George Kirby, Budoshin JuJitsu, Distance Learning



I've always been interested in Jujitsu...and at some point in the future I will study it somewhere (probably when I get more fully grounded in Kenpo). I'd like some opinions on George Kirby, the Budoshin Jujitsu he teaches and his website/ distance learning course. Any thoughts would be helpful. George is the real deal from all I've read and heard about question. His Jujitsu rep is excellent and spans decades. What is fascinating is his website. He has an 8 DVD set with student handbook which teaches the entire system and a complete approach to test for rank by video with him. Here is an excerpt from his site at

The BJJY is not currently formally testing for rank below the grade of 3rd kyu [3rd brown belt]. BJJY members may, however, submit evaluation tapes, covering the tests described in the Student Handbook. I will do an audiotape evaluation of your progress, indicating strengths, weaknesses, and areas that require particular attention. A certificate of rank will be issued if you meet the belt rank criteria. As a BJJY member, you may submit as many evaluation tapes per year as they wish. As a BJJY member, you are entitled to two free tape evaluations per year if you have a "regular" membership; 1/year with "associate" membership. There is a minimal charge for additional videotape evaluations. On site evaluations can also be arranged at seminars or at my dojo. The BJJY requires formal testing starting with Sankyu to make sure that students are progressing in the art a competent manner. This involves sending a pre-evaluation tape and answering questions on a short-answer written test. If the pre-evaluation tape and written test are satisfactory then you will be sent the formal testing procedure. On site testing can also be arranged at seminars or at my dojo. There is a minimal charge for testing. Formal testing is absolutely required for all Black Belt candidates! There is also a written essay and oral exam required for all dan grades prior to the mat testing. There is a minimal charge for testing. Complete testing details are available for Black Belt candidates in the Black Belt Handbook. Certificates of rank are issued for all grades when the candidate meets the requirements, successfully passes all written, oral, & performance portions, and has a current BJJY and AJA membership.


Sr. Grandmaster
MTS Alumni
Aug 28, 2001
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Terre Haute, IN
George Kirby is certainly well known and very competent; I don't know anything about his distance learning program. Use Search and Similar Threads for more discussions on the general topic of distance learning though.

Mark Barlow

Yellow Belt
Jun 2, 2005
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Alabama Gulf Coast
George Kirby is an extremely nice guy. He have a knack for organization and promoting Budoshin and I think most of his students are competent. I've visited his dojo a couple of times, attended tournaments his people have hosted and trained with some of the instructors who belong to the group. As a rule, they're nice, dedicated folks with a decent understanding of Jujutsu. However, I don't think much of long distance learning (kind of like long distance romances, not much physical interaction) so I'd look for a local instructor.

If there isn't a Jujutsu dojo nearby, look into Judo or Aikido.

Mark Barlow


Blue Belt
Jan 26, 2005
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Although I believe it is best to learn directly from a qualified teacher, some times it is not possible.

I have had a lot of communication with George Kirby and even own a copy of the tapes. I bought them for a reference and never tested with him for anything.

The combination of tapes, books and support materials provides a lot of detailed information. It is one of the best of the "home study" programs I have seen.

Plus Mr. Kirby is a good guy to deal with.


Black Belt
Jul 27, 2005
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That's right Jim san, Prof. Kirby is very nice person. Sensei has his books & videos (not all), and I find almost all the techniques are very usable. I especially like the self-defense tape.

Mr. Kirby and my sensei has been corresponding since the late 90s. My sensei and Prof. Kirby both are connected by the way of Prof. Brosious.

My sensei agrees with you that there is no way somebody could learn an art as complex as Jujutsu through videos and books. Distance learning is possible for accounting and computer lessons, but not a physical art like jujutsu. However, like Jim san, he agrees that the best combination is to train in a dojo with supplemental help from videos, books, and a constant correspondence with a high-ranked & experienced sensei.

BTW sensei, if you read this, I hope it's OK if I borrow the books & videos a little bit longer.. :)


White Belt
Dec 22, 2007
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I do both the distance learning and with Sensei Kirby in Santa Clarita. The videos has helped me accelerate my learning (as well as testing). I had an ACL injury and was not able to do physical practice. Yet, when it cam time to test for my green belt (I skipped yellow) - I pulled it off with ease and went beyond the basic requirements. I took what I learned from the videos and did some mental rehearsal (using a combination of visual, auditory, and kinesthetic modalities). Even one of blackbelt testers (besides Sensei Kirby) thought some of what I did was at the blackbelt level. I told him that I had a blackbelt in Kenpo and was a full instructor in Jeet Kune Do. I think my experience in the arts also helped.

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