The 9 Ryu-ha is taught in the Bujinkan system. Masaaki Hatsumi was the Sōke (grandmaster) of all nine Japanese traditions. He has now appointed eight Japanese Dai Shihans as the new Soke of all nine schools.
九古流派 The nine ryūha
(immovable heart school)
Founded in the Yeikyu-era (1113 a.d.) by 出雲冠者義照 Izumo Kanja Yoshiteru. The school is characterised as a style that emphasises natural movements, and the study of nature is important.
– Nagato Sōke is the 27’th generation grandmaster
(nine demon gods school)
Founded at the end of the Kamakura-era (1336) by 出雲冠者義照 Izumo Kanja Yoshiteru. The school is most famous in Bujinkan for it’s many weapons techniques such as sword, spear, halberd and staffs of various lengths.
– Iwata Sōke is the 29’th generation grandmaster
(heart of the willow tree school)
Foundend in the Yeiroku-era (1625-1711) by 高木折右衛門重俊 Takagi Oriemon Shigenobu. The school is a self defence style both Jūjutsu unarmed close combat techniques, and mūtō-dori unarmed against sword attacks.
– Sakasai Sōke is the 18’th generation grandmaster
(jewel tiger school)
Founded in the Hogen-era (1156-1159) by 戸沢白雲斎 Tozawa Hakūnsai. This school is perhaps the school that have the biggest influence of the unarmed basics in Bujinkan, such as Sanshin no kata, and Kihon-happō. Striking with the fingers and toes is very characteristic of this style of fighting.
– Ishizuka Sōke is the 29’th generation grandmaster
(knocking down the tiger school)
Founded in the Tenbun-era (1532) by 坂上太郎国重 Sakagami Taro Kunishige. This school’s speciality is the art of manipulating the bone structure. The foot work is also quite unique by cross stepping, quite similar to the chinese styles. Also the use of the sword in this school is quite unorthodox.
– Noguchi Sōke is the 19’th generation grandmaster
(truth, loyalty and justice school)
Founded in the Yeiroku-era (1558-1570) by 瓜生判官義鑑房 Uryu Hangan Gikanbo. This school have not been taught that much yet.
– Sakasai Sōke is the 16’th generation grandmaster
(the hidden door school)
Founded in the ōho-era by 戸隠大助 Togakure Daisuke. This school is known in the Bujinkan as the school where all the Ninjutsu techniques come from. In the 80’s everything that was taught in Bujinkan was called Togakure-ryu, but the truth is that most of the things that was taught was from the schools above. You could say that the name was used to attract many students.
– Tsutsui Sōke is the 35’th generation grandmaster
(hidden cloud school)
Founded in the Tenmon-era (1532-1554) by 伊賀平内左衛門家長 Iga Heinaizaemon Ienaga. This school have not been taught that much yet.
– Furuta Sōke is the 16’th generation grandmaster
(jewelled heart school)
Founded in the Tenbun-era (1532) by 佐々木 Sasaki Goeman Teruyoshi. This school have not been taught that much yet.
– Kan Sōke is the 22’nd generation grandmaster
The 9 Bujinkan Ryu-ha and its importance
When Hatsumi Sōke taught the schools during the 80’s up til his retirement in 2020. I never heard him say that knowing the techniques in the 9 Bujinkan Ryu-ha was important. We train the techniques from the Ryu-ha as if they belonged to one system, Bujinkan Dojo Budo Taijutsu.