Essential Battojutsu: Fundamentals of Japanese Sword Draws

Savoy

Sunday July 28, 2024 - 10:00 am to 11:30 am


Abstract: In the feudal era of Japanese history, it was not uncommon for conflicts or fights to erupt suddenly or for a samurai to be ambushed by their enemies. A samurai’s skill to quickly deploy a sword and attack or defend in one smooth motion could mean the difference between life and death. Because of this most styles of Japanese swordsmanship (Kenjutsu) study these techniques and arts known collectively as battojutsu or iaijutsu (drawing arts). In fact, this skill is so widely studied that following World War II, many of the classical forms of battojutsu were codified into a modern martial art that focuses almost exclusively on the skill of drawing known as Iaido (way of drawing the sword). In this session we will cover essential elements of battojutsu including how to wear the katana, how to hold and control it when in the saya (sheath), basic drawing mechanics, basic draw cuts, basic drawing defenses, and some combat strategies. All applied techniques will be performed with partners as targets or opponents.


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