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Chow's legacey

Author Topic: Chow's legacey  (Read 23579 times)

Jon Pack

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Chow's legacey
« on: June 16, 2003, 10:13:21 AM »
William K.S. Chow is the instructor that had great influence on some of kenpo's greatest instructors. Emperado, Parker, Touliosega, Cerio, Alemany, Chun and others.
Kajukenbo, American Kenpo, Lima Lama, Nick Cerio's Kenpo, American Shaolin Kenpo, Chow/chun are all indebted to him for his efforts.
Mitose may have planted the seed, but it was Chow that had the greatest influence on what has become such a treasure to generations of practioners.
Those who have read my past posts know that my main interests lie in who/what Chow taught. To that end I would be interested in anything that you can share that would futher enlighten me.
Did he teach others I may not be aware of?
What of his time in California?
Thank You in advance for your posts!
Jon Pack
Chippewa Valley Kempo

Offline John Bishop

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2003, 06:51:24 PM »
Prof. Chow taught many people thru out his lifetime.  He started teaching in the early 40s and always had some students until he died in 1987.  
His most famous students would of course be Sijo Emperado and Ed Parker.  He also taught Ralph Castro (up to brown belt), Ron Alo, Brother Abe Kamahoahoa, Charles Kuihana,  Sam Kuoha, Fred Lara, Paul Yamaguichi, Bill Chun Sr., Joe Emperado, John Chow-Hoon, Frank Chow, Will Tracy, Elizabeth Chun (Auntie Liz), and many others.  
Many of these people have passed away, but Sijo Emperado, Ralph Castro, and Sam Kuoha are still around.  As is Bill Chun Jr.
As to Prof. Chow's time in California.  I may be wrong, but I don't think he ever lived here.  He did come to visit Bill Chun Sr. and Ralph Castro at times.
   
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Jon Pack

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2003, 02:51:53 PM »
Can you comment on his teachings becoming more linear later in his life? I am under the impression that the Kara Ho teachings follow a linear approach. Can you comment on why this might be?
Thank you for your input and for your respinse in advance!
Jon Pack

Karazenpo

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2003, 06:55:29 PM »
To be perfectly honest, Jon, I don't know what to tell you. The Goshinjitsu Kai Chinese Kempo of Masters' Bill Chun Sr. & Jr. appears to me and many others as the kempo practiced by William Chow of which he was famous for, the Kara-ho does not. ???  Anyone?

Offline John Bishop

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2003, 10:50:02 PM »
Jon:

I've known Sam Kuoha since the 80s.  During the late  80s we discussed Prof. Chow quite a bit, since Sam was his successor and I was starting to write for the magazines.  
There were many people that trained with Prof. Chow long before Sam, but Sam was the last of his black belts who stayed with him until he died in 1987.  Sam has all of Prof. Chow's personal items, birth certificate, marriage certificate, the KaraHo banners from his schools, original B&W photos from Mitose's first book, etc.
Professor Chow called his system various names over the decades that he taught.  First was "Kenpo Karate".  Then there was "Shaolin Kenpo".  That was followed by "Go Shin Jitsu Kai Kenpo".  When he adapted the "Goshin Jitsu Kai Kenpo" name he gave Ralph Castro permission to use the "Shaolin Kenpo" name that was used when he (Castro) was a student of Prof. Chow.  The "Chinese Kempo of KaraHo Karate" name came sometime in the 60s.  
Prior to training with Prof. Chow, Sam trained in a Kajukenbo offshoot along side Prof Alan Abad.  He also trained in Kenpo with Tigi Matalii, Aikido with John Damian, and Tae Kwon Do with Jun Chong.
The reason I'm telling you this is because a lot of the techniques and all of the Katas in Kara-Ho came from Sam's other training.  Of course these additions were done with Prof. Chow's permission.  
Prof. Chow never really taught any katas, but he did know Naihanchi Shodan, and could demonstrate it.  
I saw video of Prof. Chow teaching classes, but he was in his 60-70s at the time.  They did a whole lot of hand speed drills, and hand toughening drills.  He had a hand conditioning drill I've never seen before.  He would take a steel folding chair and hold it by the legs, parallel to the floor with the back of the chair over the students head.  The students would then punch the steel seat.      
If you would like to get ahold of Sam his email is: Karaho@bigfoot.com
John Bishop  8th Degree-Original Method 
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"You watch, once I'm gone, all the snakes will start popping their heads up!"  Sijo Emperado

