Monday, June 21, 2010

Iaido - Zentekigyakuto

Another video taped at the Dothan Botanical Garden last Thursday with my students, in the first part a group practice of the Sword waza "Zentekigyakuto", the 7th one of the "Batto-Ho" series. In the 2nd part the Bunkai practice of the same move.


Batto Ho is a group of waza common to several Styles of Iaido, including Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu.
the one we study in Dothan at the Yoshukai Dojo and in Pensacola at the Big Green Drum Dojo


In our Bunkai interpretation of Zentekigyakuto, the two opponents walk in the same direction. As Uchidachi (the bad guy) turns and draws his sword up to cut Shidachi (the good guy), this ones stops him by an upward draw (Kiri age) toward his hands or face and keeps pushing him back. As Uchidachi steps back he is off balance and Shidachi cuts him in an oblique cut (Kesa Giri).

There are 2 versions of Zentekigyakuto, depending upon how fast Uchidachi retrreats, Shidachi takes one or two steps toward him before cutting. The finishing oblique cut is to the Right or the Left, depending upon which foot is forward (it is advisable to cut away from one's own foot).

As previously stated for our other videos this is not a perfect demonstration, but simply an example of what we practice in our Iaijutsu class at the Yoshukai Dojo in Dothan, Alabama. If you wish to see the real stuff, please refer to Masayuki Shimabukuro Sensei videos : Samurai Swordmanship


The Bunkai is our own interpretation of a situation where Zentekigyakuto could be used. There are of course other possible interpretations. I invite you to figure some out and post videos on Youtube for us to compare and discuss. Remember however that Sword Practice, even with a Boken (wooden sword) can generate serious wounds.

Bunkai practice brings an element of reality in the practice of all our waza (or kata in other martial arts) it forces us into taking into account various elements such as terrain, light, distance and timing, which are not easily taken into account in the Dojo. 

Good luck in your practice.

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