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Japan Iaido Taikai Guide

Taikai are great opportunities to show your every day practice results and perform outside of your dojo. A chance of being judged by high level sensei, judges with sharp eyes. An opportunity to practice under pressure and raise your level by competing against other Iaidoka. A wonderful time to make new friends, meet old ones and practice together. Here are some of the taikai & shiai advantages. Throughout the year in Japan several Taikai takes place. Below you will find information about 15 of the most important national or private events recognized by the Zen Nippon Kendo Renmei.

1. Zen Nippon Iaido Taikai
History: 1st in 1966 (Osaka) -> 45th in 2010 (Niigata)
Location: Change of prefecture every year
Date: October
Categories: 5th, 6th and 7th dan + Team by prefecture
Participants: One representative per prefecture per grade
Katas: 2 Koryu + 3 ZKR Iai

2. Zen Nippon Kendo Embu Taikai – Kyoto Taikai
History: 106th in 2010
Location: Butokuden, Kyoto
Date: May, 2nd->5th
Categories: 6th dan Renshi and above
Participants: More than 600 iaido participants, 737 in 2010
Katas: 5x Free

3. Zen Koku Hakone Taikai
Location: Hakone jinja, Kanagawa prefecture
Date: May 28th
Category: 8th dan
Participants: 9x 8th dan by invitation
Katas: 5x Koryu
Link: Hakone Jinja no blog

4. Kitakyushu Iaido Taikai
Location: Fukuoka
Date: March
Categories: Mudan -> 7th dan + Demo 7th and 8th dan
Katas: Mudan 5x free kata, Above mudan 2x Koryu + 3x ZKR Iai
Participants: 650 participants in 2010
Link: 35th Kitakyushu Iaido Taikai

5. Osaka Iaido Taikai
Location: Osaka
Date: December
Categories: 1st dan -> 7th dan
Participants: This is the biggest iaido taikai of Japan with 1300 participants in 2010
Katas: 1st dan 5x free, Above 1st dan 2x free + 3x ZKR Iai

6. Sakuranbo Iaido Taikai
Location: Murayama, Yamagata prefecture
Date: July
Categories: Mudan -> 7th dan + Demo
Katas: Mudan 5x free, 1st dan and above 4x Koryu + 1x ZKR Iai
Link: Videos

7. Uwajima Iaido Taikai
location: Ehime prefecture
Date: April
Categories: Mudan -> 6th dan
Katas: Mudan -> 3rd dan 5x Free, 3rd dan and above 3x Koryu + 2x ZKR Iai

8. Suio-ryu Koden Budo Taikai
location: Shizuoka prefecture
Date: October
Categories: Mudan -> 6th dan
Katas: 5x free kata
Participants: 400 participants

9. Zenkoku Meiryu Nippon Iaido Taikai
Location: Niigata prefecture
Date: June
Categories: 3rd -> 6th dan
Katas: 2x Koryu + 3x ZKR Iai
Participants: 600 participants in 2009

10. Kato Tsuneo Sodatsu Iaido Taikai
Location: Fukushima prefecture
Date: June
Categories: Mudan -> 6th dan
Katas: 4x Free + 1x ZKR Iai


11. Yamatokoriyama Oshiro Matsuri
Location: Nara prefecture
Date: April
Categories: Mudan -> 5th dan + 6th & 7th dan demonstration
Katas: Mudan -> 1st dan 5x Free, 2nd dan -> 5th dan 2x Koryu + 3x ZKR Iai

12. Tamashi Iaido Seitaikai Tokyo
Location: Tokyo
Date: September
Categories: –
Katas: 2x Koryu + 3x ZKR Iai

13. Kanto Shintetsu Iaido Taikai
Location: Tokyo
Date: November
Categories: Mudan -> 6th dan
Katas: Under 3rd dan 5x Koryu, 3rd dan and above 2x Koryu + 3x ZKR Iai

14. Tokyo Joshi Iaido Taikai
Location: Tokyo
Date: July
Categories: Mudan -> 6th dan, Only for Women (Joshi)
Katas: 3x Koryu + 3x ZKR Iai

15. Zen Nippon Gakusei Iaido Taikai
Location: Change of prefecture every year
Date: November
Categories: Only for academic, individual and Team, 5 selected per University
Katas: 2x Koryu + 3x ZKR Iai

This list was translated from the annual publication (2010) Tora no maki Vol 3. We translated very few information from the original articles which also contain origin and history, prize list, contact/fee information …

M. & Y.