GEOMETRIC LINES AND PATHS -- UPPER/LOWER CASE MOVEMENTS


To further develop Economy of Motion as you acquire new "States
of Motion" you must thoroughly understand the concepts of Geometric
Lines and Paths. GEOMETRIC PATH is the concept of visualizing an
entire limb being used to block or strike with, not just a portion of
it. This concept allows for a greater margin for error, since it is
the entire path of action that you are to contemplate using. Another
comparable analogy is the "SQUEEGEE PRINCIPLE" where it's not the
outer ends that are utilized, but the entire area that exists between
them. The outer boundaries of your action form the geometric lines,
while the area between them constitutes the path. Instead of following
geometric lines, we should all learn to employ geometric paths since
it insures better protection. This principle can also be paralleled to
a third analogy, the concept of UPPER AND LOWER CASE.

UPPER AND LOWER CASE MOVEMENTS basically adheres to the SQUEEGEE
and GEOMETRIC PATH principles. UPPER CASE MOVEMENTS are moves that
employ the upper part of an arm to block with as opposed to the lower
portion of that arm. The upper part of the blocking arm is discouraged
from being used twice.

UPPER CASE AND LOWER CASE MOVEMENTS can best be explained in the
following manner. If you were blocking a punch to your head with the
hammer portion of your fist it would be faster and simpler to block a
second blow aimed at your stomach with the lower part of your forearm
instead (LOWER CASE MOVEMENT). Logic should tell you that your forearm
is closer to second line of action (punch to your stomach). This
action can be paralleled with the letters of the alphabets that
require it be written in two forms -- upper and lower case. Employment
of an UPPERCASE MOVEMENT followed by a LOWER CASE MOVEMENT
would have your arm following a path and not a line of action. Following a path
of action as opposed to a line of action again allows you greater room
for error. ECONOMY OF MOTION is the result of its employment.

Begin by reviewing basic movements of your hands and arms,
especially when blocking. Visualize each of your blocks and strikes as
following a path rather than simply a line of action. Practice with a
partner to see if you can defend, strike, or simultaneously defend and
strike with a single movement. Once you feel comfortable with your
arms following Geometric Paths, apply your training to your legs.

Employ these three methods of application when practicing self-defense
techniques. Get a partner and defend yourself by utilizing the
Upper/Lower Case, Geometric Path, or Squeegee principles. Have him
randomly strike high and low to various targets on your body as you
conveniently and subtlely employ these principles. Require that your
partner get into the spirit of his movements. Have him strike at you
with force. Don't settle for weak, slow, and sloppy movements. Let
this form of practice improve your awareness, heighten your use of
Economy of Motion, and compel you to protect yourself with meaningful
as well as effective blocks.




Ed Parker Sr. Memories
Archived with the permission of Ed Parker Jr.
Ed Parker Sr. was the founder of the art known today as American Kenpo.
In these files, Ed Parker Jr. shares his fathers unpublished notes and other memories with us.