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Thread: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

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    Default Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    My name is Angelo Collado I am a 6th Degree Black belt in American Kenpo . My lineage=Parker/Trejo/Furuya. I have been studying for well over 35 years now. I was initially taught Form 4 directly fromFrank Trejo/ Yosh Furuya . I have be fortunate to have met with and have goneover and dissected Form 4 with MANY 1st generation Seniors. Frank Trejo, Roger Meadows, Pat Salantri, Huk Planas, Lee Wedlake to mention a few. Back in the day there was no YouTube or Internet. You had to travel and beg and plead to get some mat time with the seniors. But once I met with all the great instructorsI found that they ALL did Form 4 with all similar angles, attacks, techniques,stances, strikes, blocks , targets and applications and were 99.9% consistent. Evenbeing hundreds of miles apart and not being in communication with each other. There were some differences in timing and interpretation of movements and movement principals… But nothing major that wouldmake the form appear different.
    I have traveled the globe and have attended many Kenpo Eventsover the years. I have been fortunate enough to have been asked to be a judge on many Kenpo tests and tournaments. I have seen “thousands” of Form 4 katas performed over the past 25 years of experience. I have taught Seminars on Form 4, I haveproduced DVD ‘s on form 4, and I have groomed Form 4 for many “IKC/ World Champions. I feel that I am rather familiarwith Form 4 by now, and have a grasp on it a little to make this observation:
    Recently over the past 2 years I have seen a change in the execution of Form 4. Angle changes and application changes, attack changes and target changes. As am approached to work with individuals I firstwatch their form. I say “ok your angle is off on this move” their response is “ NO that the way we do it” At that moment I am at a point where all my experience and knowledge of the form does not apply because I have never seen it performed that way. My next question to them is. “explain it to me” and usually they do explain it very well, but it is completely different from the way I was taught the form, the attack is way different, So who is correct and who is wrong? The answer is BOTH are correct and no one is wrong. If the forms practitioner can explain what he is visualizing during the execution of their own form , who am I to say they are Wrong? I cant. I can only statethe fact that I learned it a different way and that this is NOT the way the form was originally taught to the masses back in the 1960,70 and 80’s. I can offer my instruction on the way I learned it, however, when someone comes to me for advice and they show me a form different from my own expertise, I can no longer assist or evaluate based on the original form. I have to evaluate based upon this new material presented to me. It has gotten to the point that I can no longer judge the form itself, but the only the execution of “whatever” moves are performed.
    One year when I was competing I can remember thinking hitting every forward bow stance in the form correctly at the IKC. After the event Ihad several judges comment on the forward bows and angles “I missed. ” How did they know that? Because we all did Form 4 the same way and we all knew every move in the form but now this is not the case.
    So! Here are my questions specific to form 4 :
    1. After you complete side one A of protecting fans and you execute two low uppercuts crossing in front of your mid-section (leftover right). Your right fist strikes to 9 o'clock while your left fist strikes to 3 o'clock. Without hesitation continue circling both of your fists and convert them into two outward overhead claws…..do you close RIGHT to LEFT, OR LEFT TO RIGHT???

    2. During the technique Unfurling Crane, Do you execute a Downward Block on both sides?

    3. During Flashing Wings. Where is the attack coming from 12:00 or 1:30 -10:30??

    4. After side A of Thundering Hammers Do you execute a backfist in transition to side B?

    5. After side A of Defensive Cross, Do you replant your right foot back to its "Point of Origin,"after lifting stiff-armback knuckle strike or do you place it down in front of your other foot?

    6. During Prance of the Tiger do you jump and sweep or step and sweep the opponents foot?


    These 6 points have changed in the past years. I’m just curious, why were they changed and who changed them?
    Below are links to Youtube videos of seniors doing Form 4 backin the 80’s. Observe and look at all these points I mentioned above. You will be amazed at what you see. All taught by Parker. They all do it 99% similar.These men represent different lineages that root many of us today. So why are we doing it differently now? Who changed it? And Why?


