Originally Posted by rokutanda
With regards to your comments regarding Bokken use, that is pretty much the same way of doing things as when I used a bokken, the only difference being we never put the bokken in ones hakama/obi. However, I have seen people use bokken with saya.
Did you use a live blade (shinken) or an iaito (unsharpened metal sword)? You can still cut yourself with the point of an iaito, but the rest of the blade is no sharper than a butter knife. Usually, you don't touch a live blade for a long time in iaido (fairly high up in the dan rankings), simply because it is easy to hurt yourself while doing noto (sheathing).
Anyways if anyone is looking for documented Iaido in NYC, Hooper Sensei, who is rokudan in muso jikiden eishin ryu teaches at ken zen, and Kato Sensei, nanadan in muso shinden ryu teaches at shidogakuin. I have trained with both and they are excellent teachers. Both are highly ranked kendoka as well.
It doesnt matter too much which iaido style you choose between MJER and MSR as testing is conducted by a panel of judges coming from both backgrounds. There are stylistic differences, but everyone learns the ZNKR seitei katas first anyways.
Maybe this paragraph from Deborah's report might explain a bit of my misgivings about shinkendo.
Having further thought about iaido and Shinkendo, I would even be bold enough to state that Shinkendoka could also learn from iaido: for example if Shinkendo kata were practiced with iaito rather than with rounded bokuto, the chiburi and noto portions of the kata would be more clearly understood by Shinkendoka. In other words, there is fertile ground for open-minded students of both disciplines to learn from each other.
I've met Deborah and Phil a few times before, attended a naginata seminar with them years back. They're great folk and very educated about iaido and the sword arts, and I would tend to hold in high regard their professional opinion about something like this. The Modern Samurai school is supposedly an Obata-endorsed academy, although he does not teach there himself except maybe for an occasional seminar.
We used bokken until yellow belt (1 year), then moved on to live blade if the instructor though we were ready - I couldn't afford a shinken, so I purchased a steel iaiyo from Nosyuiaido - it was a sharpened steel blade. I had originally purchased an iaito, but sensei wanted us to go straight to the real thing. It's my understanding that iaito are a relatively new phenomenon, but sensei taught a bit more old school.
Originally Posted by hl1978
Iaito are a post-ww2 thing. The smiths after ww2 were restricted to making only 2 shinken per month, so for the growing iaido community shinken rapidly got expensive and hard to find. Iaito are a cheaper, safer alternative. Also the lighter weight reduces repetitive strain injury.
Affordable quality sharp swords like your Steel Iaito are an even more modern phenomenon than iaito. They have really only been available in the last few years, less than a decade.
Yes - steel iaiyo (don't know if that's the correct spelling - I'm just using what was on Nosyuiaido's site) are a new thing. What I meant really was that we moved straight to a sharp steel blade as opposed to dull iaito. To my understanding, shinken are "real" swords forged by a certified Japanese blacksmith, and can run into the tens of thousands of dollars.
Originally Posted by NeilG
The students in my class used less expensive swords from Nosyuiado or Bugei, which weren't technically "shinken" but are still made for cutting and iaido practice.
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO