Mugai ryū was founded by Tsuji Gettan Sukemochi in 1680 and specializes in swordsmanship (kenjutsu, iaihyōdō, tameshigiri).

One of the characteristics of this school is the focus on cutting iai, which means a strike from a sheath that is capable of cutting (a tatami, rolled straw mat).

Currently Mugai ryū Meishi-ha is located in Tokyo, Japan, and the school is led by Niina Toyoaki Gyokudo soke (17th generation headmaster and successor of the school).

The founder, Tsuji Gettan Sukemochi, studied Yamaguchi ryū swordsmanship under Yamaguchi Bokushinsai and Zen Buddhism Zen master at Sekitan Ryozen.

At the age of 32 he received a formal poem from one of the Buddhist scriptures from his Zen master as proof of recognition and transmission. Tsuji Gettan Sukemochi used the word Mugai 無外 (“there is nothing outside”) of this poem to represent his swordschool. (read more about the history here)

The following three disciplines are taught in Mugai ryū Meishi-ha::

  • Iaidō 居合道 (drawing the sword from its scabbard and directly striking)
  • Kenjutsu/kumitachi 剣術/組太刀 (partner exercises with wooden swords)
  • Tameshigiri 試し切り (cutting exercises with a sharp sword)

The omote-curriculum of Mugai-ryū consists of:

  • 20 iai kata
  • 10 iaikumitachi kata
  • 5 kenjutsu kata
  • 12 Kasumi Shintō ryū kenjutsu kata

The students are graded according to a kyu/dan-graden systeem, but menkyo are also awarded to students who are training long enough and have mastered the school. (read more about the exam requirements)

Kochōkai has been an official branch-dojo of Mugai ryū Meishi-ha since 2011 and weekly classes are taught by Arjan F. Tervoort.

Kochōkai has several options for training Mugai ryū. Click on the links for more information.