Goshinjutsu-ryu is somewhat related to the Shito ryu family of systems, but
it was very much affected by both southern Chinese and even some Indonesian
Pentjak, in a roundabout fashion. Some of this is obviously parallel
development, since the older the ryu, the more likely it will contain techniques
similar to those of other ryu, often from other nations. Also, Goshinjutsu is
related to the Goshin ryu aikijutsu system, and a lot of the bunkai of the kata
are descended from Kumi Uchi and aiki jutsu techniques, especially the kansetsu
waza. GJK* uses angular footwork, and circular body dynamics, with emphasis on
hip rotation in evasion and striking. Both the "snapping" hip rotation familiar
to shtokan stylists , and the floating/flowing hip motion more familiar to
Okinawan styles, especially those influenced by Chinese technique, are used.
Most GJK stylists use the curled fist*, not the vertical fist of Isshin styles, nor the trapped index finger as found in Oshima's shotokan and some of the shobayashi shorin schools.
As the pentjak and Okinawan Isshin influences found their way into the American branches, some schools stopped teaching the goshin aikijutsu concurrently with the Goshinjutsu ryu karate, and some of these schools are very close to Kuniba's Motobu ha shito ryu in appearance and performance of their kata.
The schools that maintained the "traditional " Goshin still teach both goshin
ryu Aikijutsu and the more Chinese related aspects of Goshinjutsuryu,
particularly the Fukkien Crane influenced forms of the Kishu Tsegeki no gata and
Chugokute no gata. This schizm became more pronounced after the death of Shitani
and Marakami, and was an issue in Gerald Durant's introduction of the system
into the US. Furthermore, Mr Durant became soke of the system a few years before
his death by default. after the death of Marakami and Shitani, there were no
more high ranked practitioners alive in Japan, and interestingly, when Shihan
Carl McClafferty went to Japan and demonstrated before Ritsuke Otake, Head
Instructor of the famous Shoden Tenshin Katori Shinto Ryu , Otake sensei
recognized the art and it's techniques. Most of the bunkai of the GJK forms and
the waza contain much more kansetsu (joint leverage striking and manipulation )
waza than found in most karate ryu. Also common to the GJK is the use of happo
no sabaki, or eight directions of movement, probably taken from the Goshinryu
aikijutsu in which tai sabaki moves in a radial manner from the center of the
attack at eight directions, both forward and back. Striking is Dakentaijutsu
style, in which sharp series of blows are used both to incapacitate and to do
structural damage by using the bodie's reaction to the previous strike. katas
tend to be variable in speed, and use the kihon no sabaki.
*GJK - Goshinjutsuryu Karate
(Goshinjutsu Karate Association) /Goshinjutsu kyo Jujo- dai soke Matthew Durant
The GJKA is pretty much a Shito ryu variant, and does not incorporate any of the Goshin ryu aikijutsu into it's techniques or training.
Goshin jutsu Karate kai
formed by J. P. Root
Akai Tatsu Ryu/ Mizu Hi Kobukan Shinto ryu
Carl McClafferty/Soke Mak .
Mizu Hi incorporated Goshinjutsu ryu and Goshin ryu aikijutsu into it's ryuha in the same way Katori shinto ryu kenjutsu and the Yagu shinkage ryu kenjutsu teach both kobudo and jujutsu as a part of their training. Carl McClafferty went to Japan and formed the ryuha under soke Mak's Mizu Hi with the help and guidance of Soke Mak and Ritsuke Otake, Head Instructor of the Tenshin Shoden Katori Shinto ryu. Because of the deplorable politics and infighting for power among the few remaining GJK instructors, Carl , who already held menkyo in Mizu Hi kenjutsu and a nanadan in GJK, elected to leave the bickering behind, and simply incorporate GJK into the Mizu Hi and Akaitatsu ryu as one of the ryu ha of the system.
*The curled fist is where the fist is formed by curling the tips of the
fingers into the palm as if gripping a roll of pennies (yes it does come from
the yawara jujutsu te waza using koppo eda) with the thumb gripping the first
two fingers, and the ring finger and pinky kept (relatively ) loose, except on
impact , when the fist is squeezed at kime. the fist is rotated to the
horizontal on impact, with the striking surface the first two knuckles, and the
fist slightly tilted forward to align teh bones with the radial bone of the
wrist. The elbow is kept slightly bent, too, and the triceps, lats ,a nd
abdominals are all tightened at impact.