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A Piece of Taiho-Jutsu Nostalgia

While searching through some boxes for material on the S.A.C Combative measures program, I came upon a piece of Taiho-Jutsu "history".  It was this piece of nostalgia which lit the flame under me for Taiho-Jutsu.  It was an article from the October 1967 issue of Black Belt magazine, titled, "Judo Is Not Enough for the Police".  Sharing pieces of this article, written by Andy Adams, may bring smiles to those who remember it, and prove interesting to those who are "young" in the field.

The article begins by stating, "Nowhere in the world is the life of a policeman really a happy one.  Generally, the hours are long, the pay is inadequate, and the risks high".  It continues by citing statistics which included, that "...since 1954, more than 40 Japanese policemen have been killed by criminals".  Continuing, the article describes how the traditional Judo position of grabbing the sleeve and collar leaves the officer "wide open fora counter-attack".  Further, it describes the officer's vulnerability "...to an assailant armedwith a knife, a stick or a club".  "Judo has become more of a sport than a martial art.  It's too weak for self-defense", according to Prof. K. Takizawa, director (at the time) of the National Police Academy's technical training program.  Another person mentioned in the article was Prof. K. Hosokawa, whose name many may recognize as being one of the chief Taiho-Jutsu instructors to S.A.C. personnel at the Kodokan.


We then see the article describing the addition of Aikido to the training, since it “...is far more effective for police work than Karate, which depends on kicks and sharp jabs, can kill or maim".  It further referred to the jutte, the forerunner of the modern baton, describing them as "dull-bladed sabres".  To remedy the deficiencies in the existing self-defense program, a five week training course in "taihojitsu, as modified with the addition of Karate and Aikido", was "inaugurated".  "This course is known as "the art of making arrests' and includes the most effective techniques in self-defense.  It covers not only the Oriental methods but the western style as well".  We're additionally informed that the course originated in 1947 "by a group of twenty-two experts", and included sixty-six kata for offensive and defensive action.  Since kata, according to the N.P.A., did not allow for flexibility, "spontaneous movements receive greater emphasis". 

The article contains more than this brief "appetizer", but the above gives one the "flavor" of Taiho-Jutsu at the time of its modification in the mid-'60s, written at the time, by a correspondent in Japan.

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