Extensions are like add-ons to techniques. Many people have said that Parker Kenpoists use over kill on their opponents. The idea however as I understand it is that they train for "overskill" and not overkill. That is that if something doesn't work they can go onto another thing until they have destroyed their opponent.

Now this does lead to problems. Some kenpoists just speed right up and as a result get "slappy" and their strikes don't do much. The rapid fire shots don't do much if they are not effective. Speed, Power & Accuracy should probably go in the order of Accuracy, Power, & Speed.

Back to my original issue. Some schools no longer teach the extentions of have students make up their own. What do you think? Should schools continue with teaching of the extentions? Why or why not?
I believe we need to learn the extensions as they are our link to the way Master Parker envisioned the art. It is through the use of extensions that we learn to branch off into other techniques and learn our spontaneity.

Rob Broad
I think they're good to learn too. Just more fodder for the cannon.
The extensions also have the ability to help us realize the full extent of the versatility of the art of Kenpo. It also helps us discover the avenues that each technique could possiblity travel into. Imagine Five Swords but he person staggers back after the first strike, we now go into Dance of Death or whatever else seem logical depending on how the feet are positioned.
In the original 24 system, the extentions are started at 1st brown and continue per belt.

Many people never teach them anymore or use their own. A shame really. I have yet to start to use them myself.
One of the main differences between the Parker and Tracy system is that their techniques have the extensions as a part of the regular techniques. The two systems do not share that many techniques but the ones that are the same usually have the entire technique extension included.
A little off the topic of extenstions, but...

I've often wondered about the years in which the techniques and forms of American Kenpo were developed and reached there current state. For instance there is footage from the early 60's showing what we now call short 1 and short 2.

What portion of the modern material was developed before Al and Jim Tracy split off? Did they know Form 4 as I know it today?
I think this would be an excellent question to ask Huk Planas. He's pretty knowledgeable and has a good timeline to work from. Plus he did some tracy stuf too.

A lot of the old timers would know this but also remember that they all have their own "slant" or frame from which they look from.

I have to think that the time frame the Tracy's left was as far as they got from the Parker system. Having said that I don't think Parker was higher than 3 or 4 when they left in forms. So I doubt they'd be doing what he did.

Not that it matters as Parker was constantly revising his system.:asian:
hey Shine,

The Tracy's forms are the same (well sorta*) through 5. The Tracy's have a 6, but they make no claim that it the same form. (The interesting thing is that it is also a counter weapons form, like the AK form.)

*I said that they are "sort of" the same because there is a difference in technique execution between the two systems, but there are still lots of similarities in these forms. You can run through the forms side by side and see the little differences, which is a fun and interesting exercise.


Of course that means that some of us get to learn both 6's, I am not looking to that....
The Tracys forms are close to those of American Kenpo but there is a major difference in the way they applied. In the American Kenpo system we learn principle of motion from the forms. The biggest difference starts at Long form 2, and from there you will see many little variances of why and how things are done.
Imagine Five Swords but he person staggers back after the first strike, we now go into Dance of Death

That's not an extension, it's grafting, an entirely different (though very important) skill
It's not really different. The extensions can be used as the what ifs to the colored belt techniques. You will see a few concepts taught in the extensions not taught previously at lower levels. You can graft these extensions into various other techniques that they were not designed for. Remember, numerical rearraingement, suffix, prefix etc.?
Ah, but he didn't say "he staggers back, so you have to use an extension to finish the technique," he wants to add ANOTHER technique. It's going a little far (I think) to call a whole, pre-existing technique a suffix. But I'm not saying it's not a good thing to know how to do, and of course, in what ifs, you could change, add, delete to or from any technique if it works, and in the spontaneous phase extensions can even be used on their own, but in my system, anyway, maybe EPAK (or Tracy) is slightly different, each technique does have its own prescribed extension. A suffix would be using only a part of that extension, or adding something entirely new.
Originally posted by GouRonin
In the original 24 system, the extentions are started at 1st brown and continue per belt.

Many people never teach them anymore or use their own. A shame really. I have yet to start to use them myself.

Originally taught and called the "Green-Orange Techniques" That is at green you learned the orange extensions.
personally, I like the extensions...

They not only deal with the "what if he's still there" thing, they give you a way to "finish it" when it isn't in there with the base technique...

For example, in dance of death, you've hit him in the groin and knocked him over (and hopefully have a good hold on his ankle) at the end of the technique... so you're sitting there, hanging on to this dude, going "ummm... what do I do now?" Enter, the extension... (which I have seen but haven't been taught yet)
First, I train under Master George Elmer in American Chinese Kenpo Karate. We begin developing our own extensions as yellow belts as a necessary requirement for orange belt. At this early stage they are usually only one or two additional moves (which must make sense) after the base technique, but it teaches us to react to how our opponents body moves.

I find this to be a distinct advantage as we progress though the system because it accelerates our efforts in tailoring Kenpo to suit us personally. We all train in Ideal Situations while in class which we know will most likely be different during a confrontation on the street. Working with our own extensions teaches us to essentially to think for ourselves in moving with and reacting to our opponent.

I am a green belt who realizes I still have much to learn. I wanted to state my opinion because I personally find extensions to be an integral part of my Kenpo training. :asian:

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