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Iaido and Kobudo Dojo in North London

Traditional Japanese martial arts in North London


Training in Suwa

Training in Suwa

Iaido is the art of drawing and cutting with the Japanese sword. In North London Budo Seitei Iaido, toho, and Musoshindenryu are taught in a traditional, safe and enjoyable manner. Musoshindenryu includes Omoriryu, Hasagawa Eishinryu, Okuden(Tachiwaza and Suwariwaza), and Tachi uchi no kurai. Classes are small with the emphasis being on personal tuition, rather than being at the back of a large class-as is often the case.

Classes are open to people of all levels and include basics, kata, and application. Specialist classes are also taught which cover areas like tameshigiri-cutting practice. Iaido is, by its nature, more inward looking and less bashing than kobudo! You need no equipment to join in a lesson, and you are welcome to come down and watch prior to joining in!



Kobudo Training

Kobudo Training

Traditional Kobudo is also taught at North London Budo. Kobudo covers the  ‘peasant’ weapons of Okinawa. These initially include the nunchaku (rice flails), bo (staff), and sai (pronged daggers). Students progress to using Tonfa and kamma as well. Classes are traditional, concentrating on kihon (basics), kata (sequences), and sparring drills.

There is no free sparring, competition, or foam ‘chucks’ in these classes. For those who like the traditional weapons training, but are drawn more to the contact side of weapons training-kobudo will be the one for you.

As with the Iaido, you are welcome to come down to watch, or to try a lesson.


Call North London Budo now on 07958 995979

  1. northlondonbudo
    August 12th, 2011 at 10:34 | #1

    We recently held a small tameshigiri competition at the Edgware dojo. During the evening students competed for a lovely trophy with a series if cuts increasing in difficulty as the evening progressed.
    The word ‘Tameshigiri’ is widely used in the West to mean ‘cutting of straw targets’, however the word really applies to exercises where the sword is being tested, rather than the student. The word ‘sumotogiri’ is more correct for cuts designed to test the swordsman. In Japan some instructors denegrate or play down cutting as being a showy egocentrick exercise. However I believe it helps students relate their Iai practice to something practical. I have found that some Iaidoka can have lovely kata but are anuable to cut. The drawing action of good cutting eludes some students, and to this end I find tameshiigiri usefull. The easiest analogy would be to take a karateka who had only ever punched air, and then try to measure the level of his ability! It’s also great fun! Students quickly discover that the easiest route through a target is not the shortest, and that cutting moving targets and freestanding(unpegged) targets is not easy!
    Care must be taken when cutting as for some students it is their first use of a ‘live’ blade. My advice to inexperienced students would be to cut from haso no kamae with the blade already unsheathed and cut with the grain of the straw. If a student has good basics e.g control of the thumb during koiguchi wo kiru and noto much of the instructors first-aid skills will be redundant. However tameshigiri is by it’s nature dangerous!
    It is also important that the swords are maintained properly and oiled between cutting. The blades should also be wiped clear of water/preservatives prior to re-sheathing. Not everyone is aware that rolled tatami mats contain preservatives that can stain steel, and that often it is neccessary to use jitekou nugui to remove the marks!
    Cutting should only be undertaken under those who have many years experience, and sword specific PLI is a must.
    Ross Owens proved to have the best cuts on the evening, including two exeptional cuts to moving targets!

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