Saturday, May 31, 2008

Hakone Iaido Taikai

This past Wednesday, May 28th, was the Hakone 8th-dan Iaido Tournament. It's held every year at Hakone Shrine on May 28th, regardless of whether or not that falls on a weekday or a holiday. As it was a work day for me, I couldn't go, as much as I might have liked to.

More info about the event here (in Japanese). It is by invitation, and so only the very best 8th dan competitors - those who have won tournaments at the 7th dan level, for example - participate. I'm not entirely clear on how it works, but it seems that (usually) if you have won it in the past, you are not invited to join it again. There appear to be some exceptions, though.

I found a list of previous competitors. Where I was able, I have written the names in Romaji. This is much easier to do with family names than it is to do with given names, so I will usually give family names only; apologies if that seems disrespectful, or if I get any names wrong. Obviously, the honorific "Sensei" is implied after each name...! The family name plus the prefecture is probably enough, in most cases, to identify the individual. In some cases, I outright guessed at the name and probably got it wrong.

1st Annual Tournament - Heisei 5 (1993)
Winner: Kawaguchi Toshihiko (Yamaguchi)
2nd: Ide Katsuhiko (Hiroshima)
3rd: Otsuka Taro (Gifu)
Participants - Kobayashi Masao (Ibaraki), Namitome Shigenori (Fukuoka), Fujita (Tokyo), Mori (Osaka), Yamazaki (Saitama), Yamazaki (Shizuoka)

2nd Annual Tournament - Heisei 6 (1994)
Winner: Yasunaga (Kumamoto)
2nd: Kishimoto (Chiba)
3rd: Yoshinari (Kanagawa)
Participants - Ohashi Ryo (Tokyo), Kataoka (Aichi), Sato (Miyagi), Takeda (Ishikawa), Miura (Yamaguchi), Watanabe Hideo (Saitama)

3rd Annual Tournament - Heisei 7 (1995)
Winner: Ishido Shizufumi (Kanagawa)
2nd: Mitani (Kochi)
3rd: Oda (Shizuoka)
Participants - Hakuno (Fukoka), Sato (Tokyo), Saiki (Yamaguchi), Sugahara (Miyagi), Tamagawa (Osaka), Fukuhara (Hyogo)

4th Annual Tournament - Heisei 8 (1996)
Winner: Kimura (Kumamoto)
2nd: Monma(?) (Yamagata)
3rd: Fujiwara (Hyogo)
Participants - Oura(?) (Tokyo), Tanaka Shinzo (Fukushima), Tamagawa (Osaka), Fukube(?) (Mie), Yamauchi (Osaka), Yoshinari (Kanagawa)

5th Annual Tournament - Heisei 9 (1997) - Shrine 1240-Year Anniversary; many former participants were re-invited to compete again.
Winner: Kawaguchi Toshihiko (Yamaguchi)
2nd: Ide Katsuhiko (Hiroshima)
3rd: Mitani (Kochi)
Participants - Ishido Shizufumi (Kanagawa), Oura (Tokyo), Fukuhara (Hyogo), Yasunaga (Kumamoto), Yamazaki (Saitama), Yoshinari (Kanagawa)

6th Annual Tournament - Heisei 10 (1998)
Winner: Ogura Noboru (Tochigi)
2nd: Fukushima Manabu (Tokyo)
3rd: Kumeno (Ehime)
Participants - Sojima(?) (Kanagawa), Gota (Hokkaido), Nishidaira Hirofumi (Okinawa), Imura (Osaka), Noguchi (Chiba), Inoue Katsuhiko (Shizuoka)

7th Annual Tournament - Heisei 11 (1999)
Winner: Tanaka (Tokyo)
2nd: Yamazaki (Shizuoka)
3rd: Fujita (Tokyo)
Participants - Kishimoto (Chiba), Takeda (Ishikawa), Mori (Osaka), Watanabe (Saitama), Miura (Yamaguchi), Yagyu Hideo (Osaka)

8th Annual Tournament - Heisei 12 (2000)
Winner: Azuma Yoshinobu (Oita)
2nd: Muraomo(?) (Tokyo)
3rd: Haruna Matsuo (Okayama)
Participants - Nakamura (Tokyo), Obayashi (Osaka), Kaneda Masao (Tokyo), Hisano Michiya (Shizuoka), Hirota (Aomori), Koike (Yamanashi)

