Todd, Kenn and Justin Hundley
His first patent was on a multi-function gear puller designed for the automotive and aerospace industry called The Complete Puller. Before he invented the first emulator, he had already created some innovative improvements in the gym equipment industry through his company Perfect Body Fitness. In 1984, Perfect Body Fitness was the first gym equipment manufacturer, to paint gym equipment white. Up until then, everything was either black or gray. Kenn also created some innovative improvements to gym equipment that are still being used today.
Kenn's second patent was for the sports emulators he developed starting in 1989. The only reason that the emulator technology ever came about, was pure accidental.
Kenn started to play golf on a regular basis in his late 30's. But there was a problem. His brain only knew how to swing a baseball bat. Kenn grew up in a baseball family. His brother is Randy Hundley who caught for the Cub's. Randy's son is Todd Hundley catcher for the Mets, Dodgers and the Cubs. Todd would eventually train on Kenn's batting emulator. Kenn even played one season of minor league ball for the Cubs. This baseball history was not helping Kenn's golf game.
When he started to take some golf lessons, it did not take long to realize that the golf instructors could play very well and explain the mechanics of golf well but they could not get Kenn to learn these mechanics. He knew that there was a disconnect between what the instructors knew, and what they could get Kenn's body to learn. He decided to approach the learning aspect of golf from a different perspective. So, he designed and built a training machine to help him learn the kind of golf swing that the pro golfers had. That was in 1989 and Kenn formed the company Specific Athletic Movement Emulators or SAME. Within a year, Kenn had also made a batting emulator, a throwing emulator and a kicking emulator.
In 1992 Kenn traveled to Japan to set up a deal for a Japanese company to buy emulators. That year, Kenn sold several box cars of batting, throwing and golf swing emulators to a company in Matsumoto Japan. In 1993, Kenn also allowed the field goal kicker for the Phoenix Cardinals, to use his kicking emulator for a week. At the end of that week, Craig Davis broke the record for the longest field goal ever kicked for the Cardinals franchise. In the same year Kenn sold a Batting Emulator to the Chicago Cubs. In 1996, Kenn sold a Batting Emulator to the New York Mets. In 1997, NBC in Phoenix, did a interview with Kenn that featured Samy Sosa and Todd Hundley. The interview showed the before and after results of Samy and Todd using the Batting Emulator, along with the before and after results of several other major league players. That interview can be seen at the bottom of the home page by clicking on the interview LINK.
In 1995 Kenn established the first sport specific training facility in Scottsdale Arizona. The SAME Performance Center featured all of Kenn's individual emulators and he also started to train athletes. In 1996, a PGA tour golfer walked in off the street. He had heard about Kenn and his golf machine at a party. Kenn worked with this PGA pro for about three months in his facility. This golfer had to qualify to get into the 1996 US Golf Open. Not only did he qualify, he went on to WIN the tournament. After this happened, The Golf Channel invited Kenn to their studios in Orlando to do a segment on the Golf Swing Emulator. Click on this link to see the interview with the winner of the 1996 US Open, Steve Jones. LINK
Also in the same year, Kenn had gotten his golf handicap down from an 18 to a 3.3. By 1997, Kenn's Golf Swing Emulator was being carried around on the Sr. PGA tour. Here is a link to a promotional video showing a handful of Sr. PGA pros talking about the Golf Swing Emulator. LINK
Kenn was obviously on to something but he was not satisfied with what he had. He knew this technology worked, but he could not explain exactly why. This is when he started to do research in the field of neurology at the ASU Science Library in Tempe Arizona. That work started in 1998 and Kenn is still at it today. You can see one of the research papers that he wrote on the subject of motor memory learning by clicking on this link or by Googling the phrase "How the brain learns the golf swing". LINK
Kenn lived in Atlanta in 2009. He needed to find someone to use his baseball emulators so people could see just how effective they were. The high school ball players were reluctant to try anything new. The only person he could find to try out the equipment was a high school teacher that was still playing simi pro baseball in Ill. This teacher still loved to play baseball and Kenn allowed him and a friend to work out on the baseball emulators for 6 months for free. This ball player was an outfielder. He was 6' tall and he weighed 190. After six months of training 5 days a week on the batting and throwing emulators, he was strong as a bull. He could throw the ball 300 feet in the air and he could hit the ball 450 feet in the air with a wooden bat.
The only problem was that he was 24 years old. From a pro scout's perspective, he was too old to even get a tryout. Kenn told him that he was going to have to crash the party and just show up at a tryout uninvited. Eric Suttle went to four try outs in three states. Finally, he went to the Houston Astros facility in Florida, and they signed him to a minor league contract in 2009. Kenn has had similar results with even older players training on his baseball emulators.
Kenn eventually has had batting emulators in the stadiums of the Mets, the Dodgers and the Cubs. All of his high school clients that have purchased either a batting emulator or a throwing emulator, have received full scholarships to large universities in the US. Some of these clients are still playing pro baseball and some are still playing in the major leagues and using his baseball emulators.