Experiences Part 1

One of my former students who lives wayyy too far away to train has asked about my experiences with violence as to seek insight on what, why, how, and to include the "after action" report. I'm always a little antsy on discussing my "fights" on a public forum for several reasons. First, while I don't want to advocate violence as your first option, sometimes it's your only option. As noted Combatives Instructor Tim Larkin says, "When violence is the answer, it's the ONLY answer". Second, the written word is notorious for being taken out of context and I'd rather not spend the rest of my life defending my statements so please just take it for what it is, MY experience. Lastly, I don't want to come off sounding like my "fighting skills" rock and that "Bruce Lee don't have nuthin' on me". With that said, I'll share three experiences that left a lasting impression, changed my martial art outlook, and show that they ALL could have been avoided. This first one still invades my dreams and taught me some very life changing lessons so I'll describe it first. I'll relate the other two in future blogs.

1980 San Diego 20 years old
I had attended a friends birthday party in Imperial Beach and was returning home when I had a burning desire for some Jack in the Box onion rings. I pulled off I-5 and went to the nearest JaBo which was located in the Shelltown (Mistake #1) area of National City. It was almost 11:00pm and instead of going through the drive through, I went in to order (Mistake #2) as well as use the rest room. When I entered, I noticed four vatos in Pendletons and pressed white t-shirts (Ignored Warning #1) sitting at one of the tables. I ALMOST (Mistake #3) turned around and left but I had to use the head and I wanted those onion rings. While making my order, the server gave me a strange look, (Ignored Warning #2) which I disregarded. She told me that they were in the process of closing and that they would have to make my onion rings which would take a few minutes. While waiting, I went to use the rest room. When I returned, the place was empty other than the two servers (Ignored Warning #3). I collected my food and went outside to my truck. I immediately started digging into my onion rings (Mistake #4). I sensed/heard someone running up behind me (Ignored Warning #4) and as I started to turn, I felt the shock of the hit as well as seeing a flash bulb go off in front of my eyes. Onion rings went everywhere as I staggered back against my truck and I started throwing blind punches. My vision was fuzzy and I could only see the guy directly in front of me but I knew that there were at least two more because I could feel them hitting and grabbing at me. One of them kept yelling something about "East Side" but other than that, at was all noise. I managed to drive my thumb into an eye (Good Move #1) of they guy in front of me. He screamed and that's when I went down to the ground. I immediately went to my back (Good Move #2) and started kicking anything and everything that I could reach. They in turn started playing soccer on my torso. I had kept the truck to my back (Good Move #3) and when I had been put down it was now to my right. It took several seconds (hours?) to realize that I was taking some serious damage to my ribs. After one nasty barrage, I found I couldn't breath and scared s$#*tless, I rolled under my truck (Good Move #4). Thank goodness for lift kits and off-road tires. They would not go under after me so they slung rocks, concrete, bottles and insults at me for about a minute (or it could have been another hour). I heard a siren come on close by and I could see them take off. An SDPD patrol car pulled up about 30 seconds later. After paramedics and paperwork, I drove myself to the hospital. Total damage, one broken rib, three cracked ribs, multiple contusions, cuts, and abrasions, a split lip, and a concussion. All and all, for making a bunch of stupid mistakes, I came out okay. I did find out during the interview why I was jumped. One of the hoods was the server's boyfriend and she had noticed my affiliation tattoo on my wrist. They were Shelltown Cholos and in my teens, I had run with East Side and still wore the tag. They hated each other with a passion then and five years later, they still hated each other.

At the time I was a Green Belt in Chinese Kenpo. We were a fight school and the techniques were more for belt progression than actual use. We were not taught any awareness or avoidance skills but we were taught how to take a punch and keep fighting. Skipping the very obvious mistakes I made prior to taking the first punch, I learned the following lessons about the attack itself:

Always step off when covering. I did not learn COVER until I began my American Kenpo training in 1988. Turning in place just gives your assailant a different part of his intended target to hit (think OODA).

Don't try to kick in a mass attack. The violence of action on my part combined with the pushing, pulling, and striking from my attackers forced me to lower my base. Even lowered, I still felt unstable and attempting a kick/knee would have put me on the ground a lot sooner.

