4 Kang Duk Won

Kang Duk Won Korean Karate

The page on Kang Duk Won Korean Karate is a little long, but it is the straight goods. Enjoy.

DO YOU REMEMBER YOUR FIRST MARTIAL ART? For me, it was Karate. This was back in the sixties, and Karate had just hit the shores. There were stories of men shearing bricks with the edge of their hands, smashing boards into kindling with their fingertips. Heck, we even heard of a guy who could knock the horns off bulls, even kill them, just by chopping them.

Kang Duk Won Korean Karate emblem

Emblem of the Korean Martial Arts Association


Man, I wanted that kind of power. I wanted to be stronger, tougher, able to stand up to anybody. I didn’t have a lot of confidence, a few of the bigger kids used to shove me around, and I wanted a way to fight back.

Heck, in this life you have to be able to fight back. Back then we just had a few bullies. Now we have thugs and gangbangers, guys who want to beat up on the single guy walking down the street just for the heck of it. You have to be careful when you take money out of the bank late at night, you never know when some drunken lout is going to put his hands on your girl, and things are just rough.

Heck, read the police reports. You read those statistics and I don’t have to say anything more.

Anyway, we were pretty excited when we found out that this Karate stuff really existed! We’d see some moves on the big screen and practice them in our backyards. Some kid would get a hold of a book, and we would be in his garage after school every day, Looking at the pictures, practicing the moves, trying to figure out what this secret ‘ki’ (chi) energy was. We’d smash our fists against bags and treetrunks and think we were doing the right thing.

A couple of the kids enrolled in judo classes, that was a pretty big deal, but there was a big difference between learning some fancy throws and locks, and being able to knock some bully down with one, swift punch…and then a karate school opened up in the next town.

I went to see that first class, it was a Goju ryu class, and kids and young men lined up in a long line and practiced their stances and punches and kicks, and sometimes these strange things called Kata. I used to sneak in and watch that class, it was conducted in a YMCA, and I hid in some bleachers and just watched. I didn’t learn much, just got an inkling of what the art was about, but it was still pretty exciting.

Eventually, I graduated from high school, and I attended a community college in Los Altos. Went to classes and learned a bunch of boring stuff that parents and teachers told me was going to make a difference, but, in my heart of hearts, I knew there was something else that was going to make a difference in my life. Karate.

One day a fellow I knew asked me to go to a karate school that had opened up down on the El Camino.

My answer was no, but inside my heart of hearts…and I ended up walking into my first official Karate dojo that very same day.

I spent a couple of years at that karate school. I became an instructor, even wrote their training manual, and I had a ball. Still, there was something missing. I went to the tournaments, engaged in the ‘locker room talk,’ went up the belt ranks, but, in my heart of hearts…I knew I hadn’t found real Karate.


I talked earlier about men who could smash boards and bricks, men who could even kill bulls, with their bare hands.

I didn’t find them at that first school I went to, and chances are you’ve never met one of these men, either.

This is one of those martial arts horror stories. You think you are going to learn deadly secrets, become unbeatable, and the truth…you’re trained for touch tournaments, the forms don’t even relate to freestyle, and the first time you have to use Karate you get your ass kicked.

And it is a fact that most people think that boxing, or a little Mixed Martial Arts, like you see in the UFC, is better than Karate. People think Karate is for kids, and they talk trash about the McDojos, and the sad fact of the matter is that these people are misinformed.

They have just never experienced Real Karate.


I’m going to give you a sketch here…

Karate was created on Okinawa. For hundreds of years countries visited Okinawa, as that was the central port to the Asian continent, and the people who visted brought all the martial arts of their countries.

Dirty tricks, jointlocks, weapons, strikes, kicks, throws…you name it, and it was brought to Okinawa.

Okinawa, at the time, was ruled by two countries, Japan and China, and the Okinawans were forbidden weapons of any sort.

Man is an ingenious fellow, and the Okinawans are high example of this. They gathered the techniques together. Sorted through them for what worked, and created a new martial art. And, man, this new art worked.

There are recorded instances of people taking swords away from Samurais, taking on crowds of thugs on shadowy docks, breaking bricks and coconuts with their fists, twisting bamboo until it shattered.

One fellow, the fellow who was in charge of the Imperial body guards, actually faced down a live bull. Imagine that, getting in a ring with a live, snorting, thousand pound hunk of meanness, and looking him in the eye until he backed off. Now that is a martial art!

Anyway, the story takes a nasty turn.

The Japanese commanded the king of Okinawa to come live in Japan. In effect, they kidnapped the fellow.

This left the Imperial bodyguard without any real reason for training. They taught Karate to school kids, but that had to be watered down. After all, who wants to have Little Johnny rip somebody’s throat out over lunch money?

