Category: Samurai/Bushido

Kendo-Swordsmanship-Nishiki-e-Tsukioka-Yoshitoshi-1873

Sakakibara Kenkichi – The Father of Kendo?

When it comes to kendo and its development, it is difficult to point towards a definitive “father” of kendo. Naito Takaharu and Takano Sasaburo are often given such praise. It goes without saying that modern kendo would likely be a very different activity if not for their influence (if it Read More

Shinsengumi slaying a radical Samurai

The Ikedaya Incident

On the night of July 8th, 1864, a stream of white and light blue haori jackets emblazoned with the kanji 誠 (Honesty) moved toward the Ikedaya Inn. It was situated just east of the famous Sanjo Bridge in the heart of Kyoto and these were the jackets of the famous Read More

Kashima Jingu Shrine

These are MUST-VISIT places for Budoka

These are MUST-VISIT places for Budoka Not only in kendo, but in any contest are decided not just on raw ability. “Luck” can also play an important part. There is a saying “do your best, and leave the rest to Providence.” In order to win, the basic idea is to Read More

Brush painting of Musashi versus Yoshioka Seijuro

Yoshioka Seijuro: who did Musashi really fight?

“Miyamoto Musashi” is a novel written by Eiji Yoshikawa that was published as a serial by Asahi Shimbun from 1935 to 1939. Since then it was been made into movies, TV series, and comic books many times, making Musashi a legendary swordsman not only in Japan, but worldwide. As Musashi Read More

Zanshin

In kyudo, there is a concept called the “8 Phases of Shooting”. This concept divides the movement for releasing the arrow into 8 phases; each phase has its own name. The last phase that brings the movements to a close is called “zanshin”. The kanji is usually written in mean Read More

Kendo Step

Budo’s “maai” and “zanshin” can make for smooth communication with others

I’m sure the Budo practitioners know how “maai”(gap, space) is important in Budo. There is an appropriate maai between you and your opponent during the fight. Being too close or too far apart is no good. “Maai” is the correct distance between you and your opponent. People who excel in Read More

Bringing Sasaki Kojiro’s Sword to Life – Part 3

This is the final part of our series on Sasaki Kojiro and his latest depiction in the film Musashi, as well as the sword that was made specially for the actor Matsudaira Ken to use in his protrayal. If you haven’t read them already, then check out Part 1 and Read More

Bringing Sasaki Kojiro’s Sword to Life – Part 2

We continue our previous article concerning Sasaki Kojiro’s infamous long sword the Monohoshizao and how it was brought to life for the silver screen in Mikami Yasuo’s ‘Musashi’. Previously our chairman Kimura Takahiko and famous jidaigeki actor Matsudaira Ken discussed the character of Sasaki and what it was like portraying Read More

New Shinai Preview – Katana Grip

A brand new style of shinai handle on the horizon! Inspired by the katana, that the shinai originally represents, it features an asymmetric design that gives you great awareness of the position of your shinai as well providing an extremely comfortable foundation for your kamae (posture). As part of the Read More

Bringing Sasaki Kojiro’s Sword to Life – Part 1

In the recent Movie “Musashi” by Mikami Yasuo, the famous jidaigeki actor Ken Matsudaira plays Sasaki Kojiro – Musashi’s infamous final nemesis. In this article Takahiko Kimura, Tozando’s chairman, discusses with Matsudaira about his role and the development of his signature weapon – the “Monohoshizao” (known affectionately as the laundry Read More