With the explosion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and mixed martial arts (MMA) as a whole every form of combat has been incorporated by fighters to help them claim victory. From all reaches of the globe these fighting styles have been tied together to let each fighter be as versatile as possible and win through strong stand-up, aggressive ground and pound or match ending submission.
The art of Kempo was known little throughout the MMA world until controversial fighter Fedor Emelianeko (30-3) stormed onto the scene with his fighting style being strictly Kempo. Considered by many martial arts purist and the orignal mixed martial art, Kempo runs deep into history. It's origins started back with the Shaolin Monks of China and initiated by Master "To-De" Sakugawa (1733-1815). It has evolved in America by way of Hawaii where it was changed and adapted and includes techniques from art forms such as Tai Chi, Kung Fu, Nippon Kempo, Jiu Jitsu, and Aikido. It is based on an ever growing system in order create a complete fighting system.
The true goal of the art of Kempo is not to train and develop the next UFC champion but to bring about a way of awakening through martial arts and bringing an awareness of oneself and one's place in the world. It is this deep meaning behind the art that allows for a total body workout and experience.
The Basics Rules of Kempo:
- Establish a base: Without a strong base there is no ability for one to attack or defend.
- Create Distance: With distance between you and your opponent there is time to allow for movments to occur and strategies to be put into place.
- Control,disarm, technique: With little or no offense needed once can win an encounter with these basic principles.
- Strike high/check low & strike low/check high: Expect the opposite attack and be ready for it. Stay true to this and avoid a clean attack.
Stages of Learning Kempo:
- Mechanical: Nothing is known of the art and the basic movements and techniques are taught in an exaggerated fashion.
- Physical: There is an understanding of the techniques but not the flow of the movements. Responses are thought through at this point.
- Mental: An understanding of the techniques and flow are achieved without thought. Expert level.
- Meta-Physical: At this level a skill in clairvoyance is achieved and moves are sensed before they are made and there is little if no thought required in a response and attack.
With most workout routines become old and stagnant very quickly try turning to martial arts as a new way to build all parts of your mind and body and Kempo is a perfect way to start.