Umeň, Sweden. "Bj÷rkstaden" Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu.
The Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu school located in Umeň, Sweden, offers very little qualitative instruction to it's prospective student.
Located in the proximity of downtown Umeň, the minuscule (5 x 12 meters, roughly) basement dojo is first and foremost hard to find. Besides being small, it is also poorly ventilated and deprived of dressing rooms. It is however well provided with various training weapons and mats, aswell as rarely used tha´-pads and focus mits.
A typical class at this dojo sees it's student warm up approximatively 20 minutes with various Ukemi (Breakfalls) , followed by 10 minutes of Sanshin (The five basic unarmed forms of Bujinkan.)
When these proceedings are over, the remaining hour of class time is spent drilling techniques made up on the spot by the instructor. Wristlocks, lunge punches/kicks and occasional weapon techniques are standard. Ground fighting is rarely, if ever, adressed.
Compliance is a must, as is practicing slowly. Resisting your partners' attempts to apply a technique on you is considered very rude and "disruptive". Heavy focus is placed on using Taijutsu (wholebody technique) to apply techniques, obscure "principles", and avoiding the use of strength and speed. Sparring is inexistant.
No cardio or conditioning whatsoever is trained, excluding the warmup breakfalls.
The general atmosphere of the dojo is quite unhealthy and cult-like, due mostly to the head instructors oafish and bully-like mentality. Other martial arts, in particular mixed martial arts are frequently dismissed as inferior, and little concern is taken to any individual's state of mind or opinions. Student to teacher ratio is good however, with an average of 7 students per class.
Overall, my suggestion to anyone interested in taking up Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu in Umeň, Sweden, is not to bother. Although it is common practice at the club to offer a variable (usually 4) amount of free classes to beginners (Incidentally, the beginner classes are the only ones where conditioning, cardio and groundwork are, poorly, adressed.) the 750 SEK/quarter (wich averages 250 SEK/month, with the American dollar costing roughly 8 SEK) are not worth it.
If you are seeking effective unarmed or armed combat training in Umeň Sweden, don't go to the local Bujinkan dojo.