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#113748 - 12/21/04 01:24 PM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5822
Loc: USA
Stay

Because there are no left handed Japanese swordsmen.

Or archers for that matter.

(Ok there maybe some, just so few and far between as be effectivly non-exsistant)

Just the way things are done.

Look at it this way--may give you a chance to develop functional skill with BOTH hands.

At least one Scots clan actually tied up the right hand of its warriors--"forced" them to train the left until they could use either hand.

(think it was the Kerrs--amoung others)

Might come in handy someday being able to use either hand.

Think what you may be able to someday do with nito kendo.

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#113749 - 12/21/04 05:24 PM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Anonymous
Unregistered


Ah, another southpaw. You could probably find a teacher who would be willing to teach you left handed. However, tradition is a great part of Japanese swordplay, so I am not sure you want one that would.

It's too bad, lefties have such an advantage in fencing.

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#113750 - 12/21/04 06:23 PM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Anonymous
Unregistered


[QUOTE]Originally posted by cxt:

At least one Scots clan actually tied up the right hand of its warriors--"forced" them to train the left until they could use either hand.
[/QUOTE]

I do the same thing to my students when using one-handed swords. It helps you to be a better fencer all around. As far as the left handed thing, I promote use of your primary hand, whether it be right or left. It's only fair. It also makes things a bit more interesting because the strategies used to defeat a right hander are completely different than their southpaw counterparts.

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#113751 - 12/21/04 06:26 PM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Charles Mahan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/14/04
Posts: 2502
Loc: Denton, Tx, USA
The problem is primarily that no one would know how to teach a southpaw to do things with the left hand. No one does it so there is no frame of reference. Add to that the fact that katana are primarily two handed weapons. It's not a simple matter of doing the same thing with the other hand.

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#113752 - 12/21/04 07:09 PM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Anonymous
Unregistered


It wouldn't be too different, would it? You would just reverse the footwork, the stance, the way you carry the sword, and everything else. If a student is a natural left hander, he should be able to mirror commands and instructions with ease. The only problem I have had in fencing is with the handshake at the end of the match.

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#113753 - 12/22/04 05:27 AM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Anonymous
Unregistered


I understand the difficulty. I'd be wandering around the Dojo doing Katas opposite to everyone else, and would have to line-up 10 feet away in case I cut someone's head off next to me.

It's just a little annoying. Imagine throwing a football with the other hand? Ahhh!


Mark.

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#113754 - 12/22/04 09:06 AM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Charles Mahan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/14/04
Posts: 2502
Loc: Denton, Tx, USA
The problem is that the subtlties of swordwork are learned by sensei demonstrating and the student doing his/her best to copy the technique. So the sensei could probably coble the technique together backwards, but he'll never be able to show the subtleties to the student because he can't do them either. It would be up to the student to translate them from the regular version, and the student doesn't isn't the best person for the job, because the student doesn't know the subtleties.

See what I mean? It's theoretically possible Especially if you could arrange for the student to watch the instructor through a mirror or something, but that's just silly. Tradition is as big a part of the average koryu as any of it's techniques. Left handed swordsman simply did not exist, and so they do not exist now.

That's not to say that there aren't lots of southpaws swinging steel in Japan. There most certainly are, and they do it just like everyone else. Swinging steel is a uniquely two handed activity. Right handed folks have trouble with some aspects that lefties don't, and vise versa.

[This message has been edited by Charles Mahan (edited 12-22-2004).]

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#113755 - 12/24/04 06:16 AM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Anonymous
Unregistered


I think the problem with a lot of Kenjutsu today is that the original art has been split into so many subarts, all of which are needed to become an effective swordsman.

If you can find a good traditional Kenjutsu school(Not likely outside of Japan) you should find their training includes Iaijutsu, shinai sparring, handling real swords, combat training, probably some grappling and everything in between.

Are you could try and find a Haidong Gumdo school within a reasonable distance of your home =)

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#113756 - 12/24/04 06:25 AM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Anonymous
Unregistered


My instructor is naturally left handed yet wields the sword just like everyone else (Yes, even one handed techniques are done with the right hand). You simply become ambidextrous after a time.

She can write using either hand with no visible difference as well. It's crazy!

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#113757 - 03/10/05 02:44 PM Re: Iaido or Kendo?
Anonymous
Unregistered


[QUOTE]Originally posted by Benjamin1986:
It's too bad, lefties have such an advantage in fencing.[/QUOTE]

I wouldn't say that. (This addresses the issue of doing iaido with only your right hand, so bear with me). The person who I usually train against in fencing is my brother who is left handed, and while it gave him the advantage in the beginning, eventually one adapts and it actually helps me when fencing other righties because I have the other perspective. So, in iaido, you'll have the other perspective which could help you in competitions.

Also, my brother reached 5th kyu in iaido using his right hand with no trouble, so it can be done. [IMG]http://www.fightingarts.com/forums/ubb/smile.gif[/IMG]

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