Karazenpo

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2003, 02:18:24 PM »
   I can say this as pretty much fact: Nick Cerio earned his black belt from George Pesare. It was in the Karazenpo Go Shinjutsu that he learned from Victor Gascon. Cerio then hooked up with Bill Chun Sr. and William Chow sometime in 1966. He continued his studies until 1971. The lessons with Chow were two week visits between those years and he would live-in. When Nick Cerio came back from these visits he started altering the system. Nick Cerio's Kenpo core is obviously the Karazenpo he learned from George Pesare. We also know that Gascon was a Kajukenbo black belt of John Leoning and Leoning in turn, Sijo Emperado. So, it was based on the early Hawaiian-derived kempo. Now, here is an example of a modification he made from his studies with Chow:

1) Karazenpo combination #4 (in Shaolin Kempo Karate it's #2): Step inside a right hand straight punch with a right inward hammer block to the arm, either chamber and execute a straight right back-two knuckle punch to the face or as a variation simply snap a quick back fist to the face with the same right hand. As you retract the back fist circle into a straight driving elbow to the solar plexus (this is done with a shuffle of the feet), with the same right hand make a circular hand reap to his achilles heel area and take him down. Step in and follow up with the same right hand using a knife hand to the groin, cross and cover.

2) Nick Cerio's Kenpo version using the above Karazenpo combination as its base: Step back with the left foot with a soft left outward dragon hand (grab) block simultaneously with a circular sweeping rake to the face with the right hand which immediately returns into a right back fist to the face which circles into a straight driving right elbow to the solar plexus followed by a circular forearm-type elbow strike to the jaw returning into a right back fist to face which circles down into a right hammer to groin. Sweep attacker with your right foot, cross and cover. The technique in NCK is called "Dance of Death".

Professor Cerio stated Nick Cerio's Kenpo nucleus was circulartory in nature. I would have to say outside of Grandmaster George Pesare who gave Professor Cerio his foundation and identity in kempo that his next greatest influence was Professor Chow. My point being, Professor Chow and Master Bill Chun Sr. were practicing this continuous motion kempo with rapid-fire striking and a 'circular' nucleus back in the 60's. Also notice both the original and the NCK version uses 'consecutive striking' (same hand) rather than 'alternating striking'.
I took a two day seminar with Master Bill Chun Jr. and what he taught seemed to be this type of continuous motion, in-close rapid-fire striking. As far as myself and others there could see, it was Chow's Kempo. Of course I never met the man but I'm going by everything I've seen or read and the first hand knowledge from Bill Chun Jr. and the late Professor Cerio. That's about all I have to offer on this.  :)   Respectfully, Shihan Joe
« Last Edit: June 29, 2003, 08:00:11 AM by Shihan Joe Shuras »

Karazenpo

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2003, 08:31:14 AM »
Aloha Brother Gerry, let me run this past you and see what you think. In my historical research on our roots in Hawaii, I tried to find the 'kung fu connection' to Professor Chow. Here is what I got:

Professor Chow spent a lot of time at Professor Henry S. Okazaki's dojo, 'founder of Danzan Ryu Jui Jitsu'. It is common knowledge that Chow had the utmost respect for the Professor. Several of Chow's brothers trained in jui jitsu, one of them, John Chow-Hoon was one of Okazaki's highest ranking black belts of that era. Chow took the title of 'professor' for himself out of respect to Professor Okazaki.

Now, going on that I started looking into the different arts Okazaki studied and what went into Danazan Ryu. I found that the most influential instructor in Okazaki's life was a Chinese Kung Fu master, Wo Chung.  The name 'Danzan' was what Master Chung called the main island of Hawaii and out of respect to him, Professor Okazaki called his system 'Danzan Ryu'. Master Chung's system was called 'boxing with the intent to kill'. It's Japanese translated name is Mushi-Jitsu, I have yet to find its original Chinese translation. Putting two and two together, it would be logical to conclude that Chow's blending of the 'circle with the line' may have been inspired by his relationship and training with Okazaki and Okazaki in turn with his training under Chinese master Wo Chung. I would like to have traced  Chung's system to see if it was based on the five animals and I will look into it further but as of now I have reached a dead end. Although a bit indirect, this is the only fact based connection that I could find linking Chow to any type of Kung Fu practiced in Hawaii at that time. Respectfully, Shihan Joe :)
« Last Edit: June 29, 2003, 08:33:47 AM by Shihan Joe Shuras »

napashifu

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2003, 09:21:56 PM »
  8)
Along with Kajukenbo, I also study Danzan ryu jujitsu.
 Some people believe that it was the praying mantis style that Wo Chung taught, but no one is 100% sure.
aloha.
Mike Ritchie.

