When studying martial arts today, it’s valuable to include elements from various martial arts. This allows students to have a broader awareness for self-defense and to be more adaptive to various situations.
Many schools have an attitude of there being a best way or a true way. They may even teach that other martial arts are wrong. The truth is that every style of martial art has its own strengths and weaknesses. Every style has its own philosophies and strategies. Some have completely different body mechanics.
Take switching from taekwondo to aikido, for instance. Taekwondo is a powerful martial art that uses lightning quick kicks. Aikido is a smooth martial art that focuses on joint locks and throws to use an opponent’s body against them.
Taekwondo requires maneuverability – you’re bouncing on the balls of your feet so that you’re never caught flat-footed. You can hop back, forward, side-step, and spin or reverse a kick with strength and speed. Taekwondo is very focused on body momentum. The body rises and falls, the shoulders open and close, all to create acceleration with every movement.
Aikido, on the other hand, requires strong grounding and flat feet so that you can use an opponent’s momentum against them. To raise on the balls of your feet weakens your own base and throws you off-balance. If you have strong grounding and you’re pinning someone’s wrist against their body, they can’t move you. If you’re up on the balls of your feet like in taekwondo and they push against you, you’re going to fall to the ground.
These two different martial arts use such different strategies that the most basic, Day One lessons about body mechanics that are taught in each almost completely disagree. Neither one’s right and neither one’s wrong. It’s important to understand they’re just going about self-defense in different ways. That’s why we teach elements of multiple martial arts through the foundation of kenpo. It allows well-rounded training and the ability to continue picking up and training in a variety of martial arts styles. We offer child, teen, and adult classes and tailor training so that every student can get the most out of their ability.