PROFESSOR RICK CLARK
Ao Denkou Kai
Prof. Clark was born December 4th, 1948 and began
his life long study of the martial arts in 1962. Prof. Clark is
deeply indebted to his first instructor Mr. Wesley Hughes who instilled
in him the desire to continue his practice of the martial arts.
Mr. Hughes demonstrated outstanding dedication to the martial arts
and his desire to pass on his skill and knowledge when many would
have give up. Mr. Hughes was in a tragic car accident that left
him paralyzed from the neck down, yet he would coach his students
from the side of the mat in his wheel chair. This dedication to
teaching the martial arts has always impressed and humbled Prof.
From the beginning of his training in the martial arts Prof. Clark has been
exposed to the concept of cross training. In the early days most of the martial
arts to be found in the U.S. was Judo. Karate, Tae Kwon Do, and Aikido were
practiced in the U.S. but tended to be in the larger cities or perhaps in military
bases. At that time martial arts schools were not as numerous as they are today.
So when a visitor would come to the Dojo they would be welcomed and asked to
participate in the class, and even teach some of their favorite techniques.
They would even offer what they could in a short period of time if they practices
a different martial art.
This cross fertilization of martial arts offered the genesis of the current
system taught by Prof. Clark. Over the years Prof. Clark has had the opportunity
to train with a number of instructors who have felt he had the skill and understanding
to be ranked in their system. Because Prof. Clark has trained with a number
of different instructors and their styles he has been awarded various ranks.
In the past this has led to some confusion with his student because they would
question the origin of a particular technique. The late Grand Master Remy Presas
(founder of Modern Arnis) offered the advice to Prof. Clark that he should
form his own association and name the system of techniques he taught. While
this was sound advice Prof. Clark was reluctant to venture out and name a style
of martial arts that he was teaching. However, it became increasingly difficult
to separate the individual arts from the blended style he was teaching. After
further suggestion by Grand Master Remy Presas and from his students Prof.
Clark adopted the name Ao Denkou Jitsu for the style he was teaching and Ao
Denkou Kai for the organization.
Ao Denkou roughly translates as "blue lightning", the lighting is
for the "zing" of electricity you feel when a pressure point is struck
or manipulated. "Ao" or blue is in respect to Chung Do Kwan (Blue
Wave) from which Prof. Clark studied from 1966 under Chung Nak Young.
Professor Clark currently holds
- 8th Dan in Ryukyu Kempo
- 7th Dan in Ju-Jitsu
- 7th Dan in Tae-Kwon Do
- 5th Dan in Chinese Kempo
- 4th Dan in Judo
- 3rd Dan in Modern Arnis
- 1st Dan in Hapkido
His teachings and methods are sought after worldwide
and he regularly holds seminars on Vital Points, Grappling and
applications hidden in the traditional forms, for martial artists
of many different systems throughout the USA, Canada, Australia,
New Zealand, Ireland, Scotland, England, Wales, Norway and Sweden.
Professor Clark has been active in teaching martial
arts to law enforcement personnel: federal, state and local.
His dedication to the martial arts has earned
him the commission of Kentucky Colonel by the former governor
of Kentucky, the Hon. Wallace G Wilkonson. In addition, Professor
Clark has been awarded Tae Kwon Do Instructor of the Year and
the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Eastern USA
Martial Arts Association.
On the literary scene, Professor Clark has published
in Australia, UK, New Zealand, Sweden and the United States. He
writes a regular column in the International Magazine Bugeisha.
He is the author of "Martial Arts for the University:
A Textbook for Basic Judo, Ju Jitsu, Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Modern
Arnis and Vital Points".
Professor Clark has also produced 2 video tapes:
- "Vital Point Strikes found in Naihanchi 1 (Chulgi 1)"
- "1995 Australian Seminar Tour"
Professor Clark's Ao Denko Jutsu is based on the
use of Vital Points to enhance the striking and grappling techniques
of any given system or style to achieve maximum effect. Many of
his techniques are developed through analysis of traditional forms
and the truly effective techniques hidden within them.
Through these seminars, Martial Artists the world
over have learned how to increase the effectiveness of their techniques
and gain a better understanding of the Traditional forms they practice
from this world-class instructor.