Collage of Nito-ryu from 1661 Catalog

The style or way of using two swords simultaneously in Japanese sword training and/or swordsmanship is commonly referred to as Nitō-ryū  (二刀流; lit. two-sword style).

Of course, Miyamoto Musashi is well-known and acclaimed for his Nitō-ryū, although the term Nitō-ryū is, in fact, generic, and not exclusively connected to Musashi. Over the history of Japanese Sword Arts, more than one school has used the term Nitō-ryū to describe a two-sword style.

Musashi’s school, called Niten Ichi-ryū (二天一流), has more than one officially-recognised line within Japan. Those extant Japanese schools of Niten Ichi-ryū are considered a traditional or classical martial art, referred to as koryū (古流; lit. old style), that have legitimate evidence of lineage to Musashi through densho and mokuroku.

Our school and its swordsmanship, namely Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu (玄心二刀流剣術), is not koryū, nor affiliated with Niten Ichi-ryū or has any claim of lineage.

Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu is shinbudō (新武道; lit. new budō), based on a way of using two swords simultaneously. Additionally, as a modern martial art, it is open to everyone, and is more accepting of the Western mindset, while retaining a strong emphasis on Japanese etiquette and customs within the dōjō.

Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu's founder, Greg Clarke, was a monkasei (direct student) of Iwami Toshio Sōke, the 11th head of Musashi’s Santō-ha Niten Ichi-ryū, as well as a monkasei of the late Ishida Hiroaki Shihan, a menkyo-kaiden in Shintō Musō-ryū and Noda-ha Niten Ichi-ryū, and menkyo in Shunpūkan’s Enmei-ryū among others.

The above-mentioned koryū ryūgi (classical schools) all have various legitimate claims of a connection to Musashi throughout his lifetime, and contain extant Nitō waza (two-sword techniques), kata (forms), and kuden (oral transmissions) purportedly related to him.

Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu is a distillation of authentic koryū kenjutsu study and continuous training over 20+ years, drawing on Nitō (simultaneous use of two swords) in both waza (techniques) and corresponding riai (underlying rationale) beyond that which can be presently studied in one traditional school alone.

 

The Nitōjuku (二刀塾; lit. two-sword school) has been established to offer Japanese sword training with a primary focus on the simultaneous use of two swords, which each student will learn from the outset through Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu.

Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu consists of 30 partnered two-sword forms, utilising the important training roles of uchidachi and shidachi. All practice within the comprehensive curriculum makes use of only pragmatic Nitō techniques and applications against an Ittō (single sword) exponent.

There are 3 kata sets within the curriculum: Kiso (基礎; foundation); Tenkai (展開; expansion); and Tōgō (統合; integration), each with its own character and purpose.

 

Kiso 基礎 / Tenkai 展開 (* with zen 前/go 後 variants) Tōgō 統合
   
Uken 右剣 Chūdan 中段
Saken 左剣 Gedan 下段
Hidariuke 左受 Jōdan 上段
Migiuke 右受 Wakigamae (Hidari) 脇構 (左)
Uchikomi 打込 Wakigamae (Migi) 脇構 (右)
Yokouchi 横打 *  
Ashiuchi 足打  
Uchigaeshi 打返  
Noriuchi 乗打  
Kotetsuke 小手附  
Uchidome 打留  
Tsukidome 突留  

 

The kata are structured and connected as a whole so as to systematically develop an exponent's technical skills and psychological abilities, from body movement and ambidextrous weapons handling, to the proper use of targeting, distancing, and timing, and intense kihaku (strength of spirit) training.

The kanji used for Genshin (玄心; Profound Mind) to represent our school's swordsmanship fundamentally underlies the ultimate objective of training, and the personal character development ideals of Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu.

Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu utilises a grading and promotion system based on the Kyū/Dan ranks found in modern martial arts, and has teaching certificates of accreditation based on the Shōgō system.

There is no free sparring in Genshin Nitō-ryū Kenjutsu, so it is suitable for everyone, regardless of gender or previous martial arts experience. There is a minimum age requirement of 18.

The first introductory week of classes (potentially three) are free, and we also hold full public liability and professional indemnity insurance through SportsCover Australia.

A standard white dōgi is the normal training uniform for beginners and mudansha, but any loose, comfortable clothing is suitable. The usual training uniform for yūdansha is an aizome uwagi and hakama. Both long and short bokutō are provided for beginners to start.

 

Brisbane Dōjō
Tuesday &
Thursday 6:30pm - 8:00pm
Sunday 3:00pm - 4:30pm

St Davids Hall
855 Logan Road
Holland Park QLD 4121

To enquire about training, please feel free to contact us.

 

 

Content & Images © 2019 - Kobudōkai Australia incorporating Nitōjuku.com