Face moments of danger with a quiet and alert mind.
Throughout history, the Takeda Samurai were dreaded opponents. Their sword fighting techniques are characterised by drawing the sword and cutting at lightning speed, and
by a superior strategy.
Iaido is a part of Takeda Ryu swordsmanship. In the old days it was called Battojutsu (“the art of drawing a sword”), later Iaijutsu and today Iaido. Quick drawing of the sword, precise cutting, and the strategy are taught here.
One of the exercises, the competition Batto Shiai, is in today’s budo a very special and spectacular feature of the Takeda School. It is a guarantee for highest technical level, which is absolutely necessary to become a master of Takeda Ryu Iaido. In that special exercise the opponents are facing each other at a larger distance, so their blades do not have contact. Referees are deciding whose cut was faster and more precise. So it is just a few steps distance between the two competitors that turns the decision over life and death into a victory or defeat by points.
Battogiri, the cutting with a real sword. Straw mats, rolled up and then soaked in water to give them a consistence similar to a human neck, arm or leg are cut. Battogiri is of vital importance for iaidoka who hold dan ranks. It enables them to experience real cutting, and to thereby gain high proficiency in using a real sword, without which mastery in swordsmanship is simply not possible.