Likes Likes:  0
Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 50

Thread: Research into British Jujitsu

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Bushey
    Posts
    20
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default Research into British Jujitsu

    Hi,
    My name is Eugene McFadden and I am a senior student under Mark Thomas sensei at Fudoshin jujitsu. We are a small club of adults that broke away from Kevin Pell Hanshi's Ishin Ryu Jujitsu and we are currently working to adapt and change our syllabus to overcome some short comings. Part of this process has been my taking an interest in the evolution of jujitsu in Britain. Pell Hanshi was never particularly forthcoming in the precise details of his own experience, which has lead me to do some digging.

    Having read and researched I can see that a Ishin Ryu is a break away of the WJJF, which seems to have been a creation of James Blundell, Richard Morris and Robert Clark. Pell Hanshi studied under them at the WJJF although the precise history is a little vague. I understand that there was some fraud that occurred which led to the WJJF breaking up, am I correct in this?

    I also understand that what we take to be jujitsu is, in fact, a form of altered Judo that has been mixed with some other forms of wrestling, making it a gendai martial art as opposed to a traditional koryu. So what we do is not in fact jujitsu at all, which is a shame as I took it up because I was under the impression that it as a traditional Japanese art; not that this matters so much now.

    Anyway...

    Is it possible for anyone to fill in the blanks for me regarding the evolution of jujitsu in the UK? I know that there is no direct link back to the bartitsu of Barton-Wright, but what is the precise history of the WJJF syllabus?

    Also, I'm currently on a sabbatical from work and am staying in Okinawa for an extended period of time. There's loads of Karate here that I'm picking up, but does anyone know of any traditional jujitsu on the island?

    Thanks,

    Eugene McFadden

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Chelsea, London & Souka, Saitama-ken
    Posts
    1,284
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    You will not find much koryu jujutsu on the Ryukyu islands.

    Jujutsu is a mainland art, you're better off being in kansai or kanto if you want to do some real research into the discipline.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    England
    Posts
    367
    Likes (received)
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by EugeneMcFadden View Post
    Hi,
    My name is Eugene McFadden and I am a senior student under Mark Thomas sensei at Fudoshin jujitsu. Part of this process has been my taking an interest in the evolution of jujitsu in Britain. Pell Hanshi was never particularly forthcoming in the precise details of his own experience, which has lead me to do some digging.
    If you search 'Kevin Pell'' on here, there's quite a few threads about him/mention him/his training history.

    From what I remember he had trained in Shorinji Kempo, Judo and Kyokushinkai karate.

    Good luck on your research.

    edit There is an interview here with the man:

    http://www.youtube.com/user/IshinRyu.../1/dn7lc7Ewhsg
    Last edited by bu-kusa; 25th April 2010 at 20:02.
    Paul Greaves
    ''Skill is aquired via sweat equity''

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Harrogate, North Yorkshire, UK
    Posts
    4,232
    Likes (received)
    97

    Default

    As a very general observation, is there any point in seeking lineage or sources for techniques in the modern age? Martial artists these days can pick up ideas and inspiration from so many media, in ways that wouldn't have been possible just a mere 50 years ago. Seminars, DVDs, books and magazines with photographs can illustrate concepts and tips that an experienced martial artist can go on to experiment with, developing ideas and working out practical applications in their own dojo. No, of course I don't mean Home Study courses that take you from beginner to Master in 10 episodes... but there is no denying that there are opportunities to observe an enormous variety of styles, Arts, tactics, without having to leave your own home dojo.

    In the not-too-distant past, any martial artist wishing to experience alternative instructors would have been getting on his bike (horse?) and actually travelling somewhere. The Instructor would have his own dojo and the students there would be his only students... he wouldn't be trying to run an organisation or selling books or DVDs. The records of the student, therefore, that showed how long he trained with someone, would have far more meaning in terms of what he might later come to teach. Obviously, the whole matter of qualifications/certicates/scrolls, etc. has grown to be of tremendous importance when establishing credibility for someone claiming "transmission of the art", but I'm thinking it may have had a little more meaning in the time when a person's influences were limited to those he could experience directly.

