Introduction: Iaido Techniques
This will teach you some of the techniques of Iaido.
Step 1: Releaseing the Blade
Press thumb up against the tsuba (hand guard) while holding the sheath of the sword.This should release the blade from the sheath.(no image needed)
Step 2: NUKI TSUKE (draw and Cut)
From A sitting position (sitting on your feet toes pointed back and your knees touching the ground) you take your right hand and grasp the tsuka (handle)(your sitting position should stay the same except that you toes should now be under you so you can stand up if needed). Then you start to draw the sword from the saya and, start rotating both the saya and blade so that the ha (cutting edge) is pointing to your left after you have drawn half the blade. While you are doing this you should be on your left knee and your right foot should be on the ground next to it. Wile you are continuing to draw out the blade you should be rotating your upper torso slowly and when the blade is free from the saya you swing your arm that is holding the sword to your right. Have some self control when you do this, don't knock yourself over.
(Pics are no of me but will be replaced by me sometime soon)
Step 3: KIRI TSUKE (finishing Cut)
The sword is raised to a jodan (upper, above the head) position (furi kaburi). The right hand moves so that it does not block your vision. Grasp the tsuka with the left hand in the proper cutting position in a very relaxed grip. No further movements or adjustments of the hands on the handle should be made before immediately cutting down. As in all big and powerful movements, the tip of the sword must start. This is accomplished by first tightening the grip of the tsuka and then rotate your wrists as your arms start their movement forward-downward. The feeling should be of throwing away the tip as far as possible. You should step forward with your right foot at the same time, so that your legs have the same position as in the end of nukitsuke. Your arms should be slightly bent throughout the cut. The cut finishes so that the tsuba is slightly lower than the right knee, and even with the kneecap. The kissaki points down slightly to clear the groin of the opponent. The eyes follow the drop of the foe to the floor, not the tip of the sword. Grasp the tsuka with the left hand just above the tsuka gashira for more power. The cut is made as soon as the power can be applied with the left hand. The pause at the top is less than 1/2 second if there is one at all. Kiri otoshi is done at full speed and power with the feeling of cutting through anything that's in the way. The tip of the sword (kissaki) should lead the motion, not the arms. The right hand's movement is like throwing something as far away as possible, left hand is like rotate (forward-upward) and then strongly down. Stop the cut by gripping tightly with both hands, most with the pinky and ring fingers, some with the long finger. The index fingers and thumbs are not gripping just laying on the tsuka.
Step 4: Nihonme, Ushiro (rear)
In this move the swordsman is seated in the formal seiza position (the position i told you about in the first step). When he/she senses an attack from an opposing individual from behind, the swordsman acts by simultaneously drawing his sword and rotating 180Â°. The swordsman acts with a horizontal strike to the head of his attacker. You do this by going from the sitting position to standing on your left leg but still kneeling on your right. You then spin your right leg while swinging the sword to your right at your opponent. Then, after moving forward, he/she strikes with a lethal overhead cut. (You hold the sword like in instruction number 2)
Step 5: Yonhonme, Tsukaate (Strike With the Handle of the Sword)
The swordsman is seated in a posture which allows his right knee to be raised off the ground. This seated posture, called take-hiza, was common for swordsmen who wore full armor, to facilitate standing. The swordsman in this situation is confronted with two attackers, one in front and one in back. Using the butt-end of his sword's hilt (tsuka kashira), the swordsman delivers a temporarily disabling strike to the solar plexus of the attacker in front. He quickly rotates 90Â° to dispose of his rear attacker with a horizontal thrust of his sword (tsuki), followed by a frontal pivot, to deliver the mortal overhead strike to his original stunned opponent in front.