Kakita Kenjutsu School

Kenjutsu training

Kenjutsu (剣術; literally, "sword technique") was the art of using a sword in combat. [1] Some calle it "The Art of the Living Blade". [2]

Practice Edit

The practice was largely done in the form of kata and by actual cutting and thrusting of the blade against water-soaked rolled mats and bamboo poles called tameshigiri. The practice tool was either a bokken (wooden sword), iaito (unsharpened steel sword), or shinken (live blades such as katana). A common misconception of practitioners and observers alike was that the bokken was used for safety when performing two-man kata. In fact, the wooden sword was used to minimize the chance of damaging the blade of a steel sword. Some schools of kenjutsu had adopted the shinai (bamboo sword) for safety reasons. [citation needed]

Kenjutsu and Iaijutsu Edit

The major distinction between iaijutsu and kenjutsu was the condition of the sword at the start of combat. In iaijutsu, the sword began sheathed and the emphasis was on the initial strikes, while in kenjutsu, the sword began unsheathed, and the emphasis was on both attack and defense. Kenjutsu also often included consideration of combat against opponents wearing armor while iaijutsu generally assumed that the opponent was unarmored. Some kenjutsu schools also taught sword combat against other weapons such as naginata or yari. [citation needed]

See also Edit

External Links Edit


  1. Roleplaying in the Emerald Empire, p. 71
  2. Way of the Samurai, p. 34

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