Hakko Densho Ryu Jujutsu
as Palumbo Shihan was taught, the technique passed down in the traditional manner,
by word of mouth from teacher to student, from hand to hand
Hakko Densho Ryu Jujutsu is a traditional Japanese form of Jujutsu with its roots in Hakkoryu Jujutsu and Daitoryu Aiki Jujutsu. It consists of blocks, kicks, strikes, joint locks, and throws. Pressure points are used to cause pain yet not injury and off-balancing is used to control the attacker. We choose to respond to an attack in a manner which will cause the least amount of harm, while successfully defending ourselves. Our system also includes a healing component. Students learn Shiatsu (finger pressure) to provide a wellness treatment. Learning the details of Shiatsu also enhances the student's understanding of and ability to learn advanced techniques.
This martial art cannot be learned from reading a book or watching a video. It is said that the techniques cannot truly be learned from seeing them, they must be felt. Only with devoted training can one master the techniques and develop a deep understanding.
Dennis G. Palumbo
The founder of Hakko Densho Ryu Jujutsu began his formal training in the martial arts in 1958 in Yanagi Ryu Aiki Jujutsu. He entered the Air Force and upon his first overseas assignment to Japan, began his study of Hakkoryu Jujutsu with Shihan Hideo B. Abukawa, eventually attaining the rank and title of Shihan in November 1963 making him at that time only the 5th American to be awarded this title. He traveled back and forth between the US and Japan for many years, continuing to study Hakkoryu, Shotokan, Shudokan, and Goju-Ryu Karate.
In 1970 Mr. Palumbo was requested by Soke Okuyama to return to the Hombu for advanced training but was unable to attend because of Air Force duties until almost 10 years later. He formed the Hakkoryu Martial Arts Federation in 1974 while stationed in San Angelo, TX. The HMAF is an organization dedicated to furthering the study of Hakkoryu Jujutsu and passing its teachings throughout the world.
In June of 1980, Mr. Palumbo returned to Japan to undergo training and testing by Soke Okuyama. He was awarded the titles and ranks of Renshi and then Menkyo Kaiden. In the summer of 1986 he was awarded the title of San Dai Kichu, the highest possible ranking in Hakkoryu Jujutsu.
Palumbo Shihan respectfully retired from the Hombu Dojo in 1998. In an effort to continue passing the teachings of Shodai Soke Okuyama Ryohu and abide by the wishes of the Hombu Dojo, he created the system Hakko Densho Ryu.
In 2008 Palumbo Shihan turned over the active administration of HMAF to his student, Dara Masi. He named Dara Masi as Director of HMAF and gave her the responsibility for all teaching, ranking, and administration of HMAF. Dai Shihan Dennis Palumbo passed peacefully on September 12, 2014 after a prolonged illness. Upon his death, Masi Shihan became the head of Hakko Densho Ryu Jujutsu.
The History of Hakkoryu Jujutsu
Hakkoryu Jujutsu was founded by Shodai Soke (First Generation Head) Okuyama Ryohu, born in 1901 in Yamagata Prefecture. During his early life, Shodai Soke traveled extensively, studying many of the martial and medical systems of his day. He studied under many teachers of various bujutsu ryu. At the same time, he had the opportunity to study with leading masters of traditional Japanese medicine including circulation (meridian-in/yo) theory, finger pressure medicine, acupuncture, massage, and traditional herbs and diet. He eventually became an instructor of Daitoryu Aikijujutsu, but in 1939 he left Daitoryu to begin formulating Hakkoryu.
On June 1, 1941, he held the "Hakkoryu Kaiso Hokokusai" (ceremony proclaiming the founding of Hakkoryu). The name "Hakkoryu" is based on a philosophical Japanese view of the color spectrum as being divided into eight bands of light. The eighth shade is infrared, which is invisible to the naked eye but extremely powerful, as are Hakkoryu techniques. The number eight in Japan also has associated with it numerous philosophical and religious meanings that are beyond the scope of this brief introduction.
Hakkoryu is a Jujutsu system which uses the body's Keiraku (meridian system) to create varying amounts of pain to control an attacker without necessarily causing serious injury. Because of the non-injurious potential of these techniques, Hakkoryu is said to be humanitarian in nature.
"The three major characteristics of Hakkoryu are: no challenge, no resistance, no injury. With Hakkoryu, for the first time, the eyes of the dragon are drawn."
-Shodai Soke Okuyama Ryuho
Constant throughout Hakkoryu training is the concept of abandoning force. Muscular strength is not required in Hakkoryu. Instead, the techniques rely mainly on an understanding of anatomy and physiology, both the exponent's and his/her attacker.
Along with Hakkoryu, Shodai Soke maintained an original and distinct school of traditional medical therapy called Koho Shiatsu (Imperial Method of Finger Pressure Therapy). Using the same Keiraku utilized in Hakkoryu to control an attacker, Koho Shiatsu defends against attacks of disease and sickness from within and outside the body.
Following Shodai Soke's retirement in 1986, his son, Okuyama Toshio assumed the responsibilities of the Ryu. At that time, Waka Sensei, as Okuyama Toshio was then known, took his father's pen name "Ryuho," and with it, the title Nidai Soke (Second Generation Head). Nidai Soke Okuyama Ryuho now directs and has total authority over all Hakkoryu dojos tied to the So Hombu Dojo. Shodai Soke passed away in November of 1987.