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Old 03-30-2005, 12:01 PM   #23
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 10
Re: Steven Seagal's sword work

Although much of this has been mentioned before...
The reason for my posting is from these articles.

"Sensei Seagal holds black belts in Karate, Aikido and Kenjutsu and has also studied Judo, Kali, Kendo, Eastern Philosophy, Shinto Religion, and the Holistic Arts (including Acupuncture, Herbology and Calligraphy)."

"Seagal also holds black belt rank in kenjutsu..."

"Q: I read in an article that kenjutsu is a part of your life?

Sensei: Well, to me Aikido and kenjutsu are the same thing. If you've seen my technique, I'm always cutting. Today we just did a couple of stabs at this and that, but when you watch me a lot you'll see I'm always cutting with the feet and the hand; tesabaki, ashisabaki. The hand and feet angles are all kenjutsu. "
From students' interview with Steven seagal
posted on

Also from the same interview.
Q: Many years ago, when I saw "The Challenge," I saw your name in the credits. I was wondering how you got in to do the choreography?

Sensei: This is an interesting story. I was in Kyoto and there was a sword master by the name of Onoha Ittoryu,very very good at the inside stuff .Mifune, the Japanese actor, was to do "The Challenge." The guy who choreographed all the famous director Kurosawa's stuff, "Red Beard", "Seven Samurai" and all that had just died.

He was a great kenjutsu master and Onoha Sensei would not teach these people and believed I was a good swordsman. They came to me and hired me to choreograph the fighting and the sword and Mifune said, "Who is this white guy?" Mifune said to call up this Onoha guy and tell him to get down here. Onoha comes down in a Hakama and Kimono, the next day. He walks over to Mifune and says, "I came down here to tell you that this guy over here can teach sword as good, if not better than anybody I know." He bowed and left."

I certainly jumped the gun saying Seagal Sensei is a sword "master" however, it seems to me that many jump to conclusions and assume his skill level is not very proficient. It is my opinion that a large number of these are due to lack of knowledge of his training (which I am guilty of as well) and some other are due to outright jealousy.

Steven Seagal is in the limelight and often under the microscope because of what he does. But as far as his my opininon he is a much better Aikidoka than an actor.. (hmmm not sure if that is a ringing endorsement or not. ) Listen to him speak, attend a seminar or two, and as with most good instructors, there is a likelihood you will learn something valuable.

Separate the actor from man and martial artist. They are two separate beasts.


-But I could be wrong.
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