German Ju-Jutsu

German Ju-Jutsu is a martial art related to Japanese Jujutsu, developed in Germany using techniques from various traditional and modern martial arts. The system is used by the German police forces.

In Germany, the term ‘Ju-Jutsu’ virtually always is taken to refer to German Ju-Jutsu, whereas other styles related to Japanese Jujutsu are normally called ‘Jiu Jitsu’.

In 1967, members of the Deutsche Dan-Kollegium (DDK, German Dan Council) started developing a new self defense system mainly based on Judo, Karate, and Aikido, all three styles in turn being based on or influenced by traditional Japanese Jujutsu. A lot of emphasis was put on techniques which could be used in real life situations.

Over the years, experience from police work as well techniques from other martial arts influenced the system.

In 2000, additional techniques from Kali / Arnis de Mano / Eskrima, Sambo, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Wing Chun, Muay Thai, Boxing etc. were officially incorporated into German Ju-Jutsu.

Techniques: German Ju-Jutsu includes atemi, elbow techniques, kicks, knee strikes, throws, ground techniques (taken from Judo), various locks, pressure points, and armed techniques, among others, covering all distances. Training includes defense against multiple opponents.

Combat Sport: Several different competition systems exist. Considering that Jujutsu in certain other European countries has undergone modernization processes that have led to similar styles as in German Ju-Jutsu, international competitions are possible, too.

The German Ju-Jutsu Association was one of the three founding members of the Ju-Jitsu International Federation (JJIF), originally called the European Ju-Jitsu Federation (EJJF), which focussed on developing the sport aspect of German Ju-Jutsu and other styles of Jujutsu. The JJIF now is an international organization with national associations in over 70 countries.

At the world level, there are two competition systems: the Duo System involves a pair of Jujutsuka from the same team demonstrating self-defence techniques against attacks randomly called by the mat referee. The Fighting System involves one-on-one combats.

Three phases are distinguished, each with slightly different rules. The round begins in the distance fighting phase. Once a grab has been made, the second phase is entered and hits are no longer allowed. The third phase is entered when the Jujutsuka are down on the mat. Switching back and forth between all phases is possible, that is, if the Jujutsuka managed to stand up again the first or second phase would recommence.

Customs: The customs are akin to those used in other Japanese Budo techniques:

  • training is performed in a dojo
  • jujutsugi or judogi are worn
  • a kyu/dan ranking system is used