Will koryu teachers teach students with tattoos?

Discussion in 'Weapons' started by kuoshu, Mar 27, 2007.

  1. kuoshu

    kuoshu Valued Member

    Some time ago, Meik Skoss of Yagyu Ryu and Toda Ha Buko Ryu made a post where he said he wouldn't accept a student who had tatttoos.
    He said that he inspects the applicant first (and his wife checks the females).
    Is this generally true of koryu teachers? Including those in Japan?
    Will they refuse a student with tattoos?
    If so, why exactly? Is it because they would suspect them of being connected to Yakuza?
  2. Lord Spooky

    Lord Spooky Banned Banned


    I'm screwed then I'm a tattooed Ninja :cry: :cry:

    :D :D
  3. Sgt_Major

    Sgt_Major Ex Global Mod Supporter

    no one would be inspecting me before a class.... if they refused me on basis of my tattoos, they'd be in court so fast their head would still be spinning as I sold their business on.
  4. kuoshu

    kuoshu Valued Member

    Well, if that's the case Spooky then I misunderstood about the tattoo thing. Somone mentioned on another thread you do koryu kenjutsu. So obviously not a problem for all koryu teachers. Maybe it's just Mr Skoss?
  5. Lord Spooky

    Lord Spooky Banned Banned

    Yep I do Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu Kenjutsu!

    Correction I attempt to do Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu Kenjutsu! :D :D
  6. Lord Spooky

    Lord Spooky Banned Banned

    Koryu mate! It's a bit different.
  7. kuoshu

    kuoshu Valued Member

    Cool! That's Miyamoto Musashi's style isn't it?
  8. Lord Spooky

    Lord Spooky Banned Banned


    Just a beginner at it though.

    I think someone like Kogusoku will be able to give you a more overall answer to your question.
  9. Sgt_Major

    Sgt_Major Ex Global Mod Supporter

    not really spooks as far as I see. They have no reason to a. inspect my body or b. refuse me on my lifestyle choice, provided their rules remain unbroken. To be tattoo'd is not against any rule, heck I know tattoo'd ministers, doctors, just about every profession.
  10. kuoshu

    kuoshu Valued Member

    Glad to hear they didn't have a problem with tattoos.
    Do you use two swords a lot, or is that just a misconception?
  11. Lord Spooky

    Lord Spooky Banned Banned

    Not the same in Japan though and the Soke of a Ryu will have overall say on what is and isn't allowed within their school. If they say no then it's no. It's their Ryu.

    They have a different view of Tattoos over there.
  12. Lord Spooky

    Lord Spooky Banned Banned

    There are Nito Kata but I don't think it's seen as the main focus. Like I said I'm new, my teacher might see this and chip in though
  13. kuoshu

    kuoshu Valued Member

    Is there any link to the Musashi Ryu Jujutsu that apparently once challenged Mr Takamatsu when he was a child?
  14. kuoshu

    kuoshu Valued Member

    I agree inspecting the body is a bit extreme, but then again they say koryu do thing differently. But anyway, it seems I was wrong about it being a general thing.
  15. Lord Spooky

    Lord Spooky Banned Banned

    I couldn't tell you. I did find the answer to that but can't remember what it was :bang: :bang: :D I've probably got it written down somewhere.
  16. kuoshu

    kuoshu Valued Member

    Just for info, Meik Skoss made his post on eBudo but I can't find it.
    Its discussed n Dave Lowry's book though.
  17. ScottUK

    ScottUK More human than human...

    I am fairly well tattooed (although a simple teeshirt covers them all - none on lower arms etc) and the Soke of Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu was curious about them but has no problems in teaching me.

    Musashi Ryu jujutsu has no connection to HNIR.
  18. Kogusoku

    Kogusoku 髭また伸びた! Supporter

    Koryu are a link to classical Japanese culture and the attitudes that formed them in some cases. Certain conservative opinions and viewpoints, nay rules are passed down. It does depend on the ryuha in question, since each ryuha's policy differs in format, function and execution. It really is a case-by-case thing.

    I know some people in koryu with irizume (Japanese for tattoo) who do koryu. I know some ryuha that just won't allow you to train in their arts if you have irizume, as per policy. There is still a very ultra-conservative mindset where irizume are consiedered the mark of criminals in Japanese culture.

    Before someone tries to chew me head off by saying "but this isn't Japan!!!", no, you're right, it's not Japan, but the discipline, culture and art that is being learned and taught is inherantly Japanese. If you want to study a Japanese cultural art, then you better start respecting the social norms by which that culture is structured. (You don't enter a mosque fully shod, you don't take someone else's pint on the bar, you don't show your tatts in a koryu dojo.)

    Some teachers of koryu have adapted some of their attitudes with the times. None of my teachers have tattoos, but understand that popular culture today sometimes encourages young people to have them. They do however respect military tattoos, since the men who have them have earned that right. (Not my opinion, it's an interpretation of a viewpoint, so put the flamethrowers away please. :) )

    I have a sempai that has a tattoo, yet does koryu, but he *must* cover it up for public demonstrations. I as a representative of a koryu in the UK have been told not to accept students with tattoos unless they are of exemplary character and will cover up during training and public demonstrations.

    Koryu isn't a business, it's a cultural study. As a norm, no profit is made in teaching or conducting koryu classes. It's a private institution, where the instructor & coordinator of the classes has the final say on whether you are allowed to learn or not. Since it's not a business, and there are no real financial profits to be made, there are no comebacks.
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2007
  19. Rock Ape

    Rock Ape Banned Banned

    A while back, one of my students 'informed me' that he was having two very large tats (one on each thigh) and that he would have to take a few weeks off his study to let his legs heal.

    I said that was his choice but not to bother coming back, when he asked me why I was taking that stance, I said, your choice to tatoo your body and stop training, my choice to put someone more dedicated to their training in your place.

    Sure I was being pedantic - but that is also my choice as dojo-cho.

    Koryu isn't a democracy or a God-given-right therefore, those who engage in koryu bugei abide by the rules of the Ryu-ha.
  20. Sgt_Major

    Sgt_Major Ex Global Mod Supporter

    thats ridiculous!

    Any teacher who said that to me would be a douchebag, and I'd be GLAD to be out.

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