Two basic ideas distinguish Okuyama Ryu from other martial arts.
The first is a method of naming techniques. All techniques can be named according to the attack and the defense used. Some fighting methods, very popular in the past, do not currently have names. It is very difficult to learn and teach jujutsu, if the techniques do not have a formal name or have different names in different schools and different languages.
Secondly, Okuyama Ryu represents a unique approach to teaching martial arts. To get the first master degree (1st dan), the trainee must master twenty-one basic techniques without any mistakes. These techniques are initially performed in the “seiza” sit-up position (suwari-waza), then semi-kneeling (hantachi-waza), and finally in the upright position (tachi-waza). The purpose of these exercises is to teach the basic principle of technology.
The test is the ability to apply the principle of each technique to self-defense. During training, after practicing basic techniques, the student can develop their own variations or applications of these techniques. This is what makes OkuyamaRyu a unique martial art that can be used by students and instructors of other systems. Anyone can use defensive techniques in the way they think is convenient during the attack using their predominance of body build, age or knowledge. Therefore, people who already have experience in Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Kung Fu or Aikido practicing OkuyamaRyu techniques can use them in a way that combines all their previously acquired skills.
Another unique aspect of OkuyamaRyu is the number of techniques that are taught after achieving the first master degree. In many styles, the practitioner of the first dan masters the basic techniques and can do them fluently. After giving the black belt, most martial arts do not offer new techniques to the practitioners. Techniques are simply done at a higher level (faster, harder, in different positions) and the student becomes an instructor.
Black belts” in OkuyamaRyu are becoming beginners again. They will get to know a completely different technical perspective, which is based on the skills already learned, but requires even more careful application of new elements. With each level achieved, the technique requires less and less movement, becoming more and more effective. Even achieving the 5 dan degree with the title Shihan (the crowd: “an example man who knows his weaknesses”) is also the opening of a new development path. Teachers never stop learning.
The motto of lack of strength, lack of damage, lack of competition describes a unique approach to training at OkuyamaRyu. During exercising, the exercisers try to relax and perform techniques without using force. If the technique is effective without using force, it will be fast and very effective during self-defense. In addition, relaxing exercises help you stay relaxed and concentrated in the moment of real danger.