Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Kenpo Continuum is out!

Amy Long has sent out the new book she has just completed called The Kenpo Continuum. I wrote a cover blurb for it and refer to it as a version of The Journey for the rest of us. Lots of bios on practitioners from all over the US and abroad. Some of my students are in there, and I wrote the bio on Rick Stone.
The book is available on Amy's website at and a few copies will be available through my site as well at in the online store.

Response to Kenpo 601

Thank you all who sent your comments in about K-601. The response has been very positive. I received one from Si-Gung Steve LaBounty who said he likes the writing style. More importantly, he said he considers himself to still be a student, which is what I feel every day.
It's great to get notes of appreciation like that, and all those I get from people who buy and read the books, then take the time to write and let me know how much they help. That's why I wrote them.
Thanks again to you all.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

New studio opening

One of my students, Tony Velada, and Aikido sensei Robert Garza are opening a combined studio in Worth, Ilinois, a Chicago suburb. Tony started with me when he was eight years old in Chicago, back in the 1980s. He met Ed Parker there when Mr. Parker would come to teach. Bob Garza is a practitioner I met a few years ago through Kurt Barnhart in Chicago. I went to a few of his sword classes there and really enjoyed them.
Between their enthusiasm and abilities, I'm sure the school will be a success. They have a Grand Opening coming up soon. Check their website at

" A Center for the Martial Arts "
Home of Soseikan Dojo and Windy City Kenpo

11425 S. Harlem Ave.
Worth, Illinois 60482
we are the WiFi dojo !

Monday, July 21, 2008

Cape Coral seminar

Gulf Coast Kenpo Karate is across the river from Ft. Myers, so it was nice to not have to jump on an airplane to go there. (Last week I flew Delta "Don't Expect your Luggage To Arrive" and they lived up to that.) We had two successful and enjoyable seminars, one for the kids and another for the adults. I presented Mike with one of the two author's pre-publication copies I received of Kenpo Karate 601 for his part in producing the book. He did the graphics work.

Mike and Renee Squatrito have a nice, clean, good-looking school that's well-organized. The students' material looks good, so it's obvious Mike is doing a good job transmitting the system. Their students are doing well in tournaments, too.

Drop by if you're in town or check out their website at

Sunday, July 20, 2008

MAP in Australia

M.A.P Lifts Off in Australia
Our future rests with our children, yet we continue to see more and more of these precious, young lives wasted due to dysfunctional family life, varied forms of abuse and criminal involvement. Today, it is a sad fact that our society seems to have trouble transmitting healthy values to young people. Many federal, state and city agencies, together with churches, have tried and are trying to help where they can. Some programs work; others don't.
Martial Artists for Peace (M.A.P) is foundation that has been created by KKA Queensland instructors Simon Rea and Tony Perez to reach out to at risk children with the Kenpo 4 Kids program.
M.A.P is a community peace programming strategy and aims to transform young people whose lives are spinning out of control into responsible, confident and respectful individuals.
The first child to be adopted into M.A.P is “Hope”. She is an 8 year old whose dysfunctional family situation made her an ideal candidate.
Well known Brisbane building company SUNSTATE HOMES has graciously sponsored “Hope” in the Kenpo 4 Kids program for 5 years. Sunstate Homes director Amir Taefi said,
“I’m proud to be associated with this wonderful initiative. We share a common belief where people live without fear, being allowed to love, live and experience life with all its weird and wonderful differences without fear of ridicule, discrimination, bullying, physical and mental abuse at the hands of others. My company builds homes for families and Kenpo 4 Kids builds homes for the spirit – it’s an ideal partnership.”

“Hopes” story coming soon.

Friday, July 18, 2008

2009 Wonder Valley Camp

This is from Graham Lelliott in Fresno, CA. This is a great camp.

Hi to everyone,
I thought it was about time that I sent out a reminder to you all.
Our 2009 Wonder Valley Camp is only about 10 months away, so we need to start receiving replies and registrations ASAP you can download an information sheet at
I can now confirm the camp instructors as follows.

Master Lee Wedlake, Ed Parker Jr, Professor’s Diane Tanaka, Jason Arnold, Brian Hawkins, Ingmar Johansson and myself.

I’m sure that you will agree that this has the making of another great camp at Wonder Valley California, the camp is held on Memorial Day weekend May 22nd to May25th 2009 Friday pm check in, Monday check out.
For those of you who attended the 2005 and 2007 camps please feel free to post comments on the guest book at
We already have Kenpo people traveling from Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, Jersey and within the United States so lets make this a camp to remember from around the world.
A profile of the Instructors and their seminar topics for the camp will be posted on our website in the near future, as I’m sure you will all appreciate there is a lot of hard work in coordinating this event, so an early response will really help us with room allocations etc.

Please reply to let me know you received this mail
Many thanks and best regards Graham Lelliott

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Kenpo Karate 601

My next book, Kenpo Karate 601, is done! I'm waiting for them to be delivered to me from the printer in Ohio. I think I may have them by late next week.

