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Samurai Swordmanship Vol. 1: Basic Sword Program by Masayuki Shimabukuro
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I am primarily an instructor of other arts (Kali & JKD), but earned my black belt under Hanshi Shimabukuru a few years back. I wanted to get some knowledge and skill in this famous art even though my main interests lay elsewhere.
I'm glad I did, and that I hooked up with Hanshi's organization. It's a class act in every way, from the quality of the instruction to the people involved, who have always been very professional and dedicated in their desire to disseminate the art of iaido. To help with that end Hanshi came out with this volume.
I've seen many iaido books and videos and sets and this is still my favorite one. This volume goes over basic techniques and principles that are essential to the art, from how to hold the sword to the basic drawing and sheathing techniques. It also covers some etiquette, construction of the sword and its parts, cutting straw mats, and a bit of history. I own the earlier five volume series that Hanshi did back in the 90s also, and that's worth picking up too and has all the waza series, from basic to advanced. Overall a fine video that will help you get started in your iaido studies, or to help you review if you already have an instructor.
After watching the first little bit (Blah, blah, sword terminology, yadda, yadda, tradition, etc.)I started learning. And learning a lot. First and foremost, what I was doing WRONG. Now it had my attention.
Yes, this is a "Basics" DVD. They're not gonna make you an instant badass off of one video. This is the building blocks of it all, like, oh, for instance, HOW TO HOLD A SWORD IN THE FIRST PLACE! You'd be amazed how many are doing it wrong. Even in those fancy samurai movies. Hell, I was doing it wrong! This is some seriously great stuff. If you're looking to learn how to take care of your sword, know your sword, and know how to USE your sword, this is a great buy. I'm looking forward to getting the next two as well.
.......When I've got the basics down. :)
It covers Nukitsuke, Furikaburi, Kirioroshi, Chiburi, Noto, Tameshigiri. It also has two 2 person exercises.
Production values are first rate, the demonstrations are masterful, and the voice "acting" is acceptably good.
The proper grip and stance and basic strikes were explained and covered in a way that was easy to understand
and informative.I learned more in the first 15 minutes than I had from anywhere else.I am looking forward to
what I will learn in Vol. 2.
There is lots of great instruction on here. That being said it is VERY instructional. There is nothing exciting other than it's instructional benefit. I only gave it a four because it is a bit boring but, it does the job. It instructs you on Japanese swordsmanship. I am learning from it. I will be buying the rest of the series.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Didn't finish watching before handling blade. Will write better review when cut fingers heal. Should have watched first. Top rating; plenty of time now.Published 2 days ago by b&b
The video presentation is straightforward and concise for the subject matter covered.Published 1 month ago by P. Porter
Exceptional product. Instructor is clear, examples are precise.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
I'm a bare bones beginner and this video offers plenty of information for me, have to review it many many times.Published 2 months ago by Robert Quittner
All three volumes are very good,especially if you are unable to have an instructor.Published 6 months ago by Tammy M. Palermo