Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Yudanshakai

[NEW IN 2015!]

The Budoshin
Ju-Jitsu Yudanshakai [BJJY] was created in 1994 to meet the needs of my black belts and inquiries by people worldwide who had purchased my Ohara Publications books, or the Panther Productions/CMA 8-DVD/MP4 series, [who wanted to have some instructional guidance as they worked through the books and the videos]. Both of  these groups wanted to have a "home". The BJJY was set up to meet these needs.

The BJJY uses a variety of methods to insure a top quality support program, blending the traditional standards and format of the art of Ju-Jitsu with modern technology. Both the Student Handbook and Black Belt Handbook will provide you with all requirements for every belt rank. This makes the instructional and testing process completely straightforward and open from the very start without any surprises for you!

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BJJY Membership Benefits:
The BJJY is the only organization to provide a modern, coordinated and comprehensive training system for the art of Budoshin Ju-Jitsu. The BJJY is able to accomplish this through an integrated program that uses the following resources that are available at various discounts in my store [click here]. Please be aware that some of these books are currently out of print, but still available from various sources on the internet.

Black Belt Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Home Study Course ©1992: Eight instructional DVDs.
Black Belt Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Home Study Course - Multimedia Version ©2015: mp4 version of the 8-dvd set
Jujitsu: Advanced Techniques for Redirecting an Opponent's Energy ©2015.
Ju-Jitsu: Basic Techniques of the Gentle Art - EXPANDED Edition
©2011 [Updates and replaces the original version published in 1983.
Ju-Jitsu: Intermediate Techniques of the Gentle Art ©1985. OUT OF PRINT
Jujitsu Nerve Techniques: The Invisible Weapon of Self Defense: ©2001. OUT OF PRINT
Advanced Jujitsu: The Science Behind the Gentle Art  ©2006.

JUJITSU FIGURE-4 LOCKS; Submission Holds of the Gentle Art  ©2009. OUT OF PRINT

Student and Black Belt Handbooks
Budoshin Ju-Jitsu [6th ed. ©2002]

 Numerous Seminar Videos [mp4 format] [click here]
Kokoro: The BJJY newsletter [currently published monthly].

