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CQB Kajukenbo Beginner Requirements (Level 1 to Level 7)




The clover represents knowledge, Mind, Body and Spirit, and also Sijo Emperado
In our system it also represents overlapping compound circles. The clover is one of the earliest & most recognized Kajukenbo symbols, so we pay homage to our roots with it.

The arrows represent our use of angles (especially 45* angles) , changing directions when meeting resistance, and the willingness to adapt to the situation while always looking for the best tool for the job.  The arrows also pay homage to our JKD heritage via the JKD emblem.  The triangle shape of the arrows also symbolize our Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu influence.



KAJUKENBO is a self-defense system that was developed in Hawaii by a group of martial artists (who later called themselves ‘The Black Belt Society’) between 1947 & 1949.  It is made up from techniques from multiple martial arts including Karate (KA), Jujitsu (JU), Kenpo (KEN), and Chinese & Western Boxing (BO).  Chinese boxing is often called Kung-Fu.  Other arts are also a part of Kajukenbo but not credited in the name.  Although several contributors developed what would later be called Kajukenbo, Adriano Directo Emperado was considered it’s principal founder.  He was addressed by the title ‘Sijo’.  Sijo “Sonny” Directo Emperado was born on June 16, 1926 and died in his sleep on April 4, 2009 – about 2 months before his 83rd birthday.
The Kajukenbo salute is a fist enclosed by the left hand is a common sight in almost all Kung-Fu and Kajukenbo schools. Friendship symbolized by the left hand covers the aggressiveness of the right hand. It is the salutation of instructor to instructor or student to instructor. It is also used when entering or exiting the training area. When the left hand is not closed over the fist, but is straight the gesture means, “I come in peace and I am just practicing my art.” It is considered another gesture of friendship. When the fist is pushed forward by the left hand it is a challenge to the other person.  The fist is associated with “power” & the open hand signifies “friendship.”  Together they translate to “powerful friendship, or for our purposes, the standard “covered fist” represents respect.
Sifu‘ is a Cantonese (Chinese) word used in Kajukenbo to mean ‘teacher’.  It is the official title and form of address for Kajukenbo black belts from 3rd to 5th degree, although some schools award the title at 1st degree.
All other black belts (regardless of style) are addressed and answered as “Sir” or “Ma’am” if you do not know their proper title.
Students are expected to maintain a training journal, taking notes from each class and they should also be keeping copies of handouts & study materials.  You should have several pages of notes per level.  Taking notes during class is an easy way to meet this requirement.
Your notes can be hand-written or typed but your instructors may expect to see printed copies of typed notes at any time.
You should also be keeping copies of any papers or reports you wrote for class.
The standard Kajukenbo uniform color is black.  If a uniform is not worn then training attire normally consists of sweatpants, t-shirt, and workout shoes – preferably all black.
Proper stick grip leaves a punyo a free bit of stick at the end (sometimes spelled punio), the free space from the butt of the stick is about the width of 3 inches to an adult male fist

Three Rules of Locking: Always strike & distract (before, during & after), Never chase a lock & Never force a lock
Lin-Sil-die-dar: “Simultaneous Blocks & Strikes” – Every block is a strike, every strike is a block
Escrima is a fighting art from the Philippines, also known as Arnis, and often called Kali on the West Coast.
Muay Thai is a form of kickboxing (sometimes called Thai Boxing) from Thailand that incorporates shin kicks, knees, elbows & headbutts.
Four Ranges of Combat” are: Kicking, punching, trapping & grappling (hand-to-hand)
Hubud (often called a generator drill; means to ‘tie’ or sometimes ‘untie’), it teaches fluidity and sensitivity


What is self-defense?

Generally speaking, you do not need to retreat to defend yourself with less-than-lethal force {at least in Missouri} nor do you need to let the bad guy try to harm you first.

This is from the Missouri Revised Statutes: Chapter 563 – Defense of Justification, not legal advice.

Missouri Revised Statutes, Chapter 563: Defense of Justification (August 28, 2016)

Use of force in defense of persons

563.031. 1. A person may, subject to the provisions of subsection 2 of this section, use physical force upon another person when and to the extent he or she reasonably believes such force to be necessary to defend himself or herself or a third person from what he or she reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of unlawful force by such other person, unless:

(1) The actor was the initial aggressor; except that in such case his or her use of force is nevertheless justifiable provided:

(a) He or she has withdrawn from the encounter and effectively communicated such withdrawal to such other person but the latter persists in continuing the incident by the use or threatened use of unlawful force; or

(b) He or she is a law enforcement officer and as such is an aggressor pursuant to section 563.046; or

(c) The aggressor is justified under some other provision of this chapter or other provision of law;

(2) Under the circumstances as the actor reasonably believes them to be, the person whom he or she seeks to protect would not be justified in using such protective force;

(3) The actor was attempting to commit, committing, or escaping after the commission of a forcible felony.

2. A person shall not use deadly force upon another person under the circumstances specified in subsection 1 of this section unless:

(1) He or she reasonably believes that such deadly force is necessary to protect himself, or herself or her unborn child, or another against death, serious physical injury, or any forcible felony;

(2) Such force is used against a person who unlawfully enters, remains after unlawfully entering, or attempts to unlawfully enter a dwelling, residence, or vehicle lawfully occupied by such person; or

(3) Such force is used against a person who unlawfully enters, remains after unlawfully entering, or attempts to unlawfully enter private property that is owned or leased by an individual, or is occupied by an individual who has been given specific authority by the property owner to occupy the property, claiming a justification of using protective force under this section.

3. A person does not have a duty to retreat:

(1) From a dwelling, residence, or vehicle where the person is not unlawfully entering or unlawfully remaining;

(2) From private property that is owned or leased by such individual; or

(3) If the person is in any other location such person has the right to be.

4. The justification afforded by this section extends to the use of physical restraint as protective force provided that the actor takes all reasonable measures to terminate the restraint as soon as it is reasonable to do so.

5. The defendant shall have the burden of injecting the issue of justification under this section. If a defendant asserts that his or her use of force is described under subdivision (2) of subsection 2 of this section, the burden shall then be on the state to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant did not reasonably believe that the use of such force was necessary to defend against what he or she reasonably believed was the use or imminent use of unlawful force.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 1993 S.B. 180, A.L. 2007 S.B. 62 & 41, A.L. 2010 H.B. 1692, et al. merged with H.B. 2081, A.L. 2016 S.B. 656)

*Effective 10-14-16, see § 21.250. S.B. 656 was vetoed June 27, 2016. The veto was overridden on September 14, 2016.

Self Defense, simply put:  You generally have a right to use a justified and proportionate level of force against a person who appears to have the meansopportunity, and intent to harm you or someone else. This right ends the moment the threat subsides.

1st – The defendant must prove that s/he reasonably BELIEVED that the act was necessary to defend himself.  This defense may be available even if it turns out that the defendant did not actually need to defend herself.  As long as she reasonably believed that defense was needed because of the threat of physical harm.

2nd – The defendant must show that s/he was in IMMINENT danger.
3rd – The level of force needs to be proportionate and JUSTIFIABLE.

Techniques are no more fixed or permanent than the fight you may be in!

Everything we train should be adaptable and is subject to improvement or replacement.


Eye of the storm: To seek safety, one must go into the heart of danger!

Reactionary Gap – The range / distance between opponents where ‘action beats reaction within arms reach’.  You are too close to the bad guy to register the threat in enough time to do anything useful about it.  This can be tested has proven to be true about 90% of the time.  It is fun for adults and kids to drill.  Start with 2 people facing each other in a ‘neutral stance’ – just standing relaxed with feet parallel and about shoulder-width apart.  Now have them both get close enough to put their hands on their partner’s shoulders. This is ‘within arms reach’.  Now to test that ‘action beats reaction’, simply have one person Attack (‘A’) by trying to poke the other Defender (‘D’) in the middle of the chest, for real and quickly using their dominant hand.  Let ‘D’ try any block, evasion, stance, etc. they can think of – BUT they cannot move until ‘A’ does.  As a courtesy, ‘D’ should not be trying to hit ‘A’ back.  Reset -every time- back to arms reach and  repeat the drill about 10 times, counting how many times ‘D’ was poked.  Then let ‘A’ and ‘D’ switch roles.
The drill can start with counting 3 and THEN poke.  ‘D’ *knows* when it is coming but will still be hit 9 out of 10 times.
Now poke without counting or warning.  Now do it poking with either hand.   Now by poking anywhere on the torso.

Now work the drill using a practice knife instead of a finger poke…  It just got real.

First Strike Advantage: The ability to get of a preemptive strike or technique within the Reactionary Gap which is hard to defend against.  Since action beats reaction within arms reach, whomever strikes, grabs, etc first in this range will have a decisive advantage.  You will often also have the element of surprise if you distracted the bad guy.  Often useful from the Hidden Stance.  ‘First *Strike* Advantage’ can be used to clinch, disarm, or any number of things – not just hitting.

