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Tomiki’s Koryu Goshin-No-Kata and Taiho-Jutsu

In a previous article (Kodokan Goshin-Jutsu and Taiho-Jutsu: Two Sides of the Same Coin) I compared the Taiho-Jutsu course to the twenty-one defensive moves of Kodokan Goshin-Jutsu and found them to be similar in theory and practice.  A similar comparison may be made to Koryu Goshin-No-Kata (traditional defense forms) of Tomiki Aikido.

In formulating his own system of Aikido, Kenji Tomiki (1900–1979) noted that there were many techniques which could not be executed in randori (free-style practice).  Taking fifty of these techniques, Tomiki developed the Koryu Goshin-No-Kata.  These forms consist of kneeling techniques, standing techniques, knife techniques, sword defenses, spear defenses, and sword vs. sword techniques.  With these categories, it may not seem immediately obvious what the relationship is to Taiho-Jutsu, or the practicality of many of the techniques.  What needs to be remembered is that Tomiki Sensei was the chief Aikido instructor for S.A.C.'s Combative Measures program, from which the Taiho-Jutsu course was derived. 


Tomiki differed from his teacher, Aikido's founder Morehei Ueshiba, in that he advocated free-style, competitive practice in the dojo, where the techniques were practiced in a fairly realistic manner.  This reflected into the complete S.A.C. program, as well as the current U.S.T.J.F. course, belt rank system, and Combative Measures program.  In the Koryu kata, Tomiki Sensei's wisdom and philosophy is ever-present.

While sword, spear, and kneeling techniques are not part of the Taiho-Jutsu course, the movements incorporate the taisabaki found in Taiho-Jutsu, and the techniques of Koryu have the same logic and approach behind them as does Taiho-Jutsu.  Here is where we clearly see the relationship between the two.  The unarmed techniques would seem to be a positive supplement to the Kyu/Dan system, and at an advanced level, even the weapon and kneeling techniques would seem to be complementary, despite the impracticality of sword and spear in today's police work and combative measures situations.  While the Koryu techniques are not intended to be a self-contained system as Kodokan Goshin-Jutsu is, they are in fact ways to reinforce and enhance the similar techniques already found in the complete Taiho-Jutsu program.

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