The Iaido and Jodo 8-dan Gradings, Kyoto 2014 Text and Photos by Jeff Broderick The annual Kyoto Taikai was held from Friday May 2 to Monday May 5, 2014. The iaido and jodo 8-dan gradings were held there on Saturday May 3 and the results are as follows: In iaido, 151 people took the test, and seven passed, giving a pass rate of 4.6%. The successful participants were: KUNIKATA Takayuki – Fukuoka (51) MATSUMOTO Yasunori – Saitama (60) YAMADA Hiroshi – Chiba (64) ITO Masatoshi – Ibaraki (64) FUSHIMI Hitoshi – Osaka (66) KANENARI Toshimatsu – Fukushima (67) YOSHIDA Tetsuo – Niigata (75) For jodo,Read More →

What is this Rank and Grading Stuff? Part 2 – The Federation By Kim Taylor In Part 1, I discussed why or why not to grade from the student’s and teacher’s standpoints. This article will look at the federation’s standpoint. From the federation’s standpoint: Gradings, from a federation standpoint, are almost everything. Certainly in the iai and jō sections of kendo federations there is really nothing else. In the kendo section we have those tournament things which are probably, come to think about it, more important than gradings. Business speak is all the rage today so what does the kendo business do? It sells rankRead More →

What is this Rank and Grading Stuff? Part 1 – Students and Teachers By Kim Taylor Everyone, in every martial art eventually asks himself why he is standing in line waiting to go demonstrate in front of a panel in order to try and obtain a piece of paper and the right to be called one more (or one less kyū) number. And pretty much everyone answers “I don’t know”. Of course there are many reasons to grade, and a few arguments against, so let’s examine some of them. From the student standpoint: Most students will have a very self-centred point of view to grading;Read More →

Rehab By Ron Fox It happened during a Sunday practice in the last week of June 2013 in the middle of uchikomi-geiko. As I completed one attack, turned and started to do fumikiri to go for the next attack, somebody kicked me in the back of my left calf. After completing the cut on the momentum, I looked over my shoulder and nobody was there. That was when I began to worry. You see, Steve, a good kendo friend of mine, suffered a partial tear of his Achilles’ tendon. He told me, “When it happened it was like someone kicked me in the back ofRead More →

Research and Writing on Budo By Kim Taylor After exactly 20 years I have gone back to writing the series of books on the Muso Jikiden Eishin-ryū, my koryū iaido practice. The last of the manuals on the core solo kata was published in 1994, and recently I finished a fourth book on the partner kata. I have a couple left to clean up some loose ends, but it’s a relief to be so close to the end of a 20-year project. Why so long? Well actually the question might rather be, why the nerve to write a book on a martial art when youRead More →