Thoughts on Tameshigiri from Famous Swordsmen

Tameshigiri is a very popular element of swordsmanship today. This is perhaps thanks in part to the spread of Toyama-ryu, a system originally created in the 1920s to teach fundamental sword technique to officers in the Imperial Japanese Military. Tameshigiri forms a central part of training in Toyama-ryu and its derivatives, but traditionally, this form … Continue reading Thoughts on Tameshigiri from Famous Swordsmen

A lineage all but forgotton: the Yushinkan dojo

Editors note: This is the first in a series of articles by Tokyo based budoka Jeff Karinja. In this series, he will introduce Yushinkan dojo and talk about its history, esteemed lineage, and ethos. Enjoy! The Yushinkan Dojo (有信館道場) is perhaps one of the most distinguished training halls in modern budo history. The dojo, once … Continue reading A lineage all but forgotton: the Yushinkan dojo

Kendoka shashin meikan

a.k.a. kendoka pictorial directory Editors comment: what follows here is another great translation by Isaac which I believe will be useful to the researchers out there. This book – kendoka shashin meikan (剣道家写真名鑑) was published in 1925, and it attempts to catalogue the butokukai of that time. This includes not only various pictures but the … Continue reading Kendoka shashin meikan

A very brief look at the formation of reiho used in todays kendo

Without taking your eyes of your partner, and at a distance of roughly 9 steps do a standing bow (ritsurei) of 15 degrees, move your shinai from sageto to taito, take three large steps in and “draw” your shinai in a largish arc up and diagonally down through to the center of your opponent while … Continue reading A very brief look at the formation of reiho used in todays kendo

The Swordsman and the Cat

The tale “Neko no Myojutsu” is from an old budo fable written by the samurai Niwa Jurozaemon Tadaaki (pen name Issai Chozanshi, 1659-1741) in 1727. To quote William Scott Wilson: “Little is known about the man.. but he was clearly acquainted with swordsmanship, philosophy, and art, and had made an extensive study of Buddhism, Confucianism, … Continue reading The Swordsman and the Cat