    What's the history of "jujitsu" in the UK? I really wouldn't know. But if you think of the traditional Japanese dojo; one sensei, a handful of students and one chosen successor, passing down the secret techniques through the generations... that doesn't seem to be how it went once it arrived in the UK. The whole scene was rather different, as this clip shows. I went on a half-hearted Google search to try and get some background on the clip and it leads me think that researching is a skill I do not posess. Post 27 on this thread gave my less than complete results.
    David Noble
    Shorinji Kempo (1983 - 1988)
    I'll think of a proper sig when I get a minute...

    For now, I'm just waiting for the smack of the Bo against a hard wooden floor....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    England
    Posts
    367
    Likes (received)
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tripitaka of AA View Post
    As a very general observation, is there any point in seeking lineage or sources for techniques in the modern age?

    What's the history of "jujitsu" in the UK?
    I think its important to know what it is you do, if you spend 100's of hours doing something, why not look into the roots of it. Plus if you know your arts original context then you can often see why certain things are done the way they are, and also see how appropriate they are to modern day self defense.

    The history of 'jujitsu' in the UK is really complex, not helped by the slightly misleading histories attached to many of their clubs.

    A good example of this is the two different schools in the UK currently saying they practise Tenjin Shinyo Ryu, one seems to be a modern style, one is the real deal koryu.
    Paul Greaves
    ''Skill is aquired via sweat equity''

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Posts
    177
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    The earliest "British jiujitsu" was determinedly eclectic. Barton-Wright trained in Shinden Fudo Ryu (not, apparently, the style of that name that is claimed as part of the modern Bujinkan lineage) for three years in Kobe, and also said that he had studied Kodokan judo.

    The two main jiujitsu instructors at Barton-Wright's Bartitsu Club (1899-1902), Sadakazu Uyenishi and Yukio Tani, apparently trained at the "Handa School of Jiujitsu" in Osaka; little is known about the style taught there except that it seems to have been distinguished from Kodokan judo and affiliated with both the Tenshin-Shinyo Ryu and an offshoot of the Sekiguchi-ryu which was called Daito-ryu (not to be confused with the more famous school of the same name). I think it is likely that both Uyenishi and Tani also had considerable experience competing in open high-school level jiujitsu competitions during the 1890s.

    By 1910 the situation was even more tangled, in that the British jiujitsu scene was by that time influenced by several other Japanese fighters, notably Taro Miyake and Akitaro Ono, the latter definitely coming from a strong judo background. Meanwhile, a second generation of British self defence instructors (William Garrud, Percy Longhurst, W. Bruce Sutherland et al) were continuing Barton-Wright's tradition of eclecticism. They blended their jiujitsu with various styles of European wrestling, devising jiujitsu counters to boxing attacks and so-on. It's also likely that they were influenced by other sources, such as the "Complete Kano Jiu-Jitsu" book by Hancock and Higashi, which was written in the USA but widely distributed in Europe.

    In any case, there is no evidence to suggest that the concept of strict adherence to a particular style was ever part of the early British jiujitsu "scene" at least until the early 1920s, when Professor Kano visited London and the London Budokwai formally affiliated with the Kodokan.

    Cheers,

    Tony

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Bushey
    Posts
    20
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    Regarding whether we need to know our lineage, I guess I'm doing it partly as an intellectual exercise, partly from curiosity and partly because I want to know "why these techniques, and why here?" I'm a history teacher, it seems to be in me to look into these things.

    Anyway, our syllabus is pretty diverse and we've cut a lot out (some sword techniques, some overly compliant techniques) with more cutting going on as and when. The syllabus does not have any real core as I've seen in other martial arts so I was wondering why.

    There's also a Ki element, which in asking around, I think I've traced back to Rod Sarchoski (sp?) and Juko Kai's Combat Ki. From reading around I see that there was a link between him and the WJJF that ended badly.

