The Gentle Art – Ju-Jitsu | Lewes Martial Arts

Here at Lewes Martial Arts – Bushido Kwai Dojo we teach both Judo and Ju-Jitsu : the gentle art. To understand why it is gentle I want to offer a quote from Jigaro Kano, the founder of Judo who started as a student of Ju-Jitsu.

“To understand what is meant by gentleness or giving way, let us say a man is standing before me whose strength is ten, and that my own strength is but seven. If he pushes me as hard as he can, I am sure to be pushed back or knocked down, even if I resist with all my might. This is opposing strength with strength. But if instead of opposing him I give way to the extent he has pushed, withdrawing my body and maintaining my balance, my opponent will lose his balance. Weakened by his awkward position, he will be unable to use all his strength. It will have fallen to three. Because I retain my balance, my strength remains at seven. Now I am stronger than my opponent and can defeat him by using only half my strength, keeping the other half available for some other purpose. Even if you are stronger than your opponent, it is better first to give way. By doing so you conserve energy while exhausting your opponent.”
(Kano : Kodokan Judo, 1986)

Moral Code

But if it is gentle then is it practical and is it successful. So the vital question was always: “Does it work; is it effective against an aggressor?” When Ju-Jitsu was being reformed and modernised in the 1880s and 1890s it was rigorously tested,  by the results of individual duels and public competitions among the members of the various jujitsu schools in Japan A description is offered in E. J. Harrison’s work, The Fighting Spirit of Japan:

“Such a process of qualification (one might say elimination) through practical testing, insured a continuous striving to perfect both the tactics and the strategic ways of employing them. It also established the reputations of those schools where that strategic perfection was highly pronounced. There were innumerable jujitsu schools which developed extremely effective methods of combat through the skilled adaptation of the principle of ju to their techniques. The following are mentioned prominently (among many others) in chronicles dealing with Japanese martial arts as having been notable jujitsu schools: the Tenjin-Shinyo ryu, the Takenouchi ryu, the Daito ryu, and the Kito ryu.” (ryu means school)

Do you want to learn a Traditional Japanese Martial Art, that engages with a gentle flexibility and allows the weak to stand up to the strong ?

If so,  “Complete” martial art like Ju-Jitsu has all of the tools necessary to be able to support you and  evolve and adapt with the times. Call us now.



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