Hidden Stance – Passive-looking “defensive” stance with hands up and open.  Your palms face toward the threat and your fingertips should be at ‘eyebrow level’.  Keep your thumbs in so they do not get jammed or broken. Your elbows should stay close to your sides and your arms are a bit more than 90 degrees in front of you. Your feet should be about shoulder-width apart with one leg in front of the other, similar to a ‘fighting stance’ but with 2 differences.  1) Make sure one leg is NOT behind the other (nothing like a cat stance) but instead turn your feet and hips slightly inward so you are not presenting your center-line, vitals, groin, etc to the bad guy & 2) your dominant hand -and therefore the same-side leg- should be in front.
The stance is usually accompanied by verbalization & other distractions (“I don’t want to fight.”, “Please don’t hurt me!”, stomping on the foot when they are watching your hands, etc.).  Called ‘a Hidden stance’ because our intentions, defensive, and offensive capabilities are hidden from the attacker.  The more cynical of us may also say we are hiding our skills from random camera-phones – see “CNN Tactics”.  Since the hands are open and not balled into fists, you look passive.  However an open hand is more relaxed than a closed fist and therefore much faster.  Not only is it faster but you have more reach because you can use things like eye jabs or limb destructions from outside of what would be expected as punching range.

CNN Tactics – Using tactics and strategies such as verbalization & the Hidden stance to make it clear to a potential police witness with a camera phone that we are the good guys who are defending and not attacking.  So called because we always consider the possibility that the footage will end up on the news or in a YouTube video.
Get into a hidden Stance and say “I don’t want to fight” but be prepared to make used of the First Strike Advantage.

Understand that real conflict often happens in or near the Reactionary Gap.  Explain that the first step in not being a victim is staying out of range (‘The Reactionary Gap’) or by using it to your favor (‘First Strike Advantage’) to distract and get away / call for help.

Lock-flow [moves 1-3]
from a Lapel grab, step in 45* & distract: 1) outside wrist lock, check the pulse, pull straight to 2) uppercut & elbow lock, 3) roll over to straight arm bar
Inosanto’s “Five Strikes” (Cinco Teros): A1- shoulder to hip, A2- backhand shoulder to hip, A3- across stomach, A4- backhand across stomach, A5- thrust to solar plexus
Siniwali (means ‘weaving’ or ‘to weave’): stick drills such as 2-count (a1/2 & backhand) & 3-count (a1/2 + foot & backhand)

Mount: display stability & striking; gravity and hip position then armbar
Guard: (closed or open): display stability & striking; hip position then armbar
Side Control: display stability & striking; gravity then Americana (palm up) and Kimura (palm down)
Scarf Hold: display stability & striking (‘scarf’ for short); gravity
Twisting Arm Control (a Vale Tudo -“Anything goes”- position): display stability & striking [VT is a side-mount variation]

Same-side arm grab defense: Hands up / distract, step in F45*, elbow across top, back-fist), side clinch, takedown or strike
Choke defense against wall: Hands up / distract, finger jab to throat, wrist lock then strike and finish
Side Wheel: ‘Head lock’ defense: wrap hip, or pin hand, strike low (tap!), block knee, step to front sit out, frame & mount
Front Bear hug (arms pinned) defense:  Go up on toes, distract, push arms straight & hips back, then finish

Punch defenses (using footwork to the inside with a shoulder stop)
(vs. right haymaker punch or high hook)
1. Left shoulder stop with simultaneous right vertical punch or palm strike
2. Right shoulder stop then hand exchange: left palm to jaw, right brachial stun
3. Right shoulder stop followed by a left rising palm or elbow to the floating ribs and a groin strike with the right

Boxing basic combo 1 – 6:   Jab, Cross, body hooks, uppercuts [30:90s]
Vertical Punches [60:30s]
Arm, wrist & neck stretches
Front Snap kick & roundhouse kick
Slapping hand block (pak sao) from a reference point
Palm-up deflection (taun sao)

Drill: Jab, cross, front elbow (with lead step & slide), rear elbow (with female triangle zoning to outside) with Forward Pressure using focus mitts.

Some basic sensitivity drills:
Hubud: basic Angle #1 (A1)
Grabbing hand (lop sao) from reference point
Hand Exchange (trained from jabs in hubud )

When preparing for the Level 1 exam you should have a brown or black belt teach you how to tie your belt.

In CQB Kajukenbo, your belt does not overlap or cross in back.

Demonstrate Simultaneous Blocks & Strikes
Three-kicks drill:  Same / “Rhythm of 3” or different kicks
“Rhythm of Three” punches drill
Light roll: positions & passes
Forward rolls & back rolls
Front Break-fall, Back break-fall & Side break-fall

Full knuckle push-ups [15:40s]
Ab Crunches [15:40s]
Reverse crunches [15:40s]
Compound Squat Thrusts [10:30s]

Step & Slide footwork
Male & female triangle footwork
Sitting in Base
Bob & weave vs hooks



KAJUKENBO was founded in Honolulu, Hawaii at the Palama Settlement Gym on the island of Oahu by a group who later called themselves the “Black Belt Society”.  They were marital artists from various styles and backgrounds who decided to train together.  It is important to point out that only Joe Holck had a black belt when they started working out together.  Even so, this was the beginning of a revolutionary and adaptive style designed to combine the most useful aspects of the arts they had studied.  But always remember that in Hawaiian culture, a good tale is often more important that being accurate.  Because of this, it is hard to be certain of absolute truth in our history.

Dumog is a term for grappling arts from the Philippines.
Despite popular belief, Kali is not the root art of all Filipino fighting arts, but rather a term popularized in the United States calling it the “Mother art of escrima & arnis.”  The names Kali, Escrima and Arnis can often be used interchangeably.

Kali is actually from a Malay word which means “to scrape”
Filipino Martial Arts (FMA), Arnis or Escrima are more accepted names for ‘Kali’
Ohana is the Hawaiian word for ‘Family’, Mahalo is Hawaiian for ‘Thank you’.
Aloha is Hawaiian for ‘Hello’, ‘goodbye’ or ‘I love you’ depending on the context.
Rattan is a vine-like plant that ‘Eskrima sticks’ are usually made from.
Remember: Whether it is spelled KeNpo or KeMpo, the word is properly pronounced ‘Kim-poe’
“Sil Lum” is Cantonese for the more common Mandarin word: “Shaolin”; which translates to “Young Forest”

Lineage refers to your family tree.  Start your lineage from the top with Sijo so everyone has a common frame of reference.
Your lineage is:
Sijo Adriano Directo Emperado  –> GM Sid Asuncion –>  GM Alan Lee Carter –>   Sigung W. Mike Griffin  –>   (“Sigung”) Dave Jones

Knee & Elbow strikes from the clinch
Elbow cover, takedown, scarf hold, Arm-Trio
Pak Sao Slip & shoot
Spear entry vs wild hook: shoot in, wrap the arms and go to a side clinch then step in front and execute a Hip Throw

Lock-flow [moves 4-6]
Figure-four his arm, drop his center and elbow to his face, 4) Shotgun wrist bend, 5) wishbone, 6) Goose-neck come-along

Cross-arm grab defense:  bring hands up (double palms up) & then eye jab or other distraction, step F45* towards his grabbing side, turn palms to opponent, then slap or grab opponent’s hand, strike or finish with a takedown
The posture is very relaxed , knees bent & ready for any attack and defense.  Think of a snake ready to strike.
On the whole, this stance is well balanced & turns the your centerline (and vital targets) away from your opponent, providing additional protection to them.  It is a bit lower than a kickboxing stance and a big higher than a wrestler’s stance as a compromise when fighting.
* The chin slightly bent forward to protect it from uppercuts & similar attacks at this angle.  This will also help to bob and weave much faster.
* The rear knee is slightly bent out for faster mobile and springing action.
* The rear foot is usually turned outward at a 45 to 50 degree angle.
* The rear heel is usually raised 1” to 2” off the ground creating a coiled spring action.
* The front knee is slightly bent and turned inward to protect against any blows to the groin area.
* The front foot is turned inward at a 25-30 degree angle used heavily for kicking, including jamming kicks and entry kicks.
* Your rear and front foot are a bit wider than the shoulders, and the weight distribution is about 40% on the front leg and 60% on the rear leg
* The hands are usually held open and ready, with fingertips at “eyebrow level” or with loosely closed fists at roughly cheekbone level.


Position then submission!

“To see is to disbelieve, to hear is to doubt, but to feel is to know.”

