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The Bujinkan (武神館) is an international martial arts organization based in Japan and headed by Masaaki Hatsumi.

The combat system taught by this organization comprises nine separate ryūha, or schools, which are collectively referred to as Bujinkan Budō Taijutsu.

The Bujinkan is most commonly associated with ninjutsu. However, Masaaki Hatsumi uses the term Budo (meaning martial way) as he says the ryūha are descended from historical samurai schools that teach samurai martial tactics and ninjutsu schools that teach ninja tactics.

The Bujinkan organization incorporates the teachings of the martial arts lineages (ryūha) that Masakki Hatsumi learnt from Takamatsu Toshitsugu under the banner of Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu.

These are

Bujinkan Budō Taijutsu training does not include participation in competitions or contests as the school's training aims to develop the ability to protect oneself and others using techniques that focus on disabling an attacker (&/or removing their desire/ability to continue) as efficiently as possible.

This training is conducted in a manner in which there are predefined "attackers" (uke) and "defenders" (tori) similar to drills in judo (gokyo) or traditional Japanese martial arts. However, the Bujinkan differs from many traditional martial arts in that the training progresses through the following stages:

  • Predefined sets of movements (kata) and physical conditioning

  • Variations to the fixed drills (henka), responding to changes in the attacker's movements or situation

  • Free form training (randori) consisting mostly of spur-of-the-moment, dynamic techniques during which the defender hits, locks, chokes or throws the attacker in a controlled and safe manner

  • More advanced training consists of controlling the attacker's mind using various techniques such as pain compliance and deception


Training is done in a manner that entails little risk of permanent injury.

  The Bujinkan does not adhere to any official guideline or set of rules to limit actions or techniques used during training. The approach used in the Bujinkan includes gaining compliance through pain and utilising potentially damaging techniques in order to survive dangerous situations rather than focusing on winning a competition or evenly matched duel. As a result many of the staple responses of a Bujinkan student would be inappropriate in most competitions.

  The Bujinkan largely focuses on “taijutsu” (body movement / skills) ; happo biken jutsu (various modern and traditional weapons) and ninjutsu (ninpo tactics and strategies).



Taijutsu (body arts) is the Bujinkan system of unarmed defence using strikes, throws, holds, chokes and joint locks. It encompases skill such as: koppo jutsu is the "way of attacking and/or using the skeletal structure"; “koshi jutsu” is the way of attacking muscles and weak points on the body; jutai jutsu is the "relaxed body method" teaching throwing, grappling and choking techniques and dakentai jutsu which emphasises strikes, kicks and blocks

The first levels of training, such as leaping, tumbling, break fall techniques and body conditioning, form the basis for taijutsu. They are needed to progress into other techniques such as unarmed combat and the use of tools and weapons. Once learned, Taijutsu techniques can be applied to any situation, armed or unarmed.


Tori and Uke

Training begins with two partners practicing pre-arranged forms (waza or kata) and then advancing to unlimited variations of those forms (henka). The basic pattern is for the Tori (Tori, or the person applying the technique) to initiate a technique against the person who receives the technique (Uke, or the person receiving the technique).

Ukemi and balance

Bujinkan taijitsu seeks to use body movement and positioning rather than strength to defeat the opponent. All techniques in Bujinkan taijutsu involve unbalancing the opponent while maintaining one's own balance. This is achieved by moving the opponent into inferior positions and manipulating their body along weak lines where it is difficult for the opponent to resist. The attacker continuously seeks to regain balance and cover vulnerabilities (such as an exposed side), while the defender uses position and timing to keep the attacker off balance and vulnerable. In more advanced training, the attacker will sometimes apply reversal techniques (返 技, kaeshi-waza) to regain balance and disable the defender.

Ukemi (受身) refers to the act of receiving a technique. Good ukemi involves a roll or breakfall to avoid pain or injury such as dislocation of a joint. Thus, learning to roll and breakfall effectively is key to safe training in taijutsu.

Before receiving the 9th kyu (the lowest rank), a student must demonstrate the ability to roll smoothly in a variety of directions without exposing the neck to injury.


