Tag Archives: kang duk

Bob Babich, Mas Oyama, and the Kang Duk Won

Behind the Scenes at the Kang Duk Won

This post concerning Mas Oyama, Don Buck, and other early pioneers in American Karate, was actually written by Master Instructor BJ. I didn’t know some of this, and there is no way I can compete with the original words presented here. I suggest you do a little googling of the names involved to pad out what you’re about to read. It is well worth it. The original post appeared on KangDukWon.com.

The Story of the Kang Duk Won in America

Sifu Al, you probably know this already but when teenage Don Buck started training with Duke Moore in 1946 fresh out of the US Navy where Don was the US Navy Pacific Fleet 137lb Champion and also wrestled and studied Combat Judo & Defendu.

duke moore, don buck,mas oyama, kang duk won,karate,kenpo

From the Hawaiian Karate Museum, John D. Pell collection. John Pell, Don Buck, Mas Oyama, Gosei Yamaguchi.

By the Mid-50s Don Buck was a Body Building champion and San Francisco Cop in addition to being a black belt in Moore’s Judo & JJ.   Buck & Moore started studying Shorinji Ryu Karate with one of Duke’s teachers, Richard Kim.  One of Kim’s Korean student’s came to the US to work as a Pro Wrestler.  Of course I’m talking about Mas Oyama.

BTW, Mas Oyama’s Karate and Masahiko- Gracie JJ Defeater- Kimura Judo workout partners in the Early 1950’s were Tak Kubota and Taiji Kase!  In fact the gnarled hand on one of Mas Oyama’s early books- ghost written by Don Draeger- was actually Kubota’s.

After WWII Kimura worked as a Pro Wrestler in Europe and N&S America.  He hooked Mas Oyama up with some wrestling promoters here in the US and Mexico so Oyama could make some money.

Mas Oyama set his US base up in San Francisco where he could continue his training with his Sensei Richard Kim.  While not wrestling Oyama lived with Kim’s JJ student Duke Moore and taught/worked out with Duke Moore and Don Buck everyday he was in San Francisco for 4-6 hour workouts.

After a little over a year Mas went back to Japan and promoted both Duke Moore and Don Buck to their Shodan ranks.  Buck opened his own Dojo in 1957 where he only taught Kyokushin Karate making his Dojo the first Oyama Style Karate Dojo to open in the US.  ***Please note that Bobby Lowe has the distinction of opening the first Kyokushin dojo OUTSIDE of Japan.***

mas oyama,norman rha,kang duk won karate

Mas Oyama showing impeccable breaking technique.

When Don Buck opened his Dojo doors in 1957 one of his first students, and Black Belts, was one Robert Babich. A year of two later Richard Kim had a skinny Korean Black belt fresh off the boat from Korea show up at his San Francisco Dojo.  As Kim was about to leave for Japan so he sent the young Korean to his student’s, Duke Moore, Budokan dojo where Moore promptly sent the Korean to Don Buck.

The young Korean didn’t speak much English but Don Buck told him to go change into his Dogi.  When the Korean returned Buck noticed a patch with a fist on the Korean’s uniform.  Don Buck asked what the patch said and young Korean replied something like, “Kang Duk Won Kwon Bup Kong Soo Do.”

After sparring and defeating Buck’s students he squared off with Buck himself.  Buck knocked the Korean down a few times but the Korean kept getting up and he finally knocked the much bigger and stronger Buck across the dojo floor and down.  Buck got back up smiling and told the Korean, “Your hired! What is your name?”  The young Kang Duk Won fighter said, “Norman Rha” and bowed slightly to Buck!

Buck was opening a couple of new Dojo locations and he hired Rha (Rha Jong-nam) and assigned Robert Babich to assist Rha with running the new Dojo.

However, the soft whip-like Tong Bei style punching and much deeper Chaun Fa stances of Rha’s Kang Duk Won Kong Soo Do were so much different than Oyama’s power punching that sometime after Babich earned his Shodan from Don Buck it was decided that Babich should open just his own dojo with Rha so as not to create differences of style with the Kyokushin students.  So they left Don Buck’s American Kyokushin Dojo’s to open their own KDW school.

As Rha was a poor Medical School student he and Babich shared an apartment with the agreement that Rha would teach Babich KDW in return for help learning English.  It should be noted that anytime in the 60’s and early 70’s Babich promoted students to Black Belt the Tracy Brother’s would try to hire the new KDW black belts to run one of their Tracy Brother’s Chinese Kenpo Schools.

