9 November 2018
A rather successful keiko for two of our junior Japanese sword students last night.
One aspect of kokyu-ryoku (lit. breath-power; sometimes referred to as internal power) is finding an untapped strength in the inhalation cycle.
Kokyu-dosa is the fundamental exercise for developing kokyu-ryoku in both the Itto Tenshin-ryu and the Yamate-ryu. Our method (unlike aikido) does not utilize jujutsu; that is, going around the power of the attacker's grasp—but instead goes directly back into him. This all happens during a deep inhale, leaving the lungs full to deliver a powerful throw, strike or cut—on the exhale. In the photo sequence below, uke (the attacker) was simply dumped over to the side.
Kokyu-dosa was followed by a kenjutsu kumitachi (a Japanese fencing exercise) utilizing the same methodology, and even an unarmed self-defense application.
We will continue this exploration in next week’s classes.
Above: The man on the left above is attacking the man on the right by grabbing his wrists. This is meant to prevent him from defending himself, or drawing a weapon.
In response the man on the right inhales deeply while raising his hands. This tips the attacker off-balance leaving him open to counter-attack.
After off-balancing his opponent the man on the right throws the attacker onto his back. The man on the right can now attack, draw a weapon, or escape.