Mr. Parker on T.V. with Lucille Ball; In the early days of Kenpo -Jiu Jitsu development in the U.S. (photo, video link below)
This entertaining clip is a light hearted demonstration of the founding elements of Modern Kenpo. It’s in the early days of Kenpo Jiu Jitsu development in the United States. Decades later, the Dynamic Edge Kenpo curriculum project (the fusion of various traditional martial arts with a practice of health, fitness and self-defense) is still under development.
Kenpo has evolved to become the study of treacherous, scientific street fighting combined with self-mastery. The physical practice is combined with training of the mind while emphasizing; awareness, confidence, perseverance, precision, self-control, focus and respect for one’s self and for others. The modern Kenpo student studies a wide variety of subjects including; stress reduction, meditation, injury prevention, basic anatomy and physiology, visualization training, kinesiology, fundamentals of physics, violence in society, de-escalation, and adrenaline stress to name a few. These are examples are of the ongoing study that are part of this unique Art of the United States now growing around the world.
In the first clip, Parker demonstrates: Leap of Death in the beginning, part of Darting Mace (Fist/Strikes) and a version of Seoi Nage (shoulder throw Judo) part of Kicking Set 1, a downward spiraling arm bar, Parting Twigs (Arms) Bow and Arrow/ spine crank submission.
The show allowed enough time for Parker to demonstrate a wide survey of early U.S. Kenpo. At it’s core he was beginning to combine Judo/Jiu Jitsu with Karate and Kung Fu. Myself and several of my students are continuing to work on this goal by refining the system and including Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as well as other road tested practical self-defense methods.
It’s funny how he was part of perpetuating some of the myth-conceptions about Karate; breaking boards, yelling, etc.) that he would spend his life fighting against. He later evolved the Art of Kenpo to show the more intellectual and health aspects of the art but he approached this scene with good humor and was clearly having fun.
Lucille Ball actually spent time training with Mr. Parker. She was excited to showcase her teacher : ) I love how she shouted “I did it!” That feeling is the greatest gift you can share with a new student learning martial arts. I had never seen the Bill Bixby clip, very cool! (A version of Tripping Leg/similar to the Judo throw Osoto gari).