They don't come at you one at a time like the movies. In fact their exuberance probably kept my damage to a minimum because they kept getting in each other's way.

Maneuvering to the outside in class is relatively easy. When the attack is real, it's a hell of a lot more difficult to maneuver anywhere let alone maneuver with a plan.

Use your environment. Vehicles, buildings, fixed objects, clothing, anything lying around that might make a weapon or a defensive tool.

When tunnel vision kicks in, go after the guy you can see and inflict as much damage as possible up to and including maiming and lethal force. One of my students is a Federal Corrections Officer and two weeks ago, he handled his first inmate killing. An inmate was beaten and stomped to death by five other inmates. He had the unpleasant task of trying to keep the inmate alive until medical help arrived but ended up watching him die before help got there. Even if no weapons are involved, a mass attack is a deadly force assault. Treat it as such and do whatever it takes with the eyes and throat being the primary targets.

Tattoos can get you killed but peroxide and table salt will get rid of them.

Last, TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS. I believe there is nothing mystical or psychic about a "bad feeling". It is your mind's unconscious ability to pick up on 'triggers" that the conscious mind is too preoccupied to process. Good awareness skills are the conscious mind's answer to why these triggers are important. Awareness is a skill and like any other skill, must be developed and practiced. Future blogs will discuss some of the methods I use to teach awareness. Fighting is ugly and it's even uglier when you're getting your butt kicked. Hopefully, you might learn a little from my mistakes that will keep from having your butt handed to you for a bag of onion rings.

by admin | 7 2012 9:54am | FAQ | permalink | 0 comments

Nature of the Attack

Another question came up concerning Destroying Wedge and the nature of the attack. Below is the excerpt:

One technique tip video I would like to see would be Yellow belts Destroying wedge. Been doing and teaching this for years but have some trouble when the attackers hand are far apart on the push, then people take their block around the barn to get outside the left arm or they thrust the block across to much and turn their opponent sideways. Sometimes they even go inside the left arm and only get the right. Lol.
Anyway, thanks. Russ

First, the long answer
This is a VERY common problem when working outside of ANY front ballistic attack. This has been covered in depth by Mr. Parker and re-enforced by Mr. Paul using the AKKI style of movement. All AK techniques were written from a relatively strict "ideal" attack.
My interpretation of Mr. Paul's "ideal" is not near as strict as Mr. Parker's allowing for more flexibility in the response.
This concept is taught on the very first technique in the AKKI curriculum FLASHING SWORDS.
The "secret" to our fast responses is the Wedge. Using the OODA concept and Hick's Law as guides, we can not react quickly enough to orbital variations once the attack is initiated. If we have the luxury of recognizing the attack in its pureness, all the time in the world to choose one of our two hand push techniques, and the skill set to implement the "correct" response, then all is good in Happyville. If you've ever had somebody jack you into a wall with a two hand push though, Happyville is no longer in the equation.
As the Rangers say, a simple plan executed violently is better than a perfect plan executed tomorrow.
If you study the AKKI techniques in depth, you'll find that most responses to front ballistic attacks work off the wedge.

The wedge has been around forever and can be found in most systems because it works (as far as not getting hit) with minimal training and not a lot of thought. The wedge is built off the flinch or startle response which takes an incredible amount of reality based training and fine tuned awareness skill to overcome. Even the best Operators in the world freeze and/or flinch in the face of a sudden attack. Their strength is their ability to overcome it in the blink of an eye. Getting back to Destroying Wedge, if the student is being programmed to adjust his response to the attack during its trajectory, you are setting that student up for failure.

Remember, the attacker is already halfway to the target before the student moves (see Mr. Parker's Reaction beating Action). Whether the hands are close or far apart, I still use the same wedge and let my opponent's structure determine my next response. If his hands are close, Destroying Wedge. If has hands are further apart, Divided Fury.

I teach my students that Blocks are knee-jerk, gross motor skill reactions. They do work during a committed assault but have much less efficacy in a fight. Instead, I get my students working wedges and interceptions as quickly as possible and Mr. Paul has taught a number of drills emphasizing these skill sets. I feel wedging itself is a gross motor skill with the fine motor skills being angle and the follow on targeting.

