KINETEKAN CORE CONCEPTS
KINETEKANTM is a revolutionary modern martial art developed by Roger Salick after a lifetime of research.
Ground-breaking and dynamic in its approach,
Kinetekan is martial arts...evolved.
"Do nothing that is of no use."
Miyamoto Mushashi, The Book of Five Rings,
The Classic Guide to Strategy
Kine = [from Greek kinesis: motion] Moving; the forces of motion
Te = [from Okinawan te: hand] 1: Hand, fist
Kan = [from the Japanese kan: house] House; training hall; place
Kinetekan is quite different from traditional martial arts. To help understand how, the bullet list below explains some core Kinetekan concepts. In articles to come, we'll dig further into the finer details.
Please Note: The following list applies almost exclusively to adult Kinetekan training and the special KAT (Kid's Advanced Training) classes, where the emphasis is very focused on realistic self-defense. It does not generally apply to regular children's classes, which emphasize child development through fun, coordination-intensive, high-energy martial arts games.
Yours in Martial Arts,
And now, your guide to the exciting new world of KINETEKAN:
- Emphasize realistic techniques.
- Train against the
most statistically probable attacks.
Forget the robotic, frozen, exaggerated postures. Move.
Advance and retreat with the power of fluid, dynamic motion. Harness maximum
Try your techniques against difficult opponents. Find out
where they fail, where they can go wrong. There's no winning and losing
training in your school. There's only improving.
- Form is overrated. Worry more about
Form is only important as a means of achieving a particular
physical effect. If you hit hard, fast and accurately on the street, no one is
going to give a rip how you look when you do it. Kinetekan (and self-defense)
is not a cinematic or demonstration art. It's a functional one.
away at your techniques and your art. Eliminate everything that doesn't work,
doesn't matter, or slows you down.
Michelangelo'sThe David, the zenith of
humanity's artistic arc, was created solely by eliminating material from a
rough block of marble. Then Michelangelo polished the stone. Do the same with
martial arts. Get rid of the garbage. Be ruthless about it. Then polish.
Although Forms are core curriculum for many martial arts,
Kinetekan's tight focus on workable self-defense views them as fantasy
fighting: impractical, memory intensive, staged, and virtually irrelevant to
realistic combative training. (Note: a more complete discussion of Forms will
be offered in an upcoming article devoted exclusively to this topic.)
Cut training that emphasizes unrealistically long and
cooperative demonstration patterns. Nobody fights like that. Long patterns are
another self-defense fantasy. Break them up. Re-arrange them. Keep what's good
and throw out the junk. Practice shorter, more effective self-defense
- Train on different terrains.
Self-defense doesn't always occur on spacious open ground.
Fight from the floor, chairs, benches, walls, corners, in and around a car.
Practice on grass and gravel, sand and snow.
Practice with objects littering the self-defense
environment. Train in a crowd, bumping bodies.
- Teach through Immersion Training.
This is the same way that children, native speakers and
foreign exchange students rapidly acquire language skills. Some examples of
Kinetekan Immersion Training would include:
- New students interact in group training immediately.
Students of all belt ranks (but not ages) train together, including
instructors. New students are rarely segregated from the main group.
Techniques, even advanced ones, are not restricted to certain ranks.
From Day 1, train as if you'll confront a serious opponent tomorrow.
- Make training brain-based.
Brain-based training makes sense to the learner. Information
is presented in the fastest and easiest ways the human brain is hardwired to
learn. Examples of this include:
- Preferring the simple to the complex, and the direct to the
Minimize memory demands. Make nothing needlessly complex.
Engage as many senses as possible while training. Touch, sight, sound, the
use of colors -- all increase student interest, memory retention and ease of
learning. Above all, keep your training tactile. Physically interact with a
partner, or a pad, or something. Some mirror and air work is OK. Too much, not
- Worship efficiencies. Do the most
with the least.
Maximize speed, power and effect. Minimize time, energy
expended, exposure and risk.
- Prefer hitting and moving over
Blocking rarely advances your fight. The best block is
moving, not being there to get hit. If you must block, don't leave yourself
- Proportional Training, or the 80/20 Rule:
Train 80% of the time on techniques you expect to use 80% of
the time in self-defense situations. Invest less time on techniques less likely
to be used.
- Develop mental and verbal avoidance strategies as
your first line of defense.
mind and tongue are vastly more powerful, and usually more efficient, than your
fists and feet. In the face of hostility, use them first.
that's not possible, try to walk away. Physical combat is wildly unpredictable
and dangerous; you never know where it will lead. It can throw you into a
minefield of unintended consequences. Your opponent, of course, will not think
this way, but history is littered with the bones of men who thought they could
- If you must fight, use the least force necessary to
neutralize the threat.
Do the least harm. As soon as you are safe, disengage.
- When conflict becomes unavoidable, seek an unfair
If you cannot find an unfair advantage, create one.
- Be honest everywhere in your life except when
Train using feints, misdirections, and cheap shots. Learn
about it here; don't fall prey to it out there.
defines the Kinetekan mindset. Prepare for the aftermath of any move or
situation. What will your opponent do next? If you do this, or he does that,
practitioners seek to anticipate the future of everything that can affect them.
These questions often take the form of, "If you do
that, what if he does this?" They are often banned in traditional classes
as disrespectful. In Kinetekan, not only are they allowed, they are encouraged.
There are a lot of good martial artists with interesting
techniques out there. Pick their brains and learn from them. But there is also
so much unrealistic, unworkable, theatrical silliness that it can scarcely be
believed. Be skeptical and selective.
doesn't matter how ancient a movement or form is, what it's called, what person
devised it, or in what land it originated. It doesn't matter what styles
venerate it, or how many masters have passed it on to how many students, or
what rank you're supposed to be before it relinquishes its hidden secrets.
only matters that it works, and works well. The rest, as far as self-defense is
concerned, is nonsense.
- Kinetekan is a living art.
It is organic. It evolves.
- There are no sacred techniques.
Students are free to discard or modify techniques that don't
work for them.
- There is no unbreakable hierarchy of knowledge.
knowledge, all ways of doing things, need not flow from your instructors.
for yourself. Pull knowledge from other sources. Stay hungry for new ways.
- Invent something and share it.
Students are encouraged to develop new techniques or to
modify old ones. If something works, share it with others in your school, even
Be open to many ideas, but selective in what you embrace.
Critically evaluate even the conventional wisdoms. Be bold in both thought and deed.
Dare to seek your own path.
- Laugh. It's
okay to have fun while you train. Don't take yourself too seriously.