Archive for the 'Media Review' Category

Aug 04 2014

Tetsuzan back in Print

Published by under Media Review

You can once again purchase Tetsuzan Bujinkan Densho.  This book is a print of newsletters which have articles from Hatsumi Sensei and the senior Shihan.  The articles which tell you about training methods and the dangers of incorporating incorrect movement into your kihon.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who is curious about the senior instructors thoughts on training.

Your life is on the line, practise well.

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Apr 09 2009

US West Coast Tai Kai

Published by under Media Review

Recently there was a tai kai featuring two friends of mine, Paul Masse and Rob Renner.  You can see a preview for the video here.  It can be purchased at for 29.95 US.

I am waiting for my copy right now actually.  I usually would not pre-approve a video but these are two guys who have significant Japan experience.  There is a real connection that they have which I have to insist people analyze and try to emulate.

A short note about Paul and Rob.  Paul Masse trains weekly with sensei where he is occasionally translating.  In fact all the times that I have been in Japan I think I have been to one Hatsumi Sensei class where I did not see him.  The same can be said about Rob.

In addition to Sensei’s classes Rob trains with Oguri, Nagato, Noguchi and Seno Senseis.  He occasionally translates for Oguri and Nagato senseis.  (Rob also teaches 5 classes a week at his own dojo.)

Thus you can be sure that you are in good hands when you learn from them.  That’s all I have to say about this video, for now.

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Oct 16 2008

You can’t learn true budo by video

Published by under Media Review

This goes for written material as well.  The thing that constantly amazes me is what people see as effective budo and what actually feels like effective budo.  I have been pointed once again to the YouTube to watch martial arts video.  This is of course always a toss up as you don’t know what quality of information you will receive.  You can be watching a demo from someone you know is good, but as a result of teaching or trying to explain fine points it looks like garbage.  You can also see lousy practitioners seeming great because of awesome camera work.

I guess what I would like to pass on to all of those reading is you can’t trust your eyes when it comes to Budo.  If you try to use your eyes alone, you won’t know what’s really going on.  There is an element to true budo that requires a feeling.  If it were not like this Japan would not be a trip which is neccessary to make.

Judge what is good and bad by feeling it, not by seeing it on video.

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Sep 08 2008

Attributes of a Budoka review

Published by under Media Review

As promised I will do a short book review.  I have hardly any time for reading, especially with the seminar that I just hosted.  Now that it is finished I have had a chance to collect my thoughts and re-read the book, I am ready to give my exalted opinion.

The Book is setup in such a way that it presents the attribute, gives the definition and the proceeds with advice and exercises to improve the attribute.  There for example is a section on mechanics.  It starts with a dictionary definition of mechanics, then explains the budo concept of mechanics and it’s importance.  Finally you are treated to what training you need to do to improve your mechanics.

This is so simple a concept but it was missing from the Bujinkan in book form.  Too often we as Bujinkan members hide behind the way things are done in Japan to realize that the training in Japan is to pass on as much information as possible.  It is our responsibility to actually find ways to train what we are shown.  This is a book that allows us to take proper responsibility for our actions and training.

A skill list, training drills and some of the old conditioning exercises as an added bonus.  I highly recommend this book, it is a short read and well worth the yen.

The cover of the book.
Despite the personal signed copy I can assure you my review was objective.
Despite the personal signed copy I can assure you my review was objective.

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