Weapons use is among the 18 disciplines taught in the Bujinkan: ken (sword), kodachi (short sword), jutte (sword breaker), tessen (iron fan), kabuto (helmet breaker), bō (long staff), jo (4 foot staff), hanbo (half staff), yari (spear), naginata (halbred), shuriken (throwing blades), kusarigama (sickle and chain), kusarifundo (weight and chain), kyoketsu shoge (dagger and chain), ono (war axe) tetsubishi (caltrops), tanto (dagger), shuko (hand claws), ashiko (foot spikes), metsubushi (blinding powders), and kayaku (the use of firearms). Some types of weapons in the Bujinkan have more than one type, such as the shuriken.

Historically, there are two main types of shuriken, hira shuriken (flat blade) and bo shuriken (straight blade). The hira shuriken are also called shaken and senban shuriken; these types of shuriken are flat multi-pointed plates and blades which can have from three to as many as eight points. Some different styles of hira shuriken are Sanko Gata (3 pointed triangular), Juji (cross shaped), Manji(swastika shaped), and Kumi Awase (a cross shaped folding shuriken). The bo shuriken can be round or flat, thick or thin, and come in many different styles such as straight and round with a single point, round and pointed at both ends, flat pointed at one or both ends, as well as types such as Hari Gata or needle shaped, Tanto Gata or knife shaped, Yari Gata or spear shaped, and Empi Gata or swallow shaped shuriken. There are also many types of swords used in the Bujinkan such as Ken, Katana, Tachi, Odachi, Wakazashi, Kodachi, Nadachi, Shikomizue, and Tanto. There are also many different types of Yari or spears. Long bladed, short bladed, and long or short bladed with single or double hooks or blades flaring out to the sides.

Physical conditioning

Junan taiso (junan meaning flexible) is a yogic method of stretching and breathing by means of which the Bujinkan practitioner may develop and maintain good physical condition and wellbeing. The exercises promote relaxation, blood circulation, muscle toning and flexibility, and form a core part of all training sessions. Junan taiso is a form of conditioning and preparation for the body. All major joints are rotated and stretched in a proper manner while healthy breathing and concentration are practiced.


Our systems way of training:

According to Bujinkan members, Ninja Jūhakkei (the eighteen disciplines) were first identified in the scrolls of Togakure-ryū 戸隠流, or "School of the Hidden Door", founded during the Oho period (1161–62) by one Daisuke Nishina (Togakure), who learned a life view and techniques (ninjutsu) from Kagakure Doshi. Togakure ryu Ninjutsu Hidensho is a manuscript in Hatsumi's possession that is said to document Togakure-ryū. It is the purported origin of the "18 skills of Ninjutsu."

Ninja jūhakkei was often studied along with Bugei jūhappan (the 18 samurai fighting art skills). Though some techniques were used in the same way by both samurai and ninja, others were used differently by the two groups. The 18 disciplines are:

  1. Seishinteki kyōyō (spiritual refinement)

  2. Taijutsu (unarmed combat)

  3. Kenjutsu (sword techniques including Tojutsu)

  4. Bōjutsu (stick and staff techniques)

  5. Sōjutsu (spear techniques)

  6. Naginatajutsu (naginata techniques)

  7. Kusarigamajutsu (kusarigama techniques)

  8. Shurikenjutsu (throwing weapons techniques)

  9. Kayakujutsu (pyrotechnics)

  10. Hensōjutsu (disguise and impersonation)

  11. Shinobi-iri (stealth and entering methods)

  12. Bajutsu (horsemanship)

  13. Sui-ren (water training)

  14. Bōryaku (tactics)

  15. Chōhō (espionage)

  16. Intonjutsu (escaping and concealment)

  17. Tenmon (meteorology)

  18. Chi-mon (geography)

The name of the discipline of taijutsu (体術?), literally means "body skill". Historically in Japan, the word is often used interchangeably with jujutsu and many others to refer to a range of grappling skills. It is also used in the martial art of aikido to distinguish unarmed fighting techniques from others, such as those of stick fighting. In ninjutsu, especially since the emergence of the Ninja movie genre, it was used to avoid referring explicitly to "ninja" combat techniques.[citation needed]




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