Front-leg side kick & Thai (shin) kick “Skip” Knees from the Clinch
Oblique kick Female triangles & Hand Exchange
Thai shin block Escrima / Arnis “standard” 6-count
2-man back-fist drill Angle #1 Spear & snake disarm drill

Knee-fold takedown from side clinch: bump his knee forward, pull his hip or head backwards
1. “Swivel base”: If on the ground & attempting to get up, put hand back on ground, lead foot on ground with knee up, put weight on rear hand and lead foot. Swivel hip back & up head comes down.  Go to feet in a solid 3 point base and up in a fighting stance.
2. “Kick and base”: Same as “swivel base”, but add kick with rear leg to opponents knee, shin or ankle with your rear leg before swiveling your hip back.
3. “Four points roll”: If you’re on your back with opponent circling, rock forward & back, pivoting with knees bent, keep feet pointed towards opponent, then come up in base as appropriate.
4. “Base and back”: Stand up in base with opponent standing next to you and shuffle or step & slide back.
5. “Base and clinch”:  Stand up in base with opponent standing next to you and shoot in to a clinch
6. “2-handed base back”: Stand up in base using both hands on the ground to skip back and gain some distance.  Then come up in a fighting stance.
Tight Guard Pass: strike, palm to floor between legs, stack on your shoulder, to side control)
2-handed bridge escape from Mount: elbows in, cover, block a leg, straight arm belt grab & bridge up, then over
Elbow Escape from Side Control: distract, get to side, pull hips away, slide bottom kneee through and then point it to the ceiling.  Go to guard.
Bridge Escape from Scarf hold: get to side, distract, grab around waist, bridge up over your head, slide knee under hip, roll to opposite side but be sure to pull your arm free.  Go to side control.
Frame Escape from Scarf hold:  Get to your side and Frame your arms against his neck, pull hips away then Ms. Piggy or Frame to the hole, come to knees

F45* Knee-bar takedown to mount Elbow-fold takedown to mount
Americana p shoulder lock) from Mount Kimura (down shoulder lock) from Mount
3 Ankle locks from in guard / pass:  Toe lock, heel hook, Achilles; hip block & extend

Arm-Trio to arm pass:    Low armbar, Americana, hip switch & high armbar, pass arm over neck

Knuckle push ups [30:80s] Crunches [30:80s]
Reverse crunches [30:80s] Compound squat thrusts [15:45s]



The “Black Belt Society” and the arts they are said to have contributed, were:
Peter (Young Yil) Choo (Kenpo & boxing) – KA, BO: According to his son his style was Kenpo –  not ‘Tang Soo  Do’ as commonly claimed.  Later accounts and some other evidence implies he contributed very little since there is very little boxing in the original Kajukenbo methods.
“Uncle” Frank Ordonez (Kodenkan Danzan Ryu) – JU: He’s stated that he studied Danzan Ryu.   When asked later what ‘Sekeino Ryu Jujitsu’ was, Uncle Frank said “I have no idea.”
Joe Holck (Danzan Ryu) – JU: (Kodenkan Danzan Ryu) Jujitsu.  Prof. Holck was the only black belt at the time of Kajukenbo’s claimed origins.
Adriano (Directo) Emperado (Kenpo under William Chow & James Mitose) – KEN: also said to study Eskrima
George (Chuen Yoke) Chang (Sil Lum Pai) – BO: Chinese Boxing; wrongly called “Clarence Chang”

The Kajukenbo handshake:  The handshake originating from the school of our progenitor, Sid Asuncion, is considered to be the traditional handshake.  This is either a traditional, palm-to-palm clasp or a clasping at the hilt of the thumbs. Then, the instructor places his or her left hand on top of the two clasped right hands. The student cups the handshake from below with his or her left hand.  It represents the instructor passing knowledge to the student and the student accepting that knowledge in his or her cupped hand.

Wing Chun: The name of a system of martial arts developed in southern China approximately 300 years ago. According to legend, the Buddhist nun Ng Mui, was a master of Shaolin Kung Fu and used this knowledge to invent a way to take advantage of the weaknesses inherent in the other Shaolin systems. This new system was passed on to only a few, very dedicated students.  Later, the style became known as Wing Chun, after Ng Mui’s first student, a woman named Yim Wing Chun.  The name means ‘Beautiful springtime’.   In 1949, Yip Man, who was considered by many to be the Grandmaster of modern Wing Chun, brought the style out of China into Hong Kong and then to the world.  Yip Man was also Bruce Lee’s primary teacher.  Wing Chun teaches sensitivity, simultaneous blocking & striking, energy conservation and other useful principles.

Siu Nim Tao (SNT):The first form of Wing Chun, teaching the basic moves & trapping elements of the style.  Siu Nim Tao” means “Little idea way” or “Way of little thought”.  Bruce Lee felt this was the most important form.   Sometimes this form is called Sil Lum Tao.   Sil Lum Tao literally means “Young Forest Way”.  This is taught on request but not required in class.

Centerline: Attack and defense along an imaginary vertical line drawn head-to-toe from the center of the Wing Chun fighter’s chest and / or the center of the enemy’s chest.

Siu Nim Tao (Part 1):  Ready position (neutral stance). Salute, then chamber fists high
1: Feet out to high horse, sink slightly, and shoot double spear down at 45*, crossing, right on top
2: Finish in high horse and roll arms up, keeping the right hand on the outside, 90* bend in arms
3: Continue motion through so that arms uncross; double taun sao (palm up deflection)
4: Back to chamber & horse
5: Left Chung Choy. Ride center line, straight out to target, taun sao
6: Execute Huen Sao(circling hand) in toward centerline, 360*, grab, turn palm up & chamber fist
7: Repeat Chung Choy & huen sao (Moves 5 – 6) on right side; Back to chamber & horse

Slip, shoot & slap (vs. mirror lead jab): Slip under the punch F45* to the outside.  After shooting in, strike low-line & continue around to opponent’s side or back after clinching
Side kick entry: Use your front leg for a quick side kick near the opponent’s lead knee or ankle.  Instead of retracting the kick, follow it as with a step & slide to close the gap.  Continue around to opponent’s side or back after clinching
Straight Blast entry:  Use a barrage of vertical punches and step & slide or charge into trapping range.  On the clinch, control the hips / arms and move to the side or back as appropriate.
Thai knees & elbows: drills to focus mitts and air shields

Lock-flow [7 – 10]
7) Palm-up armbar, 8) blade wristlock  9) S-Lock & elbow  10) Palm-up shoulder lock

Boxer’s combo 1 – 12
jab, cross, low hook, low hook, uppercut, uppercut,
tight high hook, tight high hook, low jab, low cross, long high hook, long high hook

Toe kicking (in shoes)
target vital areas – pressure points, kidneys, groin, liver

Start saving up for your Purple belt (~$10) & black kenpo uniform (>$35) to wear for your L4 test.


“Sweat now or Bleed later”  ~  “Civilize the Mind, Savage the Body”

Understanding the Clinch and Grappling Range:  The clinch is considered to be standing grappling.  A clinch (“To seize in a firm grip while standing”) can be used to eliminate the opponent’s effective usage of some tools and tactics by controlling his arms and blocking his legs & hips, which is a form of both trapping and grappling.  While fighting in the clinch (sometimes just called “clinch fighting”), your trapping / close range weapons can also be used and the clinch can also be used to switch from stand-up fighting to ground grappling by using takedowns, locks or throws from a clinch position.  Shooting in (aka “closing the gap”) to the clinch from weapons, kicking, punching or trapping range can also severely limit a fighter who has specialized on one or more of those ranges.  Bruce Lee’s student, Larry Hartsell, referred to this as “Entering to Trapping to Grappling”.
The primary tools of grappling range are locks, holds, escapes, reversals (sweeps / throws / takedowns) & chokes – with the clinch being a type of hold.  You can also strike from the clinch since your knees, elbows & headbutts are in range, although they are considered to be trapping range tools.  Throws, locks and take-downs are also executed in the clinch and you only need to make small adjustments to switch from the clinch into trapping range.  The lines between trapping & grappling range while in the clinch blur, so much so that the clinch could almost be considered its own range.  It is important to note that a grab does not automatically qualify as grappling.  A simple wrist or lapel grab does not mean you are automatically in grappling range, in fact, you are likely in punching or trapping range from a grab.  As an oversimplification, to be in grappling range (standing or on the ground) you should be close enough that you are (or could be) touching the opponent with your shoulder, sternum, or hip.  Some people may disagree with the distinctions and conclusions I have drawn here, but for our training purposes this is how I teach it until I find a better definition.
Some clinch positions include:  Bear hug, Collar-and-elbow, Thai Clinch (aka “neck tie” or “double collar tie”), Double underhooks, Pinch grip tie, Over-under, and Overhook, and our Side Clinch.
CQB Kajukenbo focuses on fighting from close range, such as trapping range or the clinch, because we believe that this is a distance which most “martial arts” overlook and it can therefore, render their techniques and tactics nearly useless.  Also, many of the arts that do train in these ranges have rules about what is “legal” and “fair” in these conditions.  We have no such restrictions.
Since a high percentage of confrontations actually occur with someone in your personal space (and many of them go to the ground  for one reason or another) we need to be effective under those conditions.  Remember also that it is very difficult to stop a person with the proper skills -or dumb luck- from taking you down to the ground.  Furthermore, it is ludicrous to believe you could consistenly stop 2 or more people from doing so.  If you have been trained to “not go to the ground” or that “you cannot be taken down” then I challenge you to try to stay on your feet against a college wrestler or someone who has been studying Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for about 6 or 8 months so that you gain some perspective and get a dose of reality before you find out the hard way on the street.
By training to enter to (and fight from the clinch), you will become a more effective combatant who has the ability to move to trapping range or the ground game, almost at will.   No other range or position that I can think of realistically gives you the versatility of the clinch.

