That, and also...September 20 2007 at 12:44 AM
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AnonymousLee (Login AnonymousLee)
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Response to What is Kenpo
First of all, GM Parker taught techniques differently to different students on purpose (in some cases) in order to relay a specific lesson to the student according to where they were on their personal Kenpo journey. So it's certainly possible that different people might differ on the specifics and both be correct.
But more importantly GM Parker himself understood the importance of having the Kenpo system continue to evolve and change. He himself did drastic changes to the martial arts as he understood that they were insufficient for modern America. He changed American Kenpo many times during his life. He wanted the martial arts to continue to change and be modified for the better - he understood that he hadn't made the perfect system. I think that this is one of the reasons he taught people and worked so hard to spread the art - so that future generations could continue the work of building upon Kenpo for the better.
So, in that light, isn't every branch of Kenpo true Parker Kenpo, so long is it retains the spirit and ideals he laid out? Wouldn't GM Parker be disappointed if his art remained exactly the same over the centuries? I also completely do not understand the need for arguing about who's Kenpo is more 'legit'. As long as people are passing on the art and always striving to improve themselves and their students, whether that means making Kenpo 5.0, adding in MMA to Kenpo, or teaching it alongside TKD or Yoga, then that is fine by me.
If their ideas are flawed and hurt the system, they won't continue to survive through the decades. Simple as that. Let them do as they will, if their ideas have merit, try to add that merit into your own Kenpo. If everyone were to strive to do this, instead of sit around complaining, I think the future of Kenpo would be much brighter (not that it isn't as is).
And as a side note, I think one of the reasons there is so much mudslinging is that it allows lazy Kenpoists to feel like they are active in the art of Kenpo, when in reality they are sitting a computer doing nothing.
No offense to those who've participated in the mudslinging, but next time maybe add in a couple hundred push ups instead, or go for a jog. At least that will have a positive benefit as the next day comes around, while arguing about how someone's rank is unjustified won't.