    Bu-Kasa-
    I've read all the Pell threads on the website a few times and remember when the whole Graystone thing went down and people here turned their attention to Ishin Ryu back a few years ago, I remember hearing little trickles here and there. Being as I was back then on the other side of the fence, as it were, reading all these posts has been enlightening, but they don't lead me any further in my search as they don't quite fit with things I was told whilst in the organisation.
    Watched that video and at 0.44 Pell says that jujitsu led to karate, that's not right, is it?

    Tony-
    Thanks for that, I do intend on getting to your seminar in London next year.

    Steve-
    Yeah, that's what I figured; still, there's plenty of Karate here to be getting on with.

    Eugene McFadden

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Chelsea, London & Souka, Saitama-ken
    Posts
    1,284
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by EugeneMcFadden View Post
    Watched that video and at 0.44 Pell says that jujitsu led to karate, that's not right, is it?

    Steve-
    Yeah, that's what I figured; still, there's plenty of Karate here to be getting on with.

    Eugene McFadden
    Eugene,

    Karate has absolutely nothing to do with jujutsu. It has something to do with the hybrid modern generic jujutsu taught in Britain, which at a base level is more of a mixture of aikido, judo and karatedo.

    Sorry if that's a gross over simplification of things, but I distinctly remember when I was training in these things, there was always the usage of a distinct mixture of judo, aikido and karatedo terminologies.

    Have a look at the culture and history of Okinawa and the Ryukyu archipelago and the amount of times those islands changed soverignty. Also look at the teaching methodology of Okinawa/Ryukyu budo and that of mainland Japanese budo; Very different methodologies.

    The atemi-waza in koryu jujutsu is a very different animal though.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    bristol
    Posts
    39
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    Hi Eugene,

    Have you checked out the articles (most notably by Graham Noble) in the old (Terry O'Neills) Fighting Arts Magazine? While they may not be specific to your school's own lineage they do offer a wealth of information to then build on with further research.

    Best Wishes -and don't forget to write up the results for the rest of us (more 'lazy' individuals that like to read.....).

    By the way, I seem to remember hearing that Bath University had been left a huge private archive relating to British Judo/Jutsu, a couple of years. Tony Wolfe from the Bartitsu organization may have more details on that.

    Good Luck,
    William
    William Derobec

    Witch hunts often end with burnt fingers....

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    bristol
    Posts
    39
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    For clarity, the archive was bequeathed a couple of years AGO, not limited in content to a 'couple of years'.

    Missed the deadline for editing.

    William
    William Derobec

    Witch hunts often end with burnt fingers....

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Posts
    177
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    The Bath University Library houses the Bowen Collection, bequeathed to them by the London Budokwai after Richard Bowen's death (Bowen, of course, having been the senior researcher into the histories of British judo and jiujitsu). I haven't visited the Library yet myself, but various other researchers have sent me material from the collection relating to my areas of interest.

    As well as a large library of judo/jiujitsu books (catalogued on the Bath University Library website, IIRC), the Bowen Collection includes a number of thus-far uncatalogued boxes of ephemera including promotional posters, pamphlets, magazine articles, letters etc. Hopefully it will be possible to have that archive catalogued for the benefit of future generations of researchers.

    My best,

    Tony

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Bushey
    Posts
    20
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    That Bath library collection does sound very interesting, I will investigate it once I'm back in country, thanks Tony and William. I will also check out Fighting Arts' website.

    Steve-
    Yeah, I figure that there's no link between Karate and jujitsu, it was a funny thing for him to say though. Am finding training in Okinawa fun, have tried a few karate schools and they are good places, relaxed with loads of history and interesting emphasis upon different aspects of technique. When you trained in jujitsu in the UK, were you with the WJJF?

    Am currently researching these names:

    James Blundell (BJJAGB)
    Richard (Dick) Morris
    Robert (Bob) Clark
    John Steadman (WJJF)
    Terry Parker
    Martin Rogers
    Dr Vearnon Bell
    Terry Griffiths
    Andy McGill

    They all seem involved in the history somehow.