Now for the short answer
Destroying Wedge is for a two and push with the hands close together. Have your attack follow that ideal so the student can learn the mechanics of that response.

Hope that helps.

by admin | 4 2012 9:41am | FAQ | permalink | 0 comments

Timing Patterns

I had a question from one our AKKI members that I thought would be of interest to all.

Hi Mr Brumby

On your clip about Circling Destruction you mention 4 main timing patterns. There are a number of patterns and variations I was curious to which 4 you are talking about. My guess is inward inward outward and outward inward inward are two of them. Then maybe outward outward inward and maybe swirling?

Thanks. Russ

Great question Russ, Mr. Paul has codified four timing patterns:

#1 Inward-Inward-Outward

#2 Outward-Outward-Inward

#3 Outward-Inward-Inward

#4 Inward-Outward-Inward

All the rest are combinations of the above or have insertions in conjunction with the above. Those patterns mean absolutely nothing to one who has not trained under an AKKI Instructor. AKKI timing is audible and must be heard to be learned. What I have found is that many AKKI students go through a process of learning the patterns. First, you learn the rhythm; second, you use the rhythm to develop speed. Third, your learn the mechanics to SUPPORT everything you have learned up to this point. The Fourth and final stage, you learn the micro-refinements that Mr. Paul has built into the patterns. Unfortunately, many get to the speed portion and stay there because it looks and sounds very effective. To the un-learned, it is very impressive but to the predator standing in front you, you may as well be tickling him. Mr. Paul has been hammering the AKKI members to `get the rest of the story`. It`s easy to get to step two in the learning process, the rest takes a lot of time and diligent effort under a knowledgeable instructor. I don`t know if Mr. Paul will allow me to film the patterns so we`ll wait and see on that one.

Feel free to ask any questions about the system. Again, I can answer most and want I can`t, I`ll send to Mr. Paul.


by admin | 15 2012 6:24pm | FAQ | permalink | 0 comments

The AKKI Crest

The AKKI Crest

The AKKI Crest has such deep meaning and so many symbolisms that it would take a book on it`s own to describe every feature. Most of the features have multiple meanings, so only a few will be described here. These descriptions are exerpts from the AKKI Yellow and Orange Belt Reference Manuals. Further descriptions will be found in subsequent publications.

The Frame

The basic framework of the AKKI Crest is clearly related to Ed Parker`s Crest. This is to show the roots of our system and the strong influence Ed Parker has on our journey forward into the art. However, it clearly has it`s own distinctive features. It is three dimensional showing that our association has depth. Paul Mills has formed this association with over 30 years of experience in the art, with many of his executives whom also possess decades of experience each. The AKKI was not founded on a whim and is not stamped on paper, but forged from experience, knowledge and skill which gives the association and it`s members great strength.

The Tiger

The Tiger represents Earthly strength and physical prowess. Like a beginning student in Kenpo, he is impressed with his own abilities and is eager to show them. He is strong, fast and ferocious, but lacks the inner strength that can only come with time, experience and humility. He looks up to the Dragon for guidance and reaches to him in the attempt to gain his wisdom and power.

The Dragon

The Dragon represents spiritual strength and wisdom which comes with seasoning. Like an advanced student of Kenpo in his latter years of training, he treasures his knowledge and abilities and is not quick to display them. Humility and Self Restraint are strong characteristics of the Dragon. Time and experience has given him not only knowledge, strength and skill, but wisdom and inner peace. The attitude of the Dragon is always placed above the Earthly strength of the Tiger as shown on the crest, yet he is always in touch with his Tiger as depicted by the tip of his tail touching the Tiger`s paw.

The Key

The Master Key represents the heart of the system. Through the use of the few Master Key movements, the entire art is derived. While the tiger wishes to posses it, it eludes him at every turn. Only the Dragon possesses the wisdom to use the Master Key to unlock the secrets of the universe. At the end of the key, are three rings representing Orbital Summation. The smaller ring represents the Proximal Facilitation, the intermediate ring, the Medial and the larger ring, the Distal. The larger ring also depicts an Elongated Circle as well as a Path of Action. Within that elongated circle are the initials, `MK`, for Master Key.

