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The term "Iai" is taken from the phrase "Tsune ni itte, kyu ni awasu". The meaning of this is, whatever we may be doing or wherever we may be, we must always be prepared for any eventuality.

Through the sword we seek to improve our spirit and become better people, to promote peace and good feeling beyond the walls of the Dojo and into our daily lives. There are many styles of Iai, many ways to cut, to move, and as one learns one improves technically. However, we train not only to learn techniques, but also to cultivate the heart and spirit, and in this respect all "styles" lead to the same goal.

One must bear in mind the higher goals to achieve and take each step and overcome each obstacle, but at the same time, though the path may be a difficult one to follow, one must relish and enjoy the challenges.

HARUNA MATSUO Nanadan Kyoshi

December 1994


Iaido is the art of Japanese swordsmanship. Many people, men and women, study Iaido the world over. In Great Britain Iaido is taught under the direction of the British Kendo Association. Kenseikai dojo's are a member of the BKA. Iaido is taught in all of our many dojo.

Iaido is the art of drawing, cutting and returning the sword to its scabbard. Students learn Kata (pre-determined movements) which they practice to improve their skill.

There are many styles of Iaido and many hundreds of Kata. Therefore, classes tend to speciallise in one system. Within Kenseikai dojo we teach the Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu style. Also, all students are taught the Seitei Iaido (standard set) of the Zen Nippon Kendo Renmei (All Japan Kendo Federation), which is required within the grading syllabus and also used extensively for competition.

Definition and Brief History