This weekend it won’t just be derby fishermen casting new shadows against the Vineyard backdrop. The added company of traditional Japanese martial arts fighters scheduled to arrive this week are likely to bring some unusual silhouettes to sunsets up-Island.

Fourteen Tenkara karate black belts from Saratoga Springs, N.Y., a group that has visited the Island for the past 15 years, have two scheduled workout classes. One will be held on Sept. 20 at 5 p.m. on the Menemsha Dock, and the other will take place on Sunday afternoon in front of the Gay Head Lighthouse.

To observers, the workouts look like a combination of dance and martial arts performances. But for each individual fighter, the workout is a very personal experience, according to Shihan Patrick Hussey, head instructor and owner of Saratoga Karate/The Tenkara Dojo. A dojo is a formal gathering place where martial arts are practiced.

In a phone conversation with the Gazette, Mr. Hussey said the workout classes are open to the public for viewing, but participation is strictly limited to very experienced black belts.

The first Vineyard trip was held in 1999 and was organized by Mr. Hussey, who is a seventh degree black belt himself.

Since then, Mr. Hussey has come to the Island each year with at least a dozen students. He said traveling with his students is a unique experience in itself.

“It’s become quite a thing,” Mr. Hussey said. “Between serious workouts that I teach and meditation and having fun, everything from the karate part to the social part, seeing the bartenders and restaurant owners and bus drivers that know us on a first name basis, it’s really something special.”

He said each year the group eats dinner at Chesca’s in Edgartown on the first night and enjoy lobsters in Menemsha on the second. Each year the group stays at the Lillian Manter Memorial Hostel in West Tisbury, he said.

“The whole trip is unique. You see, it is atypical for a dojo to travel together or even socialize together,” said Mr. Hussey. He added that the trip is the only time of the year he socializes with his students.

“The dojo is a very strict environment. Traditional karate is very serious. Inside the dojo I’m the teacher and they are the students. I’m telling them what to do and teaching them and they’re learning and listening. We do not hang out ever outside of class. In the karate world, for this trip to happen with students is very rare. It’s our one shot to just let our hair down and relax a bit,” he said.

The annual tradition is one he sees lasting another 15 years. “We keep coming back because of two things: the people we meet and see here and the memories we make,” he said.

“One year some derby fishermen out on the water stopped what they were doing and watched our workout. They stopped fishing! It was so cool. They watched us for like 20 minutes. I’ll never forget that,” he said.