The April 2010 AKKI Camp is over now and it was one of the best yet. Good ole’ Mother Nature decided to
grace us with a few inches of snow on Friday, but it was over by the afternoon. A freak spring storm hit the area
just as people were coming in from all over the world, but the weather did not deter anyone from attending this
awesome event. The expectations for participation at the camp, with this economy, was good, but at the end of
the day everyone was blown away at the amount of students and instructors that showed up, it was incredible.
They came in from all over. This was a very large camp, well attended and those that missed it, will definitely
not want to miss the teachings.
Friday morning was the time for the AKKI Kenpo Int’l Test. Students from all over came forth to
show their skills in front of the International AKKI Testing Board. All testers did an awesome job and
performed their sets, weapons, forms and self defense techniques to a high level of competency. Watching the
brown and black belts perform is always in incredible experience. They can really move and are a testimony to
Mr. Mills expertise, knowledge and teachings.
On Friday around 3 pm, the first of many incredible seminars taught by SM Paul Mills and other extremely
qualified, and knowledgeable AKKI instructors took place. The first opening seminar was taught by Mr. Mills.
This seminar aptly subtitled “ Master Keys within the AKKI Yellow Belt Techniques” was the lead off to other
great, eye opening and enlightening seminars that would be taught during the camp. In this seminar, Mr. Mills
imparted to all the participants some important information on how to accelerate and explode their motion
utilizing the master key movements in the yellow belt techniques. Just when you think you have the yellow belt
techniques down, then Mr. Mills’ let’s you know just how much you don’t know. As one of the participants, I
can tell you that the knowledge that Mr. Mills shared with us, will keep us working for a long, long time . It is
amazing to see how the motion within “Flashing Swords” can increase your power, speed and movement and
how Mr. Mills’ application of this was so revealing. It was a real eye opener to see how this basic motion can ap-
ply throughout the AKKI curriculum.
The next seminars were taught by Mr. Bruce Tompson and Mr. Frank Elsasser. Mr. Tompson’s expertise in
teaching Form 2, Level 2, as well as the other AKKI Forms, really showed while explaining the internalization
patterns and grafting from one technique to another. Mr. Tompson has a dedication and incredible desire to
help AKKI practitioners understand and perform the AKKI forms with proper execution, power and function-
ability. Mr. Elsasser, AKKI 10th Degree Black, once again taught the Corrective Adjustments of the Testing
techniques. With his many years of experience in American Kenpo and within the AKKI system, he really
knows how to get the camp participants moving and excited about what they are doing. He has a way of
explaining and refining techniques and basics that helps everyone he teaches move better and more efficiently.
The 3rd set of seminars were taught by Mr. Steve Bybee and Mr. Alan Jacob and Ryan Wheaton. Mr. Bybee a
6th Degree AKKI Black Belt, taught “Motion Explosion”. Mr. Bybee worked on helping students to explode
their techniques and expand their motion to reflect power and speed. He has a way of explaining and teaching
that really helps the students understand how to explode the techniques, basics, etc. with effectiveness and reality. Mr. Alan Jacobs and Ryan Wheaton taught “Blueprinting Trapping Set”. What an awesome set this is,
these two incredible instructors really know their stuff. Mr. Jacob and Mr. Wheaton, really went into detail
about this set and helped everyone understand it to a much deeper level, and helped refine it so everyone had a
better idea of the why’s and how’s of the set.
The 4th and last seminars of the day were taught by by Mr. Jim Clark and Mr. Josh Lannon. Mr. Clark, a 6th
Degree AKKI Black Belt, once again imparted his expertise by teaching the 3 phases of the AKKI Club set. Mr.
Clark has distinguished himself as one of the AKKI’s best club practitioners and his knowledge of the clubs is a
testament to Mr. Mills’ teachings. Mr. Lannon is another excellent instructor who taught the “Combat Applica-
tions of the AKKI Finger Set. This was another eye opening seminar which showed you how to apply the aspects
of the finger set when it counts What an awesome seminar and Josh is an excellent seminar presenter.
Saturday’s seminars started off with a bang. Mr. Frank Elsasser expanded on his Corrective Anatomical
Adjustments/What you think you know. Mr. Elsasser, in his own way, takes you to that next level of under-
standing, by letting you know, that what you think you know, you really don’t. To work with him, is to gain a
better understanding of basic movement and techniques application and so much more.
Mr. Mark Keller, 8th Degree Black Belt, taught “Exploring the AKKI Timing Patterns”. This was an awe-
some seminar that showed how the timing patterns within the techniques help in creating more power, more
speed while creating extreme effectiveness not found in other kenpo systems. Learning to alter your timing and
adjust your speed can trigger an explosive amount of power within the technique and helps to make it even
more effective. Mr. Keller really taught an excellent seminar which left the participants wanting more.
