What is Iaido.
Iaido is the study of swordsmanship to intuitively respond to an attack with smooth, controlled movements drawing the sword from its scabbard, striking or cutting an opponent, and then returning the sword to the scabbard. Techniques are studied from a variety of seated and standing situations.
What are the origins of Iaido.
Modern Iaido is based upon techniques from the Japanese feudal period enabling swordsman to to be able to defend themselves by quickly drawing their swords and cutting down adversaries in the event of an attack. After the collapse of the Japanese feudal system in 1868 the theory and the practice of these classical disciplines were preserved and became what is known as Koryu (old schools that pre-date the Meiji period) Iaido.
In 1952 the Zen Nihon Kendo Renmei (ZNKR), also known as the All Japan Kendo Federation, was founded and in 1968 a technical committee which brought together Iaido leaders created the 7 Seitei Kata (standard forms) drawing mainly upon the techniques of several different Koryu. In 1981 a further 3 Kata were added and again in 2000 another 2 were added bringing the set currently to a total of 12. These 12 Seitei Kata encompass the principles of sword handling are the basis of a system of training that offers significantly challenging yet rewarding study.
What is involved in Iaido training.
Iaido training is based on the study and practice of Kata involving drawing, cutting and re sheathing actions from a variety of seated and standing situations. For the most part, Kata are practised in a solo fashion against an imaginary opponent with paired exercises being introduced at advanced levels. The movements are often simple but can be very difficult to master. Ongoing practice builds the skill and understanding needed to perform each kata with precision and control.
Beginners may start learning with a wooden sword called a Bokken or Bokuto, but quickly transition to non-sharpened swords called Iaito. Senior experienced practitioners may choose to train with a sharp-edged sword called a Shinken.
What "style" of Iaido do we train at Kuroyama Budokai.
Study at Kuroyama Budokai principally involves the ZNKR Seitai Kata. For more advanced students, deeper study of Iaido is achieved through the practise of Koryu. Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu is the principal Koryu studied - it is one of the most widely practiced schools of Iaido and claims an unbroken lineage dating back from the sixteenth century.
Additionally from time to time students will have the opportunity to participate in sessions of Tameshigiri, the practise of test cutting with a live sword using rolled straw mats. This practice was popularized in the Edo period (17th century) for testing the quality of Japanese swords but continues to this day with a focus on the practitioner's control and precision with a sword.
Who are the Kuroyama Budokai Iaido Instructors.
Our Principal Instructors are:
Our Assisting Instructors are:
Michi Kawada - Sandan (3rd Dan)
Who are the governing bodies for Iaido.
International Kendo Federation (FIK) is the internationally recognised world-wide federation of national Kendo, Iaido and Jodo.
Australian Kendo Renmei (AKR) is the FIK recognised organisation in Australia. It is also recognised by the Australian Sports Commission as the National Sporting Organisation (NSO) to develop Kendo, Iaido and Jodo in Australia.
ACT Kendo Renmei (ACTKR) is the AKR recognised affiliate organisation for the development of Kendo, Iaido and Jodo in the ACT.