The History & Lineage of Daito Ryu

Sokaku Takeda and Takuma Hisa


Sokaku (left) & Takuma

In the beginning of the Showa era (1926), Mitsujiro Ishii, Asahi Newspaper Company Business Bureau Chief, (who later became the Lower House President in the Diet, and also the President of the Japan Athletic Association) invited Morihei Ueshiba to train patrolman and guards to protect the company. Ueshiba was one of Sokaku Takeda's most distinguished disciples. In the Osaka branch of the Asahi Newspaper company, Takuma Hisa was the General Affairs Bureau Chief. In about 1933, Ueshiba began instructing Hisa and his colleagues. Hisa was enthusiastic and trained vigorously every morning and mastered what he was taught by Ueshiba. Later, Ueshiba conferred upon him the 8th dan for his achievements. However, even more significantly, in 1935 Sokaku Takeda showed up in Osaka and instructed them personally, replacing Ueshiba. His techniques were much more advanced and powerful. Takeda was stricter and severer than had been Ueshiba. So, Hisa was able to continue his training even more aggressively. Because of his dedication, Hisa was awarded "Menkyo Kaiden" or a "Full Master ship" certificate in March 1939. He was only one of two people to have received such an honor. The other certificate was honorary in nature and was awarded to another Asahi Staff in Osaka. From his experience with both teachers, Hisa arranged the whole category of techniques he learned and collected them together in a 11 volume collection called the "Soden" for posterity in order that future generations could learn Daito Ryu correctly.


Takuma Hisa and Kenkichi Ohgami


Takuma (right) & Kenkichi

In his later years, Takuma Hisa established the Kansai Aikido Club at Awaji-cho, Higashi-ku (present day Awaji-cho, Chuo-ku, Osaka), backed up by the Kansai financial world. Centering on the Kansai area, he taught Daito Ryu and raised many disciples. After the Kansai Aikido Club closed down, in the 1970s, his disciples, including Kenkichi Ohgami formed the Takumakai Association to carry on Hisa's legacy which continues today. Mr. Ohgami worked at a trading firm, when in 1961 he joined Hisa's dojo. He followed Hisa until his passing in 1980. Prior to the formation of the Takumakai, Mr. Ohgami opened his own dojo called the "Daibukan" (The Great Martial [Arts] Hall) in 1968 in Nishinomiya city, Hyogo Prefecture (between Osaka and Kobe in Kansai area of Japan). The Daibukan President was awarded a teaching license, (kyoju dairi) and 5th dan in 1971. Then, in 1976, Mr. Ohgami was conferred 8th dan by Hisa, the highest rank awarded in Daito Ryu. Hisa Sensei used to come to the Daibukan and teach Daito Ryu whenever he had time to do so, often staying afterwards at the Ohgami's residence for an informal drinking and eating session. At that time, Hisa Sensei taught Mr. Ohgami individually, not only techniques of Daito Ryu, but the history of Daito Ryu, stories about his teachers and his life in general, often offering personal guidance to Mr. Ohgami on many issues. Hisa Sensei treated Mr. Ohgami as one of his most trustworthy disciples and best students, and consequently, they developed a deeper bond compared with his other students. After Hisa's passing, Mr. Ohgami disassociated himself with the Takumakai for a number of personal reasons, although he was one of their founding members. However, since 1968, Mr. Ohgami has continued over the more than 30 years to devote himself to his students at his Daibukan dojo in the same spirit as Hisa himself, teaching a wide variety of students from all walks of life and from many countries. The Daibukan is one of the few traditional dojos in Japan offering personal instruction by Mr. Ohgami directly almost everyday.



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