The Pittsburgh Bujinkan Taka Seigi Dojo follows the guidelines set by both The Taka Seigi Dojo and the Honbu Dojo in Japan. We recently joined the Taka Seigi Dojo Family headed by Shihan Phil Legare, therefore we have adopted their curriculum and integrated the Black Belt Manual into our training.
Also we follow the yearly theme which comes directly from Soke Hatsumi out of the Honbu Dojo in Noda Chi, Japan. Shidoshi Earlewine and Shidoshi Fetterman are committed to traveling to Japan at least once a year to train with Soke Hatsumi, The Japanese Shihan and all the mentors from foreign countries who kindly share information and allow us to train with them. We augment this training continuously by attending as many seminars and event’s that the Taka Seigi Dojo has to offer.
We offer the following programs:
- 3 Days a week training (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday)
- Adult Classes
- Private Lessons (Available by appointment)
Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu Classes
Tuesday & Thursday: 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Saturday: 11:00am - 1:00 pm
Japanese Sword & Meditation Class*
*By invitation and announcement only!
(Ages 15 and above. If under 18 must have permission parental consent)
The uniqueness of Ninjutsu/Budo-Taijutsu allows for a dynamic style of training. Life is at times unpredictable and unsure. We need to have the flexibility and abilities to make decisions based on moving naturally through life. Our training has to mimic life in order to be successful throughout our lives. In other words, no two classes will be the same even if the material in which we are studying seems to be similar.
We are a family; therefore we treat everyone with respect and take care of one another as such. In the beginning you will be paired with an assistant instructor to mentor you and show you the importance of basics. We break up the curriculum into 3 major categories of Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced Kyu levels. Each stage is designed to make a more natural learning process for those who have little or no martial art experience. This does not mean that the training is easy. It will be challenging from day one and you will want more. Here is some of what you can expect.
Beginner Level Studies
- Basics of Taijutsu and being a good Uke (Training Partner)
- Basic Postures or Kamaes
- Basic Strikes
- Basic Understanding of Weapons and how they become an extension of your body. Mostly Hanbo Techniques & Bo
- Basic Knowledge of the San Shin no Kata and the Kihon Happo
Intermediate Level Studies
- Deeper understanding of the Beginner’s level
- Improved Taijutsu and Ukemi Skills
- Adding weapons to San Shin and Kihon Happo Training
- Train with Basic Bo and Bladed weapons (Understanding the dynamics of bladed weapons and some defenses)
- Timing and distancing improvements
Advanced Kyu Level Studies
- Solid Understanding of the Basics and improving on skill with Taijutsu
- Movement becomes more defined and ability to move naturally showing improvement
- Ability to demonstrate the Basics to new students (Kamaes, Dojo etiquette, and Ukemi Skills)
- Have solid understanding of Kihon/San Shin basics
- Work with Flexible weapons (Kusari, rope, etc)
We hope this gives you a general idea of the type of training that is involved in the Bujinkan. If you need more info, please contact the dojo.
Ranking is the Bujinkan is simple and not made to be the focus of ones goals. If you train, you will improve daily, therefore rank will come….do not get caught up with it as that promotes ego. Open you mind and heart and the rest is easy.
We start everyone out at White belt or 10 kyu (Basic rank), no matter what Martial Art experience you may have. We follow the recommended time period for ranking as set forth in the Black Belt manual of the Taka Seigi Dojo. However, there are exceptions to the rules as there are some folks that have a natural physical ability, especially in the earlier ranks that may move you along a little faster. DO NOT BE IN A HURRY! If you are serious about training in Budo, then you will always be a student because the learning never stops.
On average it will take you 2 ½ to 3 years to obtain the rank of Shodan (1st Degree Blackbelt). The following is a breakdown of how ranking flows in the Bujinkan.
Beginners: White to Yellow Belt (Yellow is in our dojo only)
- 10th Kyu: White Belt
- 9th Kyu: Yellow Belt
- 8th Kyu: Yellow Belt & 1 Silver Star
- 7th Kyu: Yellow Belt & 2 Siver Stars
Intermediate: Green Belt
- 6th Kyu: Green belt & 3 Silver Stars
- 5th kyu: Green belt & 4 Silver Stars
- 4th Kyu: Green belt & 1 Gold Star
Advanced Kyu Ranks: Brown Belt to Black Belt
- 3rd Kyu: Brown belt & 2 Gold Stars
- 2nd Kyu: Brown Belt & 3 Gold Stars
- 1st Kyu: Brown belt & 4 gold Stars
- Shodan: 1st Degree Blackbelt No Stars, New Patch