Continually meeting the needs of our membership through improved service:
  • 2005: Student Handbook revised & updated to cross reference techniques in books & videos with belt-rank requirements
  • 2006: Audio evaluations can now be sent to you immediately [upon evaluation of your video - in any format listed below] as an attachment to an e-mail to you.
  • 2006: Schools who wish to be official Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Dojo can now affiliate with the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Dojo, Inc [BJJD] for these benefits. Click here to contact G. Kirby.
  • 2007: 3rd edition of the Black Belt Handbook is released with with specific criteria up through Godan [5th degree] and more guidance on 6th-10th degree promotional criteria.
  • 2008: Kokoro is now sent to members online as pdf files, resulting in a reduction in membership fees.
  • 2008: All back issues of Kokoro [since 1994], the Student Handbook, Black Belt Handbook, and Budoshin Ju-Jitsu [the "Big Book"] are now all single pdf files which can be sent as email attachments. Yes, you still have to pay for them, but it's a lot less & there's no "shipping & handling" charge any longer.
  • 2009: Kokoro [newsletter] now sent to members as a .pdf file. [Acrobat Reader is available as a free download if you don't have a program that opens pdf files.]
  • 2009: New members will receive all membership materials as pdf files through the internet; almost instant gratification and it saves trees!
  • 2009: Black Belt Handbook is updated to include honorary titles for higher ranked yudansha as well as appropriate kanji for belts plus other small corrections. Kanji information also appears on its own page in this website.
  • 2009: Nidan through Godan kata requirements available as MP4 files at the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Store.
  • 2009: BJJY Executive Board created to provide future guidance and leadership for the BJJY.
  • 2010: "Budoshin Online" emails, sent to BJJYmembers, AJA sensei, and the general martial arts community, is reformatted to look more professional.
  • 2011: Student Handbook updated to cross-reference with Jujitsu: Basic Techniques of the Gentle Art -- Expanded edition.
  • 2011: Technique fixes [and fine points] start appearing on YouTUBE as an available resource to the entire martial arts community.
  • 2011: BJJY Executive Board creates Mission and Vision statements as guides for their purpose & operation. To see the statements and Executive Board members click here.
  • 2012: 9th edition of the Student Handbook is updated to properly cross-reference with all of my published books as applicable as well as the "Big Book" and the 8-dvd/mp4 Black Belt Home Study The Mudansha Syllabus now includes all techniques presented in the 8-dvd/mp4 series, not just the required techniques for belt promotions. Sections of the handbook are also in color to increase ease of learning and reference.
  • 2012: An easier to use website pull-down menu replaces the cumbersome list of topics. Also addeds is a site index for quicker access to over specific items on the website.
  • 2013: Commenced use of Hightail Dropbox [ https://www.hightail.com/u/Budoshin ] so that BJJY members can send their belt evaluation videos directly to me as mp4 files, thus avoiding mailing and dvd costs as well as related shipping time delays.
  • 2013: Converted all dvd sets [owned by George Kirby] to mp4 format to increase ease of use & playback options [computer, tablet, smart phone, etc.], speed order processing, reduce overall prices, and eliminate shipping & handling charges.
  • 2014: Updating & refining the Black Belt Handbook and Student Handbook are in progress & scheduled for release in 2015. Ohara book #7 is also in the works and scheduled for release in 2015.
  • 2015: Executive Board creates a new & straightforward procedure for cross-certifying instructors in other martial arts who would like to formally teach Budoshin Jujitsu.
  • 2015: Revised Black Belt Handbook, 4th ed., released in April. Although it's 14 pages shorter than the 3rd edition it also contains a new procedure for cross-certification from other ju-jitsu systems [ryu] and most importantly, it's easier to understand and follow.
  • 2015: Thanks to the impetus of Bruce Geyman I updated the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Black Belt kata lists in June to include references sources for all techniques listed. Now technique references are available for a mudansha and yudansha grade kata lists.
  • 2015: Thanks to the encoruagement of Sensei George Cushinan and others, plus the positive support ot Century Martial Arts, the 8-dvd version of the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Black Belt Home Study Course is now available in mp4 format. I also now retain the rights to produce it in future electronic & other formats as well.
  • 2016: 10th edition of the Student Handbook is released. No major changes but some informational items have been added.
  • 2017: All certificates now sent as pdf files via the internet, thus bringing international membership rates down to US membership rate levels as excessive postage costs & risks eliminated. Hard copy postage of certificates still available.
  • 2017: 11th edition of the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Student Handbook has some items rearranged to make it more user-friendly to the new student, as well as a section on wear & care of your gi, but no changes in terms of belt rank requirements.
Benefits Yudansha BJJY Membership*
[Black Belt in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu]
Mudansha BJJY Membership*
[Below or not a Black Belt in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu]
Membership Certificate: yes and shows black belt rank yes
Student Handbook: yes yes
Black Belt Handbook:   at 2nd kyu
Electronic Medium Evaluations: See below 3 free evaluations/year
[$25 each thereafter]
Formal Testing*: [$25 setup fee per test if you're using "free" evaluations above - $45 otherwise] yes: sankyu & higher grades
[$25 testing fee if you're using "free" evaluations above - $45 otherwise]
Certificate of Rank: yes, if requested yes [for brown belt ranks & if requested below sankyu]
Technical Support: yes yes
Kokoro newsletter & other announcements: via email via email
BJJY patch/crest for new members: BJJY Black Belt crest/emblem to be worn on left sleeve of gi Budoshin Jujitsu crest/emblem to be worn on left sleeve of gi
E-mail address ending with @budoshin.com: yes yes
Select product discounts in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Store: yes yes
Membership Fee [U.S. or foreign]
[for 12+ months to nearest following June or December]:
$35-40/1-year options
$130/5-year membership
$35-40/1-year options
$130/5-year membership
Other Restriction[s]: *Continuous BJJY membership is required of all yudansha who wish to be considered for promotion to any higher yudansha grade.
*Continuous BJJY membership is required of all yudansha who wish to be considered for promotion to any higher yudansha grade.

Remember: the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Yudanshakai is the ONLY yudanshakai authorized to assist you in earning your black belt in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu!

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Belt Testing:
If you are a BJJY member you may informally test for rank below the grade of 3rd kyu [3rd brown belt] by submitting a video DVD [or mp4 file you can send via my Hightail dropbox]  of you following the appropriate Mat Test sequence in the Student Handbook. I will do an audio evaluation [e-mail attachment to you for immediate feedback 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 and you request a certificate. As a BJJY member, you may submit up to three video evaluation per year for free as part of your membership package. There is a minimal charge for additional video evaluations. On site evaluations can also be arranged at seminars at the discretion of the sponsoring sensei.

The BJJY requires that you engage in formal testing, starting with Sankyu, to make sure that you are progressing in the art a competent manner. This involves sending a pre-evaluation tape [which is waived if you've secured lower ranks from me] and answering questions on a short-answer written test. If the pre-evaluation and written test are satisfactory then you will be sent the formal test. On site testing can also be arranged at seminars at the discretion of the sponsoring sensei. There is a minimal charge for testing.