Vs. Headlock with punch- block punching hand with your front hand and trap biceps with your rear hand, grab wrist of arm around your head, trapping it against your chest, lift your head up & step back with outside leg driving hip forward, duck underneath to rear & finish with an arm lock
Vs. Side headlock without punch- grab hip with rear hand, brace opposite side knee of opponent, step forward then sit out on rear foot to takedown, go to side control
Vs. standing 2-hand choke- tuck chin then bob & weave to side, back, or into clinch
Vs. front bear hug with your arms free- distract, step back into base, take rear hand palm and drive head or nose of opponent back (add compound or blade)
Vs. one hand collar grab from front- trap hand with your same side hand (palm up), grab his elbow with the opposite side hand, step across and through with your opposite side foot while bracing your elbow on your hip, slip under his arm and to the rear, finish with arm lock
Escape from MOUNTED position, Opponent has collar or throat with one hand: initially keep elbows tight & down, then take your opposite side hand to grab opponents wrist (no thumbs) and pin it to your chest. Same side hand grabs his elbow or cloth. Trap his same side foot with your same side foot, drive your hips up and roll to the side & on top to mount
You have MOUNT, opponent is pushing your chest- drop a shoulder back while bringing that same side hand inside opponent’s and driving it to the ground in a swimming motion, repeat on other side
Vs. Haymaker or high hook punch- Both hands swim up inside blocking both biceps, trap an arm at the elbow, move to his opposite side, hip throw.



Jeet Kune Do: Originally developed by Sijo Bruce Lee in the mid to late 60’s, Jeet Kune Do (“The Way of the Intercepting Fist”) is more of a philosophy than a specific Martial Art. The principle behind JKD is self expression, and using what works for you.  Predating this JKD philosophy Sijo Bruce’s art was called Lee Jun Fan Gung Fu, which was a melding of concepts from Wing Chun Kung Fu and other arts.   Jun Fan is mainly an unarmed style, and is very well known for it’s use of trapping (from Wing Chun) in correlation with it’s use of very quick footwork (from western boxing).  It was one of the first arts to seriously address the concept of being able to fight in different ranges (kicking, punching, trapping, grappling).  From JKD / Jun Fan we learn to adapt, evolve and to use what works.  Kajukenbo predates JKD by about 20 years, but much of the philosophy applies to both arts.  At some levels Kajukenbo in the Griffin line is indistinguishable from JKD.
KUNG-FU:  Means “achievement through great skill or effort”.  It combines “Kung”/ “Gung” meaning achievement or merit, and “Fu” which translates into man.
GUNTING: meaning scissors, is the component of FMA that focuses on destroying the opponents ability to wield their weapon. This is done by cutting the hand or wrist with a pair of blades, with one blade, or empty handed by striking nerves and tensed muscles.  This is often called “limb destruction” or “defanging the snake”.



Knuckle push-ups [50:120s] Crunches (either) [50:120s]
press-ups & diamonds [10:30s each] Compound squat thrusts [25:60s]
KB swings [120s] Speed bag work [30s]

‘Reactionary Gap’ Drill: Demonstrate how Action beats reaction within arms reach.  Optional:  Reactionary Gap drill with slap block (pak sao) vs. wing deflection (bong sao)
Triceps Control: swim in & wrap both with 2 hands (no thumbs) and control, strike, throw or escort
Scissors destructions: Knife disarm, Back fist to hand, Elbow to fist, elbow to bicep
Chain of Hands: Basic 2-hand trapping (Tagalog: “Cadena De Mano”)
Brachial Stun: Blade or flat of arm into brachial plexus tie-in at 45* down into neck towards heart.
Cross Arm-bar counter #1: grab wrist & roll into opponent when he sits back into the arm bar
Rear naked choke: Key: line the elbow with the chin and to turn your fist over
Cross collar choke: Key: both palms up, first palm secures the collar grip, second palm goes under the first

Kick defense: “shelving the kick” – take the kick on your forearms / elbows until you are ready to catch it on your forearm with your elbow close to your sides, wrap the leg and then fold the knee down with your free hand while stepping back to drive the knee into the ground.  Reap or attack the supporting leg if assistance is desired.  Finish on his back or with a submission such as a Figure-four leg lock or rear naked choke.
3″ striking: sun punch, concussive palm (“like drinking water”) & knife hand
Full Nelson with various grips
Full Nelson Escape: frame forehead up & draw elbows down, stomp instep.  Shoot hands to floor hook his ankle and lean back to a knee bar

Siu Nim Tao (part 2)
8: Left taun sao (palm up deflecting hand)
9a: Huen sao toward centerline and continue through to wu sao (protecting hand)
9b: Retract wu hand inward, then follow out with fook sao (controlling hand)
10: Repeat huen sao to wu sao, fook sao twice more
11: After the last (3rd) fook sao, bring wu back to about 5″ from sternum on centerline
12: Pak sao (slapping hand block) to opposite shoulder
13: Bring hand back to centerline, then execute a palm strike to opponent’s chin or nose
14: Roll wrist in toward centerline, grab and chamber (see Move 6)
15 – 21: Repeat Moves 8-14 off right side.

Breaking: 3 attempts allowed to break two 12″x12″ pine boards parallel to the floor.
Using a hand technique with the board(s) firmly supported, no spacers.
Boards may be single or paired, but single boards must be broken with 3-inch strikes or shorter.

Clinch positions (pummeling) – both of your arms over, both under, one arm over & one arm under
Side clinch & opponent is pulling away or leaning back: hook his nearest leg with your rear foot and scoop, re-plant your foot in base before going to mount (kosoto gake: rear leg hook)
Side clinch (opponent turns to face you): wrap arms around waist grabbing your own wrist, pull waist in while driving into opponent with your head and chest. You may also hook the leg to help the takedown. Be sure to release the grip before hitting the ground
Side clinch to thigh reap: base & step through with your back leg, pull him over you & hook inside his near thigh with the leg, reap high and straight, then hook your heel to the ceiling; while pulling his arm & pivot or fall
Side clinch to rear throw sacrifice: drop base, grab his belt  or groin with your front hand & belt, hip or under groin from back, push your hips in & fall backwards while pivoting, lifting him over your head is optional. (ura nage)
Side clinch to leg scoop:  base, keep opponent’s hip wrapped with your back hand and scoop under one or both of his knees with your front hand while standing & arch your back.  “Make a hole” by moving the back leg and put him in it.


“Kicks, strikes, counters or locks = KISS: Keep It Simple & Savage!”

“All else being equal, size DOES matter!  That is why we train: To make sure everything else is NOT equal.”


Kenpo- The original system based on what was developed in 1949.  Also called “Emperado Method” or “Traditional Hard Style”
Tum Pai – Created by Sijo, Al Dacascos and Al Dela Cruz in the early 60’s to create an advanced style for the Kajukenbo system. In the mid-60’s the developments that made up Tum Pai became incorporated into what was called Ch’uan Fa. In 1971, Jon A. Loren started incorporating the concepts of Tai-Chi and Southern Sil-lum into his Kajukenbo classes. He demonstrated his concepts and techniques and asked if he could call it Tum Pai and bring the name back to life. Sijo granted permission with the acknowledgment that the original Tum Pai followed a different path than the revised Tum Pai soft style. The name Tum Pai which means “central way” fits the Tai-Chi concept blended into the Kajukenbo format.
Ch’uan Fa – In the early 60’s in Hawaii, Sijo along with students Al Dacascos and Al Dela Cruz, incorporated innovations of the style Tum Pai and other martial arts into their Kajukenbo training. Later it became obvious that they were no longer doing Tum Pai and in the future it would have to be named something else. In the mid 60’s Al Dacascos moved to Northern California and continued training in the Northern and Southern styles of Sil-lum Kung Fu, to enhance his Kajukenbo training. It was during this time, in 1965, that the name Ch’uan-Fa was introduced. The word Chu’an-Fa itself means “fist way” or “fist style”.  The Chuan Fa branch is not to be confused with our style that Carter & Griffin named “Chuan Fa Self-Defense” after Alan lost contact with Al Dacascos and Al Dela Cruz, who where his classmates in Hawaii.
Wun Hop Kuen Do – Founded by Al Dacascos, in Cantonese, Wun Hop Kuen Do means “combination fist art style”.  Wun Hop Kuen Do techniques identify with and are based on the Kajukenbo system. This martial arts style incorporates techniques from many different styles including Northern and Southern Kung Fu systems, Aikido, Judo, jujutsu, Eskrima and many different styles of Karate. Since this style is always being developed, it is not a fixed system. This means that they are always striving to improve the style by incorporation and improvement of useful methods or techniques. In addition, the philosophy of remaining “unfixed” also applies to the defense techniques in that there is no defined response to a given situation, they attempt to fit the situation as it arises. This idea leads to self defense that is creative and allows one to think about what is the best response. There are have many drills to allow practice of this type of fluidity and creativity that lead to the ability to respond reflexively to any situation. This is one of the primary things that sets this style apart from most others, it is a martial art that asks you to think for yourself and use your own common sense to actually see what you should do next. This is in contrast to many other training methods where one is supposed to mimic techniques which many times are not practical except under very defined circumstances.


Any type of attack in hand-to-hand combat will fall into one of these categories. These methods of attack are the basis for combat tactics. The tools can be applied in any of these 5 ways. Of course, the sharper the tool, the more efficient the attack. Tactics are not a replacement for efficient tools.  The METHODS should not be confused with the RANGES.


