The Way of the warrior
To defeat another party doesn’t mean that you have won
Originally the training was meant to prepare the samurai for the battlefield. As a system of Bujutsu (military or martial arts), “victory ” on the battlefield was the focus of practice. However, even Bujutsu was not just about physical strength and defeating an opponent. Early on, the masters recognized that true success is always also a victory over oneself. In this sense, even defeat in the battle can be understood as a victory. Through continuous practice and engagement with one’s strengths and weaknesses, the Bujutsu (martial arts) becomes a Budo (way of the warrior).
Discover your own potential
In today’s society, the sword has long lost its importance as a weapon. However, the virtues that are traditionally associated with it, honesty, courage, decisiveness, and others are as valid as ever and thus the technique of war transforms into the “Way of the Warrior”. In this context, the meaning of today’s Kenjutsu practice is, to develop your own potential on a mental and physical level. The method of killing has become a way of personal growth.
Way of the sword
Kashima No Tachi – Sword method of Kashima
In the classical Kenjutsu Schools (Ko Ryu) there is no sporting competition. The focus is on the practice of Kata, encoded in which are the principles and “secrets” of each school. Through the constant practice of Kata, we study the basic principles of distance, timing, and placement and over time come to internalize and apply them intuitively.
Training for body and mind
The well-defined movements of the Kata are anything but dead forms. Mindless repetition of memorized steps and beats will get us nowhere. On contrary, the Kata must be discovered and brought to life anew with each execution. Only in this way, it is possible to discover new aspects and issues raised within them and to continue to develop ourselves. Even at a time when the samurai still had to prove their skills in duels or on the battlefield the practice of kata was considered a method of low-risk training. Today, the regulatory element of the “real” fight is missing, and thus it is as or even more important for us students to fully devote and dedicate ourselves to the Kata to question and challenge our own skills again and again.
The Kenjutsu style we practice is “Kashima no Tachi” in the tradition of Minoru Inaba Sensei from Shiseikan Tokyo. Practice takes place without protective equipment with either a wooden sword (bokken), a bamboo sword (shinai), a leather-coated bamboo sword (Fukuro Shinai), or even a “real” sword (Katana). We are members of the ISBA (International Shiseikan Budo Association).
If you are interested in the practice of Kenjutsu we would like to invite you to attend a trial session. Please feel free to contact us if you have any further questions and also before attending so we can adequately cater to your needs.
How to start you sword practice
You can always start with Kenjutsu. Previous knowledge or special physical fitness is not required. You will gain the needed skills through regular practice and everyone can build up those skills.
What does it takes to practice Kenjutsu?
All you need is the will to work on yourself and to accept that it takes some time to learn and internalize the complex movements. Once you have made that decision, you will discover that exactly that challenge makes the fascination.
New beginners are always welcome to drop in for a trial session at the basic classes. Please check here for the actual schedule. All you need to bring for your first experience is comfortable and clean sportswear you don’t wear outside. A wooden practice sword will be provided for your first class. The class will start on time. For your first visit, please be at the Dojo at least 15 minutes before the class starts. That will give us enough time to introduce ourself’s and to give you a short introduction to the Dojo.
We also offer special introduction workshops. Please check the website from time to time for the dates.