Seven Exercises for Martial Training

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Al at Modern Kogusoku sent this to me the other day – it presents a fascinating perspective on the approach to martial training:
Seven Exercises for Martial Training
1. Experience cold, heat and rain by climbing high mountains and crossing deep valleys.
2. Rest in open fields and sleep in mountains.
3. Never carry money or food on your person; never wear warm clothing.
4. Travel everywhere by engaging in contests.
5. Reside in graveyards, haunted houses, or among savage beasts.
6. Associate with dangerous criminals.
7. Live off the earth among peasants.
– from the teachings of the Bukyo Goden Ryu
Al didn’t have the source of this in his notes – anyone who is familiar with it please chime in.


  1. Thanks for that info Matt – it certainly looks like a prescription for musha-shugyo. I find the recommendation to associate with criminals interesting advice. It would be a learning experience to be sure.


    • Well technically I suppose you do associate with criminals as an LEO. If the point is to learn about violence and behaviours like pre-violence indicators, triggers, etc, then the CCTV/mobile video revolution allows people to do so much more safely. I no longer fraternise with the idiots of my youth or the petty or not so petty criminals I used to know. Without doubt i learned lessons and behaviour that have been useful…I don’t think i want to repeat though. 😀
      I really enjoy your blog and look forward to more posts.


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