Tameshigiri - Target Cutting for Martial Arts Blades

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Tameshigiri - Target Cutting for Martial Arts Blades

Tameshigiri is the Japanese term for target cutting with Shinken (live/sharp blades). Targets are traditionally Tatami mats (consisting of rice straw) that are rolled and soaked in water. Other targets include green bamboo shafts.

Tameshigiri is practiced by many Japanese martial arts that use the Katana, Wakazashi and Tanto. Some of these martial arts include Kenjutsu, Iaido and Ninjutsu. Tameshigiri dates back to the feudal era of ancient Japan and the days of the Samurai. The targets used for cutting were slightly different back in those days (namely dead bodies and convicted criminals!). Even today, rolled wet tatami and green bamboo targets are said to have the same resilience as flesh and bone.

Demonstration of Tameshigiri

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