Soke Masaaki Hatsumi
It doesn’t matter how strong you might be – there is absolutely no way to survive on strength alone…
Masaaki Hatsumi studied many different Martial Arts before finding Takamatsu O’Sensei, including Karate, Aikido, Judo and western boxing. After achieving 4th degree Black Belt, a US Army base asked him to teach Judo . He found that the larger Americans had a distinct advantage in training.
While studying kobudo (traditional weapons techniques) he heard about Takamatsu O’Sensei, and sought out to become his student. The young Hatsumi, 26 years old at the time, met Takamatsu who at the time was well into his 60’s. The two engaged in a match that Hatsumi would later describe:
The pain of his technique was different from any pain I had ever suffered before. I had only felt a cold, momentary pain, while with Sensei I was exposed to a hot, burning pain. It was as if something would explode, if my blood would be sucked up and I would die right away. He didn’t just apply one GYAKU but four or five. I immediately knew this is what I was looking for. I asked to be his student.
Hatsumi would dedicate the next 15+ years to training under Takamatsu O’Sensei’s supervision. And when Takamatsu passed away in 1972, Masaaki Hatsumi became heir to the 9 traditions. He founded the Bujinkan to continue the nine traditions and grow the art to the world.