Lack Of Power In Techniques

MarkC

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This is something that irritates the hell out of me too.
Yet plenty of these guys (and women) think they would actually be able to defend themselves.
 

hongkongfooey

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I think that is the advantage of some of the "traditional" karate styles. They spend A LOT of time on basics and getting them down before moving on. I think that proper basics get lost in the rush to get to the "fancy" S-D techniques. Because those are alot more fun to train. Sometimes I wonder if some students don't hit hard because they don't really know HOW to hit hard. They only do air techniques and then light contact on a compliant partner, where is the transition to hit hard and go through the technique even if it is just on B.O.B. or a heavy bag or a pad holder?

It makes more sense to me to learn all of the basics at white belt and refine them as one progresses through the ranks. I have been told by some people the reason the basics are broken up over several ranks is that some of the basic moves are too advanced to learn at white belt. I think that is nonsense. There is no reason why all of the basics cannot be taught and learned at white belt, none. Some of the basic moves are just plain ridiculous. Chicken kicks for example are not worth the energy expended to pull them off.
 

punisher73

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It makes more sense to me to learn all of the basics at white belt and refine them as one progresses through the ranks. I have been told by some people the reason the basics are broken up over several ranks is that some of the basic moves are too advanced to learn at white belt. I think that is nonsense. There is no reason why all of the basics cannot be taught and learned at white belt, none. Some of the basic moves are just plain ridiculous. Chicken kicks for example are not worth the energy expended to pull them off.

I can't remember where I first heard/read it, but I really like the 80/20 principle. To sum it up, 80% of your results are going to come from 20% of your effort. In application to MA, that 20% is your basics, and 80% of your time should be spent training them. The other 20% of your time can be spent training the lower percentage moves like a chicken kick (just look at Machida's KO of Couture to see it has a place and time).

I remember a thread from Dr. Dave (posts on MT as Kempoka-BudoKai I believe) in which I asked him about an old school training routine and there was alot of emphasis on training the basics and getting them to a sharp edge. I also think of it like this, if you can't get your first two moves to work (block and strike) does it matter what else you attempt to do from your vast repitoire of S-D techniques? You need to hit hard to stun/damage your attacker to buy yourself time plain and simple.
 

Razor

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I think a lot of the problem is with beginners, and they need it trained out from them.

When I started, my punches were probably not powerful enough, but quite soon I was performing kata with a 3rd dan who is a lot bigger than me and didn't pull any punches. Essentially, I knew if I didn't block or evade properly, I was going to be hit and it would hurt. I think that's a good way to get beginners accustomed to how much power you should have.

EDIT: I don't actually train in Kempo, but think it applies to many martial arts!
 

hongkongfooey

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I think like you do regarding the defender's response to an attack. If one is able to recover from an attack and their offense is weak, they may as well pack it up and go home. I always like to hear people talk about how the extensions will save them if their technique (not the ideal phase techniques) is not effective. I hope these people understand that the real world is not like the dojo. I'm pretty sure that people just don't stand there stiff as a board, with their arm locked out in front of them waiting for the 1000 slaps of vengeance that are on the way.:uhyeah:

I'll have to check out the Machida/ Couture footage. It just may help change my mind about chicken kicks.
 

just2kicku

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I agree that basics are your fundamentals, without them its like building a house starting at the roof with no foundation. The days of practicing basics for 2 hours a night I believe has gone by the wayside in this day and age. Instructors are doing it for a living now instead of having a job and teaching for the love of the art. Catering to what the student wants equals rent being paid and a new car. Crazy!
 

KENPOJOE

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Hi folks!
Been awhile since I've been on the boards here at MT! I had some time and was reading this thread. For the most part, I agreed with the majority of opinions,However, When I read this statement,I had to disagree. I understand the initial idea behind dealing with a "non compliant dummy"but at that point there still has to be some level of compliancy because if a "dummy" consistently resists my actions and or reactions, I will have to bring it to the point that I may have to use full contact to get my "point" across. To the majority of mass, one can take various strikes but without some level of conpliancy The various more lethal strikes will now become exactly that, lethal. We don't ant to poke out our partners eyes or rupture their eardrums to "get our point across". However, we can "agree" to use more contact so that we "both" can benefit from the training experience. I'm reminded of a quote from Mr. Parker "Remember:My control is only as good as YOUR control!" Many tmes, I've dealt with "Stone Dummies" who would not respond to your techniques but when it was their turn they would hit you full blast...until you responded by hitting them just as hard! then it was "You don't have to hit THAT hard!" from them! We are supposed to regulate the amount of contact so as to enable our fellow kenpoist to achieve a greater level of endurance and durability so that when they are attacked on the street and they are actually hit,their response should be "I get hit harder in class!"
I hope that I was of some service,
KENPOJOE
There should be no such thing as a compliant dummy after the initial learning of a particular technique or sequence.
 

