I really liked the Chokugen ryu demonstration. The power in the blade deflections was pretty impressive, as was the mobility of the practitioner to make use of the length of the naginata. As an iaidoka, I found myself trying to think of ways that I could get past the blade of the weapon and get into range .
Luckily, a naginata wielder is not something we normally expect to encounter when down the pub with the geisha's, so I wasn't too distressed that the only thing I could think of was to engage the naginata with the edge of the katana and advance quicker than she could retreat .
Correction, it was nowhere near as accessible. Before the advent of the internet, the only way to see embu was to either go there yourself, or to get together with those that were there, and watch their videos of it. Either way, there was a very limited number of people that could ever see koryu arts in action. Before the internet, there were a very limited number of people that even knew what the koryu were.... it just wasn't quite as accessible.
I understand what you meant Chris. I was just quibbling with your semantics when you said it "wasn't quite as accessible". It's akin to saying that before the advent of airplanes, crossing the ocean was a tad slower. Bit of an understatement that.My main point was that claiming that "none of what is shown on these videos would have been accessible to anyone not in the ryu..." wasn't correct, as these are taken from public demonstrations.
Hi Chris It's only a small thing perhaps but I should correct you on something. The art is not called "Naginata-do". It's usually referred to as "Atarashii Naginata" or (more commonly), simply "Naginata". Here's a reference as to why (other than "because my teacher said so" )Hmm, a few things. Firstly, it really wasn't that slow... the speed of embu will be determined by the line itself. And that was fairly typical speed in this case. Next, it features classical-based kata, but not classical kata itself. What we have here is modern Naginata-do, and a demonstration (embu) of the kata side of the training, rather than an actual classical form.
The kata in the OP though are definitely the formal kata studied from Sandan (I just compared them to footage I shot recently for comparison to be sure). Thankfully it'll be a while before I have to worry about those thoughThe Mombusho advised the new All Japan Naginata Federation that they should promote 'Naginata' using the phonetic hiragana characters rather than Chinese characters (kanji). The reasoning for this was to rid the newly developed version of Naginata of any militaristic connotations or nuances that maybe (sic) attached to the kanji, as opposed to the neutral hiragana. Thus, the characters "なぎなた" are used to write Naginata for the post-war sporting innovation, although kanji are still used in regards to the Naginata of traditional styles such as Tendo-ryu and Jikishinkage-ryu and so on. Also, the Ministry of Education directed the Naginata Federation not to add 'do' (Way) after Naginata (Naginata-do). This directive was intended to further separate new Naginata from that practiced before and during the war, and its spiritual hence nationalistic connotations. 'Naginata - The Definitive Guide' by Alexander Bennett, page 57.