Nengli

Discussion in 'KenpoTalk' started by Lizard-style, Sep 30, 2019.

  1. Lizard-style

    Lizard-style White Belt

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    Hi all, new to the site but been training in SKK for about 16 years now. Not sure if everyone else heard this story, but while I was learning Nengli South my instructor told me that these forms were once a two-man set. Flash forward a few years and, having learned both sides, I noticed that North and South (conspicuously) don't match up. I had begun training at a new school and asked another instructor who told me that at one point there had been 4 Nengli forms, North South East and West! The story (as I heard it) was that North and South had been taught at a seminar, and one way or another they never got around to teaching East and West. However, East and West were supposed to compliment North and South. As I learned them, North side is the Tiger and South is the Crane, and presumably East and West were Leopard and Snake.
    I have been researching this for some time now but have been unable to find any more information about these forms. Recently I was watching another black belt practice the 5 Dragons Face the 4 Winds, and when he did the triple kick part i was immediately reminded of the three retreating bow stances in Nengli South, which made me think that perhaps East and West were not lost but hidden in another form.

    Whew that went too long, BLUF does anyone out there have any information about these forms? Or can anyone confirm/deny what I have been told?
     
  2. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    i cannot confirm or deny. sorry
    we used to pronounce a kata Nenglise, i assume this is the same form you are talking about, and i can say it was never mentioned to me that it was a pair to another form. we did do the Two Man fist set as shown in one of Ed Parkers first books books.
     
  3. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Two man fist set is different than the nengli set, although i think its also called north and south, just to confuse things. And the two man set actually flows together, they were designed with that intent.
     
  4. Lizard-style

    Lizard-style White Belt

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    Yes, we do the two man fist set from Parker (we call them North and South, too) as well as a two man form from Wah Lum. I wasn't sure if anyone had heard the same story about Nengli (I have also heard it referred to as Nenglise), as I said I haven't been able to find any information about it on the web.
     
  5. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Unfortunately, I dont think theres anyone on here who's currently training SKK. Im probably the closest, and its been a couple years for me since ive done any kempo/kenpo (and i dont have an answer to your question). The only person i can think of who might know is @Buka, but theres a 50/50 chance he'll come on here and rant about villari instead, now that I've paged him and mentioned the no-no guy :D
     
  6. Lizard-style

    Lizard-style White Belt

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    Thanks kempodisciple, I was a little worried about that. I know there were a handful of guys that used to post on here a few years ago but I may be a little late to the party...
     
  7. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    i dont mean to speak for him but Buka never trained any forms. i learned nenglise in the mid 1980's and like i said no one ever mentioned to me that it was a set. it is possible that another form was created that was supposed to be its pair.
    and i would be more than happy to go on a Villari rant if Buka doesnt show up.
     
  8. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple MT Moderator Staff Member

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    The only reason I thought of Buka was cause I knew he trained with the guys who (supposedly) made those forms in the first place. So he might know something about their thought process.

    And one of us is bound to go on a Villari rant at some point. If you want to take that up, feel free.
     
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  9. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    The 80's were an interesting time for the Villari brand. It seemed like it was the biggest chain around, at least in Massachusetts where I live. There were more Villari schools than Dunking Donuts. Then the whole thing went into self destruct mode. The entire board of directors walked out. I wasn't up the hiarchy enough to know the inner stories but wish I did. Everybody who was a sombody went their own way. The funniest thing was to watch everyone try to pretend like they never had anything to do with Fred. They would change or make new associations and deny their past. The sad part is it worked. Over time people didn't know and others forgot. Time moves on. But I remember :) and they get mad at me when I say, Hey I remember you when you were a Villari guy..lol..wait that's backwards they tell me that and I get mad. Never mind ,, forget what I said...I was never here.
     
  10. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    Given that the name Villari has now been invoked more than three times, @Buka must make an appearance. He has no choice.
     
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  11. Buka

    Buka Grandmaster

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    I saw the Bat Signal all the way from here on Cape Cod - where I’m damn near freezing to death.

