kimura, and the late James Lee).


In addition to having studied over 20 methods/styles of Filipino martial arts (being an instructor in several), he is an instructor in Muay Thai under Master Chai Sirisute, an instructor in Pentjak Silat under Pendekar Paul De Thouars and Pendekar Herman Suwanda, an instructor in Shoot Wrestling (Shooto) under Yori Nakamura. In keeping with the spirit of always being a student Guro Dan is currently studying Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under the Machado Brothers.


Guro Dan has worked both in the television and movie industry as a stunt man, fight choreographer, and trainer on numerous projects. In addition to this Guro Dan has several instructional videos and has authored several books: "A Guide to Martial Arts Training", "The Filipino Martial Arts", "Jeet Kune Do", and “Absorb What Is Useful".


Guro Dan has also received the following awards from Black Belt Magazine's Hall of Fame: 1996 - Man of the Year, 1988 - Weapons Instructor of the Year, 1983 - Instructor of the Year, and 1977 - Jeet Kune Do Instructor of the Year.


To learn more about Guro Dan Inosanto read "Dan Inosanto : The Man, the Teacher, the Artist".


FreeVoice: Archive by Terry Tippie


Inosanto Academy of Martial Arts
7298 West Manchester Ave., Suite B
Los Angeles, CA 90045


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