Mr. Hans Hesselmann born 1947 in The Netherlands is a Martial Arts veteran with 40 years of experience to date (2011) in different fighting styles and forms. He started with living the Martial Arts after a day of extreme sports with the Dutch military Commando’s were he saw a demonstration of hard style Kyokushinkai Karate. After 1971 he started his training in Shaolin Kempo for many years with his teachers “Paatje” Eduard Lammerts van Bueren en Gerard v.d. Heuvel up to the level of 3rd. degree black belt. Because “Paatje” came from the isle of Java and had been exposed to different forms of Pencak Silat, Hans became very interested in the arts of the Indonesian Archipelago and as a result of this he took a deep interest in the ways of working with knifes, Kris, Klewang, Parang and especially the Golok. Black Belt Magazine ( 1969 ) was the first magazine that made him aware of other Kenpo / Kempo forms in this world and that was were Hans could read the first information about SGM. Edmund Kealoha Parker.
In the late 1970’s he started his own Shaolin Kempo school in his hometown and during the first 10 years tried to develop from there. He took courses for 3 years in Tai Chi Chuan with the Chinese Master Ho Kwee Swan in the city of Amsterdam. He worked as editor for several magazines like: Samurai, Zendokan, Budo Journal, Budo Sports and Mixed Fight and produced dozens of articles on the different martial arts of the world. As a translator he worked on the book of Taekwondo with the help of a Korean language editor from the University of Leiden for Mr. Hur Heung Taek (1977).
From the French language he translated one of the most outstanding Martial Arts books in Europe, Les Arts Martiaux – ou l’esprit des Budo (1979) , written by the French moviemaker Michel Random. In the early 1980’s he published his first book titled Fight Back – Tactics for Self Defence a bestseller to Dutch standards that sold over 5000 copies. The year 1980 became a very remarkable year for him as on November 18 he was in Germany on invitation of Mr. Rainer Schulte and had his first seminars with Senior Grandmaster Master. Ed Parker. That first meeting with Mr. Parker and the possibility to have some time to speak with the man himself made such a lasting impression, that Hans crossed over to Kenpo Karate immediately.
He started training under the guidance of Rainer Schulte in Germany and with the direct help of Christian Springer. Between 1980 and 1985 he went to the USA with Rainer Schulte and Chris to take part in the famous Internationals at Long Beach and earning his Flame and Black Belt. He also had the chance to train at the Pasadena Studio with Frank Trejo and Paul Girard. In those years Holland attended the first European Championships under the IKKA on the isle of Jersey and organized by Roy Macdonald / Graham Lelliot.
Back in 1969 Hans was reading an article in Black Belt Magazine on the book of Andrew Adams: Ninja the invisible assassins. That story was so interesting that he took an active interest in finding out what this Ninjutsu was all about. That would eventually lead him to the Swedish instructor Bo Munthe who founded this art in Europe and several training trips to Japan to learn directly under the guidance of the Ninja Grandmaster Dr. Hatsumi Masaaki. Between 1983 and 1995 he organized over 125 training weekends and camps in Holland that were attended each time by over a hundred students form Holland, Belgium, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Ireland and so on and for a long time he run weekly training sessions for over 1800 students.
However his lead in looking at martial arts and explaining their content was always based on what he learned from the principles of what was and still is being taught in Mr. Parker’s art of American Kenpo. He introduced the art to a wide range of students in Holland, Belgium, France since 1980.
In 1997 he organized with his group one of these big IKKA European Kenpo Karate Championships in the city of Amsterdam. At the opening of this event people went into tears as on the walls of the stadium portrait pictures of SGM. Parker were projected while his voice taken from his video’s was heard throughout the hall.In 2006 Hans and his crew organized their first IKKA World Kenpo Karate Championships(known as the Golden IKC while celebrating 50 years of Kenpo) in the large Soccer stadium in the city of Utrecht with over 800 participants from all over the world. During the days before and after the tournament over 50 workshop were given by great instructors amongst them, Edmund Parker, Roy Macdonald, Doreen Cogliandro, Dennis Lawson, Rainer Schulte, John Ward, Gilbert Velez, Bob Rose, Ryan Angell, Bob Liles, Kevin Mills, Paul Dye, Jimmy Poland, Richard Matthews, John Ward, Gino Puzzo, Marc Sigle, Ken Herman, Jose Maria Gutierrez and so on.
Over the years Hans was rewarded with the Master Award at the first Gathering of Eagles in Las Vegas (1999) organized by All Tracy and consequently nominated in The Kenpo Hall of Fame (2007) in Chicago.
Also many foreign instructors visited his school to give workshops: Rainer Schulte, Christian Springer, Jim Mitchell, Lex Sensenbrenner, Sascha Williams, Skip Hancock, Doreen Cogliandro, Richard Huk Planas, Ed Parker jr., Tom Sotis, Larry and Jill Tatum, Bob Liles and David Stanley, the stepbrother and most trusted bodyguard of Elvis Presley. On the main continent of Europe Hans created the largest following of Kenpo Karate students ever with hundreds of students in The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany etc. Under the name of Action Kenpo Karate and with the guidance of the IKKA (International Kenpo Karate Alliance). Well over 50 Black Belts ranking from 1ste degree up to 5th. degree came forth between 1980 – 2008 in his own lineage as a first generation European student of Senior Grandmaster Ed Parker.
Hans Hesselmann runs a fulltime Ed Parker’s Kenpo Karate Studio in the city of Utrecht in the Netherlands. After 42 years (1968 – 2010) in the arts he is constantly in demand for workshops and seminars on the art of Kenpo in Holland and the European countries. “The one man who ignited that spark in my heart. The one spirit who turned that spark into a flame with a constantly blazing fire as the result, is Senior Grandmaster Edmund Kealoha Parker”.
Hans Hesselmann currently holds: 8th. degree black belt in Ed Parkers Kenpo Karate, 8th. degree black belt in Dr. Masaaki Hatsumi’s Bujinkan Ninjutsu, 8th. Degree black belt in Zenryoku Kenpo Jutsu and has an LMA recognized teachers license in Self Defense. Coming full circle as a Warrior, a Scholar and a Healer, he is also a recognized foodtherapist, Reconnective Healing practitioner and a Quantum Touch Power practitioner
More info about Kenpo Karate in Holland: www.kenpokarate.nl