The Kokusai Budoin, International Martial Arts Federation, is comprised of seven divisions representing the various
Japanese martial arts. These include Judo, Kendo, Karatedo, Aikido, Iaido, Nihon Jujutsu and Kobudo. Each division has
an extensive heritage rooted in the traditions of classical martial arts.
Iaido, the way of the sword, is a martial art that began as on offshoot of Kenjutsu, arts of swordsmanship. It was
developed as a defensive method to counter surprise attacks in 15th and 16th century Japan.
The purpose of Iaido was to slay an opponent with one stroke of the sword immediately after unsheathing it. In order to
create such a defensive system, situations and circumstances of surprise attacks were studied to devise a systemized way
to utilize the sword efficiently against many forms of attack.
What is Iaido?
Iaido is a method of wielding the sword, one of the Japanese martial arts which has been practiced from ancient times until present day. The i in Iaido refers both to the existence of the body and that of the spirit. The ai refers to adaptability, the impromptu execution of movements whenever and wherever a appropriate response is necessary. The do refers to the path or way taken by its practitioners.
The practice of Iaido requires a calm spirit, extreme concentration and skill. Every motion, such as the movements of the
arms or legs and body, must be perfectly coordinated.
The physical practice of Iaido includes drawing, parrying and cutting motions, as well as various methods of returning the
sword to the scabbard. Training focuses on Kata, pre-arranged forms that are designed as defenses against an
imaginary opponent, and each form teaches several principles of correct sword handling.
"Even though you may devote yourself completely to it with all your heart and soul, it is very difficult to master Iaido
completely. It is possible, though, to move one step at a time toward the ultimate goal through practice."
– Katsuo Yamaguchi
IMAF Iaido Division
Iaido is a traditional Japanese martial art practiced as means of character development and one of the IMAF divisions.
The Iaido Division has been led by some of the greatest names in the art, including Tsugiyoshi Ota, Meijin Iaido 10-dan,
Katsuo Yamaguchi, Meijin Iaido 10-dan, Tadao Ochiai, Hanshi Iaido 10-dan, and Kenji Tose, Hanshi Iaido 10-dan.
IMAF Organization Chart
An overview of the IMAF organization worldwide.