IAIDO SEMINAR AMSTERDAM
These are my technical notes from this seminar. I wrote them for my own personal reference. I got helpful feedback from Aad van de Wijngaart, who compared my notes with his video tapes. All remaining errors are of course mine.
The annual European summer seminar alternates its location between the UK (last year in Warwick, with the British Kendo Association) and the Netherlands. This year's seminar was hosted in Amsterdam by the Nederlandse Kendo Renmei.
If this building had collapsed, it would have been very bad for European Iaido
The 3 day iaido part was led by Ishido sensei, assisted by a number of high ranking Japanese instructors. Ishido Shizufumi runs a dojo in Kanagawa (near Tokyo). Several iaido champions have come from this dojo. Ishido sensei is 8-dan kyoshi iaido, 8-dan kyoshi jodo, 7-dan kyoshi kendo, all this in his early fifties. His father Sadataro is also 8-dan iaido (hanshi), 7-dan kyoshi jodo and 7-dan kyoshi kendo. Ishido sensei has played an important role in the introduction of iaido and jodo in Europe. He is a great instructor and very open-minded.
Lining up for grading
The first day of the seminar was spent on ZNKR iaido. The second day, while candidates for the grading tests received continued instruction on ZNKR iaido, the other enthousiasts were introduced to the koryu of their choice: Muso Shinden Ryu, Shinkage Ryu, Tamiya Ryu or Hoki Ryu, all by 7-dan or 8-dan sensei. This continued on the third day, followed by a short shinpan course/demo and the grading tests in the afternoon. It was a rare opportunity to receive such high quality instruction in different styles. From what I heard it is almost unthinkable in Japan itself for students to go and be taught by another iaido instructor.
As the report was very large, I split it into the following sections:
1996/10/27, by Eli Steenput