training

training

The training style of the Enbukan is relatively formal, but perhaps less so than many students expect. On the one hand, the subject matter is very serious, and training often involves potentially dangerous practice – such as tameshigiri (cutting of targets with live blades). The very nature of dealing with live blades or even metal and wooden practice swords demands a high degree of attentiveness and mutual respect among the students. A the same time, many modern martial arts are taught with a degree of senseless rigidity which is antithetical to real learning. This is not the nature of Kobudo training.

The training of the Enbukan schools is divided into several domains. The most basic of these domains, which forms the backbone of Enbukan and most other Koryu training is Kata. The Kata are teachings which encode the basic movements of the school into larger sequences for practice, and from the Kata many of the most important aspects of the school can be understood. In addition to the Kata, the training also consists of Kenjutsu (sword fighting), and Batto. Batto (drawing strikes) represent the highest level of technical attainment. The ability to draw, strike, and return the sword and the mind to a state of rest in only an instant, is considered a very important skill to master in the Enbukan sword schools.

Beyond these technical materials, the schools each have their own Gokui or esoteric teaching, the “Heart” of the school. In these esoteric teachings live many of the most important lessons which Battojutsu training has to offer the modern practitioner.

The nature of the Battojutsu training is that it is not as stressful on the body as many other martial arts. It is common to have men, women, older and younger students training together in the same class. The training is never competitive, even when students are working together in what might appear to be the role of opponents. The primary focus of the training is the advancement of each individual through the training, this goal is shared not only by the teacher, but by all of the students toward one another.