1. Single Angular Attack (SAA) [aka Single Direct Attack (SDA)], Ex: Single straight jab

2. Attack by Combination (ABC), Ex: jab-cross-hook

3. Attack by Drawing (ABD), Ex: Leave head open to jab, counter his jab by hit­ting the biceps

4. Immobilization Attack (IA) – trapping with Hand or foot –  Ex: Slap block & pin

5. Progressive Indirect Attack (PIA), Ex: Fake a kick and then punch when guard drops


Fireman’s Carry: Shoot in low (keep your back as straight as possible) and reach up behind his hip & thigh with your left hand while pulling his right arm over your shoulder with your left hand & stand up.  Dump him to the front , over your left side, or to the rear (by letting go or hold on & bridge)

Rear hooks takedown: from rear clinch, kick out his knee, step away to make space, sit down & put your hooks in with your opponent face-up


500 of your own words on who Dan Inosanto is and how he applies to our Kajukenbo


Lock-flow [11 – 13]

11) hearty handshake, slap it down, 12) finger locks 13) One-armed Bandit

Headlock against wall (you’re on outside)- squat down and grab outside leg with both arms, lift up and circle to the front then drive your head in and down for takedown.
Headlock against wall (you’re on inside)- hook opponents outside leg with yours while controlling his arms, pull yourself around using your hands to base against wall and leaning your weight into opponent, grab wrist of arm around head, drive your shoulder forward, pull head out, go to arm lock and knee to ribs or head
Headlock from rear (standing)- trap opponents arm with both hands, drop to base, bend over driving your head down between your legs and straighten your knees to throw opponent. Don’t push your butt back.
Standing rear headlock, pulled back- trap arm with both hands, rest your weight on his arm, trap outside leg with your leg, pivot until you are facing opposite direction, bend over throwing opponent backwards
“Picture Frame” Scarf-hold (headlock) escape on ground- avoid opponents weight by turning to your side, tuck chin & make frame against opponents neck – inside elbow is on ground, outside arm comes over with forearm on opponents neck, grab upper wrist with your other hand, then scoot your hips back enough to bring your leg over applying leg scissors to neck
“Picture Frame” scarf escape but he holds on: so drive him on over & go to your knees and then to side control
“Back Climb” Scarf-hold escape with opponents head tucked- your outside leg comes over to hook his leg at hip & also grab his bottom hand.  Roll to your shoulder & base your hands. Drive him forward onto his face.  Now either go to Side Control or drive your shoulder forward, grab opponents wrist, remove head and go to arm lock
Guillotine defense, no choking threat (standing or knees)- opponent has you in headlock from front, step forward into base while bracing opponents knee which is on the same side he has your head, sit back to throw opponent forward.
Guillotine defense, you’re choking: Use your same side hand to grab under your chin to relieve pressure, other arm grabs over opponents shoulder hugging him then step behind, knee fold if desired, pulling him backwards to a takedown
Standing front choke defense- distract, shoot or step with a bob & weave if needed, grab behind both his thighs with your hips low, stand up with your head under his armpit & drive forward to a double-leg takedown (morote gari)


Shoulder-stop:  an intercepting hit (jeet kune) to the shoulder tie-in which stops the forward rotation and momentum of a punch or strike
It differs from an elbow cover in that the elbow cover does not stop the strike but instead absorbs or redirects its energy.

Stop-kick: an intercepting kick to the opponents leg, knee or hip to stop his kick.   It can be a fast & effective technique if used low line but becomes impractical if someone is kicking above your hip.

Front Thrust kick:  forward momentum kick similar to a front kick but uses the sole of the shoe and leading with the heel.   Very effective when  used against an opponent’s hip or to kick down a door.

Shoulder roll: a deflection & absorption technique often used by boxers against punchers by rolling the shoulders through a punch.   An elbow cover is a modified shoulder roll.

Tiger claw: an open hand technique starting as a palm strike but followed by a raking across the flesh with the fingers and nails.

Hidden Stance: Passive-looking fighting stance with hands up and open, often accompanied by verbalization for distraction (“I don’t want to fight.”, “Please don’t hurt me!”) or as Verbal Commands (“Don’t hit me!”, “Don’t shoot me!”).  Called this because our intentions, defensive, and offensive capabilities are hidden from the attacker.  The more cynical of us would say we are hiding our skills from random camera-phones.   Fighting in this manner is also called “CNN Tactics”, referring to how it would look favorable on us in the news.  It also has added advantages such as range (finger jabs), speed (hands open so you are more relaxed), and it is instinctive (hands coming up to cover yourself when surprised is natural).  The foot and body position is still a solid base with good mobility but the stance itself looks far less aggressive than having your fists clenched.

You are required to turn an a 500 word essay explaining JKD’s ‘Five Methods of Attack’ in your own words.


“Kicking to the head is like punching to the knee.”

Lock-flow [14 – 16]
14) Scoop to Elbow Cradle 15) twin Elbow breaks over shoulder 16) palm down Arm drag

Front pistol disarm: From a “Hidden Stance” – Inside and outside footwork with compound circle rotation.  Control the barrel and the opponents wrist while stepping and pointing the gun up and away. Shake & vocalize to help distract and hide your countermeasure.  Throw a knee to distract as soon as you have redirected the weapon.
Standing Defenses
Defense against bear hug from behind with opponents arms over- drop to base while bending arms to flex biceps, shift to opponents side and 1) control his knees while you lift and throw him backwards or 2) knee fold or 3) short ankle reap and knee fold or 4) hook his foot with yours and sit back into a knee-bar.
Defense against bear hug from behind with opponents arms under- drop to base, bend over putting palms on the ground, grab opponents leg between your legs, sit back & scoop leg to throw
Two handed collar grab from front with opponents hands pulled apart- swim your hands up & between his arms, then wrap both his arms and trap by pulling up. Move to his side in base then step your rear leg across his in front, drop your head and throw, can finish with an arm lock
One handed collar grab from front (opponents thumbs down) or hair grab- grab opponents wrist with both of your hands, step back into base away from opponents free hand and bring your lead elbow over opponents arm, keeping his arm trapped. Lean back into him for elbow/shoulder lock or s-armbar.

Ground defenses
2-handed Escape from mount- opponent has collar or throat with both hands. Pick a side hook a foot & arm and bridge to escape
Escape from mount with one arm wrapped around your head- plant head firmly on the ground and trap his arm at the elbow with your same side hand then hook that foot & bridge
Escape from mount with both his arms based out- reach up inside and wrap arm to trap, pull it to you and then hook & bridge
Opponent is mounted and tries to punch, weight back- keep elbows down and in, as he delivers the punch, bridge up forcing him to base, perform hook & bridge
Elbow Escape – You attempt a hook & bridge but opponent takes his leg out to prevent you from rolling him: drop your same side hand (or elbow) to his knee, slide your same side leg up and through on ground while using your hand/elbow to push opponents leg back, hook your leg over his and pull your hips out on that side, repeat on opposite side and go to guard.
Opponent is mounted and tries to punch, weight forward- sit up & grab around his waist, pulling him down.  Before he can frame or escape, underhook his opposite foot with your own & perform an elbow escape or bridge & roll.
Bridge & roll – You attempt the elbow escape but when you get your first leg out your opponent drops down and grabs you around the head, his weight back: wrap your arms around him grabbing your own wrist, bridge and roll him over backward.
Escape to Back mount –  You try a bridge & roll but as you get your first leg out your opponent drops down and grabs you around the head his weight forward: take your outside arm and grab around to his biceps or back, throw your outside leg up and over his back while rolling to your shoulder to end up mounted behind him.
Escape Scarf hold but he balls up: already covered – review
Escape Scarf hold but he balls up and the puts out leg to base: already covered – review


Tachypsychia: A distorted perception of time, usually because of physical exertion, drug use, or a traumatic event.  Time seems to either lengthen so things slow down, or shorten so things are moving in a speeding blur. It is believed that tachypsychia is induced by a combination of high levels of dopamine & norepinephrine, usually during periods of great physical stress and/or in violent confrontation.

Lock-flow [17 – 18]
Rotate palm back up 17) Transition series: Thumb-handle wrist reversal from palm up to outside arm lock, transition palm down & palm up again (shoulder lock or blade wristlock to outside wrist lock), reverse transition to outside wrist lock, rotate palm up to 18) thumb grab come-along

Boxers combo 1 – 16: jab, cross, body hooks, uppercuts, tight high hooks, low jab, low cross, long high hooks, overhands & upper cuts

Entering: small reap & fold takedown, take his back, pin his arms, basketball or hooks, choke
Entering: rear sit-out, mount, slap & drop weight, 3 elbow strikes & americana on left & right
Entering: foot on hip & circle throw, mount, slap & drop weight across as if to VT, hook under arm towards head, armbar
Entering (mirrored clinch): block lead hip with your front foot, sit out to side & Elevator armbar
Entering (matched right): block his opposite (right) hip with your right leg. Sit-out to Elevator armbar

1000 of your own words on the Go Rin No Sho, citing at least 3 sources – only two of them may be from the web.
Also consider purchasing a copy of the Tao of Jeet Kune Do.

From pummelling in the clinch
Circle Throw (Tomoe Nage)
Floating Throw (Uki Waza)
Side Separation (Yoko Wakare)
Corner Reversal (Sumi Gaeshi)
Jump Guard to spider guard or a reversal

Hubud application: Bum’s rush – pass arm between legs, grab hand & hair or collar from behind; escort out
Bums’s rush variation with stick / baton: hook his quads with the baton, pull up & back or grab collar / hair to escort out

Boxing vs grappling vs kicker (1 min each) Man-in-the-middle (2 rounds)
2-on-1 stacking & evasion (4 rounds) – remember to rush one of the opponents, often the one closest to the door
Reported statistic:  Kicks are used effectively in only about 20% of street confrontations


“I Bust mine so I can Kick yours!”