The Tracy’s only hired the BEST fighters, both as teachers and Association School Coaches (Joe Lewis & Al Dacascos for example),  as school challenges were common and they didn’t want to loose their schools students, $$$, to another challenging school.  Babich’s KDW academy in San Jose, CA had a reputation of turning out some of the toughest fighters on the West Coast.

It is interesting to note, at least for me,  that Babich didn’t include Sanchin or Tensho in his Kwon Bop Karate that he taught in the 1970’s and 80’s until he closed down his San Jose Dojo.  Why I don’t know???

Note:

Thanks, BJ, for this wonderful bit of writing.

The reason Bob didn’t include Sanchin and Tensho, in my opinion, is that there are two styles of Karate, one fixed and one fluid, or Shorin and Shorei. Bob was not a large man, he was thin and whiplike, and the heavier sanchin style stances didn’t suit him, perhaps even worked against the fluid motions he was developing through the Kang Duk Won.

If you want to find out what the truth behind the Kang Duk Won, check out the first Karate form and applications, and the bonus material on historical uses of Karate.

This has been a page about Don Buck, Mas Oyama, and the early beginnings of the Kang Duk Won Karate.

The Five Principles of a True Martial Art

What Makes a ‘True Martial Art?’

true martial art

Analyzing the body lines to find proper alignment…

Oddly, back when I was training in the Kang Duk Won, we bypassed the first few elements of a True Martial Art. As I studied other other martial arts, however, such as Aikido, Tai Chi Chuan, and so on, the importance of the items we hadn’t focused on became more important, and I began to see the whole picture. Continue reading

Using the Karate Stance to Build True Power in the Martial Arts!

Sinking and Screwing to Power Up Your Karate Stance

One of the main differences between art and sport in the arena of the Martial Arts, is the ability to sink and screw, such as in good Karate stance.

This difference, what I refer to as sink and screw in Karate Stances, is drastic. Oddly, almost nobody ever talks about it, or, if they do, they pass it off. Continue reading

Best Online Karate Lessons on the Planet!

Here’s a Course on Original Karate!

Oinkey Donkey
slop the hogs and shave the chicken,
I have something GRR-REAT for you!
I set up a website specifically for taking a person through Karate.

best karate lessonsNow,
if you have Temple Karate
or the Kang Duk Won (from Evolution of an Art)
Then you have the working pieces of this site.

I simply took Temple and Kang Duk Won,
broke them down into lesson format,
added check lists
articles,
and included various other items.
So,
buyer beware,
I don’t want to get caught out
accused of just ‘re-packaging.
So I am telling you now,
it is repackaging.

You might want to get it anyway,
because it is in lesson format.

Now,
you go through the belt levels
one belt at a time.
First belt only costs…
$2!

Then you add a dollar for each level.
You download the check list,
you read the material and watch the videos,
and you work out.

Now,
this thing is complete with original drills and exercises.
In fact,
you get some pretty AWESOME bonuses!
As you go through the course
each belt level will have a bonus.
For instance,
the Imperial Karate form applications are on each of the first three levels.
Other BONUSES include…
The Punch (with Kick and Candle)
The Master’s Handbook
Amazing Fighting Drills
The Kang Duk Won

And,
at the end of the course,
free test for Black Belt!

Now,
there are all sorts of other little things,
so you should just check out the site,
see what’s what.

And,
let me tell you,
this price is ONLY going to be for a while.

I am just taking a short time to check all links,
make sure all paypal buttons work,
tweak the text and whatever,
get some feedback and wins,
and then the price goes up.
I don’t know if I’ll go to two bucks every level, or five,
or some other scheme.
But it will go up to about $120 for the whole thing,
which is what the course and all the BONUSES add up to.

And,
as stated,
the course is Kang Duk Won.
This is the original Pre-Funakoshi,
not slanted for tournaments,
not slanted for commercial dojos (McDojos)
not arranged for school children,
Karate!

Do it the way I list on the check lists,
follow all directions,
and you will be visiting Kang Duk Won Karate
the way it was taught to me almost fifty years ago,
just a couple of teachers removed from the original Karate
that existed before Funakoshi.

So,
that is the big announcement.
Head on over and check it out,
and remember,
when the prices go up,
they go up for everything,
no matter where you are on the course,
so…
don’t waste time.
Dedicate yourself.
Take advantage of…
The Best Online Karate Course in the World!

