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  1. SuperGuido is offline
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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 12:52pm


     Style: BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Oh boy...

    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.gaijinryu.com/
    Mr. Epperson is the Soke of Gaijin Ryu Jiu-Jitsu and the President of the World Combat Arts Federation. The following organizations recognize him as Hachi-Dan (8th Dan) in Gaijin Ryu Jiu-Jitsu:

    United States Martial Arts Association 01/01/2000
    Eastern USA International Martial Arts Association 06/01/2000
    World Combat Arts Federation 06/02/2001
    The Hoteikan Dojo 10/06/2001
    Long Island Judo & Martial Arts Association 05/19/2002
    American Federation Of Jujitsu 12/2002
    North American Ju Jitsu Federation 01/15/2003
    Eagle Tiger Federation 01/23/2003
    International Federation Of Modern Jiu-Jitsu 03/06/2003

    Mr. Epperson has actively been involved with the Martial Arts since 1977. He has done extensive research and training in many different styles and systems over the past 25+ years. In addition to Gaijin Ryu Jiu-Jitsu, and as a result of many years of hard work, Epperson has tested and earned rank in multiple combative arts. Some of these include:

    American Kenpo Karate, 5th Degree Black Belt under Michael Lambert 06/10/2005
    Jiu-Jitsu de Brasil, Faixa Roxa under Carlson Gracie, Jr. 11/02/2003
    Judo, Ni-Dan under O-Sensei Philip S. Porter 12/27/1999
    Mi Guk Kwan Hapkido, Chil Dan under Ed Annibale 08/28/2004

    By having a thorough knowledge of these different arts, Epperson is able to conduct various seminars and incorporate Gaijin Ryu Jiu-Jitsu into virtually any practitioner's style.

    Mr. Epperson would like to thank the following individuals for their influence and contributions to the formation of Gaijin Ryu Jiu-Jitsu:

    Philip S. Porter (Judo & Jujitsu)
    Carlson Gracie, Jr. (Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu)
    Reno Claudio (Hoteikan System)
    Gary Rasanen (Judo & Yudo)
    Ed Annibale (Shen Do Aikijitsu & Hapkido)
    I'm not picking on you or your school, Maverick.

    However, there are some things that do need some explaining...especially if you want to represent your school appropriately.

    1. Official Rank
    -Soke/10th Dan: We can assume this is "granted" by all the councils. As such, this rank is relatively worthless unless he directly inherited the system from a previous "Gaijin Ryu Soke". Since Mr. Epperson is the founder, we can assume he is the first "Soke".

    -American Kenpo 5th Degree BB: Received under Michael Lambert 06/10/2005.
    --Mike Lambert is listed as a 9th Degree American Kenpo BB per this site: http://pacombatarts.com/?page_id=5
    April 14, 2002

    Sensei Muhammad was promoted to 4th Degree Black Belt in Kenpo by a Board of The World Combat Arts Federation Representatives, 10th Degree George Elmer, 9th Degree Mike Lambert, Soke & Grandmaster Lee Epperson and 4th Degree Joe Rebelo.
    ...and his own site: http://www.mlkka.org/

    --There is also a discussion on Mike Lambert on Kenpotalk here: http://kenpotalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3017

    --In all instances, Mr. Lambert is very evasive about where he received his training and under who he received his ranking from.
    ---This isn't necessarily damning, since modern Kenpo is all over the place. However, most legit Kenpo instructors who studied under official "lineages" usually display their lineage all over the place. The lack of lineage on Mr. Lambert is a bit suspicious.

    - Jiu-Jitsu de Brasil, Faixa Roxa under Carlson Gracie, Jr. 11/02/2003
    --I couldn't find any listing of an "Epperson" for any belt level in BJJ. If the rank is Purple or below, this isn't unusual...but it definitely is a strong indicator of the presence of a Brown or higher rank lacking in BJJ.