Formal testing is required for all Black Belt candidates! You must also satisfactorily complete a  written essay response to a series of open-ended questions [and possible oral questions in response to your written comments] as a prerequisite for all dan grades prior to the mat testing. There is a minimal charge for testing. Complete testing details are available 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.

AJA membership is a prerequisite for all Sankyu & higher testing as rank-certification will be issued by the BJJY [no charge] and the AJA [charge]. In addition, all dan grades will also be recognized by the European Ju-Jitsu Union/Intercontinental Jujitsu Federation and other organization through mutual recognition agreements. International certificates will be issued for Rokudan [6th dan] and higher only. Starting in 2006 continuous BJJY membership is required of all yudansha who wish to be considered for promotion to any higher yudansha grade.

Please be aware that there may be other sensei fraudulently claiming to hold yudansha grades in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu and there may be other organizations fraudulently issuing yudansha grades in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu.
If you have any concerns about the legitimacy of an instructor or promoting organization, please e-mail the BJJY. You will receive a prompt reply.

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Cross-Certification for Existing Ju-Jitsu Yudansha

In 2015 the Budoshin Jujitsu Yudanshakai established a procedure by which jujitsu yudansha from different styles/ryu of traditional Japanese jujitsu can cross-certify into Budoshin Ju-Jitsu black belt ranks up through 5th dan. In order to go through this process you will have to secure your BJJY membership and secure a Black Belt Handbook.


You may also click here just for an overview of the cross-certification process [excerpted from the Black Belt Handbook].


If you would like to download a copy of the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Cross Referencing Form, so you can cross-reference your ryu of jujitsu to Budoshin Ju-Jitsu, just click here. Don't worry if you can't fill in every line or cross-reference every Budoshin Ju-Jitsu technique.


If you are a BJJY member the Black Belt Handbook is free, part of your membership benefits. Various types of membership are available. Click here to secure your BJJY membership. 


If you just want to purchase the black Belt Handbook click here.


Caution: A Word of Advice
If you think you can submit a single video showing you executing all the techniques demonstrated on my 8-DVD/MP4 series and that I will then award you your shodan grade certification, I can assure you that that will not happen. Earning a yudansha grade at any level in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu, or any other reputable ryu of the art, requires a great deal more than the rote, memorized presentation of required kata & waza. Students who work through the belt ranks have no problems with these requirements as it's been a simple progression of acquired skills for them. These requirements are presented in greater detail in the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Student and Black Belt Handbooks.

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Approximate Time In Grade:
The guide that follows will give you an approximate timeline for progressing to each belt in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu. The timeline is based upon 2-4 hours of class instruction & workout per week. Please be aware that your time in grade may be modified by such factors as your age, physical condition, coordination, workout time schedule, rapid learning ability and previous martial arts experience, among other factors. I was able to put in 6-8 hours of instruction plus another 4-6 hours of training per week as a student & thus progressed much faster. [It’s amazing how much time you have when you’re young.]
  • To 7th kyu - Yellow Belt [optional] - 15-30 hours instruction plus practice time
  • To 6th kyu - Green Belt - 15-30 hours instruction plus practice time
  • To 5th kyu - Blue Belt [color change 6/06] - 25-50 hours instruction plus practice time
  • To 4th kyu - Purple Belt - 25-50 hours instruction plus practice time
  • To 3rd kyu - Brown Belt with Green Stripe - 50-75 hours instruction plus practice time
  • To 2nd kyu - Brown Belt with Black Stripe - 50-75 hours instruction plus practice time
  • To 1st kyu - Brown Belt with Blue Stripe - 50-75 hours instruction plus practice time
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How to Join the BJJY:
Membership in the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Yudanshakai is open to anyone interested in studying the art of Budoshin Ju-Jitsu. Review the previous chart of this page Types of Membership for benefits and membership fees. If you would like to join the BJJY & pay by check or use PayPal, please click here to got to the Budoshin Ju-jitsu Store.  Also check out the Store for great membership & combination packages that combine books, DVD/MP4s & BJJY membership

As a new regular member you will receive a Certificate of Membership, BJJY patch, Student Handbook, personalized guidance, any and all questions answered by e-mail, and your free three video evaluations per year.

