Category: Iaido

Kendo Kyoshi 7-dan Hayashi demonstrating Kendo

Thus spoke Hayashi – Vol. 2

Evaluating budo equipment can be very difficult, especially as a newcomer to martial arts. We thought who better to ask than our resident kyoshi 7-dan Hayashi Sensei: he not only has a great understanding of his chosen art (kendo), but he also actively works in product development. Let’s take a Read More

Samurai warrior cutting a roll of Tatami(Batto)

The Japanese Sword and the Japanese Idioms Part 5

Previously we have shared 4 articles introducing Japanese idioms that derive from the sword, for which we have received positive feedback as well as requests for more idiomatic expressions. Upon further research, we found plenty more. Here are 7 new idioms we would like to add to the list. “Kitaeru” Read More

Image of Japanese sword with flaws

The Katana Kizu: A flaw of the Japanese Sword

Kizu is an evidence of repeated forging The Japanese sword’s main material is the tamahagane (steel made from iron or black sand). As it is forged repeatedly, there are cases where impurities are not completely removed or small mistakes during the forging and tempering process can cause kizu (flaws) in Read More

Image of Japanese Sword Hi groove

Bohi – grooves in Japanese swords

The ‘hi’ is the Japanese name for the groove (also known as a fuller) that runs up the length of the blade. Its original purpose was to make the sword lighter and more resistant to bending. As time went on, decorative factors as well as practical ones were added as Read More

Iaido demonstration at All Nippon Student Iaido Taikai

Japan University Iaido League

In America, the College Football league is hugely popular. Michigan University boasted an average of 100,000 spectators per match in 2017. In English, rugby is famous as a university sport. Japanese universities are also known for their sporting achievements, and that is the same with martial arts. When it comes Read More

Image of Kendo player drawing Japanese sword

The Relationship Between Kendo and Iaido

Kendo was born in the mid Edo period as a martial art using the shinai and protective equipment, and continues to this day earning as much popularity as to host international competitions. There is another martial art involving the sword called iaido, and in thi edition I would like to Read More

The Ridges of the Japanese Sword: Making the Blade Stronger and Sharper

The Ridges of the Japanese Sword: Making the Blade Stronger and Sharper

As mentioned in the past, the Japanese sword is designed with the purpose of “chopping”. This means that making the blade shaper and giving it more cutting ability becomes the most important thing. To make it cut better, you need to make the blade thin, but if it is too Read More

Japanese sword Tsukurikomi image

Japanese Sword Tsukuri-komi: Structure Evolving through Time

Japanese has a word “tsukuri-komi” which refers to the structure and style of the sword blade. In a previous article about the sword’s appearance, I mentioned that the tachi had a strong back-bend whereas the uchigatana had a strong bend at the edge. The angle of the bend, the thickness Read More

Kaji Jinja shrine in Awata Jinja shrine in Kyoto

Crescent Moon Munechika: The Swordsmith Legend in Kyoto

Every year in July the atmosphere of Kyoto becomes mysteriously excited as the whole city prepares to hold Gion Matsuri – the biggest festival of the year that has been held annually for over a millennium. There is a connection between the world of Japanese swords and this historic festival. Read More