Hojutsu, the art of gunnery, began its development in Japan in the early 1500's. Matchlock firearms were first imported by the Portuguese; after the Battle of Nagashino in 1575, where peasants with firearms defeated classical Samurai; firearms were embraced by some warriors. Hojutsu is defined as "bujutsu" or "koryu budo"- Old Tradition arts, arts established prior to 1868. The term ryu refers to the "school" or "style" of the art. I have taken the liberty of changing "gunnery" to shooting to reflect the art's use of individual weapons. The ancient martial training systems and protocol remain unchanged.
In Hojutsu-Ryu, we begin training with the handgun; the handgun is the king of personal defense, given its portability and concealability. We progress to the revolver, shotgun, carbine ("assault rifle"), precision rifle, and submachine gun. We include empty hands, sticks of all kinds, and edged weapons into the art. We practice kata using firearms and the other tools listed above, with the intent that a true master of the art should prevail in a fight from flat on his back to 300 meters away.
Hojutsu-Ryu is one of the very few lethal martial arts that is combat-proven in today's world. In addition to Soke Jeff Hall, twelve Hojutsu-ka (practitioners) have won lethal gunfights; all are law enforcement officers, serving from Nevada to Alaska. Three used carbines, two used shotguns, the rest used service pistols, and shots ranged from one to eight. 95.6% accuracy was documented, all officers were uninjured, and all suspects died. Contrast this with the national average for police hits in shootings of only 16%.
Additionally, one black belt credits Hojutsu training and mindset for his safe return from combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan.