Jo, Jo, Jo your boat…

Once again, I’m sharing some of the notes I have been compiling based on my study of Saito Sensei’s Buki waza. These notes are on some of the Jo movements that are not specifically detailed in the Jo Suburi. I have found that an understanding of these movements increase my comfort level and authority when studying the Kumi practices. These are basically movements found in the Kumi practice, some practiced regularly solo, some not, and some that are bunkai. As always, I welcome corrections and suggestions. The nomenclature is the best that I could do. These descriptions refer to Saito’s weapon system, so if you are unfamiliar to them, they won’t make any sense, I’m afraid. Lastly, let me say that I am not speaking as an authority on the subject at all. I would be ever grateful for anyone with knowledge on the subject to give me feedback. All that being said:

Additional Jo Movements
These movements appear in the 31 Jo partner practice and also in the Ken Jo No Riai, but are not highlighted in the suburi. Where I could not find terms, I “improvised.” Any corrections or suggestions are welcome.

Choku Barai – The straight or direct parry. This is the first of three basic parries, usually done from Tsuki No Kamae. It is used to parry both middle level and high level strikes. In the second kumijo, for example, this movement is used from a “Jo No Kamae” in a manner that specfically counters a thrust to the face.

Kaeshi Barai – The reversing sweeping parry. The second of three basic parries. This parry is done in accord to a change in hanmi, and can be done with backward or forward movement. Usually, Kaeshi Barai is done to parry a high strike, with low level parries falling into the category of Gedan Barai.

Kaiten Barai – The rotary sweeping parry. This is the Hasso movement performed on both sides. What makes this movement distinct from the Hasso Gaeshi series is my next matter of inquiry. Essentially, it is practiced as a continuation from the Kaeshi Barai movement, and the relationship between the two should be studied closely.

Maki Otoshi Barai – The wrapping sweep-down parry. I use this term to describe the movement that uchijo uses in to parry Movement 3 in the 31 Kumijo.
Jodan Dome Barai – Upper level parry. This describes Movement 2 in the 31 Kumijo.
Jodan Dome Maki Otoshi – Upper level parry that strikes down. This is the movement in the 31 Kumijo “between” 2 and 3, that is “hidden” in the 31 Jo Kata.

Jodan Gaeshi – Upper level parry that changes to uchikomi. In the suburi we have Tsuki Jodan Gaeshi, but in the partner practices, a thurst does not always preceed this motion.
Jodan Uchikomi Barai – High parry that looks like uchikomi. This parry occurs frequently, when the Jo is brought down as in Uchikomi, but used as a parry. A good example is Movement 30 in the 31 Jo Kata, which is a parry, not a strike.

Gedan Uchikomi Barai – Low parry that looks like uchikomi. This looks like (Tsuki) Gedan Gaeshi, but is used to parry, rather than strike.

Gedan Dome Barai – Lower parry. This describes the parry that ukejo uses in San No Kumijo against Gedan Choku Tsuki. I say “Gedan Barai” simply because there is no “Gaeshi” preceding it. Otherwise, the motion looks just like Tsuki Gedan Gaeshi.

Gedan Gaeshi Barai – Low parry that looks like gedan gaeshi. Same deal with “Jodan Uchikomi Barai,” parrying low instead of striking.

Chudan Gaeshi – Middle level jo-reversing parry. My favorite subject of study. This is the second parry used in San No Kumijo. This movement happens in so many sneaky ways. It’s a parry, it’s a switch, it’s a recovery after one’s “Gyake Tsuki” is warded off. This has a relation to Hasso Gaeshi Tsuki, the way the Jo is brought back to Hasso after the thrust.

Hasso Barai – Parry that is followed with hasso kamae. This sneaky little devil. This pops up in the 31 Kumijo when uchijo parries the thrust that is Movement 28. Uchijo, after parrying with Migi Gedan Gaeshi Barai, moves to Hidari Hasso Gaeshi No Kamae, sneaking this parry in the middle of the two movements. This is one of those movements where two moves in the solo practice become one in the partner practice (28 and 29). I know that there are other ways uchijo does this, but, I am not familiar with them.


2 Responses to Jo, Jo, Jo your boat…

  1. Hi Autrelle
    I’m glad someone else has been puzzled by the “missing” movements. Over the years we’ve just given them english ‘nicknames”but I’ve always felt that to be a wee bit inadequate, when we dutifully refoer to all the other suburi-referenced movement by their japanese nomenclature. Well done for doing this – I’m afraid my japanese isn’t good enough to really pass comment, but for now I’ll ‘publish” these to my students and see what the uptake is.

    Fancy swapping blog links? I’ve just added you…
    Keep up the good work

  2. autrelle says:

    Thanks for the feedback. Some have suggested that I am being a bit over-meticulous, and perhaps that is the case. At any rate, I’m just sharing my notebook. None of this is written in stone, and I’m sure it will change as I delve deeper. Thank you for the add on your blog. I added yours, in kind. I plan on having some more information about the knife (video!) available by the end of the month. I’m enjoying the previous entries on your blog as well. Eventually I’ll put all of my MA articles on a separate site. So much to do…


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