    JIM MITCHELL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tTE_z3LCDOw
    LARRY TATUM http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGatq365nZc
    HUK PLANAS http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6z0_ha4uWDg
    Also in Writing.. The original way Form 4 Was taught.
    http://www.intermartialarts.com/kenpo-form-4
    http://www.bakerfamily4.net/kenpo/form4.htm

    So I’m NOT saying that Form 4 is being taught WRONG!! I AM saying that it has changed and evolvedand it is NOT being taught as the ORIGINAL was to all of us. That is a fact. Please don’t be offended if your one of the masses that do it differently from the original. I am sure you all have your justifications to change what you want.It is your right as a Kenpo instructor. I am NOT the kenpo Police! LOL I am just asking WHO changed it and most importantly WHYwere the changes made??
    If you’ve got answers, please respond.
    Salute
    Angelo Collado
    Last edited by Kenpohands; 07-22-2012 at 09:59 PM.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpohands View Post
    My name is Angelo Collado I am a 6th Degree Black belt in American Kenpo . My lineage=Parker/Trejo/Furuya. I have been studying for well over 35 years now. I was initially taught Form 4 directly fromFrank Trejo/ Yosh Furuya . I have be fortunate to have met with and have goneover and dissected Form 4 with MANY 1st generation Seniors. Frank Trejo, Roger Meadows, Pat Salantri, Huk Planas, Lee Wedlake to mention a few. Back in the day there was no YouTube or Internet. You had to travel and beg and plead to get some mat time with the seniors. But once I met with all the great instructorsI found that they ALL did Form 4 with all similar angles, attacks, techniques,stances, strikes, blocks , targets and applications and were 99.9% consistent. Evenbeing hundreds of miles apart and not being in communication with each other. There were some differences in timing and interpretation of movements and movement principals… But nothing major that wouldmake the form appear different.
    I have traveled the globe and have attended many Kenpo Eventsover the years. I have been fortunate enough to have been asked to be a judge on many Kenpo tests and tournaments. I have seen “thousands” of Form 4 katas performed over the past 25 years of experience. I have taught Seminars on Form 4, I haveproduced DVD ‘s on form 4, and I have groomed Form 4 for many “IKC/ World Champions. I feel that I am rather familiarwith Form 4 by now, and have a grasp on it a little to make this observation:
    Recently over the past 2 years I have seen a change in the execution of Form 4. Angle changes and application changes, attack changes and target changes. As am approached to work with individuals I firstwatch their form. I say “ok your angle is off on this move” their response is “ NO that the way we do it” At that moment I am at a point where all my experience and knowledge of the form does not apply because I have never seen it performed that way. My next question to them is. “explain it to me” and usually they do explain it very well, but it is completely different from the way I was taught the form, the attack is way different, So who is correct and who is wrong? The answer is BOTH are correct and no one is wrong. If the forms practitioner can explain what he is visualizing during the execution of their own form , who am I to say they are Wrong? I cant. I can only statethe fact that I learned it a different way and that this is NOT the way the form was originally taught to the masses back in the 1960,70 and 80’s. I can offer my instruction on the way I learned it, however, when someone comes to me for advice and they show me a form different from my own expertise, I can no longer assist or evaluate based on the original form. I have to evaluate based upon this new material presented to me. It has gotten to the point that I can no longer judge the form itself, but the only the execution of “whatever” moves are performed.
    One year when I was competing I can remember thinking hitting every forward bow stance in the form correctly at the IKC. After the event Ihad several judges comment on the forward bows and angles “I missed. ” How did they know that? Because we all did Form 4 the same way and we all knew every move in the form but now this is not the case.
    So! Here are my questions specific to form 4 :
    1. After you complete side one A of protecting fans and you execute two low uppercuts crossing in front of your mid-section (leftover right). Your right fist strikes to 9 o'clock while your left fist strikes to 3 o'clock. Without hesitation continue circling both of your fists and convert them into two outward overhead claws…..do you close RIGHT to LEFT, OR LEFT TO RIGHT???

    2. During the technique Unfurling Crane, Do you execute a Downward Block on both sides?

    3. During Flashing Wings. Where is the attack coming from 12:00 or 1:30 -10:30??

    4. After side A of Thundering Hammers Do you execute a backfist in transition to side B?

    5. After side A of Defensive Cross, Do you replant your right foot back to its "Point of Origin,"after lifting stiff-armback knuckle strike or do you place it down in front of your other foot?

    6. During Prance of the Tiger do you jump and sweep or step and sweep the opponents foot?


    These 6 points have changed in the past years. I’m just curious, why were they changed and who changed them?
    Below are links to Youtube videos of seniors doing Form 4 backin the 80’s. Observe and look at all these points I mentioned above. You will be amazed at what you see. All taught by Parker. They all do it 99% similar.These men represent different lineages that root many of us today. So why are we doing it differently now? Who changed it? And Why?


