New Women's Self Defense Classes

The Benevolent Heart Dojo is celebrating its new BedStuy training location with a NEW WOMEN'S SELF DEFENSE class:

- Education : learn what your own individual strengths and weaknesses are, and then learn to apply individualized tactics and strategies.
- Efficiency : efficiently spend your time learning movements and techniques which give you the best chances.
- Effectiveness : learn from an instructor with 20+ years of martial arts teaching experience, including teaching law enforcement professionals.
- Empowerment : the culmination of your training experience.

1 Hour class will be held every Tuesday at 8PM

Affordable, individualized classes:

Suggested Donation $20
Minimum $5

If you are interested in more information please contact Josh:

Highlights from an E-mail written May 26, 2017:


When I was attending Oberlin College I taught my first official self-defense / martial arts class. The Oberlin students attending the class as well as I were given official school credit, albeit very little. To my surprise about 18 women signed up for the semester long class and zero men. When I realized that there were ZERO men signed up for the class I scrambled to change the curriculum to match the needs of the women who enrolled. At the time my mentor and teacher, who had just recently returned from living and training in Japan with the Bujinkan grandmaster Masaaki Hatsumi was a woman (coincidently also a Harvard Alum.) and a victim of years of domestic violence. She helped guide me on teaching the self-defense class at Oberlin.


One of my closer feminist friends who I've known from kindergarten has spent years professionally in education and non-profits aimed at gender inequality and rape prevention. He has taught and organized groups on campuses all over the county for Men Can Stop Rape. Having known me for almost my entire life he has encouraged me to perhaps start teaching more specialized classes for women who would like to learn self-defense.

Coincidentally enough, this coming Monday, May 29th, the Benevolent Heart Dojo will be hosting our first women's self-defense class (which is open to non-members) and being taught by my master Dr. Kacem Zoughari. This is the first women's class I will be involved in since my days at teaching in Oberlin. My teacher will be running the class and I will be assisting. Most of the participants have ZERO to only a slight bit of martial arts experience.

If the class goes well and there is interest we may create an ongoing program. If you are interested in participating please let me know. We would be happy to answer in person any questions or to converse further on any topics which interest you.

-Joshua Noro Polier Shidôshi, LMT

The class went great, and we have started the new program.

-Scheduled on Tuesday nights and found on the class schedule in purple.

New R9D Classes

-Rolling Nine Deep: Guiding the next generation of martial artists.™

Rolling- a modern western term for 乱取り randori or getting on the mat and "fighting" or "competing." The term randori is frequently used by Judo (Olympic Martial Sport) practitioners and the term Rolling is used by modern JJ and BJJ practitioners.

Nine- 九 honor to the "Nine Schools," the source of the R9D flow.

Deep- an homage to the master, 師匠 - Shishō, to always go deeper in one's practice.

-Scheduled on Tuesday nights and found on the class schedule in red.

New Kid's Classes

Guiding the next-next generation of martial artists.™

-Scheduled mostly on Sundays (with a few substitue Saturdays) and found on the class schedule in orange.

Upcoming Events & Seminars

Topic: KACEM ZOUGHARI: Jōjutsu + Kosshijutsu and Koppōjutsu of the 9 schools
Date: (100% set airplane ticket purchased and hotel reservation locked in.) May 19 - May 20, 2018
Tentative Times: SATURDAY - 11:00am - 5:00pm
SUNDAY - 9:30am - 3:30pm
(We scheduled the 9:30 AM start time to accomodate out of towners. Please, if you need to leave earlier to catch a flight etc, no worries.)
Tentative Locations: Chelsea Studios

151 West 26th Street

6th Floor

New York, NY 10001

Between 6th and 7th Avenues on the North side of the street.

Playwrights Rehearsal Studios formerly known as 440 Studios

440 Lafayette Street

New York, NY 10012

BHD Private Dojo in Bedstuy Brooklyn

Located near the Gates J/Z subway stop in Brookyn

Brooklyn, NY 11221

New R9D dojo (name updated soon)

Located near the 15 St - Prospect Park F/G subway stop in Brookyn

Brooklyn, NY 11215

IMPORTANT Info PLEASE READ: This seminar will be limited to approximately the first 20-25 people who register. (No Refunds unless your registration is over the seminar space limit.) NO LIVE WEAPONS please. The final location will be chosen based on the registration. So please register ASAP as it will help the us choose the best place to hold the seminar at. We would like to help people afford the seminar. The BH Dojo makes ZERO profit on seminars hosted (and we have been hosting Kacem for 12+ years). If you would like to stay at the AirBnB located directly over the Brooklyn BHD location for a "NYC affordable" rate please let us know as early as possible so we can be sure to give you priority. You may also crash in the BH dojo space for a very low fee. If you choose to go the hotel route we suggest you book a hotel in the area of Delancey / Essex St Station in Manhattan. The Delancey / Essex St subway stop has two subway lines with efficient routes to all of the potential training locations. The Essex St station is also located in one of the hippest areas in NYC, The Lower East Side or LES.

Please use PayPal to pay here:
8.875% NY and NYC sales tax will be added to base price:

**In order to streamline the registration process and to keep seminar day check-in time to a minimum, please fill out the attendance sheets below. If for any reason you think you may want to change your response on the attendance form you will be given an option after submitting the form to "edit your response." please click on the "edit your response" button and record in a safe place the URL that is given. This unique URL is the only efficient way for you to change your response. Thank you for helping us make the check-in, registration and administration of the seminar as efficient as possible.

