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Question Regarding Starting Kempo Need Advice

Well I have question in regards to starting this art. My current background was I took up Karate back in the 80's like most kids. My parents said i was a brown belt (but I have no recollection to be honest). In the late 90's I trained Muay Thai for almost 2 years (quit cause I discovered the club scene. I wish I didnt quit this) then in 2009-2011 I trained in BJJ (White belt)

I am looking to get back into a Martial Art and although my wife wants to me to continue back into BJJ/Muay Thai. I have also considered other Marital Arts. I would like to take Kyokushin Karate but no places in my area teach that. My other concern is that the places here are so watered down that they have little 9 year olds as black belts in TKD or Karate Schools.

I did however find a Kempo/Judo school that looks promising but I wasnt sure what this style entails really. I have looked online and it seems like a lot of hand speed attacks on an non-resisting opponent. the sparring vids I have seen look ok, but not to keen on the idea of wearing a bubble helmet.

Has anyone here took up Kempo and what is your opinion on it? Do you feel it is watered down. Do you feel attaining black is way to fast? How hard is it against the practitioner training in this art?
nikko1 nikko1 31-35, M 1 Response Jul 13, 2012

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Hi nikko1,
I've been in the Martial Arts for around 20 years with the majority of the that in Muay Thai. The watered down schools (Mcdojo's) are rampant with unfortunatly most of them teach TKD. Essentially they're after school day cares. Martial arts are very important to me and I have spent a lot of time watching, reading and practicing lots of styles. Kyokushin is a bad *** style of karate. Those dudes are tough. From what you've wrote, yes, Kenpo is a style based on fast hand attacks with some kicking. Unfortunatly though, yes it is typically against unresisting opponents. So many of their hand techniques also rely on the opponent to react a certain way (when you punch him here, he'll do x,y and z). It's been my experience that people will react in different ways and that you can't expect something to happen, you need to flow according to what is given to you. Kenpo is a fun style to watch and to play around with, but I see it as being to flowery and not for use in fighting. It is also more important to state that it's the individual that makes the style, not the other way around. If you're looking for a fun hobby with some comradery, kenpo could fit... but I feel that with your background in Muay Thai, the sparring aspect of Kenpo could leave you lacking the feel of a real match. Be wary, because there are blackbelt factories of Kenpo popping up as well. My core style is Muay Thai, but I've trained a lot in Wing Chun, Doce Pares and the concepts of Jeet Kune Do. I personally don't think you'd really get a lot out of a kenpo school, but that's just my opinion. Opinions alone don't mean anything really. Good luck!