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GS718Trek
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Joined: 08 Oct 2014
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2022 11:54 am    Post subject: KEMPO Karate Reply with quote

Anyone familiar with or knowledgeable about this style?
I found a California location and watched some of the videos they had on their website.



I like how they practice padwork and spar.
Hawaii appears to be the style's place of origin.


Is this style comparable to Wonder Thompson's or Gene Hackleman's (chuck Liddell's sensei) Kempo?



I apologize, but I find the Katas a little awkward because I'm used to Japanese Katas.





here is a link https://www.universalkempokarate.com/
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Zaine
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2022 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kempo is an odd phenomenon to me. There are so many versions of it and a lot of them (this one included, it seems) does that thing where in their 2-person work they throw all of those strikes, do a take down, and then once again throw a lot of strikes. I'm too unfamiliar with Kempo in general to understand why they do this?

That said, the founder seems to have the experience and resume that I would expect. A few placements at state and national tournaments. You likely find the kata awkward due to his background in Kajukenbo, which tends to take more inspiration from Chinese Martial Arts than their Japanese counterparts. It seems that the founder's teacher in particular added a lot of Kung Fu into the system.

Overall, it's more comparable to Liddel's Kempo, they both come from Hawaii. Parker Kempo, on the other hand, tends to be more Japanese in it's inspirations.
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Himokiri Karate
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2022 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kempo or kenpo often times is considered a mish mash of karate and kung fu both in techniques and in cultural presentiation of the art. In the anime and manga world, they often called Kung Fu: Chinese Kenpo!


Depending on Kenpo school, some are more Chinese oriented in culture and some are more karate and Japanese based.


The idea of Kenpo is incredibly amazing and in theory, it should be considered an extremely deadly art. Problem is, the Kenpo I have seen are presented by folks who overpromise its effectiveness but are underwhelming in its presentation.

While with Korean Karate of Taekwondo and Tang Soo Do. There is serious quality control and you must be prepared to put your life on the line to make gains. Any complacent dojo or dojang behavior that is run by a Korean master can mean severe punishment for not representing the art the right way.

What I am trying to say is, Kenpo is a great art but it lacks a defining culture and quality control and one kenpo style can be wildly different than another kenpo style.
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R5ky
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2022 3:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The idea of Kenpo is incredibly amazing and in theory, it should be considered an extremely deadly art. Problem is, the Kenpo I have seen are presented by folks who overpromise its effectiveness but are underwhelming in its presentation.



Strongly concur with this!

But thankfully, people like Chuck Liddell and Stephen Thompson have demonstrated its value in competitive mixed martial arts at the highest levels. (former champ Glover Texiera is also a high ranking Kempo guy under Hackleman)


Last edited by R5ky on Sun Aug 14, 2022 3:34 pm; edited 1 time in total
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R5ky
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2022 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
You likely find the kata awkward due to his background in Kajukenbo, which tends to take more inspiration from Chinese Martial Arts than their Japanese counterparts. It seems that the founder's teacher in particular added a lot of Kung Fu into the system.

Overall, it's more comparable to Liddel's Kempo



Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe I read that John Hackleman, Liddell's trainer, had kata removed from his curriculum that he taught at the Pit.
Apart from donning gis and belts, it is difficult to tell it apart from some sort of kickboxing at this point.
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Zaine
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2022 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

R5ky wrote:
Quote:
You likely find the kata awkward due to his background in Kajukenbo, which tends to take more inspiration from Chinese Martial Arts than their Japanese counterparts. It seems that the founder's teacher in particular added a lot of Kung Fu into the system.

Overall, it's more comparable to Liddel's Kempo



Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe I read that John Hackleman, Liddell's trainer, had kata removed from his curriculum that he taught at the Pit.
Apart from donning gis and belts, it is difficult to tell it apart from some sort of kickboxing at this point.
I couldn't tell you. I had to Google what kind of Kemp Liddell learned. I don't follow celebrities much.
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bushido_man96
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2022 12:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

R5ky wrote:
Quote:
The idea of Kenpo is incredibly amazing and in theory, it should be considered an extremely deadly art. Problem is, the Kenpo I have seen are presented by folks who overpromise its effectiveness but are underwhelming in its presentation.



Strongly concur with this!