Offline crswilfsh

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2003, 12:56:04 AM »
The story on the kara ho website is that Chow was taught kung fu by his father.  I studied kara ho for about 2 years and it was explained to me that the point of the system was to counter-attack, and then to use linear, rapid-fire striking to crumble your attacker.  The system is pretty good, although they try to keep it shrouded in mystery.  They actually have copyrights and patents on their techniques.  The one drawback I saw in the system over and over again, is that it takes a truly accomplished kara ho student to teach the system properly.  

Offline badsifu

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2003, 02:51:08 AM »
how is that a drawback?
Dan Tyrrell

napashifu

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2003, 12:58:44 AM »
Aloha .
Chuan Fa Sifu;according to the Danzan ryu homepage (www.danzan.com)run by Sensei George Arrington, Professor Okazaki learned Lua from   a David Kainhee in the district of Puna in 1917. this site not only has a lot of info but also a lot of old pictures.
aloha
mike Ritchie.

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2003, 10:24:52 AM »
I wish I would have started reading this forum sooner. I hope some one is still going to read this line of posts.
   My father trained with Bill Chun Sr. and was his First black belts I grew up around all these stories and eyewitnessed many of these accounts.  Professor Chow did live in Ca. although not for very long, he stayed with Bill Sr. in Vallejo. I know because we would take him places. Bill Sr. even offerd to give Chow his school if he would stay, but chow was homesick and went home.
  As far as the circular verses the linear techniques. I asked Sijo about that once and he said Mitose Even moved "more like a Gung fu man than a Karate man"
   I was taught the Go shin jitsu kai system, and it was a combination of movements, Hands are circulir but feet are linear, but to put any system any more in to such a small nut shell is almost impossible. When Bill Sr's Wife Maggie died he lost all interest in things and withdrew from public life.  My father enrolled my brother and I in Emil Bautista's school in 1979 I believe and I stayed there until I left for the military,  A couple of years later
My brother and I went to Bill sr's house and asked him to train us and he agreed, My brother and I and Jacob Goetz were his last students, we trained with him till he died. At that time I returned to Bautista, My brother waited for Bill jr. and he and Jacob continue to train with him till this day. I still train with them when time allows and when Bill Jr. teaches a seminar and I am there I help teach and demonstate the Go Shin Jitsu Kai system.
   As far as Cerio training with Bill Chun Sr. goes, it never happened that way. It happened that he came to vallejo by Chow's order to meet with Sr. first before getting to meet him. Remember Chow was really paranoid about people (and for good reason, as it turns out) and wanted Sr. to give the okay. When Cerio turned up for my Father's class, Sr. told him to spar with my Father, them Cerio and Sr. talked a little bit. Bill Sr. then told professor he was okay. That was it, no more than that transpired between Cerio and Chun. I verified this With Nick Cerio himself when I visited with him in Rhode Island and I interviewed him for an hour or so. Cerio then went on to train with Chow for 2 weeks in Hawaii . That was it, No more no less. When I asked Cerio about his rank from Chow, He showed me his certificate for 5th degree signed by Chow and it was for rank in, (now here is where it get's sideways) Cerio's Kenpo. NOT CHOW"S KENPO" and Nick would tell you the same thing. It was the same way for his rank from Ed Parker, It says on the cert, Cerio's kenpo. I saw that cert also. Cerio was a very forthcoming man if you asked him the right questions, otherwise he let you believe what all the hype said.  there is so much more I know on this subject, but time and spaceare limited, But please if you would like to contact me on this matter please do so.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2003, 11:27:33 AM by Sifu Rob Peladeau »
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Offline John Bishop

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2003, 10:54:23 AM »
Thank You Sifu Rob.  This confirms much of the information that I have been told by several Kenpo and Kajukenbo seniors in the past.
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"You watch, once I'm gone, all the snakes will start popping their heads up!"  Sijo Emperado

Offline Matt

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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2003, 11:46:26 AM »
I wish I would have started reading this forum sooner. I hope some one is still going to read this line of posts.
 

I'm still reading. Thanks for contributing. I recognized your name - I met your brother when Bill Chun, Jr. came to the East Coast. He was assisting Professor Chun. At the end,  he (Brian?) showed some self defense examples.  I was quite impressed - really good solid skills.

Matt
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Re:Chow's legacey
« Reply #14 on: December 23, 2003, 12:59:12 PM »
you are correct, his name is Brian, and he is very solid, if you thought he was good, you should meet our Father. He just turned 70 yesterday and is still fast as lightning.
Professor Rob Peladeau
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