ALL PAID PayPal registrants will be given priority over cash payment registrants. We expect the limited spaces to sell out so please use PayPal. Thank you!

*Friday Night Training with Kacem, not included in the seminar. (May 18th from 6:30PM-8:30PM)

Based on this attendance sheet we will determine the exact location of the the Friday night class. We will close the attendance sheet and announce the final location of the class by Tuesday May 1. Please fill out the form BEFORE then. Thank you.
Price is $35 for registered seminar participants and $40 for those not attending the seminar.
Cash at door please.

(***Please fill out the MANDATORY attendance sheet below
as we may have to set a size limit for the class. Thank you.)

Kacem Zoughari

Kacem Trailer Videos:

For an assortment of past Seminar Videos, as well as Dr. Kacem Zoughari's Biography please visit his Biography Page

Examples of past Kacem Zoughari on the East Coast USA

Kacem Zoughari

Kacem Zoughari
When: August 17 & 18, 2013 NYC
Topic: Tsurugi, Ken, Jo, Hanbo, Koppou-Jutsu, Kosshi-Jutsu

When: March 16 & 17, 2013 Syracuse N.Y.
Topic: Sappo, and Hanbo

When: January 28-29, 2012 NYC
Topic: Takagiyoshinryu Iaijutsu and Secret Taijutsu

When: October 8-9, 2011, Poughkeepsie NY
Topic: Naginata, Ken, Kodachi, Hekito Gata and Koppojutsu

When: July 16-17, 2011, Poughkeepsie NY
Topic: Takagi Yoshin Ryu Chuden Level + Spear

When: April 16-17, 2011, Poughkeepsie NY
Topic: Ken, Jo and Jutte

When: February 5-6, 2011 NYC
Topic: Iaijutsu and Kusari-Fundo

When: October 9-10, 2010, 2010 Poughkeepsie NY
Topic: Koppou-Jutsu and Yari-Jutsu

When: July 10th - 11th, 2010 Poughkeepsie NY
Topic: TakagiyoshinRyu Ura Gata and Tojutsu

When:January 17 - 18, 2009 DC
Topic:Kacem Zoughari Togakure Ryu - Bojutsu Seminar

When: Oct 18 - 19, 2008 NYC
Topic: Takagiyoshinryu Jutaijutsu and Takagiyoshinryu Nawa Jutsu - High Tree, Raised Heart School and "Takagiyoshinryu" Rope Technique

When: September 6-7, 2008 Poughkeepsie NY

When: March 8 - 9, 2008 NYC
Topic: Togakure Ryu (Part II), Gyokko Ryu Chuden Waza, Ken (Sword)

When: July 7 - 8, 2007 DC
Topic: Kukishinden Ryu Chuden

When: March 10 - 11, 2007 NYC
10am - 6pm Both Days
Topics: Kukishinden Ryu DakenTaijutsu Shoden, Chuden gata and Hanbo Jutsu

When: May 27 - 28, 2006 NYC
Topics: "Shinken Kihon" and "Bukiwaza" - real fighting fundamentals and weapon techniques

When: January 7 - 8, 2006 Poughkeepsie NY
Topics: Jissen Kihon Happo

Letter to the Dojo

Soke and BHD Instructors

Justin, Ignacio and I just returned from training in Japan. This trip was spur of the moment as we decided to take advantage of the lull in gaijin practitioners in Noda. We experienced classes with Hatsumi Soke which only had around 25 people per class. I haven't experienced Soke's classes with so few people since my trip to Japan in 1992. We trained with Ishizuka sensei and his top disciples morning and night (when we were not attending Hatsumi Soke's classes). It was an intense and personal experience.

I view the members of our dojo as very fortunate; because of Kacem's generosity quite a few of you have been to Japan for training and have experienced what it is like training and living in Ishizuka sensei's dojo. For me the experience of training in Ishizuka's dojo has evolved over time. While always exceedingly generous, during this latest trip Ishizuka Sensei and his disciples were extraordinarily generous in their patience and what they revealed to us.

Personally speaking this trip represented an opportunity for me to dive deeper into my practice and to aim for higher goals and standards for myself. I urged Justin and Ignacio to do the same and spoke to both of them in some length about the opportunity. The real purpose of this email is to extend this invitation to all of you.

Over the last few years we have all experienced heart-wrenching difficulties and challenges (including Kacem). Many of you have told me of the pain and difficulties in your life and I have in turn told you of mine. Many of you feel you are in some of the deepest, darkest and melancholy times of your life. I can tell you, we are all in the same boat, almost all of us have or will experience the same or similar hardships in life. However we all have a kinship in Ninjutsu and Ninpo. This art was created in hardship and its practitioners persevered through the pain. This is the only reason why to this day we are blessed to be able to experience the art of Ninjutsu.

Let us all help each other pull through the hard times. I strongly encourage all of you to join me Justin and Ignacio and reinvigorate your commitment to yourself, the dojo, and The Art. Begin shedding all the excuses in your mind, begin to strengthen your body and continue to dive deeper into your heart to find the benevolence within. We all have the opportunity to make a new beginning, not by changing our immediate situation but by changing our interpretation of our current existence. In my opinion, the internal interpretation and manipulation of one's own self and view of one's own life and the world around us is the highest level of "kyojitsu tenkan ho" that one can practice. I invite all of you to begin practice anew, with a beginner's mind, with enthusiasm and openness to change and to look forward to the future ahead. Let us practice together and renew our commitment to ourselves, the dojo, and The Art.


Joshua Noro Polier
LMT, Shidôshi