Taihenjutsu Mutodori Kata “Unarmed Sword Evasions”
In these three exercises your training partner attacks you with a sword (training appropriate and fully padded of course!) and you get out of the way using balance, kamae, and ukemi unified into one set of movements.
Not getting hit with the sword is only the first half of the movement, the second half is putting yourself in a place after the first cut so your training partner can’t follow up with another and then another, etc.
You need to be able to control your body enough to put it in such a place that further attack is impossible. These are also exercises to learn distance and timing along with courage. Distance to be just outside the cut, timing to move as your partner does, and courage to just stand there and receive the attack as they swing down at your head.
When attacking your training partner begins in daijodan no kamae and attacks shomen giri with correct ma-ai.
Hira No Kamae “Flat posture”
Your training partner cuts and you move off flat to the side into hira no kamae followed by zenpo kaiten and coming up into ichimonji no kamae. Shifting into kamae (hira) takes you off the line of attack and put you in a position to be able to roll away to cover as much distance as possible so a second cut can’t be just fired off. While it is important to practice both the right and left side (migi/hidari) moving to the weak side of the sword is preferred so as you are rolling away your training partner has to spend additional time adjusting his kamae if they even hope to try and cut at you. Depending on their body type and skill with the sword you may have to use shiho tenchi tobi mixed in after the kamae and before the zenpo kaiten to clear additional ground.
Ichimonji No Kamae “Figure One Posture”
From the cut your receive away in ichimonji no kamae and roll to the weak side of the sword. As this happens your training partner follows you going back up into daijodan for another shomen giri and right before they cut you rise up on one knee and boshiken to gorin.
While the lesson is done from zenpo kaiten it is also proper to practice the different rolls in response to the cut. Pay special attention to when you are rising up that you are guarding with your other hand so you don’t get the hilt of the sword smashed into your face.
Jumonji No Kamae “Figure Ten Posture”
From jumonji no kamae. when your training partner cuts at you, you leap forward and to the side striking omote shuto to uko with strong shiho tenchi tobi.