The Kageshujin (shadow master) Dojo is the Hombu (本部 headquarters) for the Kurai Kotori Martial Arts Tradition. The Hombu serves as the primary resource for all things pertaining to the system, its activities, current teaching methods, written materials, and official weapons and equipment used in training.
The Hombu is also home to the Kurai Kotori Martial Arts Federation (K.K.M.A.F.) which is the only recognized registry for issuing ranks. All our instructors from satellite schools and informal training groups remain in close contact with the Hombu and are eligible for free training to foster solidarity and ensure the unified propagation of the art while remaining in sync with the edicts of the Hombu. If you are interested in studying the Kurai Kotori Tradition, please CONTACT US.
The Kurai Kotori Ryu is a tradition that follows the path of Sword & Shadow. The sword (刀) serves as a foundation weapon used to cultivate hand/eye coordination, enhance intuition pertaining to the crucial art of timing, heighten awareness to combative distancing, and imbue the importance of strategic thinking in all things. The shadow (影) serves as a concept for how to approach conflict in a manner that uses guile over brute force, calm resolve over rash action, and the ability to adapt to an enemies aggression like a leaf that floats on the surface of water... harmonizing with the natural flow of energy.
Kenjutsu (剣術) is a universal term that encompasses many skills used by a swordsman or swordswoman. To practice Kenjutsu (fencing skills), one must first become masterful at exhibiting proper etiquette with the weapon, understand its anatomy, and how to care for it. One is taught to hold the weapon, combative postures, basic attacks, conditioning, movement drills, body dynamics, combination attacks, and precision training. The sword practitioner then begins partner practice to learn advanced cuts, parries, blocks, clashing, striking, and controlling techniques before learning the prearranged fighting sets that test their overall knowledge along with the classical strategies used by the Samurai of Feudal Japan.
Ninjutsu (忍術) is a comprehensive system comprised of many sub-systems. A Ninja must turn their body into a weapon, thus the term for their unarmed fighting skills is Taijutsu (body art). Taijutsu involves striking, joint manipulation, throws, pressure attacks, finger locks, chokes, and reversals. Beyond unarmed skills, the Ninja must become skilled with Nin-Buki (weaponry). Nin-Buki is comprised of dozens of specialized weapons, including throwing blades, staves, halberds, chains, sickles, spears, cords, short bow, and blowgun. The Ninja is also exposed to the famed skills of their ancient predecessors involving wilderness survival, climbing techniques, silent movement, and escape and concealment.
The Kageshujin Dojo is dedicated to practicing, refining, perfecting, and transmitting all the skills maintained by the Kurai Kotori Ryu, but that is only a part of the equation. The most important factor is ensuring those within our martial family cultivate themselves in a constructive manner. Many things will happen to us as we journey through life. We will make friends and acquire enemies, we will find love and experience hatred, we will engage in war and cherish peace, we will have successes and suffer losses, we will live and we will die, but what really matters are the choices we make while on this journey. Many are quick to point out the flaws of the world. Crime, hunger, hatred, and corruption. It is easy to acknowledge these things exist, yet most people sit and watch as events unfold around them. The Kurai Kotori Warrior should actively seek out ways to make a positive difference in the world. This is the path.
Shodai Jonin (ninja leader) Mark Steven Grove has been studying Ninjutsu since 1972. He opened his first school in 1983 and has been practicing and teaching every since. He is the founder the Gendai system of Kurai Kotori Ninjutsu and has organized the skills into a complete training program that maintains the spirit of the Ninja. Nidai Jonin (ninja leader) Sara Salazar is a 5th degree black belt who has been training in Kurai Kotori Ninjutsu under Mr. Grove since 2003 and is the successor to the system.
Since we are adapting to the Covid-19 pandemic, we are currently focusing our training schedule almost entirely on Kenjutsu (swordsmanship). This will allow us to remain a safe distance from one another as we refine our sword fighting skills.
Join us on for Kenjutsu training on Wednesdays from 7:00pm to 9:00pm and Sundays 11:00am to 1:00pm
We also conduct much of our training outdoors in the form of multi-day camps, seminars, and guest workshops.
Although both Samurai and Ninja skills have a practical use in today's society as a method of self-protection and mental discipline, we also utilize the art to perform theatrical combat. This is known as Chambara チャンバラ , which is slang for Japanese films set in 15th- to 19th-century that are commonly known as Jidaigeki 時代劇 (period dramas). Chambara training actually benefits practitioners of Kenjutsu and Ninjutsu.
The first Chambara film titled “The Fight at Honno Temple” was released in 1908 and its director, Makino Shozo, became known as the father of Japanese cinema. Because of the films popularity, many renowned sword masters became the primary source of inspiration for developing the techniques that would be used many decades later to create the Samurai and Ninja epics of the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s.
Having the wisdom and skill of classically trained swordsmen brought a new sense of “Realism” to these films because the characters actually used historically proven fighting techniques that had been adapted to film. The significance of the Chambara film genre in world cinema is enormous. Stoic heroes fighting against unbeatable odds, honor and loyalty tested, and betrayal at every turn.
Director Akira Kurosawa made many powerful Chambara films that inspired the Westerns of Hollywood. Kurosawa's film “Seven Samurai” (1954) was later remade in America and titled “The Magnificent Seven.” The Hidden Fortress (1957) is acknowledged as an inspiration for “Star Wars,” and “Yojimbo” (1961) was remade as “Fistful Of Dollars.”
Chambara was also popular in a variety of film series including; “Zatoichi”(1962-72), “Shinobi No Mono”(1962-66), “Hanzo The Blade” (1972-74), “Lady Snowblood” (1973-74), and based on the epic Manga comics by Kazuo Koike and Goseke Kojima the amazing “Lone Wolf And Cub” series (1972-74).
Here you see four sword sets applied by multiple practitioners against a variety of attacks.
Here you see multiple practitioners demonstrating three sword sets using strategic principles.
Training outdoors so we can practice sword versus chain and a two person sword set.
This preview shows an interactive form where a practitioner holds his ground against two attackers.
Here you see two practitioners demonstrating some of the basic fast drawing skills.
Locking and hyper-extending the knee is a powerful technique that causes pain and hinders mobility.
Swordsmanship for camera where Chambara practitioners techniques flow from one opponent to the next.
Here you see a clip of two practitioners applying elbow locks with a variety of follow up techniques.
Practitioners train with a variety of weapons against targets, against an opponent, and in solitary forms.
Here you will see the cross arm entangle technique applied against various attacks.
Conquest is a TV show on the History Channel hosted by Peter Woodward. In each 30 minute episode, Woodward teaches his small group of assistants a particular type of weapon, or a set of weapons from a particular time period, while demonstrating their function, describing their comparative advantages and disadvantages, and discussing their history. In episode 24, he examines THE WEAPONS OF THE NINJA. Assisted by real life Ninja Master Mark Steven Grove of the Kurai Kotori Ryu, Peter explains many aspects of the art of Ninjutsu while Mark teaches various unarmed and weaponry skills.
8031 Wadsworth Blvd A-4
Arvada, Colorado 80003