[ame=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YVSONNESfyE]this video of the Jigen-ryu[/ame] Having just come across the above video, I thought it was worth sharing here. There's been a few discussions about that have touched on the case-by-case nature of koryu bujutsu, and the Jigen-ryu is one of the best illustrations of that. The ideal of the Jigen-ryu is that the first cut should kill. As an extension of this, they practice just one cut. The majority of the practice, as the video suggests, involves running up to the target, and cutting it over and over again in order to build up strength, speed, and stamina. Other elements of the school tend to be the simplest possible extensions of this: repeated cuts to suppress the opponent or target switching, for example. However, it is always the same cut. It might be better to say that this is the physical ideal of Jigen-ryu, however. Another way of thinking of Jigen-ryu is that it is a tool by which a general can produce an army. Even if you believe that Jigen-ryu's simplicity would make it vulnerable to more sophisticated martial schools, Jigen-ryu can produce dozens or even hundreds of trained exponents to every one of these other schools. The Jigen-ryu army is intended to be psychologically intimidating (hence the extended kiai), and the low choice burden was intended to prevent soldiers from freezing up in combat. The mass-training mentality is why the training equipment is so basic (quite literally trimmed sticks, as the video illustrates). My experience is that most people's perceptions of koryu bujutsu tends to be shaped by schools like (and primarily, if I'm honest) the Tenshin Shoden Katori Shinto-ryu, which is quite unlike Jigen-ryu. At the same time, the Jigen-ryu's role in the Meiji Restoration, producing the Satsuma soldiers, means that its historical influence arguably outweighs most other Japanese schools. And of course, in comparison to other schools it clearly illustrates that different schools existed to fill different niches.