The methods of combat known as Ju-Jitsu are, at least by historical definition, about two thousand years old and there is even mention of them in Japanese mythology when two gods, Kajima and Kadori were said to have availed themselves of the art to chastise lawless inhabitants of the eastern provinces.
Unlike western combat, the development of Oriental combat has always been well documented, but during the feudal era in Japan, from the 11th to the 19th century, it was kept as a monopolised training programme for the elite warriors (Samurai), whose diligence and bravery have remained unsurpassed to this day.
Up to the fourteenth century, no special school had been developed. Later however, the various methods employed were carefully elaborated until, eventually, many distant sects or schools came into existence. However, during the reign of Emperor Meize, many schools were suppressed and the teachings condemned as being dangerous or barbaric. It was the aftermath of this oppression that brought the first Japanese exponents of the art to Great Britain in the late 19th century. During this period, the Pro Western Liberal Government in Japan sought the dissolution of the Bujutsu Ryu which had been formed, and replaced this with Budo systems of sport and physical culture which lacked efficiency in self defence. Thus Ju-Jitsu gave birth to Judo, Aikido, Kenjutsu, Kendo, and Karate, arts which are now recognised throughout the world as excellent sports. Karate stressed striking, omitting throws and locking techniques, Judo stressed the throws omitting the striking techniques and Aikido followed the example of Judo but placed it's bias on locking and securing techniques.
All these methods were far removed from the original Ju-Jitsu teachings which placed the emphasis on striking to stun the opponent before throwing and locking. With the return of the popularity of Ju-Jitsu, there has also been a revival in 'Ki'. In Ju-Jitsu teachings, the 'Ki' is the soul of the life force and is entwined with the practise of most Japanese Martial Arts. A separate art is devoted to it under the name of Kiai Jutsu. The force of the 'Ki' in the human body is the 'Saika Tanden' which is situated about one inch below the navel.
'Ki' demonstrates the ability to absorb with your body the power of an opponent whilst 'Yo Ki' shows itself as the ability to strike an assailant with the minimum of effort and the maximum effect. The most famous Ju-Jitsuka to bring the art of 'Ki' to Ju-Jitsu was Doshi Sawa who studied under the great 'Ki' master Jokensai Hitosubashi according to records from 1639 A.D.
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