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Old 08-02-2005, 01:09 AM   #4
Dojo: FSU aikido club (??)
Location: Tallahassee FL
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 11
Re: "blocking" with japanese sword

alright, I got another flat of the blade vote! righteous ^_^!
something I saw in a dvd demo (aikikai south florida) of buki waza, was the tori stepping back from the uke using a shomen/yokomen uchi, and then did their own shomen/yokomen TO THE BLADE to "knock the other blade down" (it was called a "block" on the dvd), and was the tori's blade edge hitting against the back edge of the uke's sword. I thought this looked really weird though, as it might work for those thick bokken, but a sword at it's tip is much thinner (not to mention it's actually pointy), and I'd be afraid of missing their sword if I tried to do that. Maybe it was actually at more of an angle, and I just didn't see that because the video was only from them going back and forth on a fixed camera. Or perhaps it's just the nature of this exercise, to get the blending action and maybe feel of the opponant's blade (are they "weak" or "strong"). And I don't even remember what this was called, but if anyone can enlighten me if they know what I'm talking about?

Also, if one must displace the opponant's sword should you use the strong (part closest to hilt, what's the japanese term?) or the blade end, or the middle to make contact?
I know that in most western swords, the strong is preferred, as it's 1 the strongest (hence the name "forte", or strong) part of the blade (closest to hilt guard and hilt that absorbs shock of impact, blade is widest and thickest at this place, with the blade (depending on use) usually tapering to a thinner point at the end), 2 the hand is already protected by a developed hilt guard, and 3 was often purposefully made blunt because cutting from here was unecessary and so it could take abuse from impact.
But with the katana, the tsuba (hilt guard)is smaller comparatively to western counterparts, and occasionally ornamental in design (I think...unless the tsuba I've seen are from swords that are ornamental anyways then they don't count), so I wouldn't want to trust that skimpy little ring for protection against another blade unless it was a desparate block or something. So maybe a trying to displace with the flat of the tip? Or at least near the hilt but farther away?
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