KENPOJOE

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Hi folks!
We initially stand in a "natural stance" [or as I decoratively refer to it, the "I don't know karate" stance [which,btw,Frank Trejo has used many a time to lull an opponent into a false sense of confidence] because most people who actually attack you don't "fight fair" an drop into a stance to drop YOU! Most people are more tan happy to sucker punch you when you aren't "ready" or even looking! So, you had better learn how to react from the "Officer, I was just standing here and then he attacked me" stance. Also, I tend to enjoy the "Beautiful Intelligent Tender Caring Human" slap to get my opponent's attention or to distract him from the more deadly actions that I don't want him to see! Many of the later techniques address standing in a fighting stance but understand that the natural stance w/ hands up in a "passive" position is a fighting stance as well.
I hope that I was of some service,
KENPOJOE
I agree with this. Look at most Kenpo people spar. Kenpo sparring in most schools looks like watered down kick boxing. Why not learn to use your techniques in a live manner instead of standing with your feet together waiting for a called attack to come. It's no wonder many Kenpo students can't fight. People should put some gear on and go at it hard, none of that slap happy BS.
 

KENPOJOE

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Hi folks!
Mr. Parker was once asked "Why do people from XXX traditional style look so much better than kenpo people who hold comparable rank in the undergrade ranks?" his response "When you only have 6 letters of the alphabet to learn,then it is easier to get good at those 6 letters. But by the same token,what happen when someone uses letters you ae not familiar with? Kenpo practitioners learn a diverse series of techniques at an earlier level to evenly familiarize them with realistic attacks that occur on the streets of today. They [kenpoists] have a greater understanding of the various scenarios that can and will happen to them."fancy" techniques? Most of the yellow,orange and even purple self defense techniques are only 3 to 6 major movements in length.Depends on what a given individual considers "fancy". Now fancy that!LOL!
I hope that I was of some service,
KENPOJOE
I think that is the advantage of some of the "traditional" karate styles. They spend A LOT of time on basics and getting them down before moving on. I think that proper basics get lost in the rush to get to the "fancy" S-D techniques. Because those are alot more fun to train. Sometimes I wonder if some students don't hit hard because they don't really know HOW to hit hard. They only do air techniques and then light contact on a compliant partner, where is the transition to hit hard and go through the technique even if it is just on B.O.B. or a heavy bag or a pad holder?
 

punisher73

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Hi folks!
Mr. Parker was once asked "Why do people from XXX traditional style look so much better than kenpo people who hold comparable rank in the undergrade ranks?" his response "When you only have 6 letters of the alphabet to learn,then it is easier to get good at those 6 letters. But by the same token,what happen when someone uses letters you ae not familiar with? Kenpo practitioners learn a diverse series of techniques at an earlier level to evenly familiarize them with realistic attacks that occur on the streets of today. They [kenpoists] have a greater understanding of the various scenarios that can and will happen to them."fancy" techniques? Most of the yellow,orange and even purple self defense techniques are only 3 to 6 major movements in length.Depends on what a given individual considers "fancy". Now fancy that!LOL!
I hope that I was of some service,
KENPOJOE

I didn't mean "fancy" as in non-functional. I meant "fancy" as in more fascinating to a new student and more fun to work on. Many beginners want to gloss through the foundations and go on to material that they deem "funner". You can see it in more traditional arts too, where the student tries to bypass good basic training so they can start to work on katas etc.
 

DavidCC

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I don't believe practicing techniques with a partner is the right time to be working to develop power in your strikes. With proper mechanics power will be there. More power than you can use with a partner. IMHO it's an oxymoron - I am training to develop the ability to deliver more power by making contact with my partner and pulling my power so he doesn't get hurt. I don;t believe heavy contact in technique practice is required to learn to hit well.
 
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MJS

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Hi folks!
Been awhile since I've been on the boards here at MT! I had some time and was reading this thread. For the most part, I agreed with the majority of opinions,However, When I read this statement,I had to disagree. I understand the initial idea behind dealing with a "non compliant dummy"but at that point there still has to be some level of compliancy because if a "dummy" consistently resists my actions and or reactions, I will have to bring it to the point that I may have to use full contact to get my "point" across. To the majority of mass, one can take various strikes but without some level of conpliancy The various more lethal strikes will now become exactly that, lethal. We don't ant to poke out our partners eyes or rupture their eardrums to "get our point across". However, we can "agree" to use more contact so that we "both" can benefit from the training experience. I'm reminded of a quote from Mr. Parker "Remember:My control is only as good as YOUR control!" Many tmes, I've dealt with "Stone Dummies" who would not respond to your techniques but when it was their turn they would hit you full blast...until you responded by hitting them just as hard! then it was "You don't have to hit THAT hard!" from them! We are supposed to regulate the amount of contact so as to enable our fellow kenpoist to achieve a greater level of endurance and durability so that when they are attacked on the street and they are actually hit,their response should be "I get hit harder in class!"
I hope that I was of some service,
KENPOJOE