This book covers Form Six, a high level black belt form. In addition, I wrote a section on how to do a thesis form for intermediate and advanced ranks. This is the last of the numbered books. The next one is about Ed Parker, and it's coming along fast.

To pre-order 601, go to my website at and into the online store. You can save a few dollars if you order before the book comes out.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Congrats, Megan!

I was at Keith Mathew's Karate Studio in Canton, GA over the weekend. Mr. Mathews promoted his first black belt, Megan Cathey. Megan did a nice job demonstrating her proficiency, from the basics and forms, to the techniques and on to spontaneous defense against multiple attackers.

At the conclusion of the exam Mr. Mathews presented her with her certificate and belt. He added a nice touch, though. He and his wife, Kim, had commissioned a tiger and dragon ring just like the one Mr. Mathews wears, and gave it to her. He's holding it on the chain in the picture.

The people at the studio are a great group, very cohesive, and nice people. They had a program printed for the weekend events, complete with ads from local businesses. Family members pitching in to help out at the seminar, too.

Megan will be going off to college in August, to earn her degree in Criminal Justice (same as I did, coincidentally). She'll be missed by the group there at the studio.

I saw some old, familiar faces there and a new one. The Mathews had a baby boy named Parker recently and he's doing well.

Keith Mathews looks to be doing a good job up there.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

An apple a day

Marc Rowe sent this in; his commentary opens it.

Here is a scientific literature review of apples and health. I have pulled
out of the extensive review the abstract-summaries and conclusions so you
can get the trend of the scientific evidence that has accumulated. We used
ground up apple peels after intestinal transplantation and in children with
intestinal failure and because of peels contain a large amount of pectin, a
soluble fiber that protects the intestinal barrier. Take home message is- an
apple a day (with the peels) actually may actually keep the doctor away.
Marc .

Apple phytochemicals and their health benefits
Jeanelle Boyer and Rui Hai Liu
Department of Food Science and Institute of Comparative and Environmental
Toxicology, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853-7201 USA
Evidence suggests that a diet high in fruits and vegetables may decrease the
risk of chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and cancer, and
phytochemicals including phenolics, flavonoids and carotenoids from fruits
and vegetables may play a key role in reducing chronic disease risk. Apples
are a widely consumed, rich source of phytochemicals, and epidemiological
studies have linked the consumption of apples with reduced risk of some
cancers, cardiovascular disease, asthma, and diabetes. In the laboratory,
apples have been found to have very strong antioxidant activity, inhibit
cancer cell proliferation, decrease lipid oxidation, and lower cholesterol.
Apples contain a variety of phytochemicals, including quercetin, catechin,
phloridzin and chlorogenic acid, all of which are strong antioxidants. The
phytochemical composition of apples varies greatly between different
varieties of apples, and there are also small changes in phytochemicals
during the maturation and ripening of the fruit. Storage has little to no
effect on apple phytochemicals, but processing can greatly affect apple
phytochemicals. While extensive research exists, a literature review of the
health benefits of apples and their phytochemicals has not been compiled to
summarize this work. The purpose of this paper is to review the most recent
literature regarding the health benefits of apples and their phytochemicals,
phytochemical bioavailability and antioxidant behavior, and the effects of
variety, ripening, storage and processing on apple phytochemicals.
Summary-epidemiology evidence
Based on these epidemiological studies, it appears that apples may play a
large role in reducing the risk of a wide variety of chronic disease and
maintaining a healthy lifestyle in general. Of the papers reviewed, apples
were most consistently associated with reduced risk of cancer, heart
disease, asthma, and type II diabetes when compared to other fruits and
vegetables and other sources of flavonoids. Apple consumption was also
positively associated with increased lung function and increased weight
loss. Partially because of such strong epidemiological evidence supporting
the health benefits in apples, there is increasing research using animal and
in vitro models that attempts to more clearly explain these health benefits.
Summary animal studies
Overall, the animal studies and in vitro work begin to define mechanisms by
which apples may help prevent chronic disease. First, the strong antioxidant
activity of apples may help prevent lipid and DNA oxidation. Cancer cell
culture work has demonstrated that apples inhibit cell proliferation in
vitro, which may contribute to the association of apple intake with
decreased cancer risk. Apples significantly lowered lipid oxidation both in
humans and rats and lowered cholesterol in humans. These effects, which may
be attributed to both the phenolics and the dietary fiber found in apples,
may partially explain the inverse association of apple intake and risk of
cardiovascular disease.
In numerous epidemiological studies, apples have been associated with a
decreased risk of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancer,
and asthma. In vitro and animal studies have demonstrated that apples have
high antioxidant activity, can inhibit cancer cell proliferation, decrease
lipid oxidation, and lower cholesterol, potentially explaining their role in
reducing risk of chronic disease. Apples contain a wide variety of
phytochemicals, many of which have been found to have strong antioxidant
activity and anticancer activity. The interaction of the many apple
phytochemicals warrants more study as researchers attempt to further explain
the mechanism behind the apple's ability to reduce risk of chronic disease.
Recent research has shown that apples do contain bioavailable
phytochemicals, although more work is needed to better understand the
bioavailability of phytochemicals within the apple matrix as opposed to pure
Many factors affect the phytochemical profile of apples, and are important
to consider as one attempts to understand and maximize the health benefits
of apples. Phytochemical concentrations vary greatly between different
cultivars. The level of some phytochemicals varies during maturation of the
fruits in response to available light, stage of fruit development and to
some types of fertilization. In general, storage of apples does not seem to
greatly affect apple phytochemicals, but the processing of apples for juice
results in a very significant decrease in phenolics. Processed apple peels
retain their phenolic and flavonoid compounds activity and therefore may be
used as a value-added ingredient with potent antioxidant activity.
The potential health benefits of apples are numerous. Regular consumption of
fruits and vegetables, including apples, as part of a healthy diet may aid
in the prevention of chronic disease and maintenance of good health.
and maintenance of good health.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The doctor is in

