Something wrong in the Genbukan?

noehnongwi

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I noticed the Genbukan is changed since 10 years ago and not for the better. For example...

Taikais feel different. They used to be more enjoyable, we’d do one Ryuha in four days and test in it on the last day. There were demonstrations of other techniques, sometimes by Soke’s old Sensei. Nowadays Taikais are just cramming in the Ryuha as quickly as possible, sometimes two or three Ryuha in one Taikai and nothing else is demonstrated. We spend an entire day doing all the tests and things are often pretty disorganised.

There used to be half a dozen Shihan at Taikais. They’d demonstrate techniques and walk around helping while we practiced them. For the last 5 years the only Shihan I seen at Taikais is Soke’s own son Kotaro Shihan. I’ve heard that all the other Shihan have left the Genbukan.

Entire dojos who were at every Taikai aren’t there anymore, no students from that school at all or their Sensei. No one talks about it but I’ve heard that several dojos have been kicked out and that their Senseis have no idea why. Or if there was a known problem they have no idea how it couldn’t be solved.

It all feels very wrong. I’m sad that Taikais have changed, that dojos have been kicked out, and that Soke has lost all his top-level students, that can’t be a good sign. I want to keep doing this martial art for all my life, but I’m worried about the Genbukan and where I stand in it. I don’t want to start over with another school after all this time or spend decades training, perhaps even become a Sensei myself one day, only then be kicked out for no reason and lose what I’ve invested.

Anyone know what’s going on in the Genbukan? Anyone have similar experiences or advice to share?
 

Yamabushii

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I'm surprised this thread never received any replies. My first Genbukan taikai wasn't until 2015 or 2016 so unfortunately I can't comment on how they were 10 years ago. What I can comment on is that since my teacher and a bunch of us under him left the Genbukan a couple years back, we ended up connecting with a lot of X-Kan "ex-pats". In speaking with many of them, we began realizing how similar many of our stories/reasons for leaving were. I don't want to speak ill of anyone or mention others by name without their consent so I'll leave all of that stuff out, but I will say that in my less than 10 years in the Genbukan, even I noticed things taking a turn for the worst. Fortunately, many of us who left have found it as one of the best decisions we have all ever made with respect to running martial arts schools.
 

Tony Dismukes

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I don’t want to start over with another school after all this time or spend decades training, perhaps even become a Sensei myself one day, only then be kicked out for no reason and lose what I’ve invested.
I don't have any useful information about the internal political workings of the Genbukan (except to note that weird political in-fighting seems to be ubiquitous in the X-kans, going back to before Tanemura broke away from Hatusmi to form his own organization).

I will opine that if what you are learning in the Genbukan is valuable to you, then you won't have lost it if your dojo happens to end up splitting away from or getting kicked out of the organization. Any physical skills or life lessons you have gained are just as valid whether or not you are still officially a member of the Genbukan. I drifted away from the Bujinkan after about 10 years of training and explored a wide variety of other arts. The aspects of my Bujinkan training which I found to still hold value after I broadened my experience are still with me. I'm sure you'll find the same thing if your circumstances end up changing.
 

Yamabushii

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I don't have any useful information about the internal political workings of the Genbukan (except to note that weird political in-fighting seems to be ubiquitous in the X-kans, going back to before Tanemura broke away from Hatusmi to form his own organization).

I will opine that if what you are learning in the Genbukan is valuable to you, then you won't have lost it if your dojo happens to end up splitting away from or getting kicked out of the organization. Any physical skills or life lessons you have gained are just as valid whether or not you are still officially a member of the Genbukan. I drifted away from the Bujinkan after about 10 years of training and explored a wide variety of other arts. The aspects of my Bujinkan training which I found to still hold value after I broadened my experience are still with me. I'm sure you'll find the same thing if your circumstances end up changing.

Absolutely agree to this. Well said.
 
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