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Jujustu and Grappling from the beginning

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  • Jujustu and Grappling from the beginning

    Here is an interesting link that provides the lineage of ground fighting jujutsu and even the style that preceded fusen Ryu, Jikishin-Ryu Jujutsu. Tanto - this also explains why it recorded that Maeda was thrown out but still looked at as an ambassodor (of sorts) for judo.

    I just thought it was interesting I know this is not confrontational enough for discussion but hey who knows. Just posting for information

    Ground Grappling
    Koryu Jujutsu and Ground Techniques
    Fusen-Ryu Jujutsu was founded by Takeda Motsuge in the early 1800's. Motsuge was born in 1794 in Matsuyama Japan. He studied jujutsu since a young age and by his late teens was considered a shihan and was teaching in Aki. He had studied Nanba Ippo-Ryu from Takahashi Inobei. He also studied Takenouchi, Sekiguchi, Yoshin, Shibukawa, and Yagyu-Ryu during his lifetime. As his style came together at about the same time as the dissolution of the Samurai class, it developed mostly toward unarmed combat. Fusen-Ryu finally became an art that focused almost exclusively on ground fighting.(this may have only been in several branch schools, as certain other branch schools of Fusen-Ryu still exist today, and they do not focus on newaza).

    Around the turn of the 20th century, the Fusen-Ryu master Mataemon Tanabe challenged a new jujutsu master to the area - Kano Jigoro. His new jujutsu style had challenged several of the old style Jujutsu schools to contest and had beaten them easily. So Mataemon Tanabe's school fought Kano's school and won every match - not trying to throw, but going right to the ground and doing armlocks, leg locks, chokes, etc. Thus was the real birth of newaza as a science. Kano was so fascinated with the ease his judoka were beaten that he persuaded (and perhaps paid) Tanabe to reveal the core of his technical strategy. Over the next few years, Kano assigned several of his top students to focus exclusively on this newaza. Soon, newaza was "absorbed" as part of the Judo syllabus, and Judo began to spread across the world.
    After having several of his top students become newaza experts, Kano thought it a good idea to use this type of Judo in the school system. As the matches ended in submission instead of serious injury, it would be seen more in a sportive way. So in 1914 he organized the All Japan High School championships at Kyoto Imperial University. He called this sportive style Kosen. By 1925 so much emphasis was on newaza - because of its success in contest that Kano had to make some new Judo rules limiting the amount of time the Judoka could stay on the ground. This "Kosen Rule" continued into the 1940's, stating Shiai had to be 70% standing and 30% ground fighting. This led to an early split in the Kodokan Judo movement. Many of those Judoka whom Kano had set to master newaza, had spent time inventing new series of movements, escapes, and submissions. They and their students were now dominating even the Kodokan contests. There was so much negativity with this, that Kano sent many of them abroad to teach Judo elsewhere. He was very aware that they would not be easily defeated no matter where they went, and he also smartly removed the challenge they presented in Japan. Some of the known Kosen Judoka were Yamashita, Hirata, Tomita, Yokoyama and Maeda.
    Ground grappling is as old as man himself. It is a natural outcome in a fight. If an opponent is not rendered unconscious from an initial blow or throw, then the fight will certainly continue on the ground. Certainly, no one person is responsible for the creation of newaza (ground work). As seen here in the Beni-Hasan tomb in Egypt, ground fighting has been around for thousands of years. Also note the greek wrestlers on the piece of pottery - engaged in ground wrestling.

    The ancient Jujutsu styles also had ground fighting, but not so much in the sense of wrestling or newaza as it is today. Ryu such as Takenouchi-Ryu and Yoshin-Ryu had disarming techniques (kansetsu) which focused on breaking the bones in the arm so that the soldier could no longer wield a sword or spear. There were also techniques resembling modern Hadake Jime (naked choke) which attacked the Kobuto (helmet) in order to break the neck. The kenjutsu (sword) schools often practiced positions like "open guard" and do shime (guard) and mune gatame (chest lock) when the fight went to the ground, although they were more focused on how not to get stabbed with a katana (sword) or tanto (knife). After the dissolution of the Samurai class in the 1800's, schools began to focus more on empty hand arts - and two schools in particular had a large body of newaza techniques - namely Fusen-Ryu and Jikishin-Ryu.
    Jikishin-Ryu Jujutsu was founded by Terada Kanemon Masashige in the mid 1600's. Masashige was born in 1616, and he studied Teishin-Ryu with his father and grandfather who were masters. There were already ground techniques in this art. Later he studied Kito-Ryu, which focuses on throwing from Ibaraki Sensai, and Ryoi Shinto-Ryu with Fukuno Masakatsu. Masashige and following generations developed many techniques that resemble sequences from modern Judo - grapple, throw, ground position, and submission. Jikishin-Ryu actually called its art Judo 168 years before Kano used the term for his art.
    Jikishin-Ryu Jujutsu
    Fusen-Ryu Jujutsu
    Mataemon Tanabe
    Kosen Judo

    Kosen Judo has only continued in a few places. One example is Hirata Kanae's dojo is in Japan. He died in 1998, but the dojo still continues. Then there is Brazil, which started with Maeda. Mitsuyo Maeda who began training in Judo in 1897, and became one of the troublesome Kosen Judoka who was sent abroad with Tsunejiro Tomita. Traveling in the US, Maeda outshone his senior Tomita, defeating wrestlers and fighters that had beaten Tomita. Tomita and Maeda went their separate ways - with Maeda going onto the early "fighting circuit" for money. He even travelled to Europe where he lost the only two matches of his life against a Catch Wrestler. He spent extra time with the wrestler learning some of those techniques. Finally in 1915 Maeda settled in Brazil where he taught Carlos Gracie, the son of a local politician. Carlos Gracie and his brothers adopted the Kosen Judo techniques and developed them further during the 20th century into what came to be known as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

    Mistuyo Maeda doing Newaza

    Hirata Kosen Judo class in Tokyo. Note visiting Yuki Nakai.

  • #2

    I never said thanks for sharing. Hope all is well with you these days.