Bruce Lee Quotes

Quotes by Bruce Lee


Nowadays you don’t go around on the street kicking people, punching people — because if you do, well that’s it — I don’t care how good you are.

Bruce Lee interview on the Pierre Berton Show (1971)

Soon my fists began to swell from hitting his hard head. Right then I realized Wing Chun was not too practical and began to alter my way of fighting.

Bruce Lee in Black Belt magazine (October 1976)

You know what I want to think of myself? As a human being. Because, I mean I don’t want to be like “As Confucius say,” but under the sky, under the heavens there is but one family. It just so happens that people are different.

Bruce Lee: The Lost Interview (1971)

When you’re talking about fighting, as it is, with no rules, well then, baby you’d better train every part of your body!

Bruce Lee: The Lost Interview (1971)

I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.

Bruce Lee

If you always put limit on everything you do, physical or anything else. It will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.

Bruce Lee

To me, the extraordinary aspect of martial arts lies in its simplicity. The easy way is also the right way, and martial arts is nothing at all special; the closer to the true way of martial arts, the less wastage of expression there is.

Bruce Lee

All types of knowledge, ultimately mean self knowledge.

Bruce Lee: The Lost Interview (1971)

If you love life, don’t waste time, for time is what life is made up of.

Bruce Lee

Boards don’t hit back.

As “Mr. Lee” in Enter the Dragon (1973); Bruce Lee’s character said this to “Oharra” after Oharra had broken a board in the air with his fist.

A good martial artist does not become tense, but ready. Not thinking, yet not dreaming. Ready for whatever may come. When the opponent expands, I contract; and when he contracts, I expand. And when there is an opportunity, “I” do not hit, “it” hits all by itself.

Bruce Lee: Enter the Dragon (1973); In a conversation with an older member of the temple.

Don’t think, feel….it is like a finger pointing a way to the moon. Don’t concentrate on the finger or you will miss all that heavenly glory!

Bruce Lee: Enter the Dragon (1973); In a training session with one of the temple students.

Use only that which works, and take it from any place you can find it.

As quoted in Bruce Lee : Fighting Spirit (1994) by Bruce Thomas (1994), p.44

Forget about winning and losing; forget about pride and pain. Let your opponent graze your skin and you smash into his flesh; let him smash into your flesh and you fracture his bones; let him fracture your bones and you take his life. Do not be concerned with escaping safely — lay your life before him.

As quoted in Bruce Lee : Artist of Life (1999) edited by John R. Little, p. 192

There are no limits. There are plateaus, but you must not stay there, you must go beyond them. If it kills you, it kills you. A man must constantly exceed his level.

As quoted in The Art of Expressing the Human Body (1998) edited by John R. Little, p. 23

Don’t get set into one form, adapt it and build your own, and let it grow, be like water. Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless — like water. Now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup; You put water into a bottle it becomes the bottle; You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.

Bruce Lee: A Warrior’s Journey (2000); here, Lee was reciting lines he wrote for his short lived role on the TV series Longstreet.

Quotes about Bruce Lee


If Bruce Lee wasn’t the greatest martial artist of all time, then certainly he is the number one candidate.

Joe Lewis

When I was having dinner with Chuck Norris I did ask him: “If you and Bruce would be in a real fight to death, who would win?”, and he said without thinking: “Bruce of course. Nobody can beat him.”

John Benn, in audio commentary on DVD of The Way of the Dragon (US title: Return of the Dragon).

I wouldn’t have put a dime on anyone to beat Bruce Lee in a real confrontation. Bruce Lee was the best street fighter I ever saw, even to this very day, and not just pound for pound — but against anyone in a real fight.

James Demile in a Temple of the Unknown interview (10 April 2001)

There’s no doubt in my mind that if Bruce Lee had gone into pro boxing, he could easily have ranked in the top three in the lightweight division or junior-welterweight division.

Dan Inosanto, as quoted in “The Truth of Boxing : A Critical Look at Bruce Lee’s Hand Skills” by Bob Birchland in Black Belt Magazine (November 2007). pg. 93)

The slender, swift Bruce Lee was the Fred Astaire of martial arts, and many of the fights that could be merely brutal come across as lightning-fast choreography.

Pauline Kael reviewing Enter the Dragon, from 5001 Nights at the Movies (1982)

I wanted to do in boxing what Bruce Lee was able to do in the martial arts. Lee was an artist and, like him, I try to get beyond the fundamentals of my sport. I want my fights to be seen as plays.

Sugar Ray Leonard, as quoted at Bruce Lee Links

In a dictionary, you say “greatest”, you say “Bruce Lee”, that´s the way it is. He is second to no one.

Sugar Ray Leonard (from minute 3.46 to 3.57)

When Bruce Lee kicked, you don’t shut your eyes. Because when you shut your eyes, you cannot see Bruce Lee kick it´s so fast! Human beings cannot move like cartoon [sound effects], that´s the fastest you can be. Even Muhammad Ali or Mike Tyson, their punches are fast, but you still can see [them].

Jackie Chan

If Bruce Lee wasn’t the greatest martial artist of all time, then certainly he is the number one candidate.

Joe Lewis, quoted at Temple of the Unknown

I considered him by far the greatest. And for those who don´t considering him the greatest, at least he is the top candidate for being actually the greatest.

Joe Lewis, quoted in “Death by Misadventure” (from minute 5.54 to 6.04)

I remember many times my father (Ed Parker) talking about, pound for pound, Lee was the best martial artist, he´d ever seen.

Ed Parker Jr., quoted in the documentary “Bruce Lee: Curse of the Dragon”, 1993 Warner Bros. Tom Kuhn Fred Weintraub

Bruce Lee is my Idol. I need to learn some techniques of Bruce Lee, especially the quickness of his hands and legs.

Manny Pacquiao

It’s a little tough for the traditional martial artists to swallow, because one system doesn’t do it. You’ve got to cross-train in many different systems. Actually, the father of mixed martial arts, if you will, was Bruce Lee. If you look at the way Bruce Lee trained, the way he fought, and many of the things he wrote, he said the perfect style was no style. You take a little something from everything. You take the good things from every different discipline, use what works, and you throw the rest away.

Dana White in Fight Times magazine

His martial art skills made Lee arguably the greatest martial artist of his time — or any other.

Bill Duff in the martial arts / fight sport documentary Human Weapon by The History Channel, episode 10: “China and Kung Fu”, aired November 2, 2007.

 Source: Wikiquote, Brainyquote

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