There are typically two types of swords in which you will use for practice or performance.
The Iaito is a Katana that has the authentic feel, balance, and quality without the cutting live blade of the Iaido Sword.
For tameshigiri and cutting applications there are several variations of cutting blades that can be utilized.
Cutting blades are typically very heavy and very sharp, which make for inelegant practice of kata and strain upon the user.
For skilled performance a quality blade should be selected to prevent accidental bending, dulling, or breakage of the blade.
There are many different brands of sword manufacturers.
These swords give a very balanced feel and great quality for both practice and performance.
Blades are currently unable to be made in Japan and sold outside of the country, so many of these products will originate in China but uphold folded steel quality checks.
Note that you should respect your katana and keep it well oiled and maintained when not in use, especially cutting blades. Cutting swords have grain and will likely rust when provided moisture, humidity, and oxygen.
After hand oils or cutting sessions are performed be sure to wipe and oil your blade.
Repairing dents, Knicks, and sharpening your Iaido Blade is a great way to ensure longevity.
Many lubricants and oils will work great and often preference is left to the user. Sanitizing with Isopropyl Alcohol and then applying your sword oil is also good practice post training or performance.
Avoid Organic Oils such as Olive Oil, Cooking Oils, Canola Oil, Baby Oil Products etc. Industrial grade lubricants are much better and will cause less damage to your wooden saya over time.
With the true Karate-Ka in mind, Shureido, Okinawa Japan manufactures the highest quality martial arts equipment today, including self-defense weapons, sandbags, kobudo and makiwara equipment.
The Minatogawa people of Okinawa, pre-Japan takeover were the originators of the farming weapon self defense system we know as Kobudo.
There are several prominent styles of Kobudo that prevail today.
The island had grown from a hunting and gathering village system to a farming community through the 15th century and was heavily involved with trade to China. Including performing arts, crafts and local food recipes.
Okinawa is known for it's Karate largely as the birthplace, however the less popular Kobudo (literally "old way of war") utilized farming and fishing tools on hand to defend against Japanese invading Samurai who eventually manifested the island.
The ban of Karate practice was enforced after 1609 by the Satsuma Japanese government which led to secret gatherings to practice Kobudo and various "Te" Karate forms.
Our members are able to access kobudo training through our full access programs here.
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