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Home Striking Karate Ed Parker And The Evolution of American Kenpo

American Kenpo, that wonderful synthesis from the mind of Ed Parker, has a colorful history full of sweat and blood and intrigue.

The timeline of American Kenpo as a separate, legitimate style:

  • First Generation: 1954-1961 (Original Kenpo)
    Second Generation: 1961-1963 (Traditional Kenpo – Removal of Jujutsu, Forms imitated)
    Third Generation: 1963-1969 (Chinese Kenpo)
    Fourth Generation: 1970-1981 (Ed Parker’s Kenpo)
    Fifth Generation: 1982-1990 (American Kenpo)

What follows is a representation of each generation – see if you can spot the differences:

First Generation:

Second Generation:

Third Generation:

Fourth Generation:

Fifth Generation:

And as a bonus, here’s a commercial from Grandmaster Parker –

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