Here’s the URL…

http://kangdukwon.com/introduction/

So I’ll tell you more about this later,
but,
right now,
I have to get to work and get this site on the map.

So,
have a great work out!
And I’ll see you over there.

Al

Al Case Martial Arts Books Hit Kindle!

Martial Arts Books Extravaganza!

Al Case, the most prolific Martial Arts writer in history, has begun loading his books and novels onto Amazon/Kindle.

Titles include:

martial arts books

Click on the cover!

Pan Gai Noon (Kung Fu system which resulted in Karate)
Kang Duk Won (unique version of Karate from before Funakoshi)
Perfect Karate
The Neutronic Motors of Pa Kua Chang (a neutronic look at how Pa Kua Chang really works)
The Bodyguard Training Manual (one of the few careers in which a martial artist can use his talents legitimately)
3rd Level 6th Sense Sword fighting (getting to the heart of real weapons training)
and more.

Some of the books are available through the author’s websites, some have been out of print, or bundled and not available separately.

Of particular interest are his novels, which show a wide range of interests.

The block buster ‘The Day the President Killed the United States.’
A tale of race war in America, ‘Monkeyland.’
The secret history of planet Earth, ‘The Bomber’s Story.’
Probably the best novel ever written… ‘Machina.’

Many of these novels have not been available, or were previously only available in perfect bound copies.

Many of the novels have Martial Arts themes or sub themes.

Martial Artists would be especially interested in the Wudan Assassin series.

The Wudan Assassin series are three volumes: Hero, Assassin, and Avatar.

The Assassin is the army of the Wudan, the world’s oldest religion. He cannot get sick, he cannot die, and he is the sole protector of hope on planet earth. He did, however, have to pay a price for his unique abilities: he has no soul.

Readers wishing to avail themselves of this unique collection of Al Case Martial Arts Books and Novels can simply click on over to Kindle/Amazon.

The Secret of Sacred Sweat

Good evening!
And a happy, hot, muggy work out to you.
I remember working out way back in the seventies.
San Jose dripping with sweat.
The gi became utterly and totally soaked.

Now here’s the odd thing.
It didn’t smell.
I don’t mean to gross you out here,
talking about body odor,
but there’s an interesting phenomena here,
and I want to explain it.

ki energy

Martial Arts Chi Power!

The first few years,
when I was doing Kenpo…
the karate gi smelled.
I would work out,
and it would need heavy washing and drying.
Even then,
there was an odor that built up over a year.

Then I went to the Kang Duk Won,
and the gi stopped smelling.
I was working harder,
sweating more,
and this was the time I would work out
and the gi would be as if dipped in a pool of water,
dripping with my perspiration.

But it stopped smelling!

Now how could that be?

But,
I didn’t have the time nor funds
to explore the odor saturation points
of a Karate uniform.
So I just kept working out.

A decade or two later,
(time flies when you’re having fun!)
I was working out in Los Angeles,
and I was doing Pa Kua Chang.
And my perspiration was silvery.
I would look at my arm,
not water,
but silver water.
It was absolutely fascinating.

These days
I don’t sweat much.
I sweat a little,
but…
I don’t work as hard.
My body is not tense,
I don’t use the muscles,
I use energy,
and…
and that is the trick.

When you are first starting the martial arts
you think it is all muscle.
You pump iron
and cross train
and do body weight calisthenics,
and you work hard!

After a while,
the muscles are in tune
and the body is doing what it is supposed to,
and you’re getting a little older,
and you figure out the easier way of doing things.
You use energy.

Now,
what does it take to use energy?
Less effort.
The less effort you do
the more energy you have.
Isn’t that an interesting equation?

< e = + E

If you read the old Taoist texts
you’ll come across this phenomena.
My favorite saying
is from the Tao.

‘Do nothing
until nothing is left undone.’

Can you see how Laotse is talking about energy?

Use less energy,
and less energy,
until you are using no energy.

How fascinating.

Of course,
it was a mystery
until I had plumbed it,
done enough martial arts,
but now I am what he is talking about.

How weird.
It’s worse than old age,
and quite a bit better.

Anyway,
to go on,
when I put out that candle
on the Matrixing Chi page,
how much energy do you think I am using?

I am actually using less energy
than I have used
for anything in my life.

It’s true.
I use the motions of the body,
to stir the energy,
but I use the mind
to project it.

I wrote all about this procedure
in Matrixing Chi,
and I threw in the Candle book
to help out.

I wanted to make sure that everybody knew that it was easy.
That they would get it.