    JIM MITCHELL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tTE_z3LCDOw
    LARRY TATUM http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGatq365nZc
    HUK PLANAS http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6z0_ha4uWDg
    Also in Writing.. The original way Form 4 Was taught.
    http://www.intermartialarts.com/kenpo-form-4
    http://www.bakerfamily4.net/kenpo/form4.htm

    So I’m NOT saying that Form 4 is being taught WRONG!! I AM saying that it has changed and evolvedand it is NOT being taught as the ORIGINAL was to all of us. That is a fact. Please don’t be offended if your one of the masses that do it differently from the original. I am sure you all have your justifications to change what you want.It is your right as a Kenpo instructor. I am NOT the kenpo Police! LOL I am just asking WHO changed it and most importantly WHYwere the changes made??
    If you’ve got answers, please respond.
    Salute
    Angelo Collado
    1. We close right to left there

    2. Yes we do.

    3. Our attacks are both from 12.

    4. Yes we do.

    5. we go back to point of origin.

    6. not 100% sure what you are asking...

    I will say that my instructor was with Jim Mitchell until about 1990. I also know that when he was competing and using Form 4 in competition he came up with an idea to change footwork in the form to change the last part to be facing forward. I know that Jim Mitchell allowed him to do that, and even incorporated it for at least a while... of course that was after Mitchell had been gone from Parker for a while and was in the middle of trying to distance himself by changing names and other things in what he was doing. Anyways in regards to that footwork change in the form, our school has kept it in that way, but Barry has told everyone how it differs from the original version and asks everyone to call it Form 4 Modified for tournaments, and that was the reason he originally changed it according to him, was to have something slightly different for tournaments.
    I have seen so many different variations of it as well, but the difference you and I seem to have is that most people I talk to can not explain their differences really... its just different. I gave up long ago on trying to hope that there would be a common version of forms... I have found the same thing with Forms 5,and 6 as well though. /shrug.
    Last edited by LuckyKBoxer; 07-22-2012 at 11:02 PM.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Don't even get me started with Form 5 and 6!!!!lol

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by LuckyKBoxer View Post
    most people I talk to can not explain their differences really... its just different. I gave up long ago on trying to hope that there would be a common version of forms... I have found the same thing with Forms 5,and 6 as well though.
    Ditto ..

    And .. I know that "Ditto" is not an sufficient reason to post.

    But, I probably shouldn't say more.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpohands View Post
    1. After you complete side one A of protecting fans and you execute two low uppercuts crossing in front of your mid-section (leftover right). Your right fist strikes to 9 o'clock while your left fist strikes to 3 o'clock. Without hesitation continue circling both of your fists and convert them into two outward overhead claws…..do you close RIGHT to LEFT, OR LEFT TO RIGHT???
    This is the one instance we close right to left.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpohands View Post
    2. During the technique Unfurling Crane, Do you execute a Downward Block on both sides?
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpohands View Post
    3. During Flashing Wings. Where is the attack coming from 12:00 or 1:30 -10:30??
    Both attacks from 12:00.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpohands View Post
    4. After side A of Thundering Hammers Do you execute a backfist in transition to side B?
    We do a left backfist with the right hand in a chamber for the hammering block.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpohands View Post
    5. After side A of Defensive Cross, Do you replant your right foot back to its "Point of Origin,"after lifting stiff-armback knuckle strike or do you place it down in front of your other foot?
    We plant the right foot back, but I'd say we do it "with" the stiff-arm back knuckle.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpohands View Post
    6. During Prance of the Tiger do you jump and sweep or step and sweep the opponents foot?
    We jump.
    殺意の忍者猿コーディング
    "Using big words and obscure terms to make yourself sound like you know what you're talking about is typical, until you have to actually explain." - "Doc" Chapél
    "A belt only covers two inches of your ass and the rest you need to back up on your own." - Royce Gracie
    ‎"In Tai Chi, practitioners are classified as being either turtles or fish. A turtle swims by just using it limbs. A fish swims by using its whole body. Be a fish." - Lee Wedlake, "Kenpo 301"

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    My problem is this, Mr. Collado: The choreography is not the kenpo. Kenpo choreography is put there to give us the opportunity to learn how to move. That "How to move" part is, to me, the heart of the art. So many place so much faith in the choreography, that they fail to embody the manner of motion intended to be expressed through and in the forms.

    I have seen many folks hit every stance, yet fail to use the stance transitions to generate any momentum or torque in the motions of their upper body; the upper and lower platforms divided, unintentionally. But the dance steps were right.