    Ah, yes, Master Villarri. My old dojo was just a couple miles from the World Headquarters of the venerable Twelfth Dan. I used to train some of his guys on the sly. Guys who wanted to compete but weren’t allowed to visit other dojo’s. I never charged them, and all the guys at our gym helped them and never took advantage of them.

    My wife and I actually attended one of his tournaments as spectators to watch some of the guys we helped. Two things are still stuck in my mind from that experience.....first was Kata competition. Keep in mind that there were literally thousands of competitors from all his schools. There were TWO college gymnasiums going on at the same time, both crammed full. So how do you possibly get through all those competitors? Easy. You bring them up three at a time with ONE judge watching them do different forms and then he holds up three score cards.

    The second thing that sticks in my mind....after an hour my wife nudges me and says “Look at the spectators and tell me what you see.”

    I look and it hits me after a minute.....the spectators are ALL wearing the same shoes. Fred Villari brand shoes. You want to talk about making money? Fred was the original Intaglio Press. (Printing press used to make U. S. currency.)

    The kids we helped won their Kumite divisions by the way.
     
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  12. Xue Sheng

    Xue Sheng All weight is underside

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    I trained briefly at the Villarri school on route 20 near Worcester Mass..... it was, well, different....they did not want to hear about any of my previous MA experience.
     
  13. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    Wow. Just...wow. Thank you for that jog down memory lane.
     
  14. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    Was that Allen ' s school?
     
  15. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    In all honesty I owned a pair of those shoes. I liked them but I wore them for training not outside wear.
     
  16. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    Would you say that Villari himself was skilled and knowledgeable? If so, did any of his students get quality instruction? Or did he just immediately see it as an opportunity to make a lot of money?
     
  17. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I can't answer if he was, but I went to three different people that ran schools who were students of either him or his students (all separate from each other). All three were knowledgeable, 2 were skilled (but both had crosstraining), and the third (who did not have crosstraining), sounded as if he would be skilled but he had a debilitating back injury around the time that prevented me from seeing him in action. His students were decent, nothing exceptional. His conceptual knowledge was high though, and he gave me new ways to think about techniques, from SKK and outside, that I found helpful.
     
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  18. Xue Sheng

    Xue Sheng All weight is underside

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    I honestly do not know. It was in the late 70s and I was not there long. One of the teachers had one arm if that helps
     
  19. Buka

    Buka Grandmaster

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    Fred was a draftsman by trade, he worked for the father of one of my brown belts. He trained under Nick Cerio. When he made black belt, or maybe second dan-I forget- he put in his two week notice and declared he was going to found his own style, open dozens of schools and make millions of dollars. I knew Nick Cerio, several of Nick’s teachers and two of his ex-wives, Nancy and Kelly. Kelly now lives back in her native South Africa and teaches knife fighting with her husband Mark, an old teacher of mine - who teaches one of the best courses I’ve ever taken, knife fighting while grappling.
    Fred has ten thousand black belts. Ten mother loving thousand. Some of them became pretty good Martial Artists though. Billy Blanks and I used to spar with a few of them. We were nice, never tried to make them look bad. Those black belts and I share a common bond. We all developed well despite the shortcomings of our original instructors. My first main instructor was a competitor with Fred, and every bit as nonsensical. Yet we survived and thrived with other instruction.
    I called a buddy of mine a few minutes ago, he said the last he heard Fred was retired in Florida and was now a fifteenth degree black belt.
    Ah, well, we all reside in an interesting Martial world. One thing is for sure, it ain’t ever boring.

    But to answer your question, yes, Fred was knowledgeable. You don’t make it to fifteenth degree black belt by being dumb.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2019
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  20. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    Being knowledgeable and skilled in a martial art are not automatically the same as not being dumb. Smart people tend to figure out how to make money. Fifteenth degree seems to me to be a scheme for making money. I’ll point out that you haven’t perhaps really answered my question. ;)
     

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