An eight-year-old martial arts fan, dubbed the ‘Mini Bruce Lee’, has shown of his grueling training regime- which includes doing push-ups using only his thumbs.
Child prodigy Ryusei Imai amazed his parents when they saw him start to swing his kid-sized nunchucks in time with his idol on screen when he was only four years old.
Now, Ryusei, from Nara City, Japan, is throwing fists and high kicks like a mini master.
In order to become just like his idol, Ryusei must train like few other children his age.
One handed press ups, walking on his fists, pull ups and forward flips are just some of the moves in Ryusei’s repertoire – as in order to achieve speed, agility and control akin to that of the iconic fighter.
Ryusei said: ‘I’ve watched his movies since I was one year old and tried to be like him. I made a lot of mistakes at the start, like I couldn’t get the exact timing.
Child prodigy Ryusei Imai has a grueling training regime so he can become just like Bruce Lee
He saw his first Bruce Lee film when he was just one and started training three years later
‘Sometimes I was too fast, sometimes too slow, but I’m getting better and better. Now I can imitate his moves along with the movies.’
Ryusei’s dad Ryuji said: Basically, we train every day. On a school day, before school starts, we do stretches and some muscle trainin.’
The little boy’s grandfather was a karate fighter, and passed his passion for the ancient art form, and practicing with nunchucks, down to his son.
Ryusei pictured in his home in Nara City, Japan, with his parents who help him train
His father Ryuji says he realised his son’s talent when he saw him on TV and stage
Ryuji added: ‘I love Bruce Lee and so does Ryusei. We’ve always played music and movies to him, but when we saw him playing nunchucks along with a movie scene, it certainly surprised us.
‘The moment I realised his talent was when he appeared on the TV and stage – he never got nervous and looked like he was having fun.
‘He was performing well and showing what he loves to do in front of a lot of people, without any fear.’
To move with such rapid reflexes when tackling opponents, Bruce Lee had a motto, and Ryuji sees this embodied in his son.
‘The phrase he used to say, “don’t think, feel”, I can see that coming out of Ryusei’s face. I think that is the coolest thing,’ Ryuji said.
‘I can tell Ryusei also feels the greatness of Bruce Lee. He has a certain vision of how he wants to be.
‘I want him to devote himself to what he loves, with an honest heart, and never give up, and to remember that and enjoy himself.’