The Dayton Bujinkan Dojo martial arts school teaches Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu martial arts.

The Bujinkan (武神館) is a Japanese martial arts organization run by Dr. Masaaki Hatsumi, the grandmaster (Soke) of nine distinct kobudo martial arts schools. Bujinkan has the meaning of “warrior spirit training hall”.

Budo Taijutsu (武道体術) is a Japanese term used to describe the martial arts of the Bujinkan. In Japanese it has the meaning of “warrior way body movement”. Students who study Budo Taijutsu learn techniques based on the nine ryu-ha as one collective martial art under the Bujinkan organization.

Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu (武神館武道体術) is a Japanese martial art based in Nodashi, Chiba-ken, Japan. The head of the Bujinkan, or Soke (宗家, "head of the family"), is Masaaki Hatsumi (初見良昭; 1931-). Hatsumi Soke created the Bujinkan (武神館, "warrior spirit hall") in honor of his teacher Toshitsugu Takamatsu (高松寿嗣; 1889-1972). Hatsumi Soke studied under Takamatsu Sensei for fifteen years (~1958 to 1972) and inherited nine distinct martial arts ryu-ha (流, "schools" or "lineages") from his teacher. Hatsumi Soke then spent nearly fifty years exploring and sharing Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu with students around the world until publicly retiring in 2019. Budo Taijutsu was introduced outside Japan during the 1970's, and now has more than 3000+ certified instructors worldwide.

Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu teaches effective ways of self-protection using timing, distance, and angling. Multiple attacks, weaponry, striking, grappling, choking, leaping, rolling, and throws are all disciplines incorporated into the training of Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu. It focuses on controlling the timing, distance, and angling of an opponent. The non-competitive practices of Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu allow the practitioner to focus on developing the mind and body through a whole-body movement martial art, not speed and/or muscle training. This allows practitioners of all ages to excel within the art. As time goes by, and a deeper understanding of Budo Taijutsu is reached, the student realizes that the physical movements open the door to enlightenment within oneself. This takes time, perhaps years, and has many levels. Ultimately, training in Budo Taijutsu transcends the thought of mere mechanical movement, and moves into the growth of becoming a better human being.

When new students begin to train at the Dayton Bujinkan Dojo, they are paired up with senior students during class who assist them with basic body alignment and movement. The senior student is responsible for the safety of the new student throughout class. As the new student develops confidence, concepts such as the kihon happo (basic movements ), san shin no kata (alignment forms) and ryu-ha kata (lineage forms) are introduced through a kyu/dan ranking system.

Budo Taijutsu has nine kyu ranks (colored belts) and ten dan levels (blackbelts). Additionally, the tenth dan is broken down into five separate levels. New students start out as mukyu (no kyu) white belts, and progress from ninth kyu through first kyu, then the dan blackbelt levels, as they train. For most students who train twice a week, Shodan (1st Degree Blackbelt) is earned in 3-4 years.

Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu incorporates multiple weapons and tools in its study. Budo Taijutsu classes at the Dayton Bujinkan Dojo incorporates the use of weapons in most classes. All students, regardless of rank, train in weapon and tool use. This includes:

  1. Katana & Tachi (swords)
  2. Shoto & Kodachi (short swords)
  3. Rokushakubo, Jo, Hanbo (6 ft staff, 4 ft staff, 3 ft staff)
  4. Tanto & Kunai (short knife and blade tool)
  5. Kusari Fundo (3 ft rope/chain, also called manriki kusari)
  6. Kyoketsu Shoge (small sickle and rope/chain)
  7. Naginata & Yari (long polearm weapons)
  8. Sanban & Bo Shuriken (throwing blades)

The Dayton Bujinkan Dojo offers two classes per week dedicated to groundfighting (ne waza) and sparring (kieko randori & yakusoku randori). These classes consist of using the principles of Budo Taijutsu to control, submit, or escape from techniques applied by other students. Submission sparring classes consist of studying traditional Bujinkan kata with resisting opponents and modern-day fighting methods (boxing, shootfighting, MMA, etc.). The Dayton Bujinkan Dojo's groundfighting and sparring classes are based on the skills and drills previously taught by Alan Sakoman, Sean Askew, and Dan Klug. Dayton Bujinkan Dojo students who train in the groundfighting and sparring classes have competed in the past at regional NAGA events. The current groundfighting and randori classes are coached by Charles Gelm and Mike Ockerman. Students interested in trying or attending these classes should contact Charles or Mike (instructors). This training is typically reserved for students who are 7th Kyu or above, and train regularly in the weekly classes.

Contact Us


The Dayton Bujinkan Dojo Martial Arts School is a private facility but accepts inquiries year-round. Membership is limited.

Note: Because of the nature of martial arts training, a physician's examination report, psychological exam, background check, or screening may be required. Only those able to exercise true patience, self-control, and dedication shall be allowed to participate. Accepted students must agree to training guidelines, pay membership fees and adhere to the rules of the Bujinkan. Individuals with mental illness, drug addiction, or mental instability shall be barred from joining. Individuals with criminal records shall be turned away.

Introductions and tours are available by appointment only during class time on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. Use the form below to begin the process.