Anonymous Q makes invalid statements. We've been students of Briones Kajukenbo for about four years. We've always observed Sifu Briones as open to answering any questions or concerns raised by his students. Sometimes, people find it easier to complain in an anonymous forum as this instead of asking for the answers directly. Sometimes students get angry and blame their teacher, coach, etc. if they don't progress as quickly as they would like. In any case, here are counters to every one of Anonymous Q's claims.
*The insurance company requires a contract to prove that the student understands the risks involved in martial arts.
*All retail stores charge markups. Consumers are free to shop wherever they choose.
*We've received certificates after every successful test, just not on the same day.
*Have you been to a recent test, or an advanced self-defense or sparring class? Students at lower levels are not expected to take falls until they have reached a certain skill and control level.
*Again, students at a lower level have to start somewhere. The advanced students incorporate all kinds of strikes in their groundwork, though not with full force on another student because their level of strength would seriously injure one another.
*Uniforms and patches are a tradition of Kajukenbo and many other martial arts. It would be a disgrace to our tradition to wear sweats or shorts to class.
*You've obviously just been to a children's class. Our underbelts are not advanced enough for hand-to-hand combat. If you had observed a test, tournament, or advanced class before supposedly reviewing us you'd have seen a much greater increase in power and technique.
*Sifu doesn't like to see his students get injured and stresses the importance of safety while fighting, which is why we've had so few serious injuries. On the other hand, Sifu stresses that in a real situation on the street he wants his students to be able to take a hit without falling apart ... unlike many other schools, we actually practice taking punches.
*We do work on memorizing pinans, because they are just as important as self-defense and sparring. Self-defense and sparring teaches us the hard, sudden movements of fighting, and pinans require memorization and concentration because of their complexity and length. They also emphasize the techniques that make Kajukenbo an art form.
*As far as your designation of our martial arts being "simple" and "watered down", we focus more on straight up street fighting than impressive kicks, jumps, etc that, while very impressive, do nothing in a real fight but provide openings for attacks. As for your comparison of our style to the "original version", we are proud to be descendants of Adriano Emperado's exact style--nothing but the smallest details have changed over six generations of Kajukenbo.
*We're not sure what Q's ideas of "certified" are, but Q might want to re-research the qualifications necessary for a certification. Sifu's instructor, Sigung Tony Kattengell, re-certifies Sifu regularly through vigorous testing and our school remains approved by Sigung because Sifu exceeds his high expectations.
*Sifu has the students who are going for higher belts spar against five attackers at once during their tests. And we do focus on pinan memorization in our tests as well, it makes up a sizable aspect of each one.
It takes years of studying any martial art form to completely understand all aspects of it. As students of Sifu, we still have a lot to learn. Since you've obviously been to only a couple of Sifu's classes, you can't say that you know all about our school or art.
Finally, anyone who posts slanderous, uneducated statements as "anonymous" shouldn't be taken seriously.
Rhya & Zack Gilliam