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Old 09-25-2006, 11:23 AM   #5
George S. Ledyard
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Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,670
Re: Shinkendo, Toyama Ryu and Aikido?

There is no historical connection here. The Toyama Ryu developed out of the training given at the Toyama Military Academy in the pre-war years. Nakamura Sensei was the Founder. He was a controversial figure due to his activities in the war. Suffice it to say that his understanding of how to cut someone with a sword was not academic.

Obata Spent some time training with Nakamura from whom he learned the use of the live blade. He aslo trained with Shioda Sensei in Aikido and got a 6th dan from the Yoshinkan folks. He went on to develop Shinkendo which, as I understand it, is his attempt to develop a modern comprehensive sword system that would have the heart and soul of a classical system. I have a friend who trains with Obata and finds it very worthwhile. I like his attitude, myself. Rather than try to simplify and dumb down the martial arts that we have been given, he is trying to preserve the spirit of traditional Budo. Technically, it's not kenjutsu in the sense that it is a classical Japanese style, but Obata Sensei has tried to give it that essence. His people sure have a better understanding of the sword than most Aikido folks do.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
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