KATANA (IAIDO) – Japanese Sword

Japanese KATANA Sword IAIDO

Japanese KATANA

The art of learning to properly and safely cut with the Japanese KATANA is called IAIDO.  Very few people in the United States train this art, therefore, learning IAIDO (pronounced ‘ee’-‘yai’-‘doh’) is a rare privilege in today’s society.  The word IAIDO translates as “the way of mental presence and immediate reaction.”

IAIDO is a product of Japan’s 17th and 18th century EDO-period, commonly known as the era of the SHOGUN.  Renowned Japanese martial artist, NAKAYAMA, HAKUDO (1873-1958), coined the term IAIDO and is the founder of the style of IAIDO practiced in Castle Rock – MUSO-SHINDEN RYU.

Japanese Sword KATANA IAIDO Classes for Adults Traditional Martial Arts Castle Rock

IAIDO is a distinct, non-combative martial art intended to cultivate a practitioner’s spirit. Therefore, IAIDO is generally practiced as a solo exercise or ‘TANDOKU KEIKO’. It is purely a defensive martial practice. The art of IAIDO generally involves four actions of sword mechanics:

1. the draw (NUKI-TSUKE)
2. the cutting actions (KIRI-OROSHI);
3. the removal of blood from the blade (CHI-BURI); and
4. the return of the blade to its scabbard (NOTO)

Each of these actions must be performed in an efficient, exacting manner. Together, they must be smoothly blended into a single unified execution. Unbroken state of relaxed alertness and awareness or ‘ZANSHIN’ must be cultivated and demonstrated.

Mastery of the art of IAIDO is immensely challenging. This is because the ultimate purpose of IAIDO is to acquire the domineering presence to win over your enemy without drawing your sword. That is, to spiritually conquer your opponent with your sword left in the sheath. In other words, to “win” without killing… without even injuring.

The Japanese Sword

IAIDO is practiced by beginners with an unsharpened Japanese KATANA sword. This sword is called an IAITO (pronounced ‘ee’-‘eye’-‘toe’) and it is often made of a zinc/aluminum alloy. The IAITO must be handled with care because although the blade of a IAITO is blunt, it is still very much capable of you or another. A good IAITO is identical or nearly identical in size, shape, and decorative fittings and finishings to real Japanese SAMURAI swords, but are not suited for any form of actual martial combat.

High ranking black belts often use a live blade (a SHINKEN) when practicing IAIDO and/or a target-cutting practice called TAMESHIGIRI.

KATANA (IAIDO) Testimonials

Japanese KATANA Sword IAIDO classes Colorado

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Why Practice Iaido?

People choose to train IAIDO for numerous and varied reasons. Here are some of the more common ones:

  • You are interested in SAMURAI culture
  • You want to learn the philosophy and discipline of BUSHIDO
  • You are an aficionado or collector of swords from many cultures
  • You desire to forge a powerful spirit of self-confidence within yourself and take that spirit deeper into your personal life
  • You wish to practice martial arts, but think you may be too old or believe your body isn’t up for a more dynamic activity
  • You seek to strengthen your muscular core in your spine, torso, pelvis, legs and shoulder in a fun way!
  • You need to develop personal charisma by improving your hand-eye coordination, balance, and graceful economy of movement
  • Your career or home environment is stressful and you need a weekly mental escape
  • You know you should mediate regularly, but don’t want to just sit still; IAIDO is meditation with a sword!

Through IAIDO training, you can learn to project a powerful aura in everyday situations. In time, you can cultivate a commanding confidence and demanding respect of and within yourself by mastering your physical body and projecting it to the world. Come see what our program has to offer.

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Ideal for the “aging athlete” and dynamic and challenging enough for the young person in their prime,
you’re never too old or too out-of-shape to begin training IAIDO.
IAIDO is well suited to those wanting to avoid over-exerting themselves.
There is no falling, no rolling, and no body contact in IAIDO.

Japanese KATANA Sword IAIDO dojo classes near Denver, Colorado Springs