* You have the mount & opponent is pushing your chest- drop one shoulder back while bringing that same side hand inside opponents & driving it to the ground in a swimming motion, repeat other side.
* You have mount & opponent is pushing on stomach- sit up & push hips forward, deflection opponents hands away one side with your left or right hand. Repeat other hand.
* You have mount & opponent is pushing on your knee with your same side hand- scoop his wrist up with your same side hand (no thumb), then slide that knee up, repeat other side. You may let your knee slide back some first to ease scooping the wrist. Will also work vs. elbow pushing on your knee.
* You have mount & opponent lifts his head- if he raises up on his arm: pull it out from under him by scooping it forward while simultaneously using your other arm across his face to drive his head back to the ground
* You have mount & opponent attempts to roll over- extend the leg on the side he is rolling to & let him roll. End with a Twisting Arm Control, side control, or on his back.
* You have mount & opponent is pushing on your chest attempting to throw you off to the side- hook hand opposite the direction he is throwing you around is head while at the same time basing your other hand & leg on the opposite side.
* You have mount & opponent rolls to his side- go to side control position with one knee down & behind him up close to his head & your other leg is up with your foot snug to his stomach.
* Same as previous, but opponent then continues to roll- let your foot against his stomach to lift his hips as he rolls over, slide your other foot under him & drive your hips forward pushing him face down into the ground
* You have mount & your opponent is pushing up on your waist- fall forward & grab around his head with either arm
* You have mount & opponent tries to choke or gouge you with one hand- use your same side forearm or hand to direct opponents arm across, follow the arm down with your chest pinning it against your opponent with your body weight, grab his wrist with your hand on that side, bring your other hand under his head & pass his wrist to that hand, as you pull on his wrist & he begins to roll pop up to a Twisting Arm Control position
* Same as previous but you continue to roll him over to his stomach by pushing on the elbow of his trapped arm with your other hand & at the same time using your chest to help roll him by pushing against his shoulder & back. It will be necessary to pull his trapped arm down & under him as he rolls to prevent it from getting in the way.
* You have mount & opponent covers face with his arms- slide left or right hand underneath his arms & grab throat, squeeze his throat while leaning forward, when he grabs arm to take away pressure hit him with free hand or elbow



Kajukenbo, like many Traditional Mar­tial Arts (“TMAs”), has a logo or crest that is universally recognized by it’s practitioners.

The Kajukenbo coat of arms was de­signed by interna­tionally re­nowned Kajukenbo practitioner Al D­acascos, with the aid of Dr. Sun, a professor of Chinese philosophy and science. It was ap­proved and ac­cepted by Professor Adriano D. Emperado in May 1965.

In 1968, it was a­dopted by the K­ajukenbo Associa­tion of America, and later by the I­nternational K­ajukenbo Association. It has since become the most recognized emblem in the Kajukenbo system. Almost all Kajukenbo schools use some version of it or the cloverleaf symbol that was the first Kajukenbo emblem.  The coat of arms is explained as follows:

The Octagon: (­Gold) The eight-sided octagon rep­resents the original eight kata of the Kajukenbo system and the eight directions of attack and defense.

 The Five Colors: Represent the five original founders and the five arts that make up the Kajukenbo system. It also represents the five basic systems that make up the Chinese arts: Hung, Li, Mo, Choy, and Fut.

The Yin/Yang: (Black & White) Represents the hard and soft. The symbol represents the opposites that exist in harmony.

The Dots: The black and white dots in the yin/yang represent the hard that exists in some soft and the softness that exists in some hard. In darkness there is some light and in light there is some darkness.

The Red Circle: Around the y­in/yang symbol represents the continuous flow from hard to soft and soft to hard.

The Chinese Characters: On the left mean “Fist Way” (Eng­lish), “Kenpo” (Jap­anese), “Ch’uan Fa” (Chinese). The char­acters on the right mean “skill” (the word kung fu’s Chinese translation).

The Green Reeds: Represents a young school, organization or student growing and striving for knowl­edge. The right one also represents the tiger and the left one the dra­gon. Where the stems cross represents the two in unison. The l­eaves of the reeds represent the many systems that form the martial arts.

The White Clover: Represents knowledge, clean­liness of body, mind and spirit, and Professor E­mperado. The reeds are growing to­ward this goal.

Red, Black and White: The Kajukenbo colors.

Green and Gold: The original school colors. Green representing young and strong, gold representing the richness and wisdom that comes with time.


THE MARTIAL ARTS BELT – A Quick Introduction

HISTORY – The history of the martial arts belt is long and diverse.  Before there were even belts, a silk sash was worn.  This tradition originated within the Kung Fu system.  The first belt worn by an amateur Kung Fu stylist was black, only to change to different colors as one trained and gained experience.  In 1888, Jigoro Kano, a Ju Jitsu stylist, realizing that the Ju Jitsu students were often getting injured in class from the hard workouts, took the softer, less harmful when practiced techniques and began teaching them as a new art he named Judo.  In order to tell at a glance, a students skill level, Jigoro began having his students wear different color belts, beginning with white, ending with black, and having several different colored belts in between. This idea caught on by several other martial arts and continues today.

PHILOSOPHY – As legend has it, a student began his journey into martial arts, innocent and void of knowledge.  The white belt is representative of this stage in his life.  The same belt was supposedly worn throughout the students martial art career and eventually through all the handling, became dirty and got darker and darker.  The student knew that this was a result of all of the years of hard work and washing his belt would symbolically erase the years of blood, sweat, and tears he had gone through.  Years later, when the student was ready to go out on his own and teach his martial art, his belt had become black and everyone who saw it knew that the wearer of that belt knew his style and would be a great teacher.  Eventually, the teacher’s belt began to fray, almost becoming white again, showing that there comes a point in every martial artist’s life when they return to the purity and innocence of a new student.  This is a “Zen characteristic of perfection.”

TYING THE BELT – Recommended “Kajukenbo” Method

  1. Start with one end of the belt and place it near the navel with 6″ – 8″ hanging past your belly button. This end will remain static for most of the belt tying procedure.
  2. Hold that end in place and wind the other (long) end around your body.
  3. Place the long end over the short end while still holding the short end in place in the center of your body.  The goal is to make sure it does not cross in the back.
  4. Now wrap the long end around your body a second time.
  5. Bring the long end towards the center.
  6. Place the long end of the belt over the short end.
  7. Push the long end under both layers of the belt.
  8. Now position the long end over the short end (also to the left, from your point of view).
  9. Now grab the short end and move it to the other side (it was on the left, from your point of view, now pull it to the right).
  10. Move the short end over the long end, we’re about to tie a knot.
  11. Pull the long end through the loop you formed in the previous step.
  12. That’s pretty much it, we now have a square knot, keep both ends roughly even
  13. Now tighten the knot firmly so it doesn’t loosen during the training session.


Basic Attacks:  Upper body – focus mitts
Lead finger jab to eyes, rear palm to nose
hook palms to temples, jaw or liver
Uppercut to throat and groin
Angle 1 & 2 chops or hammer-fists to neck
Alternating C-clamps to throat with a low hook or uppercut
Chisel strikes to nose, jaw & throat

Basic Attacks:  Lower body – air shield
Lead leg front kick: toes to groin or inner / outer thigh – with snap
Rear leg front kick: toes to groin or inner / outer thigh – with power
Rear & front leg Instep kick: to kneecap – destroy the kneecap so he cannot chase you down
Rear & Front leg roundhouse: to thigh, with power, using shin if you can, cut down 45*
Rear & Front knee – point the knee like a spear, drive through

Basic Attacks:  Combinations
Demonstrate your own variations against a high focus mitt and a low air shield

Basic Defenses: Matched lead parry
Front hand parries a rear cross, back hand parries the front jab, zone to the outside

Basic Defenses: Shoulder stop
Against long high hooks and overhands, intercept and lean your head away. Frame a bit with your elbow.

