by Dr. Ron Chapél
A Sub-Level Four™ Self-Defense technique is uniquely different from Motion-Kenpo. A technique in Motion-Kenpo is, among other things, primarily a study of the effective use of “motion” in a combat scenario. Every hypothesis or technique theme is based and predicated on “motion.” Additionally, It does not explore hands on application of holds, hugs, locks, and seizures.
A Sub-level Four™ technique is a case study of many different complex sciences presented in a practical application default technique modality, that reaches well beyond its obvious immediate effectiveness. This “process” subsequently addresses long term goals and applications.
To this end through the entire first level of study, techniques are presented as “hard curriculum” with absolutely no exploration or adjustment of themes without instructor approval. This is not uncommon outside the bounds of loose structured Motion-Kenpo. In general, minor “tailoring” is only allowed to compensate for height or girth deficiencies. The proverbial Kenpo hypothesis “what if” is not allowed or entertained, and there are no Motion-Kenpo defined “re-arrangement concepts.”
The base or default technique execution is conceptually inclusive of minor variables without significant adjustment. Major variables are assigned different “Default Techniques.” These are things that cannot be seen by the uneducated eye. When executed properly, major benefit is attained because each individual technique functions on multiple levels, and lays the base foundation for even more advanced application of a theme allowing sophisticated “Destructive Modulation” at upper levels.
A technique teaches all the things listed below and additionally functions as a “mini” Taiji Chi-Gung form that may be practiced singularly without a partner to the same end without physical contact, when a partner is not available. A student is encouraged to study and explore body mechanic enhancing “chi,” and “chi” enhancing body movements, with as well as without a training partner.
Proper anatomical movement and internal energy co-exist hand in hand and one cannot be attained without the presence of the other. Done properly, they spiral upward together as long as you continue to practice, without age barriers. SL-4™ teaches immediate application of what the Chinese have traditionally waited years to explain to a very few.
It cannot be over emphasized, these are things that are not visible to the uneducated eye, and cannot be understood anymore than you would movements of any discipline not explained to you. Sub-Level Four™ techniques are absolutely workable and effective and there are no “throw away” techniques.
What is immediately discernable is when, at higher levels, a Control manipulation alternative might be to modulate destruction. This is what has prompted some to suggest, “It’s just contact manipulation,” or “They are just adding a manipulation to the technique.” Nothing could be further from the truth.
In fact a student is taught to execute the more destructive “Destructive Sequencing” first along with minor manipulations because full Control Manipulations require a much greater degree of skill and a higher physical commitment in training as well as practice. It is where the Ed Parker phrase “…to feel is to believe” manifests itself.
The top 25 things in SL-4 Kenpo™ techniques NOT in Motion-Kenpo
1. The science of proper breathing through a “Breathing Signature” to enhance short-term explosive power, and enhance the training of long-term internal energy.
2. Exploring the control and momentary movement, shifting and adjusting of your internal energy as well as your opponent’s for the purposes of enhancing your own strength while draining your opponent’s.
3. The application of internal energy for immediate effectiveness in short term scenarios, with the long-term goal of increased permanent and growing enhancement.
4. How the method and manner of execution enhances or detracts from the positive execution of all anatomical movement.
5. The limitations of anatomical structure, which is greater than its effective applications, therefore motion may be infinite, but its practical effective use is not.
6. How the proper placement and execution of “basics” can create a “natural barrier” and negate “street grappling” assaults within the framework of self-defense techniques, and counter the constant “forward pressure” of those attempting to seize or surround your torso.
7. How the proper execution and placement of the armatures away from the body may be executed in a manner that allows them to not be corruptible or manipulated.
8. How a simple adjustment in height can counter a “street grappler’s” change in height should he drop to attack your lower height zones.
9. How certain movements have an effect utilized in “Psychology of Confrontation Concepts” to enhance one’s “Mechanical Speed” by elongating the “Perceptual and Mental Speed” of your opponent.
10. How certain “Negative Physical Contact” enhances your own structural integrity and therefore can have a positive effect.
11. How to move energy from one side of your body to another location through the manipulation of armatures.
12. How to create a burst of energy to enhance your movements.
13. How to momentarily “short circuit” a person’s nervous system in conjunction with an energy drain to enhance our own action by “Completing the Circuit.”
14. How to manipulate human anatomy through, touching, pulling, pushing, striking, twisting, torquing, hugging, and locking.
15. Each technique emphasizes the shifting and transfer of body weight in conjunction with applications for maximum effectiveness with other components.
16. Explores and teaches “Negative and Positive Body” posture from multiple perspectives including but not limited to;
17. What postures opens specific cavities for effective destructive access.
18. What natural weapons and their method of execution will give you access and activation.
20. How the proper angles and associated anatomical posture function as a unit to virtually guarantee effectiveness.
22. What postures create a structural weakness in your opponent thereby virtually immobilizing him in many situations.
23. The location of nerve cavities and the order, posture and effects of sequential striking and what posture stifles or blocks his energy thereby weakening him and causing “Physical/Mental Disassociation,” (PMD). Sometimes called a “Technical Knockout” in sporting contests.
24. How the “Timing Signature” teaches the correct rhythm to “surge” energy and negate opponent body mechanics.
25. How the “Grappling Signature” sets your body mechanics during a technique to counter “street grapplers.”