The Top

The top of the crest is the roof which gives shelter to all who come under it. The association is devoted to giving shelter to those seeking it, and protecting it`s members. Like a stone bridge, it is convexed, giving it great strength to resist negative forces trying to crush or penetrate it.

The Sides

The sides of the Crest are curved conversely like the roof of a Chinese home. Whenever negative or evil forces try to descend upon those protected, they are deflected away and sent back to where they came from. The sides also clearly display the number `3` which represents the many `3-level` concepts we use in our art, such as: Primitive, Mechanical & Spontaneous: Solid, Liquid & Gaseous, etc.

The Bottom

The bottom is in the form of the double axe; the `Inner Axe` and the `Outer Axe`. The Inner Axe is the Internal Power, the type of power that really harms. The Outer Axe is the External Power. This power comes and goes with age. It is like the Tiger as it will surely hurt you, but is not as seasoned as the Inner Axe. The principles are not completely synchronized as they are within the Inner Axe. The Outer Axe also lacks the true synchronization of the conscious, and sub-conscious mind coming together in a fraction of a second.

The Arrowhead

The Arrowhead symbolizes our American heritage, for they were true warriors. It also represents a more Primitive way of battle. It is a honed weapon, chiseled by man to sharpness and strength, like an instructor shaping his student. The arrowhead also represents man made weapons which are an integral part of our art. It is a triangle, the strongest structure known to man. The triangle stands broad side up, as an open end triangle, representing the mind remaining open to all ideas, both new and old, and continues to broaden with knowledge and wisdom as the years go by, instead of closing down and having a narrow mind or way of thinking.

The Lightning Bolts

The Lightning Bolts represent the highest physical application of the art. It appears from nowhere, manifesting suddenly, striking it`s target with tremendous energy, then disappearing as quickly as it arrived. There are two lightning bolts, one representing the warrior, the other the scholar. Both in balance and complete harmony working together. They come from opposite sides striking the same target with Converging and Confluencing Forces. On the Crest, they are striking on a true 45 degree angle, the Groove`, which incorporates height, width and depth for Maximum Action Potential, one of the Master Key Concepts of the Super Powers.

The K

The K is more than the initial for Kenpo. It also represents, atop the more primitive, our modern methods of defense. It is in the `rickshaw` font to show the Asian influence on the art. The `K`, combined with the arrowhead and the lightning, depicts our Natural Weapons, through the use of the empty hand, Man-Made weapons, and the Forces of Nature. It is on the white background, representing total awareness as in the `Black Dot Focus` theory.

Kenpo Karate

The words Kenpo Karate are written across the crest. The word Kenpo means `Fist Law` (Ken -`Fist` / Po - `Law`) and the word Karate means `Empty Hand` (Kara - Empty / Te - Hand). Therefor the phrase `Kenpo Karate` means `Law of the Fist and the Empty Hand`. It is written in the Rickshaw font showing the Asian heritage of the art. Our art has grown to the more proper term of `American Kenpo`, depicted by the words Kenpo Karate angling down, feeding into the Arrowhead which shows the American influence, and brings the art of Kenpo Karate to the cutting edge as honed and taught by the AKKI.

The Frame

Within the bright Red Outer Frame of the AKKI crest, is an inner frame. The Black Inner Frame is in depiction of the Black Outer Frame of Ed Parker`s crest. This is to show that the AKKI was born from Ed Parker`s American Kenpo, yet builds upon it. The black inner frame gives strength to the outer red frame which brings the inner frame to it`s cutting edge. The Master Key principles, taught by Ed Parker, remain intact within the AKKI and are expressed with our unique and exclusive style of application.

The Tiger

The Tiger is the Warrior. He is strong, proud and eager. His right paw is raised in his representation in our salutation, the right fist being the warrior. He is our physical strength, our might, our instinct to fight. His colors are White, Yellow and Orange, the earliest colors of rank in our system of Kenpo. He has black stripes on his back, showing his aspirations of attaining the expert level of his fighting skill. His tail bares eight black stripes, the number of ranks in Kenpo before the expert level of black belt. His head is raised high above his shoulders, as he is very proud of his abilities and quick to accept any challenge. He has only three paws exposed, as any warrior will never reveal all of his weapons.