Basic Defenses: Low frame
Against low hooks (or knives) frame down, inside his arm while slipping your hips out and back, drill from bladed lubud

Basic Defenses: Elbow cover
Against high tight hooks and overhands, comb your hair back and drive over his shoulder with your elbow

Basic Defenses: Elbow deflection
Against low tight hooks and uppercuts – bring your elbow into centerline and roll with the attack

Drills: Parry jab & cross, shoulder stop front & back hooks, low frame front & back hooks – then all together
Add a counter (instep kick or knee, perhaps) after each pair of attacks

Clinches (be certain he cannot reach his belt): Double overhooks (at triceps), double underhooks (at shoulders), over-under, Pummeling

Beginner Lock-Flow
Lock-flow [moves 1-3]
from a Lapel grab, step in 45* & distract: 1) outside wrist lock, check the pulse, pull straight to 2) uppercut & elbow lock, 3) roll over to straight arm bar

Lock-flow [moves 4-6]
Figure-four his arm and elbow to face, 4) Shotgun wrist bend, 5) wishbone, 6) Goose-neck come-along

Lock-flow [7 – 10]
7) Palm-up armbar, 8) blade wristlock  9) S-Lock & elbow  10) Palm-up shoulder lock

Lock-flow [11 – 13]
11) hearty handshake, slap it down, 12) finger locks 13) One-armed Bandit

Lock-flow [14 – 16]
14) Scoop to Elbow Cradle 15) twin Elbow breaks over shoulder 16) palm down Arm drag

Lock-flow [17 – 18]
Rotate palm back up 17) Transition series: Thumb-handle wrist reversal from palm up to outside arm lock, transition palm down & palm up again (shoulder lock or blade wristlock to outside wrist lock), reverse transition to outside wrist lock, rotate palm up to 18) thumb grab come-along


Aloha – Hawaiian for ‘Hello’, ‘goodbye’ or ‘I love you’ depending on the context.
Angle – Evading and parrying incoming strikes with female triangle footwork to attack the opponent from an outside angle where they are less able to defend themselves.  Also the angle and direction of an incoming attack or threat (see “Line”), depending on context.
Arnis –  a Filipino Martial Art (FMA), also known as Escrima, and sometimes called Kali on the West Coast
Assertive Confidence –  The forceful, decisive, aggressively confident demeanor often needed for the warrior mind-set.  Not quite cocky or arrogant, but sometimes close.
Bi-Jong Stance – The classic JKD fighting stance.  Higher center of gravity than ours and the hands are usually a bit lower.
Bil Jee – spear fingers, a jab or flick to the eyes or throat with the fingertips
Black Belt Society – Peter Choo, Frank Ordonez, Joe Holck, Adriano Emperado & George Chang
Bu – Military, Martial
Budo – Martial way
Bujutsu – Fighting systems of the warrior class of Japan.
Bunkai – Fighting application of forms or katas
Bushi – Warrior class of Japan
Bushido – Way of the warrior
Cadena de Mano – “Chain of Hands” – FMA trapping drills
Centerline – Attack and defense along an imaginary vertical line drawn head-to-toe from the center of the Wing Chun fighter’s chest and / or the center of the enemy’s chest
Chain punching –  a barrage of vertical punches thrown in a continuous manner (also “Straight Blast”)

CBM – see “Coordinated Body Motion”

Chi –  see “Qi”
Chop block – A framed interception with the elbows locked at near 45 degrees away from the body with the hands up and fingertips near eyebrow level
Chow, William K.S. – William Kwai Sun Chow (July 3, 1914 –  September 21, 1987 in Honolulu, Hawaii, AKA William Ah Sun Chow Hoon) was instrumental in the development of the martial arts in the United States, specifically the family of styles referred to as kenpo/kempo.
Chow probably studied several types of martial arts as a young man, likely including boxing, wrestling, jiujitsu, and karate. Though he supposedly stood about 5’2” tall, he was well known for his powerful breaking techniques.  Chow eventually studied “Kenpo Jiujutsu” under James Mitose. As he progressed it he often tested them against US military personnel in street fights. Despite this, Chow did not often run afoul of the law.  William Chow became one of five people awarded black belts under Mitose. Chow’s black belt certificate was signed by Thomas Young, Mitose’s senior student and instructor.  Chow taught what he called “Kenpo Karate” to the likes of Adriano & Joe Emperado, Ed Parker and Nick Cerio.
Despite his heavy influence on the martial arts in the United States and his many notable students Chow never had a dojo of his own, often teaching in the park, and is thought to have lived in near poverty much of the time. Cerio once stated, “He was a very cautious individual who had no business sense whatsoever.”
Chow did not create or perform many kata but focused more on individual techniques,  referring to his as a “War Art” and teaching mostly techniques that he felt worked in the streets.
Shortly before his death in 1987, Chow renamed his system “Kara-Ho Kenpo”. Chow died of an allergic reaction to medication.  Because of his explosive and rapid firing of techniques to the vital areas of the body, he was referred to as the man that struck like a thunderbolt. This stuck and he was nicknamed, Thunderbolt.
Ch’uan Fa – “Fist Way”  or “Fist Law”, the original Chinese for the commonly know “Kempo”.  Also the name for one of the original Branches of Kajukenbo as well as what Carter and Griffin called what they were teaching in the 80’s.
Chung Choy – Vertical Punch
Cinco Teros – (FMA “Five Strikes”) – A1- shoulder to hip, A2- backhand shoulder to hip, A3- across stomach, A4- backhand across stomach, A5- thrust to solar plexus
Clinch – (“To seize in a firm grip while standing”) – First standing contact in grappling range.

Combatives – The United States Army’s term for hand-to-hand combat training and techniques. The term is also used by other branches of the US Armed Forces and other countries.

Close Quarters Combat (CQC) – see Close Quarters Battle (CQB)

Close Quarters Battle (CQB) – A type of warfare in which (usually) small units or teams engage the enemy with personal weapons at very short range, up to 30 meters, from proximity hand-to-hand combat to close quarter target negotiation with short range firearms or sometimes knives.   CQB is always high-intensity conflict, characterized by sudden violence at close range.  Also known as Close Quarters Combat (CQC).

Coordinated Body Motion (CBM) – also known as “single unit moving”, The whole body moves as one unit with one purpose to generate power,  stability, and focus
Closing the gap – shooting in to the clinch from an outside range
CNN Tactics – Using tactics and strategies such as verbalization & the Hidden stance to make it clear to a potential police witness with a camera phone that we are the good guys who are defending and not attacking.  So called because we always consider the possibility that the footage will end up on the news or in a Youtube video.

Defanging the snake – “Limb Destruction” where you disable the primary hand which is often holding a weapon

Defensive Tactics – Appropriate use-of-force and escalation procedures as defined by POST.   This includes things like control & restraint techniques as well as using & defending against various strikes & grabs for example
DanZan Ryu – “Cedar Mountain System” (from a Japanese name for Hawaii) of jujitsu founded by Henry Seishiro Okazaki (1890–1951) in Hawaii.  Founders Joe Holck and Uncle Frank Ordonez both studied DZR in Hawaii.
Do – “The way”.  Not to be confused with “D’ooh!”, which is what you say when you did something the wrong way and/or were hit in the face
Dumog – a term for grappling techniques in FMA where you twist and turn the opponent’s body with the goal of exposing a more vulnerable area, such as the neck, jaw and temples. This is accomplished by the use of arm wrenching, shoving, shoulder ramming, and other off-balancing techniques in conjunction with punches and kicks
DZR – see DanZan Ryu
Elbow cover – a modified shoulder roll where the focus is on closing the gap while framing the head with the hand and arm

Escala – “The Escala Diagram”: Kali’s Lines of attack. In FMA, these lines represent the path an attack can travel to its target. By tracing these lines with a weapon, the body becomes familiar with each motion, increasing muscle memory, relaxation, and accuracy; which will produce increased speed and  effectiveness.  It looks like an asterisk.  Sometimes referred to as “tiada”.

Escrima – a Filipino Martial Art (FMA), also known as Arnis, and sometimes called Kali on the West Coast

Female Triangle – stepping forward and outwards in the direction of the direction-leading leg at 45 degrees (See ‘Zoning’)
Filipino Martial Arts – A collection of martial arts from the Philippines which are known for stick, sword, and knife training as well as trapping – also “FMA”

First Strike Advantage: The ability to get of a preemptive strike or technique within the Reactionary Gap which is hard to defend against
Flurry – Multiple attacks from different lines and angles emphasing speed in striking, with the intent of overwhelming the adversary. Indefinite combinations of different strikes are strung together continuously to make successful defense a relative impossibility.
FMA – Filipino Martial Arts
Fook sao – hooking hand

Form – See ‘kata’
Gaeshi – Reversal
Gatame – Hold, arm bar
Gi – Uniform for practicing martial arts
Gunting – “to scissior” – a method of Limb Destruction, where your attacks cross the offending appendage
Guruma – Wheel
Hand Exchange – a chop block followed by a pass with the free hand
Hidden Stance – Passive-looking “ready to fight” stance with hands up and open, often accompanied by verbalization for distraction (“I don’t want to fight.”, “Please don’t hurt me!”).  Called this because our intentions, defensive, and offensive capabilities are hidden from the attacker.  The more cynical of us may also say we are hiding our skills from random camera-phones – see “CNN Tactics”
Hubud – (“to untie”) – high-line FMA “generator drills” used to develop sensitivity and train students to think out of the box by training follow-ups and counter-attacks in a dynamic setting instead of static, prearranged defenses
Huen Sao – circling hand
Ippon – Full point in a contest
James Mitose – see “Mitose, James”
Jeet Kune Do – Originally developed by Sijo Bruce Lee in the mid to late 60’s, JKD (“The Way of the Intercepting Fist”) is more of a training philosophy than a specific Martial Art
Jeet tek – Intercepting kick
JKD – see Jeet Kune Do
Ju – Yielding or giving way, also “10”
Judo – A sport-oriented martial arts style featuring throwing. Called “The gentle way”
Jiu-jitsu / Jujitsu / Jujutsu – “Yeilding technique” – any number of martial art styles usually focusing on self defense, locks, and sometimes grappling while teaching students to not meet force “head-on”.
Juji gatame – Cross-body arm bar
Jun Fan / Jun Fan Gung Fu – Bruce Lee’s name and the name of his evolving system before he called it JKD.  Typically it has more emphasis on Wing Chun than his later JKD.
Jut Sao – jerking hand
Jutsu – Art, technique, method (often misspelled jitsu)