9th Annual Tournament - Heisei 13 (2001)
Winner: Kusama (Niigata)
2nd: Aoki Eiji (Tokyo)
3rd: Harada Sho (Tokushima)
Participants - Ishihara (Okayama), Hakuno (Fukuoka), Sato Yukio (Oita), Miyata (Ibaraki), Koyanagi (Osaka), Yamamoto Noboru (Tokyo)

10th Annual Tournament - Heisei 14 (2002)
Winner: Fukuhara (Hyogo)
2nd: Yamazaki (Saitama)
3rd: Miyata (Ibaraki)
Participants - Tanaka Shinzo (Fukushima), Oda (Shizuoka), Saiki (Yamaguchi), Fukube (Mie), Kimura (Kumamoto), Fujiwara (Hyogo)

11th Annual Tournament - Heisei 15 (2003)
Winner: Tanno Sutekatsu (Fukushima)
2nd: Matsuoka (Aichi)
3rd: Muraomo(?) (Tokyo)
Participants - Hisano (Shizuoka), Aoki Eiji (Tokyo), Harada (Tokushima), Kamikokuryo (Kagoshima), Oguri(?) (Kumamoto), Ito (Tokyo)

12th Annual Tournament - Heisei 16 (2004)
Winner: Ikeda Masao (Tochigi)
2nd: Inoue (Saitama)
3rd: Nakano (Osaka)
Participants - Oura (Tokyo), Obayashi (Osaka), Fukube (Mie), Ueno Masanobu (Okayama), Doi (Ishikawa), Takao (Osaka)

13th Annual Tournament - Heisei 17 (2005)
Winner - Ito (Tokyo)
2nd: Sato (Okayama)
3rd: Ide Yuta (Fukuoka)
Participants - Imura (Osaka), Muraomo (Tokyo), Harada Sho (Tokushima), Kamikokuryo (Kagoshima), Oguri (Kumamoto), Ogasawara (Yamagata)

Update: (June 15, 2008)
I found some more information...

15th Annual Tournament - Heisei 19 (2007)
Winner - Mizuno (Aichi, style: Shinkage Ryu)
2nd: Nakamura Masahito (Ishikawa, MJER)
3rd: Ide Yuta (Fukuoka, MSR)
Participants - Katsuaka (Kanagawa, Tamiya Ryu), Aoki (Tokyo, MSR), Maebara (Hiroshima, MSR), Tatsuno (Ibaraki, MSR), Miyazaki Kentarou (Nagasaki, MSR), Yanagihara (Tokyo, MSR)

16th Annual Tournament - Heisei 20 (2008)
Winner - Arao (Osaka, MJER)
2nd: Kaneshi (?) (Shizuoka, MJER)
3rd: Ozaki Makoto (Kanagawa, MSR)
Participants - Takahashi (Tokyo, MSR), Sugawara (Kyoto, MJER), Tsuchiya (Gifu, Yagyu Shinkage Ryu), Yoshikawa (Tokyo, MSR), Tanizu(?) (Ibaraki, MSR), Sotozaki(?) (Aomori, MSR)

My current teacher, Ozaki Sensei, came in 3rd.


Anonymous Chris said...

Thanks for the memories!
I was there in 2000 and also participated in the demo they had.
All variety of ranks us up there doing the enbu.
You've got a Kagoshima sensei's name off - it's Kamikokuryo. I trained with him for a couple weeks when I hopped around. He's got great iai (obviously) and is quite young for a hachidan. At the time he was the youngest awarded hachidan ever.

8:16 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Thanks Chris. The list reads like a Who's-Who of top iaidoka. I've been lucky enough to have trained with quite a few of them, too. Sadly, very little has rubbed off on me!

Thanks for the correction on Kamikokuryo Sensei's name. I'm sure he's not the only one I messed up!

I'm hoping to get more recent results up there, too. I found out that my current teacher, Ozaki Sensei from Kanagawa, came 3rd this year.

I have a video of last year's tournament; Mizuno Sensei from Aichi (Shinkage Ryu) won, and with good reason. He's incredible.

All the best,

1:00 AM  
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