The Dragon

The Dragon is the Scholar. He not only has physical strength, but mental and spiritual strength as well. His left hand is raised, in his representation in our salutation, the left hand being the scholar. He is our intellect, our wisdom and our ability to reason. It is the dragon, with his left hand, that holds the Master Key as he knows that it is knowledge and wisdom that are the key to unlocking the secrets of the universe. He stands upon the Universal Design, as it is his knowledge of the Universal Principles that lift him to his Mastery. His colors are Red, the color of mastery in the arts, with traces of white, yellow, orange and black, showing that he continues to be a student and is always willing to learn more. His tail bares ten fins, the number of black belt ranks in our system. His flank fins have ten points that burn like flames, beautiful but deadly. They bare the early colors of yellow and orange showing that it is the mastery of the most basic principles and movements that create a Master. His head is bowed below his shoulders as he is humble, has humility and practices self restraint. Yet behind his head is a powerful body that has absorbed many years of training and holds the deadliest of skills. If his wisdom and reasoning fail to solve his conflict and it diminishes to a physical battle, his fighting skills have been honed to the highest degree. He also has one weapon hidden from view, never exposing his strategies to his adversaries. Yet, he holds for all to see, the Master Key - the truth, if it will only be accepted by those that seek the skills, knowledge and wisdom of the Dragon. Yet all too commonly, they look for the hidden weapon instead of accepting what has been freely offered to them.

The Tiger & Dragon

It is a great misconception that the Tiger and Dragon are faced off as if in battle with each other. They both reside within each of us. They should work in harmony, complimenting each other, as they are positioned on our crest in the yin and yang positions. They may seem to oppose each other, but they rely on each other. They are not dependent on the other, and they are not independent from the other, but are interdependent, helping each other to fill their personal voids. As the Dragon holds the wisdom, he is wise enough to keep a Tiger watching his back, and the tiger is proud enough to defend the Dragon. While the tiger is busy watching his own back, as depicted in the crest, he forgets to watch in front and grasp the simple things that lay before him. The Dragon, knowing of the Tiger`s youthfulness and eagerness, continues to be watchful for the Tiger, leading him in a positive direction, as depicted on the crest with the Dragon using his tail to guide the Tiger forward and to protect him from the unseen dangers. If it is that the Dragon and the Tiger battle, it is an internal struggle that we all face between the instincts of the body and the reasoning of the mind. The dragon is always placed above the tiger, as it is our intellect and ability to reason that should govern the actions of our physical instincts.

The Initials

The stripes on the Tiger`s back reveal three initials:

`EP` - Ed Parker, the founder, creator and Senior Grandmaster of American Kenpo.

`PM` - Paul Mills, the founder and president of our association, and the Master Engineer that is in constant perpetuation and discovery of innovative ways to further our knowledge and skills, and the designer of the crest itself.

`SM` - Steve McDowell, a Kenpo student, co-designer and artist of the AKKI crest. His initials are not only his signature, but reflect the very thing that makes our association so great. The great and many contributions of time, efforts, talents and skills of it`s members to better, further and build the AKKI into the finest and most progressive of martial arts associations.

The Universal Design

In the center of the Crest, is a partial display of the AKKI Universal Pattern, as it is the Universal Principles that lie at the heart of the art as practiced in our association. Within this design, there are many elements.

The `Heart` shape indicates sincerity and honesty. It is a symbol of our love and commitment to the association as this crest is worn over our heart. It also depicts circular to linear movement, as well as linear to circular. Also displayed within the heart are mirrored sides, showing opposite, mirrored, reverse and return motion. The heart has two lines that meet at a central point. This not only represents Opposing Forces and Confluencing Forces, but also Surface Concentration. These two lines, coming from different sources and meeting at the same point, also depicts the element of Teamwork that makes our association so deep and strong - Many people working together toward a common goal.