    If they miss an angle from the way I was taught it, but you can tell the strikes are nothing you want to be in the way of, than it's a win. When I work with people on 4, I don't even broach their choreography; I coach their body mechanics, for the generation of "Power, in Grace". Form 4, I was taught, is the master Form of kenpo. And in being that, ought to embody both the beauty of the flame, and the deadliness of it.

    Step left or right? Doesn't matter, if they are unbalanced, awkward, and lacking decisive authority and ownership of their body and the space around it in the course of their motion.

    I consider myself a kenpo purist, of sorts. And yet, care less about the moves themselves, and more about HOW the kenpoist moves WHILE they are moving. Mr. Parker often got his own stuff "wrong" at demo's. Would anyone here wanna be hit by him, regardless of whether he stepped or hopped?

    By the way -- hop. It's a chicken kick, as per the write-up.

    D.
    Clear mind, clear movement. Mastery of the Arts is mastery over the Self. That in this moment, this motion, the thoughts, memories, impulses and passions that cloud the mind must yield to the clarity of purpose, and purity of motion.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Dave in da house View Post

    By the way -- hop. It's a chicken kick, as per the write-up.

    D.
    now that I understood.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    I know I have posted footage of this guy before, but I am working to redefine my 4 so it resembles, stylistically, the combination of fluidity and punctuation exhibited in this cats movement. My limberness sucks, so I'm a bit out from that goal, but nevertheless working on it.

    If this dude did 4, in this manner of movement, it would be -- IMO -- the best 4 out there. Lots of guys winning tourneys with the form punctuate their forms the same way hard stylists and TKD folks do. Kenpo isn't TKD. It's kenpo. The continuity of movement, interspersed with punctuation and enunciation, ought to be the motion emphasis of this particular study of kenpo motion. Not the hard angularity that looks good, and gets rewarded by open tourneament judges.

    My 2 centavos, anywho -- taken or left.

    D.

    http://youtu.be/QpkvQpe6BTE
    Clear mind, clear movement. Mastery of the Arts is mastery over the Self. That in this moment, this motion, the thoughts, memories, impulses and passions that cloud the mind must yield to the clarity of purpose, and purity of motion.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    If we compare EPAK forms to Chinese forms, may I throw some baijiquan in the mix?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fssv2...eature=related

    With regards to the comments regarding form 4: I don't know enough to really comment, but I was under the impression that embusen of the form isn't random but references other forms and/or part of the systems.
    That doesn't make any of your points less valid though. From a self defense point of view have the right mechanic is more important than facing the right/ original direction. But why not try to have both solid body mechanics and follow the ideas encoded in the form?
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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by Lenny View Post
    If we compare EPAK forms to Chinese forms, may I throw some baijiquan in the mix?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fssv2...eature=related

    With regards to the comments regarding form 4: I don't know enough to really comment, but I was under the impression that embusen of the form isn't random but references other forms and/or part of the systems.
    That doesn't make any of your points less valid though. From a self defense point of view have the right mechanic is more important than facing the right/ original direction. But why not try to have both solid body mechanics and follow the ideas encoded in the form?
    I agree, completely. My point was to exaggerate a vote in the direction of Mechanics, given having seen so many which were "technically" correct, while lacking any heart. There was an old saying about the kenpo flame -- deadly to touch, beautiful to behold. This form ought to present that, more than any other. Mostly, what I see is tournament competitors doing pretty versions of the form, with moves that lack backup mass or directional harmony so much so, I'd volunteer to take their best shot with the caveat -- then it's my turn. Every block a strike, and all that... Form 4 done well ought to scare the crap out of people, as well as being a registered reference point to the architecture of the system. One of my favorite parts of the guy in your video is -- it looks like his sh%t would hurt if he hit you!
    Clear mind, clear movement. Mastery of the Arts is mastery over the Self. That in this moment, this motion, the thoughts, memories, impulses and passions that cloud the mind must yield to the clarity of purpose, and purity of motion.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by Lenny View Post
    If we compare EPAK forms to Chinese forms, may I throw some baijiquan in the mix?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fssv2...eature=related

    With regards to the comments regarding form 4: I don't know enough to really comment, but I was under the impression that embusen of the form isn't random but references other forms and/or part of the systems.
    That doesn't make any of your points less valid though. From a self defense point of view have the right mechanic is more important than facing the right/ original direction. But why not try to have both solid body mechanics and follow the ideas encoded in the form?
    I swear I must've seen a thousand identical buildings with those same walls and dusty courtyards when I was in China.
    "To be, rather than to seem"

    "Fix your rear foot ... What the hell is wrong with you?"

