View Full Version : Sanzyuryu Jujutsu

Keith Nelson
12th March 2002, 20:06
Hi all,

I just have a brief request for information, if anyone has any, about a style called Sanzyuryu Jujutsu. They claim that it stretches back to pre-712 AD. THis claim alone sets off my warning alarms, but in addition they semi-subtly claim to have been the original progenitor art for aikido, judo, & karate. Does anyone have any info on this style or on the dubious legitimacy of their claims? If so, I'd like to hear it, as I always thought it was the Takenouchi-ryu lineage that was the oldest known jujutsu line (and that only went back to the 1500's...?). ANyways, I'd like to know more, as I've got aquaintances who're interested in training with them.

Thanks for your help.

Keith Nelson

12th March 2002, 21:47
Well, without even delving into the art itself, the claims they are making as forerunners to judo, aikido and karate-do are quite dubious.

1)As we all know, judo was founded by Jigoro Kano in approx. 1882(?), and was originally a combination of Kito-ryu jujutsu and Tenjin Shinyo ryu jujutsu. Other elements were included, but these were the primary arts. Kano modified them, and viola!, judo (this is a gross generalization, I realize, but necessary for the sake of brevity:) ).
Unless the art claims to be the forerunner to the root arts of judo (highly unlikely), then the truth to this claim is quite unlikely.

2)Not an expert on the lineage of karate, but Funokoshi discusses the origins in regards to the characters for "kara" and "te" in his book, "Karate-do: My Way of Life." What became known as "empty hands" was originally "chinese hands." The meaning of "kara" changed over time. Thus, looking at the unique influence of China and its further development in Okinawa, it is also unlikely they are the forerunners to karate.

3) Aikido's direct technical foundation is Daito-ryu aikijujutsu, the art disseminated by Sokaku Takeda (Ueshiba was Takeda's student and modified Daito-ryu in his later years into Aikido). So, unless they claim to be the forerunners to Daito-ryu (again, highly unlikely), then the truth of this claim is also quite unlikely.

In short, I doubt they are who they say they are. Of course, I've been wrong before, and would welcome any further info others may have regarding this alleged koryu.

Arman Partamian
Daito-ryu Study Group

Jeff Hamacher
12th March 2002, 23:51

you may want to take a quick look at the Koryu Books website for the article "Ninjutsu: Is It Koryu Bujutsu". although not directly related to your thread it does offer some insights on the origins of ryuha or organized "schools" of martial arts. the claim that this school of jujutsu formed almost before the beginning of the 8th century would mean that it predates the earliest authenticated bugei ryuha by several hundred years. FWIW.