-- History --


The term “Jiu – Jitsu” originated in the 16th century and literally means “ the untraceable art” or “the secret art”. The roots of this art form may be traced as far back as 300BC when some of its foundational elements were developed and practiced by the Buddhist Monks of China, and later introduced in Japan where over centuries they evolved and were perfected into a unified, unique system which occupies a central role in Japanese culture and religion.

Although the art of Jiu Jitsu was adapted and widely practiced by the Samurai Warriors the exact origin of Jiu Jitsu still remains a mystery. Today historians have narrowed their search to three main theories which are most frequently cited in Japanese literature.

According to one of these theories, in June 1532 Master Hasamori Takenouti, whilst meditating in the temple of Sannomiya, received an enlightenment of technical and spiritual skills allowing him to develop the art of Jiu Jitsu which later spread throughout Japan. Other theories tend to place a much greater emphasis on the Chinese influences in the development of this art. According to these theories Jiu Jitsu was developed by Chan Yuan-Bin, who came to Japan from China and settled in the temple of Kakusedzi in Adzubi where he soon founded world’s first school of Jiu Jitsu. Yet, alternative theories exist which attribute this central role to Yoshin Miura – a renowned Japanese doctor who developed a combat system of 70 strikes which became known as (Yoshin – Ryu) or (Miura- Ryu) and served as the foundations of Jiu Jitsu.

As suggested by its name Jiu Jitsu - “The Secret Art” - was never taught to the masses in the same way as other forms of martial arts such as Karate or Wu Shu. Instead it was always reserved for the Japanese elite forces – the Samurai Warriors.

Today in Japan alone we can find over 200 variations of this art, about 10 of which are viewed as traditional or classical styles whilst the rest may be classified as their modern adaptations and variations. Many of these schools have now spread across the world and may be found in the West. Some of these schools serve exclusively sporting aims whilst others have been adapted for narrow specialisations, for example to suit the specific needs of security and police forces, bodyguards and army specialists.

Our International School of Combat Jiu-Jitsu practices a modernised form of Jiu Jitsu which originated in the early 20th century on the territory of what was known as the Russian Empire (now the Russian Federation). The origin of this highly effective specialised style of combat is wholly attributed to Victor Affanasyev Spiridonov and Vasili Stepanivich Oshepkov.

Victor Affanasyev Spiridonov was an officer of the Russian Royal Legion. Whilst serving in Japan during the Russo–Japanese conflict of 1905 in Manchzhuri his attention was captured by the brilliance and ingenuity of skills some Japanese soldiers showed in unarmed combat. Being a expert in various techniques of Russian combat he was able to appreciate the superiority of the Japanese art and with great interest became absorbed in its study.

Shortly after the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917, Spiridonov begun his work on an innovative combat system specifically adapted for the Proliteriat Russian Army.

An equally important role in the development of Combat Jiu Jitsu is attributed to Vasili Stepanovich Oshepkov, who in 1911 begun his studies of Japanese martial arts in the world renowned Japanese Institute of Judo in Kodokan. Upon his return to Russia in 1926, as a well known and respected martial arts specialist he was invited by the commanders of the Russian Army to engage in the development of a novel, specialised form of martial combat. This new form became known as Combat Jiu Jitsu, which incorporated various techniques of Russian combat, Samurai Jiu Jitsu as well as classical Japanese Judo. Many books, instructions, and guides were produced, documenting the development of Combat Jiu Jitsu, however many remain hidden from the public domain. Over the past decades, like a living organism, the system developed, adapted and withstood the tests of wars and conflicts.

The increased interest which Combat Jiu Jitsu has received in recent years is not accidental. The widely taught modern forms of Karate, Judo and Aikido have failed to retain their effectiveness and practicality due to their increased adaptation, which has replaced the foundational aims of martial arts with sporting competitions and point scoring systems.

If certain rules and bans are placed upon the use of some elements of a martial art, it may then be said that the individuals who follow such rules in their use of this art do not engage in serious combat. Instead they engage in a form of play which equips them with only a limited range of skills.

True Combat Jiu Jitsu is beyond commercial tournaments. Whilst being comparatively simple, it remains the most effective form of close proximity combat.

site by crewchin' studios 2009