Category: Iaido

mokuso meditation in dojo

Why Mokuso?

I’m sure many of you would sit silently and meditate with your eyes closed both before and after practice. Some groups call it mokuso (silent thinking), some Meiso (closed-eye thinking), or Seiza (silent sitting). When you join the dojo, the instructor would tell you the meaning and how to do Read More

Budo and the core muscle

Budo and the core muscle

The core muscle is very important not only in Budo but in many sports, and training your core muscle has many benefits. In this edition I will introduce some ways of training your core muscle, including ways that are effective for Budo. The core muscle (Japanese taikan) broadly refers to Read More

Danryu Koshirae coiled dragon motif Iaito sword

The new Iaito sword with noble Danryu dragon from Tozando

In Japan, various patterns involving the mythical creature of the dragon have been used since ancient times. In particular coiled dragons known as “Danryu” have been prized as patterns on items like plates and vases for the nobility since long ago. It is said dragons possess a mysterious power and Read More

Miyamoto Musashi with two swords

Nitoryu and the Brain

Miyamoto Musashi is well known for “Nitoryu” (double-sword style) and the founder of his own school “Niten-ichi-ryu”. With Nitoryu, you attack with swords in your right and left hands. Generally, in you stronger hand you hold a tachiI (large sword) and in your weaker hand a dagger. Originally the Japanese Read More

Kendo player with Chudan no Kamae

Mental Training in Kendo

Kendo of course requires physical strength but also mental strength. There are many ways to train up your mentality, but the most basic level is mannerisms. This relates to other martial arts too, but it all “begins and ends with manners”. If you are aiming to be a strong kenshi, Read More

A girl wearing Kendo Men

“Kyu” and “Dan” in Budo

In Japanese Budo such as kendo, judo, kyudo, there are levels named “kyu” and “dan”. Each has its own characteristic, but many people wonder what the difference is between the two. Kyu is a word that describes the quality or the condition of objects as in “ikkyuhin”, “nikyuhin” and “sankyuhin” Read More

Kendo practice Keiko in the sunset

If everything is my teacher, anywhere can be my dojo

In today’s article we are looking at how we can work on our training outside of our regular dojo.  If you are struggling to make it to regular training and want some ideas on how to make it up outside of the dojo then this is the article for you. Read More

Iaito sword inspection by Tozando Iaito craftsman

The Correct Way to Maintain Your Iaito Sword

The Iaito Sword is a sword invented for practicing iaido and uses an alloy sword blade instead of the blade of a real sword. The other parts of the sword are often that of a real sword, such as the sheath, hilt, and other metal fittings. But since the blade Read More

Young Musashi Face

The “Eye” for Winning in Martial Arts Part 2

Look at your opponent’s face, as taught by young Miyamoto Musashi Let us also break down Miyamoto Musashi’s teaching on the eye too. Musashi is known for his teaching on “Kanken no me” but long before his famous “Gorinsho”, he wrote the following at the age of 24, after defeating Read More

The “Eye” for Winning in Martial Arts

The “Eye” for Winning in Martial Arts Part 1

There are “teachings” of martial arts passed down from ancient times, and as we try to dig deeper into how our ancestors taught their skill, today we would like to talk about the theme of the “eye”. There are many teachings on the “eye” that have been passed down through Read More