But thankfully, people like Chuck Liddell and Stephen Thompson have demonstrated its value in competitive mixed martial arts at the highest levels. (former champ Glover Texiera is also a high ranking Kempo guy under Hackleman)


I've learned over time that looking to the most talented in conversations like these doesn't end up proving much. It's likely that these individuals would have made whatever they were doing look good, when in fact, it has more to do with the fact that they are just really naturally talented, and they ended up making what they do look good.
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DarthPenguin
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2022 7:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bushido_man96 wrote:
R5ky wrote:
Quote:
The idea of Kenpo is incredibly amazing and in theory, it should be considered an extremely deadly art. Problem is, the Kenpo I have seen are presented by folks who overpromise its effectiveness but are underwhelming in its presentation.



Strongly concur with this!

But thankfully, people like Chuck Liddell and Stephen Thompson have demonstrated its value in competitive mixed martial arts at the highest levels. (former champ Glover Texiera is also a high ranking Kempo guy under Hackleman)


I've learned over time that looking to the most talented in conversations like these doesn't end up proving much. It's likely that these individuals would have made whatever they were doing look good, when in fact, it has more to do with the fact that they are just really naturally talented, and they ended up making what they do look good.


Totally agree here. I am reminded of a video i saw once of GSP being shown some silly gymnastics trick involving a gym ball and performing some moves on it while standing etc (cant remember exactly which). First time he literally fell on his face. The guys showing him were all amused and a little smug at their skills. 30min later he could do it (and to the untrained eye he looked as good as them doing it).

Some people are just immensely physically gifted and whatever they do they will be good at it. For example look at Floyd Mayweather. Imagine how good an mma fighter he would have been if that had been his focus etc.
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RW
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2022 11:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

having practiced one of the 'kempo' styles for several years, getting my shodan, and having done some research, I have some negative things to say about kempo/kenpo...

It's basically the wild west. If you are a westerner that wants to open his own karate school, but don't have the necessary credentials in a traditional karate style, BOOM, just call it kempo/kenpo karate, add your personal variation and off you go!

This is why there are so many styles out there. American kempo, American kenpo, ed parker's kenpo, tracy kenpo, shaolin kempo, shaolin kenpo (yes, there is a shaolin kenpo that is not shaolin kempo, and there is an american kempo and an american kenpo), 'shaolin kenpo karate', etc etc etc

What's more just because you're in, say, a shaolin kempo karate school in location it doesn't mean you know any of the kata taught at a different SKK dojo owned by somebody else.

While you can find the same kata at a shotokan karate school in MA and in OR, and maybe even some common katas across real karate style (e.g. you will have heian nidan in several different karate styles), the guy doing "the same" style of kempo 20 miles from you is doing a kata called "screaming chicken" while you're learning "kenpo long set 1" and the guy across the state line is learning "kata 1".

If you try to dig into the history of these schools they all go back to hawaii, where the descendent of an ancient japanese clan centuries ago developed a unique martial arts style based on kung fu cough cough uh, I mean, chuan fa (totally different! ) , that then was imported to hawaii, where it mixed with "american street fighting" to become kempo as we know it. Then it became popular in continental US.

But in reality, these guys use words like kata, kumite, dojo and they wear karate gi (sometimes they're black! you see, totally different ) and they still teach you the same moves. They may call it "front kick", but it's a mae geri. They may call it "thrust punch", but it's a tate tsuki. They may call it a "front punch" but it's a tsuki. Oh, and the zenkutsu dachi? Just call it "half moon stance", it sounds good . You get the idea.

It then doesn't help that often their kata are clearly repurposed karate kata. No, they have no Taikyoku Shodan ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzIQJsRJzEk ) they're not karate!!! They have a kempo kata (totally different, guys, trust me), with a totally different name (1-pinan), that has nothing to do with it and no resemblance at all ( ) : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbL4aI_3_UA

Even their advanced katas can be repurposed katas... look up stature of the crane. Does it look familiar? It's Rohai!

How can this "ancient kung fu based japanese style combined with american street fighting" have mostly karate moves and even some repurposes karate kata?

I think you see where I am going with this. I could open a school tomorrow, call it "kempo 6.0" or "kempo 2.1) (there is a kempo 5.0, after all) or "samurai kenpo fu" (there is a "shaolin kempo karate", after all) and have kata with names like "screaming chicken" and "stripes of the cheetah" and nobody would do a thing about or or call me out on it. And if I open the dojo in a wealthy suburb and offer tons of kid's activities that idea could probably succeed.
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