What is Iaido?

Iaido, drawing and cutting using the Japanese sword, is not a sport but an ancient and unique traditional martial art for the development of mind, body and spirit. Iaido is one of the oldest Japanese martial arts, The purpose of Iaido is to develop awareness, centeredness, sincerity, a calm mind, and mental and physical harmony through the practice of traditional sword techniques or waza.

Each waza represent various situations that teach a calm definitive response using the Japanese sword to unjustified or surprise attacks. Iaido waza are performed individually against one or several imaginary opponents. It is the ultimate responsibility of each student to faithfully learn and with pride pass on these waza and the traditions of Iaido without any change to maintain the integrity of the art of swordsmanship and the respect of those who risked their lives for it.

Each of our practices starts and ends with a bow. Using the words of Esaka Sensei, "The bow reveals the heart of deep respect for others . Courtesy is an outward sign of this respect. I feel that if the spirit of the bow were properly understood the central theme of Budo, the spirit of harmony would help to bring peace to human society". By dedicating oneself to iaido practice, life' challenges can be championed through what we say... "Victory in the scabbard" means never having to draw your sword in battle to defeat the opponent.

  Peter Gunstone - Todo Kai
Our sword school, Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu, has an unbroken teacher to student traditiom since Hiyashizaki Jinsuke Shigenobu no Minamoto (1546-1621). Todo Kai follows this tradtion and Peter Gunstone, head instructor, is a member of Ippan Shandanhojin Sietou Seiryu Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu Kokusai Renmei which is led by Esaka Sensei 10th dan hanshi in Tokyo Japan.

Iaido Kokusai Renmei

Iaido Kokusai Renmei

The Todo Kai Dojo is an officially accredited dojo of Seito Seiryu Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu Iaido Kokusai Renmei (IKR), also known as Iaido Kokusai Renmei (Iaido International Federation). Esaka Sensei is the president of IKR and the head of our organisation.

At a certain point Gunstone Sensei may recommend that you become a member IKR. Membership in IKR allows you to be tested for dan ranks amongst other things. The initiation fee is 10,000 yen and the annual fee is 5,000 yen.

Esaka Sensei, Hanshi, 10th dan is a direct student of both the 20th Soke, Kono Hyakuren, and the 21st Soke, Fukui Torao. He holds a Hanshi, 10th dan, in Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu Iaido and regularly instructs iaido practioners of all levels in Japan, North America, Asia, and Europe. He is one of the world's leading sword practitioners.

Esaka Sensei holds the following positions:

Gunstone Sensei has been extremely fortunate and honoured to have hosted Esaka Sensei on Vancouver Island. It is rare for an individual of his calibre and experience to provide instruction outside of Japan. His guidance and wisdom over the years has strengthened our dojo and has helped our members sharpen their skill and knowledge of iaido. We admire his leadership and hold him in the utmost respect. We look forward to the next time that Esaka Sensei is able to train us.

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