    - Judo, Ni-Dan under O-Sensei Philip S. Porter 12/27/1999
    --This is a little troubling, as Mr. Philip Porter is well-known for selling rank in his "United States Martial Arts Association".
    --The website for the above association is down for the time being. However, here are some quotes on this website to discussions concerning them:
    Phil was a very charasmatic leader and outstanding fund raiser. Unfortunately, his accounting methodologies, as well as a tendency to pocket funds for private use, led to a serious financial dilemma for the USJA. He also began offering a lot of high yudansha rank, first to old friends, then to friends of old friends, then it seems to anyone with an open checkbook. He also started referring to himself as "O'Sensei" and claimed the 9th dan rank status. Eventually, Phil was forced out of the USJA and formed the USMA where I understand many of the same former policies are still in practice.
    The USMAA is a DISCRACE and Porter, despite his Judo knowledge, is a crazy old man. Associating with the USMAA only hurts a school's rep.
    He must have become cynical, perhaps he had given so much he now wanted monetary return. His current organization is considered a front for a diploma mill. You send the money they sent the rank. It's a pathetic way to be remembered for an individual that was once a role model to thousands.
    Well, the sponsorship went so well that Porter gave my friend a 5th degree in judo, and since judo was a offshoot of jujitsu, a 5th degree in jujitsu also. All based on my friends MA resume. And in turn, my friend awarded his judo sponsor a 7th degree in his own newly created system.
    --Overall, Mr. Porter is a solid Judo veteran who operates a diploma mill. This is a well established fact.

    -Mi Guk Kwan Hapkido, Chil Dan under Ed Annibale 08/28/2004
    His system of Hapkido Mi Guk Kwan (also the name of his school) has been recognized by the World Combat Arts Federation Soke Board.
    --Here we see another instructor who created his own system recognized by the same association.
    --Mr. Annibale lists several other organizations under his credentials, though:
    He is recognized by the
    National Hapkido Association, Korea Hapkido Federation, Korean Martial Arts Instructors Association and World Black Belt Bureau. He is the President & Founder of the Korean International Hapkido Accreditation Program (KIHAP) which consists of several high ranking Hapkido Grandmasters and Masters on its Board of Educators
    --This would require an experience KMA student/instructor to verify, though. Those names mean nothing to me.

    SUMMARY: I'm having a difficult time finding legit verification from any martial art or instructor that has a defined lineage.

    ---

    The most troubling aspect involves the association with well-known "Soke Councils".

    United States Martial Arts Association 01/01/2000
    Eastern USA International Martial Arts Association 06/01/2000
    World Combat Arts Federation 06/02/2001
    The Hoteikan Dojo 10/06/2001
    Long Island Judo & Martial Arts Association 05/19/2002
    American Federation Of Jujitsu 12/2002
    North American Ju Jitsu Federation 01/15/2003
    Eagle Tiger Federation 01/23/2003
    International Federation Of Modern Jiu-Jitsu 03/06/2003
    -http://hometown.aol.com/eusaimaa/
    -http://wcmaa.homestead.com/membership.html
    -http://www.amfedjujitsu.com/Register.html
    -The "Eagle Tiger Federation" has been abused here in depth, and has since taken down their website.

    SUMMARY: Ties to well-known and documented diploma mills and "Soke Councils".

    ---

    It's been stated before that hardcore, skilled, and talented instructors can be guilty of bullshido.

    Without jumping to conclusions, it only seems fair to send a polite inquiry to the instructor and ask about his lineage, ranks, and training dates.

    Before I do so, however, it might save some time if Maverick helped us out a bit and supplied what information he has.

    To be fair, it appears that they have competed in MMA and other events:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BisZj5YMb7Y

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-AMAlvYSHQ

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_rp8mku_YM4

    As such, I doubt the "INSTRUCTION" should necessarily be called into question...even if the business practices and ranking lineage is.
  2. It is Fake is offline
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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 12:55pm

    staff
     Style: xingyi

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Look this is silly at this point.

    He admits the parallels and like his instruction.

    Seriously, what is the point?
    Last edited by It is Fake; 4/21/2008 12:57pm at .
  3. DerAuslander is offline
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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 12:57pm

    supporting memberstaff
     Style: BJJ/C-JKD/KAAALIII!!!!!!!

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Did someone say there were KMA claims that needed to be verified?
  4. MaverickZ is offline

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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 12:57pm

    supporting member
     Style: white boy jiujitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by DCS
    If you ellaborate a bit, i think the doubts about these organizational issues can be solved. You word have value for those who know you, but clarifiying the thing won't hurt.
    Fair enough.
    1) My instructor became a de facto president when the previous president retired. Who I believe was my teacher's hapkido teacher. Though this is based purely off memory.

    2) I don't actually KNOW of anyone who has received rank through the WCAF in the five years I've been in Gaijin Ryu.

    3) There has been one cross rank promotion to a Gaijin Ryu Jiujitsu black belt and he had to train for and pass the black belt test like everyone else in the school.

    4) The only tangible effect that the WCAF has on anything I've come in contact with is that I pay less at seminars by WCAF members.

    5) Neither the WCAF nor the Gaijin Ryu websites are kept up by my teacher, but that's neither here nor there.
  5. MaverickZ is offline

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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 1:03pm

    supporting member
     Style: white boy jiujitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Satori
    - Jiu-Jitsu de Brasil, Faixa Roxa under Carlson Gracie, Jr. 11/02/2003
    --I couldn't find any listing of an "Epperson" for any belt level in BJJ. If the rank is Purple or below, this isn't unusual...but it definitely is a strong indicator of the presence of a Brown or higher rank lacking in BJJ.
    His name was on the database before they upgraded to the new design.

    His kenpo lineage comes down from Larry Tatum.

    Quote Originally Posted by Satori
    As such, I doubt the "INSTRUCTION" should necessarily be called into question...even if the business practices and ranking lineage is.
    This is the odd part, there AREN'T any business practices that exist that should be called into question. I realize the impression people receive from the surface, but the fact is the theory doesn't match the practice.
    Last edited by MaverickZ; 4/21/2008 1:09pm at .
  6. SuperGuido is offline
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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 1:13pm


     Style: BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by MaverickZ
    His name was on the database before they upgraded to the new design.

    His kenpo lineage comes down from Larry Tatum.
    Fair enough.

    Honestly, it looks like his students can fight.

    As such, he's already leagues ahead of other "Soke" types.

    If anything, all these negative associations only drag down what he's trying to accomplish, and cheapens his credibility.

    Unfortunately, "rank" and "belts" do matter to the average person, and I can easily see how your instructor may have felt pressured to create an organizational backing to his teaching in order to support his students.
  7. Rock Ape is offline
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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 1:16pm

    staff
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by MaverickZ
    This is the odd part, there AREN'T any business practices that exist that should be called into question. I realize the impression people receive from the surface, but the fact is the theory doesn't match the practice.
    If that is indeed the case, and I have no reason to doubt your word, why would your teacher want to associate with an organisation which CLEARLY operates with questionable ethics.
  8. MaverickZ is offline

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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 1:20pm

    supporting member
     Style: white boy jiujitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Ulysses Everett McGill
    If that is indeed the case, and I have no reason to doubt your word, why would your teacher want to associate with an organisation which CLEARLY operates with questionable ethics.
    His associations are purely on website, for whatever that's worth. He doesn't actually maintain the websites himself as he's a technology "caveman". Why he hasn't talked to the website manager about it I'm not sure. Most likely because he doesn't really care what people "from the internet" think. The last word I had from him a couple of years ago about the topic is that he hasn't actually kept up with any of his memberships besides being president of WCAF. He actually received requests for rank from South America asking for certification in Gaijin Ryu, which were denied.
    Last edited by MaverickZ; 4/21/2008 1:24pm at .
  9. BudoMonkey is offline
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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 1:56pm


     Style: MMA

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    -yaaaaawn-

    Unless you think you can prove something or reach some sort of conclusion, let's just let it go Ulysses. All points have been made.
  10. MaverickZ is offline

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    Posted On:
    4/21/2008 1:57pm

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     Style: white boy jiujitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by BudoMonkey
    -yaaaaawn-

    Unless you think you can prove something or reach some sort of conclusion, let's just let it go Ulysses. All points have been made.
    Contribute to the thread or find another thread to pollute.
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