what's the difference? Gyokko Ryu Koshijutsu --- Gyokkushin Ryu Ninjutsu

Discussion in 'Koryu Corner' started by ginny, May 25, 2009.

  1. ginny

    ginny White Belt

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    hello guys\

    what is the difference between these two?

    Gyokko Ryu and Gyokkushin Ryu

    hope someone can help.

    thanks


    ginny
     
  2. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Hi,

    Well, where to start? Let's begin with a little history, shall we? The Gyokko Ryu was formed from knowledge brought to Japan by Cho Gyokko, or Yo Gyokko, from China where it was said to have been developed by a princess or lady-in-waiting in the Imperial Court (or possibly a small-statured bodyguard). In Japan, it passed through a number of persons until it made it's way to Hakuun Tozawa (of Hakuun Ryu Ninjutsu), the official founder of the Ryu. This was in the mid-1100's (the official date is around 1165).

    The main characteristics of the Ryu are a common use of 50/50 weight distibution in the kamae, frequent use of thumb and fingertip strikes to vital points (kyusho), and a focus on limb controls over throws (although it does use these quite well as well). It also has a great habit of changing direction during mid-technique, adding to the torque and power, as well as making it harder for the opponent to know which direction to go in to escape.

    The Gyokko Ryu continued to be passed down through the generations until it came to it's 12th Head, Sogyokkan Ritsushi. Sogyokkan had a number f very prominent students, amongst them Akimoto Kanai Moriyoshi who founded the Gikan Ryu based on his knowledge of Gyokko Ryu, and Sasaki Gendayu Sadayasu, founder of Gyokushin Ryu.

    The Gyokushin Ryu is said to possibly have no formal techniques, with your skill being based on your abilities learnt from Gyokko Ryu. The only problem with this idea is the many generations the two arts were separated, but the Gyokko Ryu (or at least a form of it) may have been a part of Gyokushin's structure in the past. What is said to be known about it is that it contains a lot of throws, with a large emphasis on sutemi nage (sacrifice throws).

    It has also been suggested that the Gyokushin Ryu, or at least part of it, may have gone into the development of Judo, again, particularly it's sutemi nage waza, with it being taught by Takamatsu or Akimoto (or both) as guest instructors at the Kodokan.

    Very little has been shown or taught from the Gyokushin Ryu, with the two only sources I know of being a version of the Kihon Happo presented to Pedro Fleitas at a Tai Kai (and filmed there), and the end of the Bujinkan Koppojutsu DVD. This makes Gyokushin Ryu (along with Koto Ryu, Gikan Ryu, and Kumogakure Ryu) a form of koppojutsu, rather than the Kosshijutsu of Gyokko Ryu from which it sprang.

    For the record, I tend to look at each individual Ryu as having a particular approach, summed up in a single sentence for ease of understanding. It doesn't give the entire picture, but can help in shaping an understanding, particularly in the beginning. For example, Koto Ryu is, to me, "the art of striking", as it's emphasis is on striking over grappling (a very non-Japanese approach, by the way); Takagi Yoshin Ryu is "the art of no hestitation"; Togakure Ryu is "the art of escape"; Kukishinden Ryu is "the art of the battlefield"; Shinden Fudo Ryu is "the art of natural movement/nature"; Kumogakure Ryu is "the art of disappearing"; Gikan Ryu is "the art of distance"; Gyokko Ryu is "the art of changing direction"; and Gyokushin Ryu is "the art of space".

    By this I mean that Gyokushin Ryu focuses on manipulating the space between you and your opponent(s), often creating a vacuum for the opponent to be sucked into, pulling them into their own destruction.

    I don't know that this has made sense, but hope it has helped a bit.
     
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  3. ginny

    ginny White Belt

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    wow chris...

    that is some reply thank you, very grateful.

    ginny
     
  4. newtothe dark

    newtothe dark Purple Belt

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    Chris is still the CHAMP of answers!!!!!
     
  5. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Shucks, you guys are going to make me blush... if I blushed...
     
  6. Obi Wan Shinobi

    Obi Wan Shinobi Green Belt

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    But wasn't Gyokko Ryu once referred to as Gyokko Ryu Ninpo? I'm not sure which book I got that info from but if my memories serves me correctly it was first known as Gyokko Ryu Ninpo (or Ninpo Taijutus?) Gyokko Ryu Shitojutsu and then finally Gyokko Ryu Kosshijutsu....So if it was once referred as a Ninpo then wouldn't that qualify it as a Ninjutsu lineage and not a Samurai lineage????
     
  7. Dale Seago

    Dale Seago Black Belt

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    "Ninjutsu lineage" vs. "samurai lineage" is an artificial distinction inasmuch as most of those in the Iga/Koga region we would consider "ninja" today were either rural samurai, or were trained and led by them.
     
  8. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Hi Pablo,

    Yes, very correct. In fact, if forced to classify, I would class Gyokko as one of the Ninjutsu-related arts... but, as Dale said, there is so much cross-over and confusion that it is very hard to get a definate classing on most things.

    But for the sake of completion, Gyokko Ryu was originally refered to as Gyokko Ryu Ninjutsu (Ninpo seems to be a later term). The 10th Soke, Sakagami Taro Kunishige (also founder of Koto Ryu) restructured the system in to Gyokko Ryu Shitojutsu, and then the 12th Soke (Sogyokkan Ritsushi, mentioned above) restructured it again into Gyokko Ryu Kosshijutsu.

    This has probably either cleared things up, or just added to the confusion... hope the former.
     
  9. Obi Wan Shinobi

    Obi Wan Shinobi Green Belt

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    Thanks Dale and Chris,
    Actually that does clear things up for me. I know that theres a blurr between the ryus but just is confusing. Thanks again.
     

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