I think this article sums it up pretty nice. :)
http://www.straightblastgym.com/aliveness101.html

especially the part where he talks about the "I" method. When first learning, yes, the uke should be compliant, so as to allow the student a chance to get to learn the technique. And yes, as resistance is gradually introduced, the uke still needs to take into consideration that when we simulate the eye shot or any hit that would, if it were really applied, cause a reaction, that they should act accordingly. I've worked with some people who couldn't grasp this, thus forcing me to hit them or do something to them to make the tech work. :)
 
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MJS

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Hi folks!
We initially stand in a "natural stance" [or as I decoratively refer to it, the "I don't know karate" stance [which,btw,Frank Trejo has used many a time to lull an opponent into a false sense of confidence] because most people who actually attack you don't "fight fair" an drop into a stance to drop YOU! Most people are more tan happy to sucker punch you when you aren't "ready" or even looking! So, you had better learn how to react from the "Officer, I was just standing here and then he attacked me" stance. Also, I tend to enjoy the "Beautiful Intelligent Tender Caring Human" slap to get my opponent's attention or to distract him from the more deadly actions that I don't want him to see! Many of the later techniques address standing in a fighting stance but understand that the natural stance w/ hands up in a "passive" position is a fighting stance as well.
I hope that I was of some service,
KENPOJOE

I tend to work all of my techs from that natural stance. I do that, because the majority of the time, thats how I'm standing. :) I also like to work things from a slightly bladed stance. This isn't the 'fighting stance' neutral bow, or anything like that, simply a non threatening, slightly bladed stance, which will still keep my feet shoulder length apart, but will give me a bit more movement, than simply standing naturally. :)
 
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MJS

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Hi folks!
Mr. Parker was once asked "Why do people from XXX traditional style look so much better than kenpo people who hold comparable rank in the undergrade ranks?" his response "When you only have 6 letters of the alphabet to learn,then it is easier to get good at those 6 letters. But by the same token,what happen when someone uses letters you ae not familiar with? Kenpo practitioners learn a diverse series of techniques at an earlier level to evenly familiarize them with realistic attacks that occur on the streets of today. They [kenpoists] have a greater understanding of the various scenarios that can and will happen to them."fancy" techniques? Most of the yellow,orange and even purple self defense techniques are only 3 to 6 major movements in length.Depends on what a given individual considers "fancy". Now fancy that!LOL!
I hope that I was of some service,
KENPOJOE

I didn't mean "fancy" as in non-functional. I meant "fancy" as in more fascinating to a new student and more fun to work on. Many beginners want to gloss through the foundations and go on to material that they deem "funner". You can see it in more traditional arts too, where the student tries to bypass good basic training so they can start to work on katas etc.

While I agree that the art of Kenpo provides us with a vast array of tools, sometimes I can't help but think that there are too many tools in the box. Students tend to focus on the 'fancy' things, such as the long drawn out techniques, such as Dance of Death. Long tech, lots of moves, it looks cool, because you're beating the hell out of the person...lol. Yet in reality, is that practical?

To each his own I suppose, but for me, I'm a believer in the KISS principle. We're all getting to the same end point, only difference is that some get there a bit quicker. :)
 

KempoGuy06

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I have run into this a lot since i started teaching. Even when i am having people work the techniques on me. Standing 6'3" and weighing 250lbs im pretty tough. I have to constantly tell people to make contact or that they arent going to break me.

One thing i have discovered is that if they go to perform a technique and it lacks force, i will usually counter to show them they need to mean it. that gets their attention pretty quick when they end up on their backs on the mats.

B
 

MasterPain

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I believe that some folks just need to slow down their movement a bit. Super fast combinations don't have a lot of power. Slow down a little and focus on putting body behind each strike.