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    While we are on the subject of Long Form 4, can anyone tell me which came first, Long Form 4 or Short Form 4?

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    My understanding ...

    There is no such thing as Short Form 4.

    Thus, Form 4 came first.

    I know there are people who perform just one side of each technique from Form 4, alternating, and they call it Short Form 4. The problem with this execution and idea, is that much of the meat of the form is in the transitions between the strong side and weak side of each form ... and ... that the strong side and weak sides of the techniques are not identical, and those differences matter.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Hmmm..... interesting. Good points, thanks.

    On a side note, I have heard Short Form 4 can be a good form to use in tournaments because, depending on how you do it, your back is never turned to the judges.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Yes ... that is one of the justifications for its creation.
    Also ... sometimes, competitions have time limits. I saw a gentlemen do a very nice Double Knife form, but he got dinged bad, because his form went about 20 seconds long.
    And Also ... a properly executed Form 4 pushes the body beyond the fitness levels of many practitioners; people just plain run out of gas in the last two or three series of techniques.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by michaeledward View Post

    ; people just plain run out of gas in the last two or three series of techniques.
    Hey, that sounds like me. Lol

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    I'm no kenpo guru in fact I rarely attend classes anymore due to other comitments and training in different styles. But I am a second Dan who trained consistently for over 15 years and no I never knew ed Parker he was dead before my time but from everything I've read of kenpo isn't that the point of kenpo? For instructors to adapt and change things to suit themselves and NOT get stuck in tradition.

    the way my instructor alway said it was If you can explain it then I accept it.

    i think ed Parker wanted kenpo to evolve and not to stay the same after he died. I personally think variation is great. It leads to more learning and being open minded. I can do long 4 my way and then go train at a different school and see different variations and then I can reflect on them and see which version I prefer and use it.

    thats just my take on it. I believe that if we stay the same just because "that's how ed Parker did it" then that's a disservice to the art

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by michaeledward View Post
    Yes ... that is one of the justifications for its creation.
    Also ... sometimes, competitions have time limits. I saw a gentlemen do a very nice Double Knife form, but he got dinged bad, because his form went about 20 seconds long.
    And Also ... a properly executed Form 4 pushes the body beyond the fitness levels of many practitioners; people just plain run out of gas in the last two or three series of techniques.
    Then it's the students job to get their cardio to a decent level so they can do it which unfortunately a lot of kenpo guys don't do

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by Ma_student View Post
    Then it's the students job to get their cardio to a decent level so they can do it which unfortunately a lot of kenpo guys don't do
    I don't think it matters how much 'cardio' one completes. Running this form should leave the practitioner clutching at the end.
    If not, I would suggest you aren't doing the form with the appropriate amount of pizz-az.

    Certainly, there are many kenpo guys that don't do fitness. And there are some good arguments as to why it is unnecessary.

    But, even when my fitness was at its best (weight training, 22 mile (or more) daily bike rides, and kenpo throughout the week), this form demands all that is available, and then some.

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    Default Re: Kenpo Form 4... Who keeps changing it??

    Quote Originally Posted by michaeledward View Post
    I don't think it matters how much 'cardio' one completes. Running this form should leave the practitioner clutching at the end.
    If not, I would suggest you aren't doing the form with the appropriate amount of pizz-az.

    Certainly, there are many kenpo guys that don't do fitness. And there are some good arguments as to why it is unnecessary.

    But, even when my fitness was at its best (weight training, 22 mile (or more) daily bike rides, and kenpo throughout the week), this form demands all that is available, and then some.
    The ones that say fitness is unnecessary are usually the obese ones who can't be bothered to do it. There's no good argument for fitness not being necessary. You can have all the technique in the world but if you end up having to fight off a big strong guy who's in shape and knows how to fight then you're screwed unless you finish it quick. There's a reason professional fighters train to the extreme of fitness, there's a reason the army and the police need you to be at a certain level of fitness and to say you don't need fitness then frankly that's an excuse for laziness. I've seen kenpo 8th dans who do short form 1 at a average speed and at the end are doubled over out of breath and need 5 minutes to carry on. When I see that I kmow for a fact they'd be screwed in a real situation. If they can't even do a form without doubling up out of breath then how will they defend against a resisting opponent and with adrenaline flowing

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