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Old School Kenjutsu

I was training in the park with my training partner and we were studying Kenjutsu. We were using bokkens (wooden swords). My training partner and I moved and changed our body positions to try and gain an advantage over each other. I remember I pulled my sword back into a high position (Jordan no kame) to make a strong attack at which point my training partner lunged in attacking my suigetsu (lower stomach), with a straight stab. I moved to the side and lowered my sword to middle position (chuden no kame), and the sword just missed my training partners hands as he dodged my counter. Then we set up again and started our drill all over. We also did this with more than one attacker – this adds a whole new skill set to just moving one on one.

When training in Kenjutsu and Taijutsu one needs to understand and feel the flow of changing positions and of the attacker’s energy. When the body senses the change the body should flow naturally to a safe position to protect itself. However, this requires correct training and mental discipline, a strong will to get to the point where one can move with ease in the middle of conflict and conclude it swiftly.