Edmund K. Parker
Senior Grandmaster of the Arts
Senior Grandmaster Edmund K. Parker is the undisputed "Father of American Karate" and the Founder of American Kenpo Karate. He was a native of Honolulu, Hawaii and began teaching Kenpo Karate commercially in 1954 at a gymnasium in Provo, Utah. Mr. Parker graduated in 1956 from Brigham Young University (BYU) with a B.S. in Psychology.
After graduation from Brigham Young, GrandMaster Parker moved to California and opened his Kenpo Karate second school in Pasadena. Due to his skill and prowess as a martial artist, within two years GrandMaster Parker was teaching many well known entertainment personalities.
As GrandMaster Parker learned Kenpo Karate in Hawaii, he realized the need for innovations to address modern day methods of fighting. To fulfill this need, he developed concepts, theories, and principles that are practical - not classical. Because of this, his innovative concepts and ideas have greatly enhanced martial arts in the United States and throughout the world.
Mr. Parker's interest in logical analysis of the art dates to his early Martial Arts studies in Honolulu. He approved of the exciting methods that he learned as a novice in Kenpo Karate, but as an experienced street fighter, he felt that changes were necessary if the classical methods he learned were to become practical on the street. By studying and comparing experience with the functional aspects of Kenpo Karate, he arrived at breakthroughs in kinesiology (body mechanics) as they apply to martial arts, power shifting, and strength concepts.
Mr. Parker was able to develop his Kenpo Karate Concepts and Principles from an understanding of the sciences of physics, mathematics, and alpha-numerics. By applying these Concepts and Principles to real world experience, a new Kenpo Karate discipline emerged which is without equal in the world today. His use of analogies, short stories, and quotes as teaching aids has created distinctive methods to convert verbal language into physical body motion.
Through formal martial arts training under William K.S. Chow, experience, experimentation, and intense personal research, Mr. Parker developed the American Kenpo Karate System as we know it today.
Grand Master Parker died on December 15, 1990 at the young age of 59.