Ju-Jitsu means the art of gaining victory by yielding/pliancy. In its fullest form it was an art of the Samurai warriors, this gives us a martial art with probably the largest repertoire of techniques, some over a thousand years old, to name a few: Attacking pressure points, vulnerable areas and joints with kicks or strikes, grappling and locking of joints, breaking bones and dislocation of joints, any of these could be used with a take-down or throw, Ju-Jitsu can be deadly but we teach to use minimum force necessary.
Kyūjutsu is the traditional Japanese martial art of wielding a yumi bow as practiced by the samurai class of feudal Japan. Although the samurai are perhaps best known for their swords, kyūjutsu was actually considered a more vital skill for a significant portion of Japanese history. During the majority of the Kamakura period through the Muromachi period (c.1185–c.1568), the bow was almost exclusively the symbol of the professional warrior.
This comes from Shorinji Kempo, a Japanese art often described as a mixture of Karate and Aikido, its roots go back to the Kung Fu of the Shaolin temples in northem China, we can see this in the name, as the Chinese for Shorinji is Shaolin-Su and for Kempo is Chaun-Fa meaning way of the fist. The techniques of Kempo are based on high speed blocks and counter attacks, also the use of pressure to vital points of the body to cause damage or inflict pain.
Beginners start with basics such as break falls and stances advancing onto blocks, counter attacks, pressure point strikes and kicks, grappling and locking of joints, breaks, dislocations, chokes, strangles, takedowns, sweeps, throws and hold downs, you’ll learn defences from strikes, holds, weapons, multiple attacks and when against a wall or on the ground. We also train in traditional and improvised weapons.
Yes Ju-Jitsu can be practiced by anyone, men, women, boys and girls from 8 years to senior citizens.
Because Ju-Jitsu has such a wide repertoire the techniques can be adapted to the individual not the individual to any one technique, this gives us a martial art that can be used to defend from virtually any situation, regardless of the defenders size, strength or age in relation to the attackers.
As with most martial arts and sports, constant physical practice will improve fitness, other things that improve from training are self confidence, discipline and awareness, also the practice of Ju-Jitsu, because of its some times very complex moves, can improve the mind through the students having to constantly analyse and break down the techniques, this improved learning ability can be seen in work outside the field of martial arts.
In Ju-Jitsu, your progress is checked by periodic gradings, the period of which increases in relation to the grade and the amount to learn, these are normally done by senior instructors. There is a syllabus that is worked to for each grade, there are 8 grades known as KYU grades (MON for juniors) these are denoted by coloured belt starting with a beginners as white (8th KYU / MON), above these grades are Black belts or Dan grades 1st Dan being the lowest.
In Kyūjutsu, like many other martial arts, a graded system is used and does not simply consist of learning how to hit a target with a bow and arrow. There are traditions and rituals that are followed which date back deep into samurai history and the teaching of samurai history and samurai battles. As well as that, students that wish to grade will need to display a rounded knowledge on the make up and types of bows and arrows that were used by the Samurai as well as a good knowledge of Japanese history and will be required to shoot in lots of various scenarios including standing, kneeling, laying down, in formations and whilst on the move both walking and running.
With regular supervised training you should be able to gain a Black belt 1st Dan grade in 4 to 5 years.
Most clubs are run by Black belts but brown belts are also recognised as Instructors, both are given the opportunity to attend courses to improve on their instructional skills learnt within their local clubs.
Unlike most modern martial arts Ju-Jitsu is not a sport, it remains true to its original concept a fighting art, but despite this you can compete, by cutting out some of the more dangerous techniques.