The art of drawing the sword or iaijutsu developed around the 15th century, and the first school said to introduce iai into its curriculum was Muso-Ryu. This was followed in time by over 400 schools (Ryu) all of which taught highly secret methods which involved learning to draw the sword and to defend themselves while standing, lying, sitting and kneeling.
After the Tokugawa era iaijutsu began to lose its aggressive nature and started to take on more serenity of spirit, control of respiration and above all the goal of perfect and elegant control in the art of drawing the sword (iaido). By the Meiji era many different forms of iaido had emerged an the art was born.
During the 1960’s and 70’s a panel, appointed by the Zen Nihon Kendo Renmei, was convened to produce a standard set of forms to be used nationally by all students of iaido. This set is generally know as Seitei iaido.
The iaido practised by Ryusui-Ryu Martial Art Schools, up to Black Belt, is Seitei iaido. Beyond this our forms are based on the style of Muso Shinden Ryu. Due to its very nature iaido, within our school, is practiced as a separate art form from the rest of our syllabus allowing a student to train and grade in this art form alone.
The Iaido as practiced by our school is suitable for everyone. We concentrate on achieving a relaxed meditative approach whilst striving towards a state of perfection in the art of drawing. Through our practice we not only look to improve technically but also to cultivate a stronger heart and spirit.