View Full Version : GOSHIN JUTSU

1st January 2001, 13:56
Kodokan Goshin Jutsu, how widely practiced are these forms of defence?

Tomiki was one of the sensei to contribute its creation who were the others?

It is demonstrated in a kata but was it intended to be one?

Kind regards Tim Burton

3rd January 2001, 08:08
Why not kata, or the intention of same? Modernization, I suppose. It was the newest of kata for a good reason, and since so many wanted to learn self-defense, something was needed to repel the more modern attacker, with a stick/sword, knife, and gun. I've added a cane to it, and some kata, from kime no kata and goshin jutsu, aren't bad considering what the new breed has to deal with.

Was it meant to be a kata? Some do not think anything should be taught without the repetitive motion of kata, but as to was it meant to be? I don't know, but most of my classes begin with kata of Kodokan goshin (many like that it has a modern them) and kime no kata.

Anyone want to take this one on?


4th January 2001, 13:05
Hi Mark,
We know that the Kime no kata and the Kodokan Goshin Jutsu are both forms of decisiveness and expose the Judoka to combat principles that arise when operating with a separated Ma-ai rather than the Ma-ai that occurs in randori. The inclusion of weapons further increases the Ma-ai.
The Kodokan refer to the later simply as Goshin Jutsu. I wondered if this was for any specific reason. When training in Kime no Kata one performs it ritually and usually on the right side only. Yet Goshin Jutsu seems to evoke a feeling of a system rather than a kata.
Ever since I began my training in Kodokan Goshin Jutsu it has always been practised right and left. Sensei John Cornish also gives further examples of training in Goshin Jutsu in his book on the subject. In it he solves problems that may arise if uke responds in a different manner than expected, by substituting other moves from the kata to cope.
As a library of defensive techniques the Goshin Jutsu has many things to offer, some not readily seen when watching the overall performance of it.
Just as an aside, did you know that Tomiki also referred to the Koryu Dai San Kata he created for his system as Goshin Jutsu.
Tim Burton

5th January 2001, 10:06
Well, not to nit pick, you are correct when you say it isn't described as kata, but is listed in the book of "Forms" of Kodokan judo kata, but you are right, I think this was created simply to bring judo up into the new world, as the term self-defense was becoming a monster of its own. As to kime no kata, I do this because it is the realtively modern version of ko shiki no kata, or at least the intent is there.

That said, I don't do it as a "ritual" except with students who actually enjoy the repetition of kata. The idori is fun when brought up to as much speed as possible, but has limited use outside of this. The tachiai, though, is different, and since I don't do the ritual of the joseki, etc., it is as formal as I can get. Cornish himself says this, but in a much more impassioned way. He too must teach the pieces, and then as time rolls by, it becomes more complete. He recently said that, even if coaching an Olympic team, the complete nage no kata is where one must start, to find the three or four waza one is going to use.

No, I didn't know Tomiki called his system goshin jutsu, but I will go through his book, Judo and Aikido, and search for a hint of that being so, but it doesn't surprise me. Since Tomiki was at least involved in the basic waza of goshin jutsu, it wouldn't surprise me, and it doesn't now.:)


Chuck Clark
5th January 2001, 15:20
Tomiki sensei was known to call the third kata in the koryu series (koryu dai san kata) by the name "goshin jutsu no kata" as he felt it was the kata in the whole syllabus of Tomiki Aikido which taught self-defense.

I've never heard of him referring to his whole system as goshin jutsu though.

As for the Kodokan kata, I think Tomiki sensei was the man who developed it. It then had to be accepted by the "Kodokan kata committee" so it ended up with their stamp of approval and authorship. The politics involved made it impossible for any one person to be acknowledged as the author of anything new in Kodokan syllabus.

There is a story that the need to develop the goshin jutsu no kata for the Kodokan was realized after a group of Kodokan kodansha got their collective butts kicked soundly in Paris, France in the Pigalle area one night. The story was all over the newspapers and the Kodokan lost face severely. They decided that the judo guys needed some waza which hadn't been "sportified." It's not the waza themselves that are so important but the distance and timing differences which make up the goshin jutsu no kata.

Whether this story is true or not is up for debate...I wasn't there, but have heard it from several sources which I feel ought to know.

6th January 2001, 08:39
Hi Chuck,

Originally posted by TIM BURTON

Just as an aside, did you know that Tomiki also referred to the Koryu Dai San Kata he created for his system as Goshin Jutsu.
Tim Burton

Tim Burton

6th January 2001, 08:48
Hi, Chuck,
I had always called it goshin jutsu no kata, at least since about 1969 or 1970 when I was first exposed to aikido, and in that dojo in NYC, where I was teaching a few classes for my workout exchange, saw what the two in hakama were doing. After some time, I asked what the technique was they were doing, and the elder of the two said "goshin jutsu no kata." Yada yada, I was very interested, as while it looked completely new to me, I do know they were playing randori, and they spoke of Tomiki Sensei. This was when I first looked into it, and joined the classes there while I was in New York.

Anyway, since I know the goshin jutsu of the Kodokan now, and much was similar, that is what I call it. It was only when Mr. Burton asked:up: if it were meant to be a kata, did I actually look at the modern list (from 1958 and the more recent edition), did I notice it was not listed as GJ no kata, but simply Kodokan GJ. Still, it is one of seven kata taught now at the Kodokan, but since randori no kata includes the fifteen throws of the nage no kata, and those of the katami no kata, the list would have to be eight, at least, but probably nine. Add go no sen no kata and there are ten. If you add the gaeshi no kata, then eleven, but this could go on for some time, if it were an issue. I don't really see it as one, but I admit to be taken aback a little.

Politics is everywhere. The Kodokan was long since that of Kano and Yamashita, etc., on the day Kano died. Even beginning in the thirties, Kano was largely a figure head.

Thanks for your imput, Chuck.


BTW: I love stories as the one you tell here. It may or may not be true, but in some form, there is probably some truth to it. Read Tokimune Takeda Sensei's story of how his father, Sokaku, "beat up a bunch of judoka" and if taken as said by the son, it is as romatic a story as one can tell. But there is always some truth in a legend such as this, and I don't doubt that some judoka of the day had chips on their shoulders, still fresh and being braggarts of their successes, leaving out, of course, their "loss of face" in others. No one, or no one system is guilt-free in these pecadillos.

[Edited by MarkF on 01-06-2001 at 04:03 AM]