What equipment do I need to practice Iaido?
To start practising Iaido, you will need the following at the bare minimum:
- Comfortable exercise clothing
We don't expect new students to come fully equipped with all the gear they could ever need to start with, so we have limited quantities of the other essentials available to loan to new students at the start of each class:
- An obi (belt)
- A bokuto (wooden sword) and saya (sheath)
Once you've been practising for a while, and have decided to stick with Iaido as a regular art, you will need your own bokuto and saya, and uniform with an obi. If you decide you want to grade with the Canadian Kendo Federation, then a dull metal Iaito sword would be necessary. Strictly speaking, kneepads aren't mandatory, but are highly recommended for long-term practice. Volleyball kneepads, available from any local sporting goods store, work very well.
If you happen to be practising Kendo alongside Iaido, your Kendo uniform would be sufficient, but you would need to add on an obi for Iaido.
Before purchasing your own equipment, consult with the advanced students for a list of reputable suppliers.