Kajukenbo salute – a right fist enclosed by the left hand, used to pay respect
Kali – Derived from a Malaysian word which means “to scrape.  A West Coast name for Escrima and Arnis, Filipino Martial Arts (FMA)
Kara Ho Kempo – What William KS Chow eventually named his system.
Karate – A number of Japanese & Okinawan martial arts style featuring strikes, literally “Empty Hand”
Kata (型 or 形 literally: “form” –  A Japanese word describing detailed choreographed patterns of movements practiced either solo or in pairs.  The term form is used for the corresponding concept in non-Japanese martial arts in general.
Kata Garuma – “Shoulder wheel”, a Fireman’s Carry variation
Katame – Hold down, grapple
Katame waza – Grappling and ground-fighting techniques
Kenpo – “Fist Law”, the name of the style taught by Mitose to Chow to Emperado.  Prounounced “Kim-Poe”.  See also Ch’uan Fa and Kempo.  Made famous by Emperado through Kajukenbo and Ed Parker through “American Kenpo”.  The art went from China (Ch’uan Fa) to Okinawa & Japan where it mutated and the to Hawaii via James Mitose and William K.S. Chow to Sijo Emperado where it still mutates today.
Kempo – Proper prounounciation of “kenpo”, the chinese characters read “Ch’uan Fa”.  All the same thing.
Kesa Gatame – Scarf hold

Ki – see “Qi”
Kodenkan – “The School of the Ancient Tradition”, the name of Professor Okazaki’s original DanZan Ryu school.
Kodokan – The Kodokan Institute, is the headquarters of the worldwide judo community. Literally, ko means “to lecture” or “to spread information,” do means “the way,” and kan  is “a public building or hall,” together translating roughly as “a place for the study or promotion of the way.” The Kodokan was founded in 1882 by Kano Jigoro, the founder of judo, and is in Tokyo, Japan.

Kokua – a Hawaiian word meaning “help, assistance, cooperation, to comfort, to care, support and pursuit of knowledge.”
Kosho Shorei-ryu Kempo – What James Mitose began calling the kenpo style he taught about the time he went to prison and can translate to “Old Pine Tree School of Encouragement”.  Early students like William K.S. Chow and Adriano Emperado were told it was “Kenpo Jujitsu”that he learned from Choki Motobu.
Kung Fu – Means “achieving something through great skill or effort”
Kyusho-jitsu – Pressure point strikes
Lee Jun Fan Gung Fu – Bruce Lee’s method of fighting before he developed JKD, it was a melding of concepts from Wing Chun Kung Fu and other arts.  Also called “Jun Fan Gung Fu”
Limb Destruction –  Using gunting (scissoring) with the fist, knuckles, elbows or other tools into the oppoent’s biceps, knuckles or the like to disable it.
Line – Shorthand for the direction, angle, and relative speed of an incoming attack.  Cinco Teros are considered “Lines” of attack.  By dealing with the line efficiently and safely, any attack on that line can be dealt with using the same technique, in theory.
Lineage – Your place on the Kajukenbo family tree, who your instructors are and who they trained under back to Sijo
Lin Sil die dar – “Simultaneous Blocks & Strikes” – Every block is a strike, every strike is a block
Lock flow – A non-fixed series of locks and counters, usually done standing, used to develop sensitivity and the ability to flow from one technique to the next
Lop Sao drill – Crossed-forearms backfist drill
Lop Sao – Grabbing hand
Mahalo – Hawaiian for ‘Thank you’.
Mitose, James – James Masayoshi Mitose (born Masayoshi Mitose, (December 30, 1916 – March 26, 1981) was a Japanese American martial artist who brought the art of Kenpo to the United States starting in the late 1930s.  Mitose was and remains a controversial figure in the history of Kenpo in America. Many Kenpo teachers trace their lineage to him.  There is strong evidence to indicate he was a con-man & liar.  Many of his claims about where and who he learned martial arts from seem to be fraudulent. There is also strong evidence that his training was in Okinawan kempo (or karate), not some legendary Japanese style.  He was convicted of murder and extortion in 1974 and sentenced to Folsom Prison.  Mitose originally called his art  “Kenpo Jiu-Jitsu” but later changed the name to “Kosho Shorei-ryu Kempo”.
Ms. Piggy – Framing at the base of the nose below the upper lip (usually with a finger) and pushing up, away or back.  Often done to distract to turn the head
Muay Thai – a form of kickboxing (sometimes called Thai Boxing) from Thailand that incorporates shin kicks, knees, elbows & headbutts
Ne-waza – Ground fighting techniques
Obi – Belt
Oblique kick – any number of variations of a low-line kick which is done with the inside of your foot to the instep, shin or knee, in a manner similar to passing a soccer ball
O Goshi – “Big (or major) Hip” throw
Ohana – the Hawaiian word for ‘Family’
Pak Sao – Slapping hand
Panantukan – Filipino “dirty” boxing, employs unusal attack angles, gunting and dumog.  It consists of upper-body striking techniques such as punches, elbows, head-butts and shoulder strikes.  Panantukan minimises contact with the opponent, as it is not known whether or not they are armed. As such, faster & more fluid techniques such as parries and deflections are preferred over hard, linear blocks.
Pananjakman – Filipino “dirty” kicking, uses techniques such low-line kicks and knee strikes to the legs, shins, and groin, but some schools group this kicking aspect into the art of Panantukan.

POST – Peace Officer Standards & Training.  This the organization which defines what and how LEOs (Law Enforcement Officers) are trained
Professor – Formal title of an 8th Degree Kajukenbo black belt
Punyo – the butt, pommel or handle of a stick, used for strikes and locks.  The distance from the butt of the stick to the grip is about the width of an adult fist.

Qi – An application of “Coordinated Body Motion” often along with slight of hand, misdirection and similar parlor tricks used by some unscrupulous or delusional people to give the illusion or impression of supernatural powers or abilities, often described as a function of some sort of mystical “energy”.  It is important to stress that some people who demonstrate “”Qi” may genuinely believe it to be real (“delusional”).  This strong desire to believe can lead to amusing or entertaining consequences.  Also known as “chi” and “ki”
Rattan – a vine-like plant that ‘Escrima sticks’ are usually made from.

Reactionary Gap – The space & distance between opponents where ‘action beats reaction’ at least 90% of the time, within arms reach.  See First Strike Advantage.
Sepa / Sepak- see Oblique kick
Shaolin – Mandarin word which translates to “Young Forest”
Shoulder roll – a deflection & absorption technique often used by boxers against punchers by rolling the shoulders through a punch
Shutdown – Surprising an assailant with a flurry of trapping, gunting and dumog techniques to end the fight as soon as he presents a threat or puts his hands up
Sifu – a Cantonese word used in Kajukenbo to mean ‘teacher’, official title and form of address for Kajukenbo black belts from 3rd to 5th degree
Sigung – a Cantonese word used in Kajukenbo to mean ‘expert teacher’, official title and form of address for Kajukenbo black belts of 6th & 7th degree
Sil Lum – Cantonese for the more common Mandarin “ShaoLin”; which translates to “Young Forest”
Sil Lum Tao – Cantonese for “Young Forest Way”, sometimes confused with “Siu Nim Tao”.

Single Unit Moving – see “Coordinated Body Motion”
Siniwali  – means ‘weaving’ or ‘to weave’ – FMA double stick drills such as 2-count, 4-count, and 6-count
Sipa / Sipak – see Oblique kick
Siu Nim Tao – “Way of the Little Idea” – The first form of Wing Chun, teaching the basic moves & trapping elements of the style, also “SNT”
Slant kick – see Oblique kick
SNT – see Siu Nim Tao
Soccer pass kick – see Oblique kick
Stop-kick – an intercepting kick (jeet tek) to the opponents leg, knee or hip
Straight blast –  a barrage of vertical punches thrown in a continuous manner (also “chain punching”)
Suki nage – leg scoop takedown
Sumi Gaeshi – Corner Reversal (sacrifice throw)
Sutemi-waza-Sacrifice techniques
Tachypsychia – A distorted perception of time
Taijitu – “diagram of ultimate power” refers to the Chinese symbol for the concept of yin-yang, the balance of forces
Taun Sao – Palm-up deflecting hand
Three Rules of Locking – Never chase a lock, never force a lock, & always distract (before, during & after)

Tiada – See “Escala”
Tomoe Nage – Circle Throw (sacrifice throw)
Uchi mata – Thigh reap
Uki Waza – Floating Throw (sacrifice throw)
Ura nage – rear throw sacrifice
William Kwai Sun Chow – see “Chow, William”
Vale Tudo – “Anything Goes” – Any hold where you have complete control of your defenseles opponent
Wing Chun – The name of a system of martial arts developed in southern China approximately 300 years ago which employs a lot of trapping.  This was first “official” system Briuce Lee studied.  The name loosely translated to “Beautiful Springtime” and is alleged to be the name of a Chinese woman who either developed or was first taught the style.
Wu sao  – protecting hand
Yoko Guruma – Side Wheel
Yoko Wakare – Side Separation (sacrifice throw)

Zoning – stepping to the outside of (and roughly perpendicular to) your opponent with a Female Triangle