Aikijujutsu Kobukai is a creation of Jan Janssens sensei. It's an Aikibujutsu-form which mainly exists of Aiki-techniques out of the repertoire of the Yoseikan aikido of Minoru Mochizuki sensei.
Jan Janssens sensei has been training intensively for 40 years and has also studied several forms of Aiki. At the end of the 80's he started looking for an Aikibujutsu with an identity of its own. Around 1992 this resulted into the system that is now being tutored in several European countries and in the former Warsaw Pact countries.
About the Name?
Several martial art schools have a symbolic name that can be interpreted in different ways. This is not different for our school. Please pay attention to the fact that Japanese names cannot be translated literally. They are mostly a paraphrase of a concept.
Aikijujutsu can be translated as:
"The harmonious canalisation of energy by means of flexible techniques."
What's aikijujutsu ?
Aikijujutsu is a Japanese martial art of which the origins go back for more than a 1000 years. From a purely physical point of view it's a martial art that uses grips, throws, strangleholds, jointlocks and atemi. The techniques were merely developed in feudal jujutsu schools and in sword schools.
Aikijujutsu is a dynamic martial art.
The system is based on non-resistance to the force of the adversary. The person, who performs the technique, tries to gain control of the attacker by taking over the offered energy (the attack) and by using it against the attacker. Striking are the circular movements and the flexible mind of the defender. The pursuit of a technically correct and mentally mastered performance makes an excessive use of force unnecessary.
Aikijujutsu is basically a defensive martial art.
Body and spirit are trained only to react when there are no other options. Although we mainly train unarmed fighting in our school, armed fighting is not neglected. The weapons are the bokken (a wooden replica of a sword), the tanto (a wooden replica of a dagger), the tambo (a 30 cm long baton), and the jo (a 1.28 meter long wooden staff).
The History of Aikijujutsu
In the twenties of the twentieth century Mochizuki sensei, Jan Janssens' teacher, was sent to Morihei Ueshiba to learn aikibudo. He was sent there, together with among others Kenji Tomiki and Gozo Shioda, by his teacher, Jigoro Kano. According to Kano, Ueshiba had developed the ideal budo.
Morihei Ueshiba (1883-1969) was a pupil of Masayoshi Minamoto no Sokaku Takeda (1859 -1943), the soke of Daito Ryu aikijujutsu.
The history of Daito Ryu is the history of the Takeda clan as well.
This history goes back to Tenno (emperor) Seiwa (850 -881) of the Minamoto clan. Around the 10th century, the sixth son of Tenno Seiwa, Prince Sadasumi, developed a martial art that was based on the principle of non-resistance. In the 11th century the techniques were organised and listed by Shinra Saburo (Minamoto no Yoshimitsu (1056-1127)).
During the second half of the 11th century, the eldest son of Shinra Saburo was appointed governor of the province of Kai. He took on the name Takeda. It's under this name that the clan would become famous afterwards.
The reason why we can still speak of Daito Ryu aikijujutsu is due to Kunitsugu Takeda, who moved to Aizu Province, Yamanshi Pref. in 1574. When the rest of the clan was murdered in 1582, he was the only remaining Takeda. From this moment on, the secret martial art of the Takeda-clan known as 'oshiki uchií was passed on to members of the clan, until Sokaku Takeda incorporated elements of In-Yo Ho (the priciples of ying and yang) and techniques of Tenshin Shinyo Ryu jujutsu.
Sokaku Takeda named his system after the castle of Shinra Saburo, Daito no Yatakaí. From this moment on his school was called Daito Ryu aikijujutsuí and itís one of the top-students of this school, Morihei Ueshiba, who awarded his student Mochuzuki the Daito Ryu aikijujutsu okuden inkaí scrolls, bearing the Daito Ryu seal, in the 1930 ís.
Aikijujutsu Kobukai contains 84 forms of defence. 23 forms of attack are being practised. They consist of grips, punches, thrusts and strangleholds. By means of different combinations you become a total of 1932 techniques of attack and defence.
The basis of the school contains 16 kihon waza. These forms of practice are practised with a partner as kata.
Budo disciplines have contributed to the creation of Aikijujutsu Kobukai?
The Grading System
The grading consists of kyu and dan ranks.
The kyu ranks start with 6th kyu and end with 1st kyu.
The dan rankings start with 1st dan and end with 10th dan.
The keikogi or the training dress is a blue suit that is also used in several other martial arts.
The traditional way of thinking of our school is shown by the hakama, a wide pantskirt which was worn by the samurai.
Starting from 3rd kyu, mudansha and Yudansha can wear a dark blue (or black) hakama.