Kashima-Shinryū is a traditional Japanese martial art (koryū) that was established five centuries ago and developed as a pedagogical system for a professional warrior in feudal times.

A novice first studies basic swordsmanship (kenjutsu) and unarmed fighting (jūjutsu), to build a set of fundamental skills that serve as the foundation upon which all advanced Kashima-Shinryū is based. After learning the fundamentals of the art, the study expands to cover the main fighting tools of the medieval bushi, such as dagger, short sword, various pole weapons, various throwing weapons and the spear.

While the external appearance of Kashima-Shinryū with different weapons varies, all techniques and strategies rely on the shared core principles internalized with the study of the sword and the unarmed fighting. The various facets of the tightly integrated system are constantly affecting each other as the student advances is his/her studies, thus re-enforcing the learning of the system as a whole. These types of Martial Arts traditions are called holistic or composite martial arts. (Sogo Bujutsu in Japanese)