This is An-shu Stephen K. Hayes’ very first book. It was written in the late 1970s during his days as an apprentice in the home dojo of Masaaki Hatsumi, 34th generation head of the Togakure Ryu ninja. Author Hayes’ uses personal stories from his years studying in Japan to bring to vibrant life the once-secret story of these amazing warriors from Japan’s ancient cultural history.
In feudal Japan, ninja warriors were credited with supernatural powers of invisibility and ways of learning any secret, and were feared for their skill in espionage and combat. Behind these legends is the reality of an ancient, sophisticated, highly systematic art known as ninjutsu.
Perhaps Japan’s most misunderstood martial art, the secret fighting art of the ninja emphasizes naturalness of movement, responsiveness to one’s adversary, and total practicality. Women as well as men were trained in this obscure and deadly defensive art.
For centuries of Japanese history, ninja combat system practitioners needed to hold their organized training curriculum in absolute secrecy. Now, all aspects of ninjutsu are revealed in this remarkable book written by the first American trained in Japan as a Togakure ninja.
Just as important a book today as it was when first published over 30 years ago, The Ninja And Their Secret Fighting Art from Tuttle established Stephen K. Hayes as a martial arts writer like no other.