Due to unforeseen circumstances, Mr. Randall Miller could not make the camp, so the next seminar was taught
by long time Paul Mills’ student and 8th Degree Black Belt, Mr. Herb Padigimus. He taught “Hammering the
hit with Anchorage, Path and Angles”. Wow, what a great seminar from a fantastic presenter. He really
showed how working angles of execution, paths of action and anchoring can make you rip through a technique
and cause extreme pain and damage. This was very enlightening for everyone involved. A seminar well worth
attending, which also carried over into other seminar aspects later.
Next came Mr. Alan Jacobs and Mr. Jim Clark. Mr. Jacobs taught some of the new Brown Belt techniques,
both empty hand and knife. This seminar was really involved. Not only did you learn and refine some of the
new Brown Belt Techniques but we worked on the empty hand knife technique of “ Intercepting Lance” Mr.
Jacob has a way of explaining techniques that helps you understand and perform the technique with ease and
gives you a better understanding of all aspects of it. Since it was so involved and time ran out, we could not
finish the overall technique, but it would be picked up and finished later in Mr. Wheaton’s seminar.
Mr. Clark taught “ Generate More Speed through Reverse Motion” Once again Mr. Clark showed his exper-
tise does not only lie with the clubs. Jim has a very good understanding of motion, generating speed and power
and he really knows how to explain it and helps the student gain knowledge and a better understanding of it,
through reverse motion.
The 4th Seminars on Saturday were taught by Mr. Bruce Tompson and Mr. Scott Hilderbrand. Mr. Tompson
taught “Basic Kicks” The Heavy Artillery of Kenpo. The drills which he imparted to everyone made everyone
understand just how important kicks are, how to execute them properly and apply them to the techniques. He
helped people realize how the utilization of properly executed kicks can make the techniques much more effec-
tive. Mr. Hilderbrand’s seminar on “Connecting AKKI Drills Enhancing One’s Versatility of Motion” was an
eye opener for everyone who participated. The way he approached connecting the different drills, sets, etc. left
everyone wanting more and gave them enough material to work on for the next 6 months or more.
The next seminars brought Mr. Ryan Wheaton, 7th Black, and Mr. Josh Lannon, 6th Black to the stage. Mr.
Wheaton, finished off Mr. Jacobs seminar on Intercepting Lance and then went into the next empty hand
against knife technique, Ascending Lance. The application of these two techniques are incredible and power-
ful and helps a practitioner really understand how dangerous a knife can be and how you can effectively pro-
tect yourself against one. Mr. Mills has really gone way beyond the next level in creating these techniques
which has come from many years of actual defense and an expertise in weapons fighting. Mr Wheatons teaching on this seminar is a testament to training he has received from Mr. Mills. Mr. Lannon’s seminar on ground
fighting is always interesting and to the point. In “No Time to Tap”, Guillotine chokes on the Ground he
addresses the need for AKKI members to train in some ground fighting aspects. Participants really enjoyed
this seminar and know that at each camp, Mr. Lannon will be teaching more and more aspects of ground
fighting which help AKKI members become more rounded martial artists.
The last seminar taught by Mr. Mills, was a real eye opener. He expanded on what he had taught during the first
seminar and went into more knife techniques. His expertise with the knife is 2nd to none. To watch him perform
these techniques and patterns is simply incredible. It is no wonder he is considered a Master with weapons. The
way he applies concepts and principles to everything he teaches makes it more understandable and creates an
avenue which is extremely conducive to learning. His knowledge of motion and creating speed and power within
defensive and offensive moves is uncanny. He expands on Mr. Parker’s principles and concepts and takes every-
thing past the next level, making AKKI Kenpo, not only the most effective and realistic self defensive art for today,
but the most incredible American Kenpo “Art of the Future”.
The seminar series ended on an incredible high note with everyone getting so much information and leaving
wanting more. The anticipation for the next Int’l Camp in September is very high and is sure to bring even more
participants… from all over the world.
On Saturday evening all the AKKI School owners and black belts got together with Mr. Mills for an impromptu
meeting and discussion on the future of the AKKI. I can tell you right now, that the future of the AKKI, under the
tutelage of SM Paul Mills is extremely bright and moving forward. Many great suggestions were made and discus-
sions held on different subjects. Many contributed their thoughts and desires to the discussion. There will be more
meetings and the AKKI will continue to grow worldwide and be one of the fastest growing American Kenpo
Organizations around. For those interested non AKKI members, schools, etc. who read this recap, be sure to
contact an AKKI Rep in your area to find out how you can become a member of the fastest growing American
Kenpo Association in the world, and learn this incredible art.
7th Degree Black
AKKI Mid Atlantic Regional Representative