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Japanese martial arts

Traditional Japanese Martial Arts: – Koryū Bujutsu and Bugei focus on traditional schools of martial arts pre-Meiji Restoration. – These arts emphasize practical application in […]

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Traditional Japanese Martial Arts:

– Koryū Bujutsu and Bugei focus on traditional schools of martial arts pre-Meiji Restoration.
– These arts emphasize practical application in real-world or battlefield scenarios.
– Martial arts like Jujutsu and Naginatajutsu fall under this category.
– Traditional rituals, techniques, and tournaments are still followed in arts like Sumo.
– Swordsmanship, spear fighting (Sōjutsu), and Shinobi no jutsu are also part of this group.

Modern Japanese Martial Arts:

– Gendai Budō encompasses modern martial arts post-Meiji Restoration.
– Arts like Judo, Aikido, and Kendo are part of this category.
– Modern martial arts prioritize individual self-improvement and may include a sporting element.
– Iaidō represents the modernization of centuries-old practices within gendai budō.
– Schools of gendai budō and koryū may share historical origins and types of martial arts.

Specific Martial Arts Practices:

– Judo, Kendo, and Iaidō are specific martial arts practices in Japan.
– Judo emphasizes self-improvement and competition, evolving from traditional jujutsu.
– Kendo is based on Japanese sword-fighting techniques influenced by Ittō-ryū school.
– Iaidō focuses on mental presence and spiritual growth, modernizing traditional iaijutsu.
– Aikido emphasizes harmony with ki, blending techniques, and personal development.

Historical and Philosophical Concepts:

– Bushidō, the code of honor for samurai, emphasizes courage and loyalty.
– Concepts like Aiki, Kokoro, and Budō are central to Japanese martial arts philosophies.
– Kiai, the fighting spirit manifested as a shout, is essential in combat.
– Attitude and character development are key aspects in martial arts practice.
– Japanese martial arts employ hard and soft methods for strategic application.

Evolution and Diversity of Japanese Martial Arts:

– Japanese martial arts have evolved with changing societal needs and tools of war.
– Schools specialized in major battlefield weapons during different historical periods.
– Feudal Japan warriors used various weapons, each with its own art of wielding.
– Modern martial arts prioritize self-improvement over combat application.
– Japanese martial arts showcase diversity in training tools, methods, and philosophical approaches.

Japanese martial arts (Wikipedia)

Japanese martial arts refers to the variety of martial arts native to the country of Japan. At least three Japanese terms (budō, bujutsu, and bugei) are used interchangeably with the English phrase Japanese martial arts.

Late 19th-century photograph of a sohei fully robed and equipped, armed with a naginata (薙刀) and tachi (太刀)

The usage of the term budō (武道) to mean martial arts is a modern one: historically the term meant a way of life encompassing physical, spiritual and moral dimensions with a focus on self-improvement, fulfillment or personal growth. The terms bujutsu (武術) and bugei (武芸) have different meanings from budō, at least historically speaking. Bujutsu refers specifically to the practical application of martial tactics and techniques in actual combat. Bugei refers to the adaptation or refinement of those tactics and techniques to facilitate systematic instruction and dissemination within a formal learning environment.

Translations of Japanese martial arts
Term Translation
budō (武道) martial way
bujutsu (武術) martial technique alternatively science, art or craft of war
bugei (武芸) martial art
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