THE FOUNDING AND HISTORY OF KURO-KAI TAIJUTSU SELF DEFENCE
Round about 1993, while still at school, our founder, Marius Swart, discovered the historical warrior art of Togakure Ryu Ninjutsu through the books of Stephen K Hayes. In the years since then he read and re-read the books and devoured anything he could lay his hands on from Hayes and from the 34th Grandmaster of Togukure Ryu Ninjutsu, Dr Masaaki Hatsumi, Sensei.
In the meantime he became a Police Officer and received training in, amongs others, Self Defence, Riot & Crowd Control, Counter Insurgency Warfare, Special Weapons, Ammunition & Tactics, Tactical Survival, The Tonfa Baton and Pepper Spray. He was also involved in JKA Shotokan Karate during his school years and Tenshinkan Karate during his career in Policing. He was trained as a Self Defence Coach by Mr Jerry Oosthuizen of the National Crime Buster Self Defence Campaign around 1996. During this campaign he was involved in the training of hundreds of school children at Qwa-Qwa and Harrismith in basic Self Defence.
He is also well versed in Emergency Care where he attended the Free State Ambulance College in 1991 obtaining a Level 4 Emergency Medical Care qualification. He subsequently attended a CPR workshop and Emergency Care Level 2 training.
In 1997 Stephen K Hayes founded the modern day Martial Art of To Shin Do. When Marius stumbled upon this he was inspired by the modernized version of historical Ninjutsu, that focussed on defence against modern day threats. There was no club near the Free State province, with the only two clubs in SA being in Gauteng. Marius began studying the To Shin Do training DVD’s on his own, whilst also getting involved in JKA Shotokan Karate again.
Marius sustained a back injury in 2006. Due to the 45 degree angles and low stances in Karate he had continuous trouble with his back and had to discontinue Karate training. With his more than 10 years experience in Karate and Self Defence, he started playing with principles taught to him in Karate & Crime Buster Self Defence and started looking at what Hatsumi Sensei and Stephen Hayes was teaching. He found that there was a middle way with no extreme body angles and low stances that would not be bad for his back.
In 2011 a friend, Evelyn Duperron, expressed interest in learning Self Defence. They started practising a mixture of techniques with two other friends, at Dance Age in Harrismith. Evelyn’s knowledge of Dance, Yoga, Stretching and Exercise complimented Marius’s knowledge of Self Defence. It evolved into a regular practice and eventually got named Kuro-Kai Taijutsu. Kuro-Kai Taijutsu is thus a growing Self Defence art that focusses on practical modern day confrontations. It consisted of 12 levels of training until 2016. In 2017 Marius looked back at his original motivation for Kuro-Kai and realised that he needs to shift the focus back to pure self defence and Hatsumi Sensei’s philosophy of Keep it Simple. This lead to a simple 5 Level system of grading.
Marius has been teaching Kuro-Kai Taijutsu Self Defence since 2011 and has teached for more than 310 hours up to the end of 2016.
As long as Kuro-Kai adapts and changes it is growing. Adapt-or-Die. Change is Good. Don’t Get stuck in a Rut.
The meaning of “Kuro Kai Tajutsu.”
Kuro – Black / Dark – Meaning (1) It Holds Danger to our adversary, (2) It is a hidden ability to defend ourselves as we don’t carry any visible weapons (our body is our weapon), and on a lighter note it refers to Marius’s surname, Swart (Black).
Kai – Effect / Result / Floor / Counter for Occurrences / Association – I think it explains itself.
Taijutsu – body technique / body skill, a Japanese term for any combat skill, technique or system of martial art using body movements that are described as an empty-hand combat skill or system.
We do not claim to teach Karate, Ninjutsu, To Shin Do or any other art than Kuro-Kai Taijutsu Self Defence.
That is the Background, Birth and History of our Art at this present moment in early 2017.