“The Art of Japanese Swordsmanship”
The martial art of Iaido (e-eye-dow) is best translated as “Japanese Swordsmanship”. It is the practice of handling a Japanese Katana (sword) and involves drawing the sword, making one or more cuts, cleaning the blade, and returning the sword to the scabbard with concentration and focus.
Iaido is a combative martial art that however involves no direct physical contact with others in the dojo. The study of Iaido is comprised of performing predetermine movements, called “kata”, that represent combative situations where he or she is attacked by one or more opponents. All sword kata are performed solo, there is no physical enemy.
There are also person vs. person kata. These are choreographed, with one person defending with the sword against a pre-defined series of attacks performed by the other. For safety, a wooden sword called a “bokken” is used.
As you practice Iaido, you will improve your self-discipline, concentration, coordination and strength. Iaido also focuses our minds on “the moment” and teaches to exclude all interfering thoughts. This focus on the perfection of all one’s motions, without being mentally distracted and remaining calm, is the aspect of the art that is easily lost on someone who only concentrates the physical technique as a means to a practical outcome.
Classes are forming now at Iaido Seishinkan Dojo, located at:
The River of Life Center
321 Morris Road,
Fort Washington, Pa.
Class schedule for Iaido is as follows:
Tuesday Nights 8:00 pm to 9:30 pm
Thursday Nights 8:00 pm to 9:30 pm
Saturday Mornings 12:00 am to 1:30 pm
About our Iaido Instructor
Iaido classes are taught by Dwayne McClellan Sensei, Chief Instructor at Iaido Seishinkan Dojo (pictured at right). McClellan Sensei currently holds the rank of 4th Degree Black Belt (Yondan) in Muso Shinden Ryu Iaido.
McClellan Sensei began his study of Iaido in 1996 under the tutelage and guidance of David Goldberg Sensei, 4th Dan Iaido and 5th Dan Aikido (pictured above, to the right).
McClellan Sensei also studies with the North American San Shin Kai which is under the direction of Roger Wehrhahn Shihan, 6th Dan Iaido (pictured right, in white). Through Wehrhahn Shihan, McClellan was fortunate enough to had study under the late Grandmaster Mitsuzuka Takeshi Sensei (pictured below). McClellan also studies with the late grandmaster’s son, Mitsuzuka Munehiro Sensei (pictured right, in center).