    Regards,
    Eugene McFadden

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    2
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    In my 27 years I have been severely disappointed. What I thought was JuJitsu was actually Judo with some punching and kicking and I am now too embarrassed to include my black belt on my martial arts "CV".

    Virtually all Jujitsu in the UK is a form of Judo (usually a green belt or similar rank) combined with some punching and kicking that the instructor has renamed for popularity.

    The latest craze is to call anything that remotely resembles grappling as Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

    I gave up on "JuJitsu" to pursue Judo and BJJ as at least I could trace the authenticity of the instructors.

    There is an instructor where I live whose claims and style have changed based upon whatever is popular at the time:

    Ninjutsu => Jujitsu => Brazilian Jiu Jitsu => MMA

    He also claims a lineage to many different styles and every now and again transfers to a new association who promote him or "recognise" a grade He has obtained from somewhere else. The guy is actually a semi average Judo player with some basic kickboxing experience.

    In a nutshell, British Jujitsu is not Jujitsu; whether through deception or misunderstanding, there are thousands of people who believe they are practising Jujitsu when actually they aren't.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Bushey
    Posts
    20
    Likes (received)
    0

    Default

    bjjandjudfan,

    I agree with you, but what is this thing that we practice? Which is the whole reason I'm investigating this in the first place.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Essex, England, UK
    Posts
    223
    Likes (received)
    3

    Default

    Hello Eugene,

    I was just wondering whether you have searched the archives here as there are a few threads that have tackled this subject to some degree before, whilst these may not provide you with all the answers that you are seeking, they may help fill in some of the gaps, here a couple that may help:

    WJJF and soke Robert Clark
    http://www.e-budo.com/forum/showthread.php?t=22765

    WJJF (World Ju Jitsu Federation) and its origins
    http://www.e-budo.com/forum/showthread.php?t=26395

    You will basically find that WJJF was an umbrella organisation for various styles of 'Ju Jitsu' that were absorbed into it at various points, however Ju Jitsu was a catch all for those 'arts' that did not fit into other areas such as Karate, Aikido or Judo under what was the old Martial Arts Commission, and its various 'governing bodies' for various arts. As others have already said in this thread it was often a mix of a bit of Judo and Karate, although sometimes it was Karate and Aikido, or a combination of bits of all three occassionally this also included some Kung Fu. Just to further confuse matters if people had developed their own ;self defence system; that often fell into the category of Ju Jitsu as well. Most certainly Bob Clark who headed the organisation and developed the WJJF syllabus had some training in wrestling as well as other martial arts, one claim is that he originally studied under Jack Britten. However it does need to be emphasised that in the early days various different styles of Ju Jutsu (with slightly different origins) were absorbed into the WJJF before everything was standardised by Bob Clark.

    As to the fraud issue that you mentioned I believe that it was may have concerned the photocopying of some peoples signatures on certificates, one of these was Rod Sacharnoski, another was Riso Hayabuchi. However there seems to be a lack of clarity over what actually occurred. A Liverpool newspaper some years ago ran a story called 'A Samurai showdown is settled' concerning allegations that Hayabuchi had complained to the Martial Arts Commission that Mr Clark was selling certificates with Hayabuchi's signature on for 17.50. However Mr.Clark stated he was under the impression that he had been given permission to use the Hayabuchi name and that the fee charged was actually for a course and not the certificate. There were also (quite amusingly) issues regarding Sacharnoski's signature on certificates as well, Sacharnoski later claimed that it was James Blundell who was affiliated to Sacharnoski's Juko Kai organisation under the open arts division and not Bob Clark

    However I do not think that this led to any actual break up of such of the WJJF, as far as I am aware. Although Richard Morris and Bob Clarke were business partners at one point, with the former dealing the South of England, but later split to form his own organisation.

    As regards to any links to Vernon Bell, I would recommend that you contact Terry Wyngrove, who was a student of his in the early days.

    I note with interest that you state the style name you practise is Fudoshin, there was a style of that name which was absorbed at one point into the WJJF, but that style has a different history and involves names other than those that you mention.

    I hope that may be of some help,

    Regards
    Chris Norman

Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •