Some jujutsu videos from the 1990s

During the second wave of the COVID-19 epidemic, I spent some time in January transferring video footage of jujutsu training from old VHS tapes that had been sitting in a cupboard since 2000. I included a link to one of these videos demonstrating some defences against knife attacks in my earlier post on my martial arts career.

The tapes date back to the 1990s when I was training with the Kokusai Jujutsu Ryu at the Australian National University and the KJR main dojo in Queanbeyan. These were transferred from the original VHS tapes, and so quality is not great. In the following short video, I am demonstrating jujutsu defences against attacks with baton (short stick) in 1995.

The following video was taken during a training session at the ANU Jujutsu Club, Canberra, in 1998. Zoltan Bacskai is attacking with a sword, a Japanese katana. This sword has a sharp blade and its important to control the blade during the defence and throw, not only to avoid injury, but also to avoid cutting the mats. During a national championship a few years earlier, I was too slow avoiding a sword strike and had my throat cut. The cut was not serious, a few centimetres in length and about a mllimetre deep, but it bled freely and certainly impressed the audience.

The core training of the KJR was in defending against unarmed attacks, and there was a lot of emphasis on throws. I and other senior students particularly enjoyed practicing various aerial and sacrificial throws which not only looked spectacular but were also very powerful and usually quite unexpected techniques.  The opening sequence of the following video shows me performing Reverse Kangaroo Throw, in which I grasp the opponents shoulders from behind, and jump up placing both feet on the hips. This is followed by a Kangaroo Throw, in which I perform the same technique from the front. This is similar to the Stomach Throw, or tomoe nage, also a traditional throw of judo. Unlike tomoe nage in which you fall backwards with one foot in the opponent’s stomach, the kangaroo throw involves jumping up onto the opponent, so they bear your entire weight, and as they fall forwards and you hit the ground with your back, you project the opponent into a throw with both feet. Its possible to throw an opponent quite a distance with this technique and only a well trained opponent would be able to successful breakfall out of it.

This video was taken during a demonstration in Queanbeyan in August 1999.

This longer video, taken at the same demonstration in 1999, shows senior students of the Ryu demonstrating throws and counterthrows for unarmed attacks. Held in August 1999 in Queanbeyan, NSW, Australia.

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