Welcome to Dublin Kendo Kobukai
Learn Authentic Japanese Weapon Arts

Beginners Courses are BACK!
Due to COVID-19 restrictions NUMBERS are limited, SIGN UP HERE!

Come and TRY a free Iaido
session !

Come learn the Way of the Drawing and Cutting with the Japanese Sword in Dublin Kendo, the home of Authentic Japanese Weapon Arts. Here, under the guidance of our qualified instructors you can study the "Way of Preparation". Suitable for young and old, complete beginners and experienced athletes, try a free session today, or continue to read more!

*Free session temporarily suspended due to the Covid pandemic.

Here is a demonstration of Iai from Ame Agarau (After the Rain), a great Samurai flick.

Learn more about Iaido

What is Iaido? 

Iaido is the art of Japanese Swordsmanship. How to draw, cut and sheathe the Japanese Sword. It is also a highly detailed and involved study of military strategic thought and samurai philosophy in motion.  

The word itself has a number of meanings and interpretations. Each is dependant of a subjective translation as the word itself, like many Japanese martial concepts does not translate into English at all easily. The word is comprised of 3 Japanese characters: i-ai-do.

Roughly, “I” comes from Iru, to be; Ai (as in Aikido) means coming together, harmony, or love; and means road, or Way (in the Buddhist sense). Loosely translated then, Iaido means being in harmony with one’s surroundings, always being prepared for any eventuality.

Dynamic and Thought Provoking

Training in Iai involves a number of distinct yet interrelated disciplines:

Tanren - This is physical conditioning as taught in feudal Japan. It is comprised of a series of body weight and equipped drills. These drills increase psychical conditioning, fitness, strength and improve body movement and co-ordination. They also, importantly contribute to the spirit of the practitioner, training them to develop endurance, perseverance, humility, dedication and more.

Waza - These are the techniques of Zen Ken Ren Iai, this is a syllabus created to introduce the correct use of the Japanese Sword. All our senior instructors are also students of Koryu Iai (these are the centuries old styles of Iai). ZNKR Iai is the core teachings of our club and teaches the foundations of Iaido. In virtually all schools of Iai, the kata/waza are composed of four essential elements. These are:

  • Nukitsuke – The initial draw and simultaneous cut.
  • Kiritsuke – The decisive finishing cut.
  • Chiburui – A symbolic shaking of blood from the blade.
  • Noto – Sheathing the sword.

Practically all kata have these fundamental parts in some combination or other, but may also include blocks, deflections, thrusts, and multiple cuts, depending on the scenario. Iai kata are performed solitary  against imaginary opponents, called kassoteki, or teki. (There are also partner kata at more advanced levels). 

Developing Awareness and Insight

The fact that there is no real adversary means the Iaido-ka (Iaido practitioner) needs to be aware of where teki is at all times, and to focus his techniques accordingly. This demands intense concentration from the Iaidoka. Each kata, though outwardly simple, has myriad technical details that can make it fiendishly difficult to master. Indeed, a single kata could easily take a lifetime’s study, and still not be perfected. However, it is this quest for almost unattainable perfection that makes Iai what it is – a Way of strengthening the body, developing the character, and forging the Spirit.

How Can I Start Training in Iaido?

It's really easy. Just come along to one of our training sessions. 🙂 Don't worry about equipment, you just need comfortable workout clothes, like a tracksuit or martial arts uniform and we will provide the rest. Our beginners' course is €60 for three months. Some people choose to train in one art only, others practice two or even all three.

See our Training Times and Locations below, to find out when and where would suit you.  And if you want to talk to one of our instructors just click here to send us an email. 

Our Beginners Courses

Dublin Kendo is delighted to announce that we are finally able to return to indoor training and this means we are finally relaunching our beginner’s classes!

Unfortunately, due to the ongoing restrictions with the pandemic FREE PREVIEW SESSION'S ARE SUSPENDED as there are still restrictions on numbers, and only so many people we can accommodate indoors. As such we’ve decided to run a series of heavily discounted, 4-week beginners classes to give as many of you the opportunity to try these arts.

The 4-Week course is only €40 per art and includes all fees (class, insurance, equipment rental etc). If you like it (and we are sure you will) you can progress into full club membership and regular sessions.

Please Select which Art and which day you'd like to attend here - Beginners Classes!


After your beginners' course training fees are as follows:

  • Regular Membership: €50 per month
  • Concessionary Membership (students or unwaged): €25 per month
  • Children (up to 14 years old): Free
  • Juniors (14 to 18 years old): €25 per month

Training Times and Locations

IAIDO - The Way of Preparation


19:00 - 20:20 **

St. John Bosco Youth Centre,

Davitt Road,


Dublin 12


19:00 - 20:20 **

St. Joseph's C.B.S.,

Secondary School,


Dublin 3


11:00-12:00 **

The Ballybough Community,

Youth & Sports Centre,

49 Ballybough Road,


Dublin 3

** Due to building restrictions, Saturday and Monday classes are unfortunately cancelled on bank holiday weekends.

Check out some our Dojo Iaido Videos!

The following are some recent clips from our seminars and public demonstrations. 

Dublin Kendo at Shurikon 2020

A short fun video showing the members of Dublin Kendo Demonstrating Iaido, Jodo and Kendo. And some general fun behind the scenes moments as we enjoyed the 'con. 🙂

Iaido Embu at Irish National Kendo Championships 2017 

"At last weekend's Irish National Kendo Championships and Ambassador's Cup, a demonstration of the Japanese martial art of Iaido was held. Iaido translates into English as "the way of mental presence and immediate reaction" and derives from samurai tradition". Courtesy of the Embassy of Japan in Ireland.

Check Our Media Section for Articles & Videos 

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Check Out How You Can Start Training in Our Other Arts!

Copyright © 2020 All Material on this website is copyright Dublin Kendo Kobukai, and licenced under the CC-BY Licence.

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