Before you start training, you should first check the condition of your equipment.
It starts with the Bokken, the simple helper of Iaidokas. Are there initial cracks (risk of breakage) in the wood or wood splints (wear)? I haven’t seen a Bokken break in partner practice yet, but you shouldn’t challenge it. splinters of wood can injure the practitioner themselves. Unpleasant.
The Iaito should be checked carefully. In the first place is checking of the Mekugis, the small wooden pencil that secures the sword tang in the handle. However, it does not anchor the blade. Anchoring is only achieved by a good fit of the sword hilt in the handle. Has the blade of the Iaitos been damaged? Sort out! You shouldn’t let a blade break matter.
Is the sageo knot tight? A carelessly bound Sageo that comes loose is embarrassing to look at. The wearer did not understand how to master a simple knot himself. How about this Iaidoka who wants to get the sword swing under control … Does he have enough attention and concentration to practice Iaido?
Is the Saya okay? Does the clothes fit correctly? Even a small fold of clothing in the belt can interfere with the saya’s movement when the sword is drawn. Worse if the clothing slips during training. Has the Hakama been set up correctly? If it is tied too long, you can trip badly. If the sword flies …
What is your condition? Are you sober? How long is your last beer away? You are not fit with residual alcohol in the blood, even if you think you feel nothing of it. What is my own condition? I’m tired? Am I there? Have I already done everything to be able to practice concentrated kata without being stressed? Is my thought going to the cell phone in the corner that wants to tempt me to chat with a pling? What about emotions, anger, worries? It is important to clarify these circumstances in order to master sustainable training.
Iaido means more than reaching for a sword and simply practicing kata. Good training begins well before the actual training time. If I want to come on time, I have to be on time. If I want to learn well, regular participation is necessary. This needs to be clarified. Proper preparation for training is necessary internally and externally.