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FAQ: Common Questions:
1. How do I get my Shodan [1st degree black belt] in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu?
  1. Secure membership in the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Yudanshakai [BJJY].
  2. Complete all the requirements for mudansha grades [below black belt] as specified in the Student Handbook, with the emphasis on technical proficiency. Belt testing is available  starting at the Rokyu [6th kyuGreen Belt] level for $25 per evaluation once you get beyond the four free video evaluations per year if you have a regular membership. Contact the BJJY for testing details before you send a belt test video.
  3. Request the Black Belt Handbook when you reach the 2nd kyu Brown Belt level. Review it & make sure you can fulfill all of the requirements. The Black Belt mat exams are based upon the Brown Belt requirements in the Student Handbook. It may take some time to meet all the criteria, depending upon your technical proficiency in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu, experience in other martial arts & other factors.
  4. Send me a detailed autobiography of yourself when you're ready to test for Shodan [so I can get to know you as a person] as well as the required reference letters. Also, request information on the specific testing process and testing/evaluation fees.
  5. Submit a DVD [or mp4 file you can send via my Hightail dropbox] for evaluation. For Sankyu & higher grades the video should have a freestyle kata portion  followed by a demonstration of all the kata & waza appropriate to the belt level you plan to secure. [Keep the original video & send me a copy.]  This comprehensive video requirement may be waived in certain circumstances. I will send you an audio evaluation  for immediate feedback.
  6. If I feel you have a good chance of passing the Brown or Black Belt examination I will inform you how to proceed. Although testing in person is preferred, mat testing can be done by video. Keep in mind that there also is a written exam for all brown and black belt grades that must be satisfactorily completed prior to mat testing. The testing fee is $25 for brown belt and $25 for black belt grades.


2. Approximately how many techniques are there in the system to shodan level?
  1. You must be proficient with the 54 different kata [techniques] plus responses for 52 different street attacks listed in the Shodan kata & waza lists. At the time of testing you will be asked to demonstrate 5-10 kata and respond to 5-10 street situations I have selected from from the Shodan lisr without any forewarning and must be able to demonstrate those kata and street responses instantaneously.

  2. You also have to demonstrate the ability to defend against continuous random street attacks by uke. You must also be able to demonstrate effective use of a martial arts "tool". You may submit a valid gun-safety course certificate in lieu of the defensive tool demonstration.

  3. If you submit evaluation videos at each of the lower belt levels so you can be assured that you are progressing correctly, your acquired skill level will make the actual black belt mat test relatively easy. The requirement of the comprehensive video [in #1.e. above] will probably be waived in this case.

3. What is the difference between a "kata" [technique] and response to a "street attack"?

  1. A kata is a specific technique, such as koshi nage [hip throw] or tekubi shimi waza [wristlock technique].

  2. A waza [response to street attack] would be to use any kata you have learned to defend yourself agsint a specified street attack, such as a headlock, choke, hit, kick, club attak, knife thrust, etc.

4. Do I need to demonstrate ALL of the techniques on each video for each belt rank test/evaluation?

  1. No! You only need to demonstrate the "kata" and "waza" listed for each belt exam [up through 4th kyu] as specified in the Student Handbook.

  2. Starting at brown belt [3rd kyu] and into the dan grades you need to be able to execute all the kata and waza listed. The examinar will select 5-10 kata & waza randomly from each list. Kata will be called in Japanese only. You will have to execute the kata or waza immediately. More prcedural detail will be provided at the time of these exams.

  3. More detail as to why there are more techniques listed on the videos than what is "required":

    1. Below black belt, each test has a mat portion and a knowledge/terminology portion. The mat exam is broken into a “kata” section [specific forms] and a “waza” section [self-defense]. In the kata portion I ask for specific techniques, such as koshi nage [hip throw], te nage [hand throw] te tatake [a striking/hitting technique], etc. In the waza portion I ask you to do a self-defense technique against a hit, choke, short grab, etc.

    2. Although the techniques that you demonstrated in the kata portion can also be used on the waza portion of the test, when I made each video I chose to demonstrate additional [or different/new] techniques for the waza portion of each test. So you actually end up with more techniques on each video than what are actually needed for any particular belt exam. Thus the “depth” of your learning is up to you, although it’s ultimately to your advantage to learn all of the techniques. The 8-dvd or mp4 video series will actually take you almost all the way through nidan [second degree black belt] technique-wise.

    3. Also, learning anything is a process, whether it be jujitsu or geography. The more you study the better you get. I do not expect you to be perfect with one technique [kata] before you learn the next one. Some techniques you will learn faster than others. I tend to look at specific parts of technique execution at each belt level. If I see that that part is ok, I’m happy because the next piece I’m looking for will also probably be done reasonably well too. You will get better with practice. I don’t really expect to see all the required techniques done well until you get into the brown belt range. It’s a growth process. 

