Iaido: the art of using the Japanese sword
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Iaido (ee-eye-doe) is a Japanese martial art that studies the drawing, cutting, and sheathing of the katana (traditional Japanese sword). Iaido is a formal and non-combative art that was created to preserve the sword skills of the samurai. Once the basic forms and etiquette are learned, Iaido's ultimate goal, like Aikido and Zen meditation, is to assimilate a centered body and a focused mind into daily life. It becomes an art of self-refinement.

At Chushinkan Dojo, students select one of two primary courses of training, Nishio Ryu Toho, or Omori Ryu. Nishio Ryu Toho Iaido is a contemporary form of iaido created by Shoji Nishio Shihan. This style requires no kneeling forms and is recommended for those not used to sitting in seiza, the Japanese sitting position. The second is the traditional Omori Ryu, which requires performing forms from the seiza position. Training in two other traditional styles of Iaido (Keishicho Ryu and Shin Toho) are also offered.

To join our practice, please sign up for Iaido through the City of Buena Park, City of La Palma, or the City of Cypress. Initially, we will provide bokken (wooden sword) to practice with. Eventually, an iaito (Japanese practice sword), dogi (uniform) and hakama (traditional pleated pants) should be purchased to fully participate in the art of Iaido.

Good quality iaito may be purchased for about $350 and up. While it is possible to find swords for less, there are many swords on the market that are not recommended. We always suggest that prospective students ask for advice before purchasing one. Hakama can be purchased for as low as $60.

Iaido is a very precise art which benefits the students through its emphasis on breathing, calmness and posture. 

Iaido is offered as a class (separate from aikido) for students 13 years old and up, through the City of Buena Park, City of La Palma, or the City of Cypress.


Vidin, Bulgaria

Nakayama Sensei instructs Bulgarian students about the Japanese sword.



For exam requirements, click here.

For exam application form, click here.