And, the art was eventually taken to Japan. But here’s a question for you…do you think the Okinawan Karate Masters would teach the real thing to the people who kidnapped their king? An interesting example of this is when Gichin Funakoshi was sharing arts with Jigoro Kano (the Founder of Judo) he suddenly demonstrated a unique throw. When Master Kano expressed interest, Master Funakoshi shrugged the matter off. “Oh, we have a few throws in Karate.”

Yeah. Right. A few throws. And what Master Kano doesn’t know won’t hurt him!

World War Deuce happened, and the American dropped a couple of A bombs on Japan. Then they occupied the country and many of the servicemen became enthralled with this fighting art called Karate. But, here’s a question for you…do you think the Japanese would have taught the real art of karate, even if they had known it, to the men who had dropped bombs on and utterly destroyed two of their cities?

And, we eventually come to the United States. And to get to the heart of the matter, Karate was altered for tournaments, slanted for commercialism, changed to teach kids, and so on and so on.

Believe me. I was there. I saw it happen.


A lot of people will most likely not like my assertion that the Kang Duk Won is the source of Real Karate, but that’s okay. Let me tell you the story of the Kang Duk Won, and then you can make up your own mind.

A fellow name of Yoon Byung In was born in Manchuria, and his family moved to Korea. He was a smart, polite child, and he wanted to study Kung Fu. Unfortunately, the local Kung Fu Master was Chinese, and he would not teach Koreans.

Yoon asked for instruction many times, and was always turned away, but instead of giving up, just like the hero of some bad kung fu movie, he started lining up the shoes of the karate students on the porch while they were in class. Bad kung fu movie or not, Yoon was rewarded for his efforts, and he began to learn real kung fu.

Some years later, an accomplished kung fu master himself, Yoon went to Japan to enroll in college. One day, while he was practicing his kung fu by striking a tree (which tree had actually started to lean over from its daily bashings), a fellow Korean came running up to him. The Korean had enrolled in a karate class, decided having a girlfriend was more important, and was being chased by enraged karate students. Yoon came to his rescue, and managed to fend off the karate students without hurting any of them. This was an unbelievable feat, and Yoon soon found himself being introduced to the Karate Master, a fellow name of…Kanken Toyama.

Master Kanken was the real thing. He was not a student of Gichin Funakoshi, but rather a classmate, and he had studied directly under the great legends of Karate. Legends like Anko Itosu, Kanryo Higaonna, Ankichi Aragaki, and the fellow who beat bulls with a gaze, and who taught the king’s body guards, the incredible Matsumura Sokon.

Master Kanken must have been quite impressed Yoon, for he worked out a deal where they exchanged their systems, and he eventually made Yoon the head instructor for the school.

Yoon eventually returned to Korea, and he established the Kang Duk Won. This was one of the crucial schools in all of karate and of the martial arts. The Kang Duk Won was one of the original schools of Korean Karate, and it was one of the source schools, maybe the source school, for Taekwondo.

He made this establishment up to and during the Korean War, one of the nastiest wars known to man. During the freezing cold winters that swept down from the arctic, through hellish summers and drowning typhoons, in the middle of a vicious, nasty war, Yoon taught people how to survive.

As if the art wasn’t hard core enough….

Now, let me sum up what this history means:

The Kang Duk Won is a pure line back to the Okinawan Masters.

It was selected as the martial art of choice for the Imperial body guards of three different countries: Okinawa, Japan, and Korea.

And it was not part of the common Karate lineage. It was not tainted by tournament, vested interest, the need to teach children, or anything else. It is the absolute closest example of pure karate, as taught by the legendary Okinawan masters, in the world.

It was one of the original sources of power for Taekwondo.

It was, and is, something different.


I was at the Kang Duk Won for several years, and things happened there.

We stopped going to tournaments because training for tournaments, or competition of any kind, does not result in the real karate. If you are training to beat somebody up, then you are not concentrating on growing the internal energy that real karate grows.

A couple of Koreans came in one day and asked that we join their association. Everybody would be automatically promoted, and their art was called Taekwondo. That invitation was declined politely, but quickly.

And there were other things.

The fellow who got jumped in the bar. He had never been in a fight in his life, and he decked two huge construction workers with two quick punches.

The fellow who did a little freestyle with a martial artist from a rival school, and broke the guys leg with a simple down block.

And I changed. Somewhere in there I got over high school and grew up. And I became a writer for the martial arts magazines. And I started selling martial arts courses in the magazines. And I wrote books, and put together courses, and researched all manner of the martial arts. It was the golden age of martial arts, and I was treated to all manner of Kung Fus, Tai Chi, Indonesian arts, weapons, ninjitsu, and, eventually, MMA.

Okay, end of tale, and a simple question.

Would you like to get the original power of Karate? Would you like to get the Secrets of the Kang Duk Won?

