What are the various styles of Japanese Kenpo?

Tensei85

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Thats pretty much the question:

What are the various styles of Japanese Kenpo?

Are there still a large portion of Kenpo schools that keep there Japanese origins?

Thanks a lot, I know very little about Kenpo as can probably be surmised.
 

Chris Parker

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Hi,

I'll let others better qualified to address particular systems, but the term "kenpo" within Japanese arts is a rendering of the Chinese term Chuan Fa (same written characters, meaning "fist method", although the first term can also be translated as "weapon"). This lends itself to the concept that any Japanese art using the name "kenpo" is basically showing it's Chinese origins.

There have been a few arts using this term, probably the most well-known (or infamous, for that matter) is the art of Doshin So, Shorinji Kenpo. This name is essentially the Japanised reading of Shaolin Chuan Fa, by the way. However, a few classical systems have used this name as well, you just need to be sure that the term is being used to refer to an unarmed art (kenpo - fist method) rather than a sword art (kenpo - sword method [different character for sword/ken]). These arts include Seigo Ryu,Takemitsu Ryu, Shibukawa Ryu, and Sekiguchi Ryu, as well as Kyushin Ryu (which is thought to be extinct), and some branches of Araki Ryu.

These arts generally have a greater emphasis on striking and kicking, which would be a trait of their Chinese influence, but that is by no means universal. I hope this has helped a bit, and hopefully others can add to this for you.
 

Doc

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Thats pretty much the question:

What are the various styles of Japanese Kenpo?

Are there still a large portion of Kenpo schools that keep there Japanese origins?

Thanks a lot, I know very little about Kenpo as can probably be surmised.

Technically there is no Japanese KeNpo. Generally, Japanese interpretations of the Shaolin method prefer the Romanization kempo, and it should be noted the martial art form of KeMpo was founded by Doshin So in 1947, who incorporated Japanese Zen Buddhism into the fighting style, and they utilize the KeMpo spelling. This form of Kempo can be both a religion and a fighting art at the same time, like Shaolin kung fu, on which it is based.

Looked at from a Japanese martial arts perspective, it could be described as a combination of karate, judo, and aikijujutsu built on a Kung Fu framework, except that this art generally has no killing moves. It is a form of Kempo that tries to get its practitioners to move through life doing minimal damage whenever possible, which is the opposite of most Hawaiian Lineage Kenpo.

The Buddhist influences of Shorinji Kempo emphasize cooperation and is almost exempt of the bias that competition brings - turning martial arts into sports. Instructors are forbidden from making profit from their tutelage and there are no ladder-based competitions. Shorinji Kempo competition relies on paired demonstrations called embu where the accuracy, the rhythm, and the realism are noted and compared like "technical" and "artistic" marks, as in gymnastics or ice skating.
 
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Tensei85

Tensei85

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Technically there is no Japanese KeNpo. Generally, Japanese interpretations of the Shaolin method prefer the Romanization kempo, and it should be noted the martial art form of KeMpo was founded by Doshin So in 1947, who incorporated Japanese Zen Buddhism into the fighting style, and they utilize the KeMpo spelling. This form of Kempo can be both a religion and a fighting art at the same time, like Shaolin kung fu, on which it is based.

Looked at from a Japanese martial arts perspective, it could be described as a combination of karate, judo, and aikijujutsu built on a Kung Fu framework, except that this art generally has no killing moves. It is a form of Kempo that tries to get its practitioners to move through life doing minimal damage whenever possible, which is the opposite of most Hawaiian Lineage Kenpo.

The Buddhist influences of Shorinji Kempo emphasize cooperation and is almost exempt of the bias that competition brings - turning martial arts into sports. Instructors are forbidden from making profit from their tutelage and there are no ladder-based competitions. Shorinji Kempo competition relies on paired demonstrations called embu where the accuracy, the rhythm, and the realism are noted and compared like "technical" and "artistic" marks, as in gymnastics or ice skating.

Great info! Thanks,
 

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