Is it possible to learn Kyusho without anatomy?
Yes it is as many learn from using acupuncture based charts... but not to the same depth of understanding and skill that can be realized by the practitioner using real anatomic information.
Masters of old knew anatomy, although not quite the artists that Leonardo Da Vinci was, hence the archaic or cryptic drawings we are accustomed to in texts like the Bubishi, and Fujitas works or even "Secret Notes" from more modern masters such as Hohan Soken. They not only knew anatomic relations, they knew cause and effects of attacks to these Vital Points and Structures. They were masters of the human body, not just their own or their imposed strength or physical prowess in relation to an opponent, they could accomplish even more from their understanding of the human physiology.
Now this is not to discredit acupuncture, no it is to the contrary, that model has it's time, needs and abilities, but for Kyusho, it serves to restrict rather than to inform.
Yes "SOME" of the Kyusho targets are close in proximity to designated acupuncture points, however more are not. Yes it is easy to say go look at a specific point on an acupuncture chart for the general location of a weaker anatomical structure, but do not mistake this for the actual target as it is superficial at best. And that is why the Kyusho practitioner relying on the Traditional Chinese Medical (TCM) approach will only ever be superficial in effectiveness.
When you are educated and trained with anatomy, the learning curve is far shorter and has greater range in scope. It give the practitioner more option as well as more choice in their approach as even the educational materials for study become more focused and coherent. Not to say that anatomy is easy, but it does follow a singular direction as opposed to 5 elements, over 5 cycles, 12 times of days and even to some, colors, emotions, positions, etc... just way too many variables, way too many directions, way too much to learn to just train, let alone actually use it effectively in a highly stressed self protection need.
It is time that all Kyusho practitioners wake up to the realities as opposed to being inundated with extraneous, superfluous and superficial understanding and skill. This is so critical because the next generations will only weaken more each level from a continued watering down from the real physiological effects and anatomy. This can easily be seen from when Kyusho became more mainstream 30+ years ago... it was started as anatomical in approach and it grew, as did the skills of those using it. But since the introduction of the TCM based model there has been a very noticeable diminishing of skill and effect... it is weakening Kyusho and confusing people... so why is it still in use?
To have the most real effect, the most real potential, the most real abilities, we then must look at the real structures that comprise the human physiology, with real anatomy.
For Health, Wellness and Protection, understanding the realities is the only thing that counts.