Firstly, I’m aware writing this will undoubtedly upset some people, so please remember this is my own views, opinions and feeling.

I have been involved in Ju-Jitsu for over 30 years both as a student and as a teacher. When I began my journey two main Jujitsu organisations worked together and spread the word and knowledge of Jujitsu for all to follow. These days however, it appears there are so many new organisations sprouting up with various ideals and goals within Jujitsu. There are more Soke’s, Shihans and Hanshis, amongst other titles to keep up with!
It seems to me that Jujitsu has become very saturated, in many cases watered down without it evolving and becoming more prevalent for today’s modern society. Times change, people change and therefor combat MUST change and evolve. Jujitsu is no different.
One main thing that upsets me within Jujitsu today is how grades are increasingly being given away without students being put under any pressure or devotion to the art or school. I am obviously referring to senior students as training and grading children is a much deeper subject.
I feel extremely fortunate and grateful that during my time in Jujitsu my Sensei’s have never deluded me, never given me an ‘easy ride’ in order form me to advance. In fact, I was often required to put in twice as much effort due to my height and general strength disadvantage, see, when I began my journey there was no ‘women’s’ classes, I trained with the more experience class whom generally consisted of men or I didn’t train at all! It was made very clear to me that if I didn’t give my all, I was on my ass! Advice to cross train in other disciplines and visit other schools of Jujitsu was freely given, this appears to result in sanction now with so with many organisations, it’s our way or highway and you can’t hold a duel license, why?
If we are all trying to achieve the same goal and climb the same mountain, should we not be working together?
Extortionate prices are being charged for gradings, in particular more senior grades, why?
A lot of the time most of this money isn’t even being invested back into the club or association. Has Martial Arts become a money-making racket?
I remember being informed I was required to take my to 5th Dan black belt, I was also informed that I would be charged £500 for the pleasure of it! I’m very sorry but that is just unreasonable! In effect, many organisations are ‘pricing out’ their student who cannot afford to pay these fees, so attaining grades becomes more about how much money you have rather than what your skill level is?
Now I completely understand that instructors need to be paid, belts need to be provided and certificates need to be printed etc. but at times many large organisations are grading 20, 50, 100 Dan grades at a time! Do belts, certificates and instructors really cost that much??
At Muga Mushin Ryu Jujitsu and Team Mushin, we pride ourselves that we are a Community Interest Group, which means every penny that our students pay in class and grading subs go back into the school. None of our instructors take a wage or change a ‘fee’, we all teach out of love for Jujitsu and we all work extremely hard to provide the best instruction possible to our students.
We have free six-month scholarship programs available for children/teenagers in order for them to get back as much from Jujitsu as they put in. We always endeavour to find ways we can “pay it forward “.
I have been fortunate enough on my journey to train with some of the best Jujitsu-ka in the world. Masters I have the upmost resect for. This has allowed me to open the door for many people, introducing them to those who have influenced me so much over the years.
I find it greatly disheartening when there is no gratitude. No thank you and no intention for them to share their contacts and assist me to forge links with groups they train with.
I have become increasingly concerned over the past few years with the following;
– What happened to people’s nonpolitical views?
– Why don’t people want to link by spreading good Ju-Jitsu and be open minded to other styles and views?
– Why are so many unwilling to share their knowledge?
I have always had an open-door policy to my Dojo since its formation in 2008. I welcome anyone to come and train on our mat with us no matter what grade, background or association link.
I am now becoming disheartened with the lack of values in today’s traditional Ju-Jitsu schools, but this in turn makes me entirely grateful for the solid group of students I have supporting me.
We have a fresh approach, fresh ideas and a clear understanding of what we want to achieve through our school of Jujitsu. I have great plans for this school and we hope to link and forge strong bonds with those who support us. In return we will show a gratitude and support which we wish never to be broken.
Thank you for your continued support and commitment.
Sensei Sue King