5. How long will it take me to get to Shodan?

  1. That depends entirely upon you, your martial arts experience, ability & willingness to learn, and the amount of time you're willing to dedicate to practice.

  2. In a normal dojo situation, with two 2-hour classes per week, it usually takes a student with no experience 3-7 years to achieve the competence necessary to test for Shodan.

6. Will the BJJY test for grades below Sankyu?
  1. Yes. While the BJJY will evaluate & review videos submitted by lower grade yudansha for the purpose of indicating growth and progress, there is no formal testing for grades below Sankyu beyond submitting an evaluation video based upon belt requirements specified in the Student Handbook. If your skill level is adequate for promotion then a BJJY Certificate of Promotion will be issued to you at no charge at your request below sankyu. At sankyu & higher grades you will automatically be issued a certificate if you pass.
  2. You are strongly encouraged to submit evaluation videos at each of the lower belt levels so you can be assured that you are progressing correctly. If errors in the execution of techniques are being made, it is easier to correct problems at lower ranks. Your acquired skill level will then make the black belt mat test relatively easy.
  3. The major reason for no formal testing below Sankyu is that most major Ju-Jitsu organizations aren't concerned with your rank below Sankyu. No one will ask for a certificate of rank because these are lower level learning grades. However, if you claim a Sankyu or higher grade a legitimate and responsible sensei will have the right to see a certificate of promotion to that grade or higher as well as know what the requirements for your promotion were.
  4. As a result testing for Sankyu and higher grades is a more formal process. If you have not been evaluated for lower kyu grades by the BJJY an evaluation tape prior to the formal testing for sankyu will be required. There is also a short answer test for Sankyu-Ikkyu grades and an open-ended essay test for all dan grade testing.
7. How high in rank can I go with the video DVDs?
  1. While the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Black Belt Home Study Course [8-dvd or mp4 series] formally goes up to Shodan, careful review of them, combined with practicing variations and putting together other combinations can easily bring you up to a level sufficient for Nidan testing.
  2. Higher grades require additional training & seminars.
  3. Nidan-Godan kata are now available on MP4 downloadable files for those who want to go beyond shodan.
8. What aspect of the art is emphasized in Budoshin Ju-Jitsu?
  1. As a Budoshin Ju-Jitsu student you will learn the gentle art of self-defense. This is a two-pronged approach. First, you learn effective self-defense techniques from the very beginning. Second, you are also taught the art by being exposed to the theory and  mechanics behind each move. Budoshin Ju-Jitsu is a traditional Japanese style of jujitsu, the parent art of aikido, judo, and some styles of karate.
  2. Because of such a wide ranging ability to cause pain and or injury at the practitioners discretion, you are also expected to accept a very strong philosophy of non-violence: that a physical confrontation should be avoided whenever possible and that Ju-Jitsu techniques should be used only to the extent necessary to remove yourself from the immediate situation and protect yourself from further harm.
9. Do I need a training partner?
  1. ABOLUTELY -- YES!!! You need a partner to get a "feel" for the techniques so that they work properly. Hopefully your partner will learn the art as you do.
  2. Your partner can secure his/her own BJJY membership [or you might provide it as a matter of courtesy] if he/she is also interested in being tested and securing promotions in the art.
10. Can martial arts schools or clubs join the BJJY?
  1. Due to liability issues schools & clubs may not join the BJJY directly. However, individuals within a school or club may become members of the BJJY as individuals and can publicize their individual affiliation. Also, if the head instructor of the school is a BJJY black belt he'll have easy access to securing American Ju-Jitsu Association recognition of his dojo.
  2. Starting in 2006, schools & clubs with a Budoshin Ju-Jitsu sensei, may also affiliate with the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Dojo, Inc [BJJD]. This will allow those schools to officially say they are teaching Budoshin Ju-Jitsu officially, use BJJD instructional &testing materials, and officially display the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu logo indicating their dojo is officially affiliated with the BJJD. There is a minimal annual calendar-year fee for affiliation, which also includes the affiliated dojo's AJA dojo fee. Contact George Kirby for additional information.
11. Where can I find answers to other questions?
  1. E-mail me. I'll answer most general questions even if you aren't a BJJY member. Questions, [whether technical or general] are usually answered in a timely manner [usually within a couple of days].
  2. All questions [unless private] are published in Kokoro, our periodic newsletter.
  3. Current BJJY members and non-members can purchase all the past issues of Kokoro as a single .pdf file. It contains all the questions asked of me since the BJJY began in 1994 and answers to those questions. Go to the Budoshin Ju-Jitsu Store [click here] to purchase this item.

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