Projecting Chi is the easiest thing I have ever done,
but I had to go through a lot of sweat and discipline
to still my mind,
so that I could actually project a thought.

Okay,
here’s the link…

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/4c-matrixing-chi-power/

Now,
have a GREAT fourth of July!
Extra work outs all around!
And don’t forgot to hoist a suds
(or soda if you’re under age)
to freedom,
and the ability to be the best you
that ever practiced a Martial Art!

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/4c-matrixing-chi-power/

Working Both Sides of the Martial Arts

The Two Sides of the Martial Arts!

There was a famous karateka in Japan.
everybody thought he was the greatest.
One day he up and left for China.
While there,
he began studying Tai Chi,
and Pa Kua,
and all sorts of other stuff.
Now you’ve got to remember,
he was a karate master,
much looked up to,
but this Chinese stuff…
and the whispers started.

‘He betrayed Karate.
He lost his faith.
He was wrong.
How could he possibly stomach that Chinese stuff!’

Several years passed,
he returned home
went back into Karate,
and everybody forgave him.

People said things like
‘Oh,
he saw the error of his ways.
He was just making sure Karate was the best.’
And so on.

But what could they say?
He was better than them!
And it seems like all the little people
want to pull down the big people.
Jealousy.
Small minds.

Now,
here’s the thing,
when people actually asked him
why he went to China and studied
martial arts like Tai Chi and so on,
he said,
‘So I could understand Karate better.’

I began Karate in November of 1967.
I began Tai Chi Chuan about 1974.
Right after I got my black belt.

I started with a book,
Modified Tai Chi for Health,
by Lee Ying Arng.
Probably one of the first books ever printed in English
on Tai Chi Chuan.
Came from a publishing house in Hawaii.
Sold a few copies and moved on.
Some of you old guys might remember it.

Anyway,
the book was a mess.
The pictures were bad,
the motion was depicted with odd arrows
that didn’t always seem to make sense,
and the instructions were weird!
But,
night after night,
I kept at it.

I left the Kang Duk Won,
studied Aikido.
Kept doing that darned Tai Chi book late into the night.

Funny thing,
my wife once asked me,
‘What are you doing?’
I answered honestly.
‘I don’t really know.’
And I kept going.

So,
for years,
I was a tai chi book student,
slowly worming my way into
The Grand Ultimate Fist.

1981,
and I wrote my first article for the mags.
The article was called,
‘The Perfect Strike.’
It was in a karate mag,
it’s somewhere on the Monster now.
Want to know where I got the idea for that article?
Tai Chi.

Tai Chi concepts,
you see
were alien to Karate.
Strange things,
didn’t fit.
But I was finally figuring it out.
So I got paid a hundred bucks,
just because I was studying something
that made my karate better.

Years later I ran into a fellow
who took the time to show me real Tai Chi.
Oddly,
I hadn’t done badly
in my book learning.
And,
here’s the interesting thing,
I would do Tai Chi,
and people would ask me why I was good at it.
And I said,
‘Karate helped me understand it.’

Do you understand?

Here are two arts that are almost in opposition.
They contradict each other.
They are different.
But…
they are different only in that
they are opposite sides of the same coin.

In other words,
they are not different,
only people’s viewpoints are different.

Do you want to understand the martial arts?
Really understand them?
Then do two arts that oppose each other.
Or,
at least provide different viewpoints.
The jujitsu practitioner,
who relies on things like
force and hard leverage,
will find the doors of his art opening wide
when he studies Aikido.

both grab arts,
but one is force,
and the other is flow.

My particular path was karate and Tai Chi.
Lots of other stuff,
but those are the two that had the most impact in my universe.

Those are the two that short circuited my opinions
and gave me facts.

So,
try it.
If you study Karate,
try some Five Army Tai Chi.
If you study Tai Chi,
try some Matrix Karate.
Or,
if you really have an aversion to Karate,
do some Shaolin Butterfly.

Remember,
the old masters were not masters because they studied one art,
they were masters because they studied many arts.

Here’s the link to Tai Chi Chuan.
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/five-army-tai-chi-chuan/

One other thing before I head out
for another work out…

If you go to the Monster,
look in the menu for the products page,
you’ll find some neat stuff.

Remember,
every time you get a course,
or a hat or mug or whatever,
you bring me one step closer to Monkeyland,
and that brings everybody one step closer.

Now
Talk to you later.

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/five-army-tai-chi-chuan/