The Diamond represents the student - cut, shaped and polished by the instructor. Like a Master Diamond Cutter, the Teacher brings his/her student from a rough and crude state, and expertly crafts him/her into a brilliant diamond. Beautiful to the eye, but strong enough to cut through the hardest obstacles.
The Four Fins, pointing four directions identifies our reach to the North, South, East and West in an effort to include all that desire to belong to our association. These fins are in the shape of teardrops, representing the powerful action that can be derived from this type of movement. They are arranged in a Spiraling pattern indicating Three Dimensional Movement and the Super Powers that can be derived from it. These spiraling fins also reflect the motion of the universe as seen in our own galaxy, indicating that within each of us rests the Universal Principles of the entire universe. Like a hologram that has been shattered, each individual piece holds the entire image.

The Circle encompasses the Universal Design, as it is our goal to understand and harness the Universal Principles. This circle is elongated and tilted to an angle as the Earth also spins on a Diagonal axis. This again, depicts our association as being an `International` one. The circle has no beginning and no end. It is continuous and constant, as is life itself. Pertaining to the value of life, the Tiger may run care free, while the Dragon will cherish it and protect it with his own life.
The Center holds a black hole. Many practitioners will look and see the Universal Principles, but it is the Dragon who will venture inside. This hole is located at the heart and can only be unlocked by the Master Key, which is possessed only by the Dragon. This circular black center also represents the `Black Dot Focus` theory, as it rests on a white background. It is elongated, as are our movements in Kenpo.

The Colors

The colors of the frame, from inside out, are White, Black then Red. This represents the journey of a student.

The White Background depicts the many beginning students that form the foundation of the evolution of the art. Through the extent of this part of their training, they become sharper and more skilled, as the white background on the crest has semi sharp edges.

The Black Inner Edge depicts the black belt stage, where the student has become an expert in the art. He is a Teacher himself, and a Teacher of himself. He has students below him that push him and inspire him to attain greater knowledge and skill. He has his Teacher above him, pulling him and guiding him to greater levels of the art. His skills are sharper then they were in the White stage, as the edges of the Black area in the crest are sharper than those of the white.

The Red Outer Frame depicts a level even higher than that of the black. There comes a time in a student`s personal evolution when he/she becomes a Teacher of all. As his/her teacher passes on, this lifelong student assumes the responsibility to guide, direct and teach all those that come after him. He has the sharpest of skills and the greatest of knowledge, yet he is always reaching to learn more, as depicted by the sharp points of the outer edges of the Red frame, reaching outwardly. While he/she may not have a physical instructor at the highest point of his training, he knows that there is still much to learn and is always learning, supported and lifted by those beneath him. He is a Teacher of Teachers and a Master of the Art.

Additional Patches

The patches shown below are required on all kenpo uniforms. However, some patches are only allowed because of special reasons. Click on each patch to learn about placement and special requirements.

by admin | 19 2012 6:55pm | FAQ | permalink | 0 comments

Why train at Premier Kenpo Karate

  • Self-defense emphasis in ALL classes
  • No Contracts or Enrollment fees
  • No Upgrade Programs
  • No Testing fees
  • Limited Class sizes
  • Separate Children, Junior, and Adult Classes
  • Family, Military, Law Enforcement, and Emergency Response Personnel Discounts

  • by admin | 7 2011 6:45pm | FAQ | permalink | 0 comments


    Site News

    2011-03-04 23:24:09    |    0 comments

    Premier Kempo has a new website

    Rick is working on getting it on-line ASAP. Please come by and take a look !!!.... Read More...


    2011-03-07 06:17:15    |    0 comments

    Adult Kenpo

    Most adults seek martial arts training for self defense and fitness purposes. With AMERICAN KENP.... Read More...

    2011-03-04 22:25:22    |    0 comments

    Dragon Kenpo

    Ages 6-8 are also some of the most impressionable years for a child where most of their personality .... Read More...

    2011-03-07 06:16:02    |    0 comments

    Junior Kenpo

    This age group (9 to 12) is characterized by a need to explore their powers yet who are still in nee.... Read More...

    Recieve Free classes

    Fill out your name and email to receive to FREE classes.

    Get In Touch

    Premier Kenpo
    1122 10th St.
    St. Cloud, FL. 34769

    Phone:(407) 891-7828
    Fax:(407) 891-7828
    Email Us