Is Santa Claus a ninja? Well, he does have a black belt

Nearly a dozen Santas took ninja training in Japan recently.

Nearly a dozen Santas from the Greenland International Santa Claus Association turned out for this year's Saga Santa Summit, according to Japan's national broadcasting network NHK.

In western Japan, the Saga Prefecture where the trials are being held in a region long known for its pottery -- and its chimneys.

Footage from the event shows the prospective Santas listening attentively to a ninja instructor before taking to the stage to begin their training.

In rather surreal scenes, one of the Santas -- from Denmark -- can be heard on camera saying: “Oh no, we are not that quick. We are more slowly. Every day slowly with a lot of gifts for all the children.”

They have learned how to sneak into homes and improve their sleigh riding skills -– all the while immersing themselves in local Japanese culture.

To be sure, the idea of a ninja Santa may sound odd to some, but think about it: Santa Claus has a black belt.