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Dojo Kun


Work to perfect your character


Have fidelity in seeking



Cultivate a spirit of endeavor

and perseverance


Always act with good manners


Refrain from violent and

uncontrolled behavior





This section includes,


Shindo Muso Ryu Jodo is comprised of the 12 Kihon, 64 Kata, many Henka waza (Variations of kata), and several other assimilated martial art schools (Fuzoku Ryuha) in addition to the tachi, resulting in a deep and complex discipline.  Jodo is considered one of the most difficult martial arts because there is simply so much to learn. 


The Kihon are derived from Kata, and were developed and implemented into the training curriculum by Shimizu Sensei.  Jodo techniques were created to counter the strengths of other weapons.  Therefore, when practicing Kata, it always appears that the Uchidachi, tachi wielder, is defeated.


The curriculum is typically taught in the following sequence:

**Note: The words in bold print are part of the original 64 kata

  • Kihon techniques (12 Techniques)

  • Zen Nippon Kendo Renmei Seitei Jodo Kata (12 Kata)

  • Omote (12 Kata)

  • Chudan (13 Kata)

  • Ran Ai (long and short swords) (2 Kata)

  • Kasumi Shinto Ryu Ken Jutsu (12 Kata)

  • Kage (14 Kata)

  • Samidare (or Satsuki Ame) (6 Kata)

  • Uchida Ryu Tanjo Jutsu (12 Kata)

  • Gohon no Midare (5 Kata)

  • Okuden (or Shiaikuchi) (12 Kata)

  • Isshin Ryu Kusarigama Jutsu (18 Kata)

  • Ikkaku Ryu Jutte Jutsu (12 Kata)

  • Ittatsu Ryu Hojo Jutsu (25 Ties plus several undocumented ties)

  • Gokui Kata (Menkyo Kaiden only) (5 Kata)

  • Matsumura no Jo (25 Kata)

  • Matsubayashi Ryu Jujutsu (52 Techniques)



Training Principles: Why Jodo is Effective

Jodo training ventures far beyond teaching physical technique. The following "principles" are taught to develop the proper mental focus.  A deep understanding of these principles in action are the essence of Shinto Muso Ryu Jo Jutsu.  As you progress in your training, I am sure you can identify other principles besides the ones listed below.


The following principles can only be learned through Sotai Renshu, 2 person practice.  A student can learn many kata and have smooth technique, but without Sotai dosa, it is impossible to develop the concentration, physical and mental flexibility, and intuitive awareness of the opponent`s intentions.


1.  Ma-Ai 間合, and Ri-Ai

Ma-Ai, distance, refers to the space between the Shidachi and Uchidachi. The stick is versatile, flexible and advantageous over the sword because of its longer length. However, there is NO EFFECT if the distance is too short or too long:  Too short and the Shidachi gets cut by the sword; too long and there is no impact.


Ri-Ai, timing, is the second crucial element, and both are necessary.  Good timing without proper distance is ineffective.  Perfect distance and poor timing is no good either.  Together, distance and timing make the Jo a formidable and powerful weapon.


You are not doing yourself or your partner any favors by missing when you strike.  If you deliberately try to avoid hitting the other person, you are not being effective.  Consider Boxers:  How long would a boxer last in the ring if they tried to avoid hitting their opponent?  Remember that Jodo is meant to be effective and that requires 2 things:  Distance (Ma-ai) and Timing (Ri-ai).

2.  Zanshin, 残心

A definition of Zanshin is, "being in the moment." It is a state of pure concentration and total awareness as opponents face each other and spar.


There are different levels of intensity. Have you ever heard someone say something like, "Just one look from that guy will stop you dead in your tracks"?  It is the energy of this kind of intense focus that explains how someone can "dominate another person`s spirit and subdue them."


Keep your eyes and 100% of your concentration on your opponent at all times.  Many people make the mistake of relaxing and losing focus before and after a kata.  Even while doing "Osame" I have had partners that relaxed their concentration and even started goofing around.


Jo and Tachi are both weapons.  Never let down your guard.  Always be watching.  Stay focused.  Uchidachi is always looking for a way to get the advantage over Shidachi.  Likewise, Shidachi is always looking for a way to "BONK" Uchidachi.  


Me Tsuke, the act of threatening an opponent with the Jo pointed between opponent`s eyes, is an example of Zanshin in action.


3.  Shisei, 姿勢

Effective posture - includes not only your stance, but your attitude and bearing as well.


4.  Ki Ai, 気合

Ki-ai is "Eh" when striking, and "Ho" when thrusting. 


There are several reasons for Ki-ai:

1.  Safety - for your opponent and others that may be practicing nearby.

2.  Exhale - Ki-Ai at the time of impact forces the person to exhale while releasing all their energy and power at once. It is dangerous to hold your breathe when sparring; at risk of doing the Valsalva Maneuver.  

3.  Get Psyched - Ki-Ai is a way to self-encourage, overcome fear, and commit all out to the action.


5. Fudoshin, 不動心

Maintaining an unshakable spirit of calmness. Set your mind, be determined, rooted and stable both mentally and physically. Please read: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fudoshin


6. Junanshin, 柔軟心

Keep a flexible, open mind. This requires patience, the ability to set aside your opinions, previous experiences and biases, and a passion to learn. Develop a mental state of allowing - an attitude of no resistance.


7. Nintai, 忍耐

An attitude that combines perseverance, persistence, and tenacity. Hold fast to your course of action and your beliefs. Be relentless!


8. Muga Mushin, 無我無心

A pure mental state, completely empty of self (ego), emotion, thought. Please read: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mushin and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muga-mushin


9. Yoyu, 余裕
Critical margin



An offensive attack using the Jo to threaten someone.


Sen no Sen

A counter-attack, which is distinctly different from a defensive reaction.  Sen no Sen involves knowing and predicting the opponents strategy and moves, identifying the weaknesses, and deliberately countering their move.  Note: The first Sen-no-sen technique is in Oshizume (Chudan Series).


Go no Sen

A simultaneous, or mutual, attack. (This is a concept that is important to know but be aware that it is difficult to do, and does not happen within the practice of kata.)




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