"The east wind carries them away, and they are gone. It sweeps them away. It whirls down on them without mercy. They struggle to flee from its power."
Job 27:21-22
Kajukenbo was founded in 1947 on the Palama Settlement of Hawaii. The settlements and plantations of Hawaii were often rough places since many different cultures both East and West were struggling with preserving their own way of life while interacting so closely with many other people of a wide diversity.

Five martial artists known then as The Black Belt Society consisted of founder Sijo Adriano Emperado and four other high level instructors of various other fighting arts from different cultures. From these tough pre-war times was fostered a sense of community, and from the rough workouts and street style lessons of that time those who lived it will all say the same.

Fading is the sense of self-confidence, honor and community that comes from letting go of fear and embracing a spirit of endurance that comes from training the "hard-way." And it is the old-school island masters from the "school of hard knocks" that set the wheels in motion for the growth of American mixed martial arts today.
  • KA - Karate: Peter Cho (Korean Tang Soo Do)
  • JU - Judo & Jujutsu: Joe Holke (Kodenkan Judo) & Frank Ordonez (Okazaki Jujutsu)
  • KEN - Kenpo: Adriano Emperado (Kosho Shorei Kempo & Kali Escrima)
  • BO - Chinese Boxing: Clarence Chang (Siu Lum Pai Kung Fu)
What emerged was what many refer to as the first American eclectic system of self-defense and martial art alive today. American at heart, Kajukenbo for many is a path of true freedom and personal expression. Even the core of Kajukenbo was founded on the ideas that grew out of the sharing of techniques and principles of each art form brought to the table by the five founding fathers.

These men would gather in a different empty or abandoned building and swap ideas and work together to examine the strengths and weaknesses of various responses to certain attacks. This gave birth to the core art and main branch of Kajukenbo or Emperado Method. There are four main recognized branches of Kajukenbo, and today with the modern exchange of information many other smaller sub-branches also exist.

Ohana Family Tree

Sijo Adriano D. Emperado

GGM Charles M. Gaylord

SGM Anthony Hemenes