The Dojo

Tanuki  Bujinkan Dojo


I often think about how the weather affects our training. Our dojo is basically set up like the ones you find in Japan. The dojo is just a building for training. We have limited heating in the winter, and minimal cooling in the summer. This is the same feeling you get when you train in the Honbu Dojo in Japan. In our everyday lives, we are constantly fighting to be comfortable. What may be cold for you, is hot for someone else. This is an important part of training. By training in the dojo, but also being exposed to the elements allows for our bodies to learn how to adjust to the temperature. I remember one time in the Kita-Asaka dojo, Nagato Sensei was playing with the heater. This was during the winter, but he put the heater on high. Many of us were sweating like crazy. Nagato Sensei explained that this is apart of training. “It is important for us to learn how to adjust to the temperature when we are fighting.” I also remember that Hatsumi Sensei talked about this one year at the DKMS. We never know what the elements may be like when we find ourselves faced with a serious threat. However, we can not train for every element or every type of situation. This is why it is important to focus on good technique and to have confindence in what you do. Sometimes the dojo is very comfortable to train in, and at other times it is not.


A big part of Ninjutsu is the ability to conserve energy. We never know how many people we may be up against in a fight, so we must try to conserve our energy as much as possible. Training in both the hot and cold elements helps us to do that. Training in the summertime is probably the best way to learn how to conserve energy. When we are training in the summertime, you often hear Hatsumi Sensei tell us to drink tea. Soke constantly reminds us to stay hydrated. Soke also reminds us to train slow and relaxed. Soke is telling us these things for this very reason. Oftentimes due to cultural differences, many Gaijin do not understand what is really being taught in the dojo. My suggestion; listen to Soke.



Chris Carbonaro

Bujinkan Shihan

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