Daito-ryu aikijujutsu (literally: Great Eastern School) is an ancient and noble bujutsu School; ancient because it was founded in 1087 a.d. by Yoshimitsu Minamoto (1056-1127); noble because its genesis and evolution are along all classical Japan history. The martial teachings of the school were transmitted secretly within the Takeda family up until the present days. The 36th Soke, Takeda Tokimune (1916-1993), decided to develop these marvelous self-defense techniques in all the world only in late 1988, accepting the first foreign students and thus giving birth to the renown of this art. All the Aikijujutsu techniques practiced within the School are the one and only techniques practiced by the bushi of the Minamoto Clan (1100), and later Takeda Clan (1500) families and, at last, the Aizu Clan. These techniques were faithfully handed on to the present days by the Takeda family. Purpose of the School is to pass on in a correct way the teachings received by Takeda Tokimune, who received them from his father Takeda Sokaku (1860-1943), 35th inheritor of the Daito School.
With the word Aikijujutsu ( 合気柔術 ) we refer to the practice and training of the techniques of jujutsu and aikinojutsu only, while with Aikibudo ( 合気武道 ) it is meant the practice of jujutsu, aikijujutsu, Ono-ha Itto-ryu kenjutsu ( 小野派一刀流 ) and other weapons. It was Takeda Tokimune ( 武田時宗 ) to change the name of the art inherited by his father, trying to stress the importance, in a traditional martial art, of practicing kenjutsu. Tokimune then taught to his most trusted students the kata of the Ono-ha style with those modifications that his father introduced; so today this style is called Takeda-den Ono-ha Itto-ryu.
What we practice?
The Daito-ryu is a School that teaches a complete martial art, among the hand-to-hand combat techniques with atemiwaza (striking and hitting techniques), shimewaza (strangle-holds), kansetsuwaza (levers on joints and articulations), osaewaza (immobilizations), nagewaza (throwing techniques), aikinojutsu (throwing to the ground using Aiki), kyushuwaza ( pressure on vital points on the human body), the practitioner studies the use of all the ancient weapon of the bushi (like katana, yari, bo etc.). The many techniques of the aikijujutsu are transmitted and catalogued in scrolls (densho) which, in this case of the hiden mokuroku, is divided in a series (kajo), of an increasing difficulty of execution..