An interesting piece sent by Marc Rowe about brain plasticity. If they used reading in the research, is there a parallel in martial arts in which we "read" the body? As sentences were used to test whether children used sensibility judgments, doesn't a practitioner of the arts have to judge whether movements make sense? Interesting stuff. Read on.

Carnegie Mellon brain imaging study illustrates how remedial instruction helps poor readers

Poor readers achieved brain activation levels seen in skilled readers after 100 hours of extra trainingJust as a disciplined exercise regimen helps human muscles become stronger and perform better, specialized workouts for the brain can boost cognitive skills, according to Carnegie Mellon scientists. Their new brain imaging study of poor readers found that 100 hours of remedial instruction - reading calisthenics, of sorts, aimed to shore up problem areas - not only improved the skills of struggling readers, but also changed the way their brains activated when they comprehended written sentences.The results may pave the way to a new era of neuro-education.Carnegie Mellon researchers say poor readers initially have less activation in the parietotemporal area of the brain, which is the region responsible for decoding the sounds of written language and assembling them into words and phrases that make up a sentence, than do good readers. However, remedial instruction increases the struggling readers' activation to near normal levels.This also was the first brain imaging study in which children were tested on their understanding of the meanings of sentences, not just on their recognition of single words."This study demonstrates how the plasticity of the human brain can work for the benefit of remedial learning," says neuroscientist Marcel Just, director of Carnegie Mellon's Center for Cognitive Brain Imaging (CCBI), and senior author of the new study currently available on the Web site of the journal Neuropsychologia. "We are at the beginning of a new era of neuro-education."The poor readers worked in groups of three for an hour a day with a reading "personal trainer," a teacher specialized in administering a remedial reading program. The training included both word decoding exercises in which students were asked to recognize the word in its written form and tasks in using reading comprehension strategies. The poor readers were 25 fifth-graders taken from a stratified sample from schools in Allegheny County, which is home to Pittsburgh and a number of its surrounding municipalities.Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), CCBI Research Fellows Ann Meyler and Tim Keller measured blood flow to all of the different parts of the brain while children were reading and found that that the parietotemporal areas were significantly less activated among the poor readers than in the control group. The sound-based representation that is constructed in the parietal areas is then processed for the meanings of the words and the structure of the sentence, activating other brain areas.The sentences were relatively straightforward ones, which the children judged as being sensible or nonsense, such as "The girl closed the gate" and "The man fed the dress." The children's accurate sensibility judgments ensured that they were actually processing the meaning of the sentences, and not just recognizing the individual words.Further, the activation increases in the previously underactivating areas remained evident well after the intensive instruction had ended. When the children's brains were scanned one year after instruction, their neural gains were not only maintained but became more solidified."With the right kind of intensive instruction, the brain can begin to permanently rewire itself and overcome reading deficits, even if it can't entirely eliminate them," Just said.These findings of initial parietotemporal underactivation among poor readers provide evidence against a common misconception about dyslexia. There is a persistent but incorrect belief that dyslexia is primarily caused by difficulties in the visual perception of letters, leading to confusions between letters like "p" and "d". However, such visual difficulties are the cause of dyslexia in only about 10 percent of the cases. The most common cause, accounting for more than 70 percent of dyslexia, is a difficulty in relating the visual form of a letter to its sound, which is not a straightforward process in the English language. The same parietotemporal areas of the brain that showed increased activation following instruction are centrally involved in this sound-based processing.The findings also give hope to using the marvels of brain plasticity for instructional purposes in "new" (for the brain) subject areas. "The human brain did not evolve to process written language, which is a cultural invention dating back only 5000 years," Just said. "Some people's brains happen to be less proficient at relating written symbols to the sounds of language, and they need focused instruction to get those areas up to an adequate level of performance." Other skills that may be valuable as newer technologies (than written language) arise should also be amenable to neuroinstruction."Any kind of education is a matter of training the brain. When poor readers are learning to read, a particular brain area is not performing as well as it might, and remedial instruction helps to shape that area up," Just said. "This finding shows that poor readers can be helped to develop buff brains. A similar approach should apply to other skills."