Look, Karate was the first martial art to really hit the American shores, and that original art was superior. It was untarnished, uncontaminated, free from tournament, not altered for kids, and it was powerful.

Men could kill bulls with that kind of power.

And that kind of power is not available in todays karate schools.

You’ll find people teaching children, you’ll find watered down karate, you’ll find people who are making a living and more worried about getting sued over a bruise than about telling you the real reasons behind real karate techniques.

Look, we didn’t study phony karate in those days. We studied an art for self defense, for survival, to be warriors. We honed our techniques till we could make them work the way the legends of karate made them work, in real life, do or die situations.

No gloves or rules, like in the MMA.

No pads or mouthpieces.

All the clever tricks that a competitor in an arena is forbidden from doing. All the sneaky strikes that would get you banned in the UFC. All the small joint manipulations, pressure points, and other things that will bring any opponent, in the ring or on the street, to their knees.

Do you want the truth of the first and most powerful martial art to ever hit the American shores?

And, if you’re studying another type of karate, or other martial art, wouldn’t you like to grab the kind of power I’m talking about and put it in your own system?

You can, you know.

You can have that power, you can have the Secrets of the Kang Duk Won in two minutes.

I’ve written a book on it. All the pertinent forms, all the techniques in those forms, methods of freestyle, everything.

The book is 245 pages, and it has over 19,000 words. There are over 650 graphics to describe the ten basic forms, and the fifty techniques which lay open up the power of the forms.

And these techniques, I don’t think anybody has ever revealed the real techniques of the karate. People show you a few of obvious blocks, but that’s nothing. The techniques in this book are the ones I originally learned forty years ago, and they show you the real meaning of the forms.

Now, it’s become pretty common to offer a few bonuses when you’re selling things, so let me offer a few.

BONUS NUMBER ONE–I’ve included a book I wrote which covers many of the Kang Duk Won drills. These are the drills that hone your skills, get rid of your reaction time, and make you into an intuitive fighter of world class abilities. I’m telling you, there are a few grest fighters out there, but at the Kang Duk Won everybody became a great fighter. We had the forms and techniques, and possibly even more important, we had the drills that sharpened our skills so that they could be used in the real world. To be honest, I haven’t seen any of these drills since I saw them in the Kang Duk Won. That makes these even more important, as this is one of the links that made legendary karate masters.

The book is 86 pages, and it has nearly 10,000 words. It has 70 graphics to illustrate drills having to do with

  • making your mind more zen,
  • doubling your kicking power,
  • getting rid of reaction time,
  • enabling you to not just block your opponent, but to actually catch his punch,
  • monkey boxing drills to help you translate all this data into street effectiveness,
  • and an entirely new and different way of learning freestyle.

BONUS NUMBER TWO–I’ve included the first book I ever wrote, The Master’s Handbook. I wrote it right after I received my black belt, and it is chock full of hard core data and observations concerning what the real art…what real karate…is.

This book is 51 pages, and it has over 9,000 words. It has 15 drawings (contributed by one of my early students) to illustrate such concepts as

  • the mind as a computer
  • the body as machine
  • how energy really works
  • the first descriptions I ever wrote concerning CBM (Coordinated Body Motion)
  • internal energy
  • the first descriptions I ever wrote concerning force and flow
  • the zen state of mind

And here’s something interesting. When I showed the book to my instructor, he nodded his head and complimented me on describing what the art really was.

But the people I have shown this book to in the last twenty years have never seen this material! This really tweaked me…what I took for granted has actually become ‘lost’ knowledge! Is that weird or what?

BONUS NUMBER THREE–I’ve included a short write up on the lineage of the Kang Duk Won. It’s not a big thing, just 15 pages, but it’s nice to know some of the people who contributed to this Real Karate.

BONUS NUMBER FOUR–I’ve included the Marixing Dictionary. This might prove useful, because if I say something that doesn’t make sense, it might be because of the specific words I use, and the most important words that I use are in the Matrixing dictionary.

Here’s the overall viewpoint…

  • The Kang Duk Won reveals Real Karate.
  • Fighting Drills makes sure you can make it work in real life.
  • The Master’s Handbook reveals the basic concepts behind Real Karate.
  • Lineage tells you where it all came from.
  • The Matrixing Dictionary makes sure you can understand it all.

That’s five books, 450 pages, over 50,000 words, over 700 graphics, a complete art from lineage to drills.

Only ten bucks.

That’s right.

Ten bucks.

Do the paypal button, and you will be directed to a download page, and there it is…within two minutes you could be totally immersed in the secrets of Real Karate. you can learn what the ancient masters of Okinawa knew, you can have their power. You can have the real thing.

So hit the paypal button….and get the Power of Real Karate now!


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