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American Institute of Kenpo required sparring gear.

Sparring Overview

The American Institute of Kenpo (AIK) provides a safe environment where students can participate in supervised rank appropriate sparring activities to develop their martial art skills. As part of providing a reasonably safe learning environment it is the requirement that our students have the proper safety equipment to participate.

Required Sparring Gear

Note: Standard AIK Sparing Gear prices are available in the School Shop.  


1. Head Gear

The head gear provides an increased level of protection against accidental impact to the head.


2. Mouth Guard & Case

The best dental emergency is the one you avoid having. The mouth guard provides additional protection from accidental impacts that could cause damage to teeth. The mouth guard case allows for the mouthpiece to be transported and stored in a sanitary manner.


3. Chest Guard

The chest and the abdomen are a primary target during sparring. The chest protector provides protection agents against moderately light and controlled strikes.

4. Cup & Supporter

The groin protection provides a barrier of safety and protection against controlled and targeted light strikes.


5. Hand Gear

The hand gear provides protection to the hand while executing controlled strikes in a sparring environment. 


6. Shin Guards

The shin guards provide protection to both the shin of the person wearing it as well as the person on the receiving end of a light and controlled strike.


7. Foot Gear

The foot gear provides protection to mitigate against improperly thrown kicks. This protection is for the top of the foot and the toes works best when the kick is executed with control at light contact levels.

8. Gear Bag

A gear bag is necessary for orderly transportation of all your gear.

Sparring Expectations

Safety First

The American Institute of Kenpo (AIK) staff will do their best to confirm that students are wearing the required sparring gear for their safety. However, if a student chooses to participate in sparring activities without the required equipment they will be assuming full responsibility for their decision to do so. It is our instructors preference that students take their safety seriously. We ask that all students put their safety first and wear all the required safety equipment when participation in sparring activities.

Respect Your Partners

There are martial art participants of all ages, sizes, and capabilities. When sparring, it is essential that you respect your partner for everyone's safety.

  • Power Levels should be maintained to a safe and comfortable level for both participants.

  • The speed of engagement should be one where control can be maintained and does not overwhelm either participant.

  • Skills and knowledge should be shared so that those less skilled can advance their abilities.

Have Self-Control

It is essential that every student maintains control of their mind, body, and emotions while participating in sparring activities. Should a student's mind, body, or emotions become compromised in any way they should seek assistance form the instructing staff prior to continuing to engage in sparring activities.

  • The basis of strategy is formulated, re-evaluated, and refined in the mind. It is essential that when you are sparring that you keep a clear and focused mind to develop your skills.

  • The body needs to be functioning in such a way that injuries are not being created or aggravated. A focus needs to be made on developing controlled intentional actions that are executed in such a manner that all participants maintain a sound physical health throughout the sparring activities.

  • When engaging in activities, especially when you are new at them, you will have an emotional component that can be harder for some people to control than others. When participating in sparring activities all students should be working on first controlling their emotions, then using them in a positive, productive, and safe manner.

Note: To maintain the safety of all our students, anyone failing to meet these expectations will be asked not to participate in sparring.

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