Archive | September 2013

Koryu meets Gen Dai Ryu


A two day Martial art seminar is concluded… Two martial arts, one a modern budo, the other a Koryu dating back centuries. Both instructors are masters in their own field and they both are exceptional

in 12 session, each about an hour long, over one weekend, we examined concepts of body movement and basics of body physics.

I have introduced Toby Threadgill, and Robert Mustard on this blog before, so I spare you the repetition, however, for those looking to improve their skill at any martial art this seminar was a gold mine. I use the word martial art deliberately, because the seminar was not purely about Aikido or Shindo Yoshin Ryu, which was really evident form the participants who came from a variety of arts. Wado Ryu Karate, Yoshinkan Aikido, Tomiki Aikido, Jyu jitsu, Tradtional Aikido, and Judo.

The good news is, the message is spreading, we had more on the mat this year that we did last year. Both instructors were fired up and both were on form.

I had contemplated writing descriptive anecdotes of what took place, but I would probably complicate this blog and would not do the seminar justice.
There are some principles that apply to all martial arts, finding those principles, and the common base is what makes the difference between a good martial artist and an exceptional one.

One technique leading to another we examined the essence of each technique, the bases of why it works -the ‘Riai’ which the basic foundation of why the technique works. This is why it really was an event with a difference. What Threadgill sensei particularly offered, to me a budoka who has not had any Koryu exposure before (apart form the same seminar last year) was an insight into the historical element of some of the techniques and how it was applied on the battlefield.

The historical element of any technique is truly important, it makes all the difference to the development of the art and progression of skill.

Perhaps one can take the martial art forward without knowing a lot of history of the art but If nothing else understanding the history adds sense to many of the moves that seems unnecessary. We do what we do for a reason, the problem is much of the knowledge of that reasoning has worn thin by the rapid spread of martial arts over the last few decades or so. This seminar was really useful readdressing that issue.

I expect this seminar will become an annual event in view of the success and popularity. It is not very often that we see Koryu instructors visiting the UK and I sure hope this trend continues. There is some really impressive skills within the Koryu arts and it would be great to see it every now and then and be a part of it.. if transiently.

Perhaps equally interestingly is the ‘Gen Dai Ryu’ or the modern martial arts, which despite being a young art compared to Koryu still has a phenomenal depth of knowledge and skill set when the right practitioner comes around.

So… were from here for the tour?… the week is still young and the seminar was merely the beginning. Yet to come, are vists to dojos around the country, each day of the week culminating in what will certainly be a promising ‘Gasshuku’ in Preston next weekend.

I shall write more about the tour as the week goes by…




The Uk Tour begins tomorrow…

It’s finally here, tomorrow morning, sees the beginning of a brilliant and promising seminar in Dartford, an excellent collaboration between two phenomenal martial artists, Robert Mustard and Toby Threadgill. This will be the second weekend long seminar that brings together these two martial artists, the last was last year, and it was so successful that we are up approximately 35% on sign ups for the event.

It is really difficult to describe the event, what brings together a Yoshinkan Aikido instructor and a Takamura-ha Shindo Yoshin Ryu instructor on the same mat at the same event?

Well, last year, it was a success, the mix worked really well and the outcome was truely impressive. It is easy to ignore such an event if you don’t practice either martial art, however, the attendance last year were from all walks, Karate, Jyu-jitsu, Judo along with the usual Aikidoka and TYSR students.

This year I expect it’ll be much the same.

As the week goes on, Mustard sensei will be visiting different dojo’s around the country culminating in a weekend long Gasshuku next week.

I just can’t wait.

Aikido is a Martial Art… find your soul elsewhere

“Do not come to me looking for spirituality – get that from your local church. Do not come here expecting me to make you a better person – that was the chore of your parents and school teachers. If it’s the mystical you are after, see Houdini. I am here to teach you the martial art of Aikido.”

Henry Ellis

Watch What You Say

A good read and a good insight…

Acme Bugei

Watch What You Say 

By Rennis Buchner
Copyright © Rennis Buchner, 2013. Not to be used without permission


Upon joining koryu, the new practitioner will often be required to swear some form of oath and vow to follow various rules required by the ryu. Depending on the tradition this can take different forms ranging from an ultra traditional making an oath sealed in blood sworn to the various deities the ryu worships, to modern updated versions which due away with the deities and blood oaths,

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