Thanks.
 

hongkongfooey

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Hi folks!
We initially stand in a "natural stance" [or as I decoratively refer to it, the "I don't know karate" stance [which,btw,Frank Trejo has used many a time to lull an opponent into a false sense of confidence] because most people who actually attack you don't "fight fair" an drop into a stance to drop YOU! Most people are more tan happy to sucker punch you when you aren't "ready" or even looking! So, you had better learn how to react from the "Officer, I was just standing here and then he attacked me" stance. Also, I tend to enjoy the "Beautiful Intelligent Tender Caring Human" slap to get my opponent's attention or to distract him from the more deadly actions that I don't want him to see! Many of the later techniques address standing in a fighting stance but understand that the natural stance w/ hands up in a "passive" position is a fighting stance as well.
I hope that I was of some service,
KENPOJOE

No amount of Kenpo training will prepare you for an attack (sucker punch) that you don't see coming. I also stand by my statement that many Kenpo people can't fight. They can spout off terminology, talk about principles, and work techniques on a compliant partner when they know what the attack is. Take away the comfort of knowing how and where you are going to be attacked and the Kenpo goes right out the window.
 

Cyriacus

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No amount of Kenpo training will prepare you for an attack (sucker punch) that you don't see coming. I also stand by my statement that many Kenpo people can't fight. They can spout off terminology, talk about principles, and work techniques on a compliant partner when they know what the attack is. Take away the comfort of knowing how and where you are going to be attacked and the Kenpo goes right out the window.
No Training can. Because no matter how skilled you are, youre still made of Bones, Muscles, Organs, and their related Functions.
Now, most Engagements dont take place with a Sucker Punch. Its rare for someone to say "Oh look at that guy - Lets go punch him in the Head from behind!".
Most of the time, you either know the Person, or they Confront you first, or the give you a harsh Push.
Conditioning is about the only thing thatll help you, since itll allow you to be struck numerous times, and still regain some sense of Control, in order to Retaliate. But ultimately, you have to assume that even if you see the attack coming, you WILL be hit. And if youre not?
Thats Nice! Pat yourself on the back Sir!

Because its better to Expect the Worst, than Dredge it out with Optimism.

And as for some People not being able to Fight - Some People dont have Fighting in them. I consider them good sources of Information though, as they tend to sponge it up. They also make for good Assistant Instructers.
But those of any Art who can really Fight, are usually Pretty Good at it.

I imagine Kenpo works the same way.

I believe that some folks just need to slow down their movement a bit. Super fast combinations don't have a lot of power. Slow down a little and focus on putting body behind each strike.

Thanks.

That depends on Experience, and the Style. For example, Speed may not be 100% Power, but Speed itself can BE Powerful.
Im of the belief that all MA should strive for Power, above all else. And Speed is an aspect of Power. It NEEDS to be learnt, just perhaps not right away.
A Black Belt isnt going to be too great, if he can generate the most Power in the World, at a lowered Rate of Speed.
(Bare with me. I couldnt think of any non-extraditionary explanation of what im trying to say :p)
Therefore, could it not be beneficial to Teach Speed from the very Beginning, but to constantly remind the Student that it is not their Main Priority?
 

LawDog

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HongKong,
I don't know you but it is very obvious that you have had limited contact with the overall Kenpo community. Yes there are many "sports" type of Kenpo schools out there and there are also many Kenpo schools that "talk the talk" but fail to "walk the walk". However there is a very large group of kenpoists that can back up what they say. Out on the west coast there are the Kaju systems and the Ralph Castro systems along with many many others. On the east coast there are the SGM Cerios schools and the SGM Pesare's schools along with those who came from their lineage. The best way to personally prove out your opinon is to walk into one of the mentioned schools and call them a bunch of candy a _ _ _ _ and see what happens.
One should not blanket an entire style because of a few contacts that one has made or what one reads in a forum.
p.s. Kaju is not Kenpo but many of todays Kenpo systems are from their lineage.
Nothing personal here just my opinon about a slap in the face we kenpoists received.
 

KempoGuy06

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That depends on Experience, and the Style. For example, Speed may not be 100% Power, but Speed itself can BE Powerful.
Im of the belief that all MA should strive for Power, above all else. And Speed is an aspect of Power. It NEEDS to be learnt, just perhaps not right away.
A Black Belt isnt going to be too great, if he can generate the most Power in the World, at a lowered Rate of Speed.
(Bare with me. I couldnt think of any non-extraditionary explanation of what im trying to say :p)
Therefore, could it not be beneficial to Teach Speed from the very Beginning, but to constantly remind the Student that it is not their Main Priority?

I see what you are trying to point out...I think.

Speed and power are intertwined. Throw in mass and its basic physics. I like what you stated though i think it needs to be tweaked. It really depends on the person. Someone big will have a large amount of strength and could probably knock someone out due to his strength and sheer size but that wont help him in a fight against someone who is faster and more agile. On the flip though...someone small and agile might not have the sufficient strength to take down a much larger opponent. Of course this is an age old argument where technique comes into play as well.

Basically what i want to say is that power and speed are equally important. Both can diffuse a situation and can save your life (as they have for me personally). I think as teachers we should concentrate on TEACHING the techniques and then SHOW them how power and speed are intermixed.

B
 

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