What is iaido?

Traditional swordsmanship, whether called iaido or iaijutsu, is descended from the fighting arts of the samurai, who ruled Japan from 1603-1868. Sword fighting techniques evolved as a means of personal combat rather than for use on the battlefield, and flourished from the end of the 16th century. As Japan became a peaceful, unified country, rather than abandon these techniques, the samurai decided to incorporate ethical, aesthetic, and philosophical aspects to their practice. The result, iai (whether -do or -jutsu) melds practical techniques and applications to a sense of meditative mindfulness, ethical behavior, and graceful movement.

In addition, since 2012, we have added a jodo workshop, under the supervision of a menkyo (licensed instructor) from the Capital Area Jodokai in Alexandria, VA. Jodo employs a wooden staff as a means of non-lethal control of a swordsman. It is always practiced in pairs.

It is the aim of the Iaikai Dojo to continue these two great traditions. Please see the Curriculum Page for an outline of our practice.