Grandmaster Tanemura Tsunehisa Shoto Sensei, whose martial arts names are "Bi Koku Ryu" (Secret Black Dragon), "Ko Gyoku" (Shining Ball), "Fudo Masachika" (Immovable Righteous Man) and "Genju", was born on 28 August 1947 in Matsubushi-Machi, Saitama Prefecture, Japan. His given name is Tanemura Tsunehisa Minamoto no Shoto. He took the name Shoto which means "Law of the sword". He is a descendant of Shiro Takatsuna (of the Sasaki Samurai family). One of Takatsuna's sons changed his name in Tanemura (to avoid retribution by the warlord) and took his family to the Matsubushi area where they remained for the last few 100 years.
A grandson of Takeda Shingen came to the Matsubushi area and was later adopted by the Tanemura family. He mixed his blood with that of the Tanemura family. The symbol of the Tanemura family is a combination of the Sasaki emblem and the emblem of Takeda. The females of the Tanemura family use a similar emblem which is also used by the women of the Imperial Family of Japan.
His father, Sadatsune Tanemura (5th Dan Onoha Itto Ryu and 17th Family Head of a Samurai line with roots to Emperors Uda and Seiwa) and father's uncle, Kakunosuke Yamazaki (8th Dan Onoha Itto Ryu), introduced him at the age of 9 to the martial arts (Kendo, Juken-Jutsu, Nin-Jutsu and Ju-Jutsu). It was a very hard time for the young Grandmaster who received his first Menkyo Kaiden in Shinden Fudo Ryu and Kukishin Ryu at the age of 21!
He majored in law at Hosei University and at the age of 22 he became a police officer (Lieutenant), later an instructor, at Tokyo's Metropolitan Police Academy. He was a member of Japan's elite Kidotai Police Unit and involved in hostage, rescue and security operations. After 14 years of service he left the Police Academy to complete his mission: teaching true martial arts to the world.
Grandmaster Tanemura Tsunehisa Shoto Sensei has done many demonstrations worldwide and taught Ninpo and Ju-Jutsu to FBI agents, policemen, SWAT teams, SAS and other elite-team instructors. He was the first Grandmaster of Ninpo ever who left Japan in 1976 to teach in a Western country (USA - Atlanta). He was also the teacher of the first foreigners (Doron Navon, Stephen Hayes, ...) who came to Japan to learn Ninpo in the seventies. Nowadays he is still a much respected Grandmaster all over the world who teaches both Iga Ryu and Koga Ryu Ninpo, who has more then 50 years experience in martial arts (over 23 Ryu-Ha) and who is still studying and learning new styles.
He is now Soke/Soshi (Grandmaster) of not only Ninpo, but also of various Ryu-Ha (Martial Traditions) like for example Amatsu Tatara Bumon & Shumon (Japan's oldest secret school), which has almost disappeared in modern times, and also Chinese martial arts. Currently he's teaching Ninpo as the "Art of the martial arts". His schools (Genbukan Ninpo Bugei and Kokusai Ju-Jutsu Renmei Dojo) have their headquarters (Honbu Dojo) at his home where he also maintains the position of Kancho (Head of the association).
Some of Grandmaster Tanemura Tsunehisa Shoto Sensei's teachers: Takamatsu Toshitsugu Sensei, Sato Kinbei Sensei, Kimura Masaji Sensei, Fukumoto Yoshio Sensei, Kobayashi Masao Sensei, Hatsumi Yoshiaki Sensei, Seishiro Saito Sensei, Nagao Zenyu Sensei.