Although the Ryu is not in itself a part of any religious order, it adheres to religious convictions on a traditional family basis.

Mihashira Jinja one of Yanagawa’s major shrines is dedicated to the Tachibana Clan. They and the Kageryu observe and always participate in religious events. Yearly Hono-Embu. Really rather embarrassing having to put my own pictures on the net. But then again I am the only one that does these embu now.

PURPOSE: Many years ago, if anyone went into another persons house wearing a long weapon it was not to sit down and drink tea! This not mean to say that a long sword cannot be used indoors. The value of a Japanese sword as a thrusting weapon receives little merit nowadays.

There are many techniques within the Ryu that use these techniques, For example a thrusting cut under the armpit between the legs or up into the cranium through the chin all produce fatal results. There are other benefits to using the shorter sword indoors apart from cutting.


The blade shown on the previous page is known as a Ma kiri. This translates as a door or devil cutter. A slicing action through Fusuma paper doors allows one to gain quick entry into inner rooms of a building.

Gusoku Armor of Mogamido type, covered with Crepe Leather with Double Ring design do. Height.37.0Wt.12.0kgWorn by Tachibana Muneshige(1569-1642)16th-17th century, Momoyama period.

Kaiin, Nathan Morrison in the classic Ukebarai waza spinning to the rear to parry and following the opponent as he runs away to cut him down.


Despite rigorous training in Kage-ryu, exponents encouraged to study more than just swordsmanship, and practice other traditional arts. Demonstrations of the Kage-ryu include shakuhachi, shigin, (Japanese singing), and the mikkyo (esoteric practices) and the jingai (triton shell horn) of the Honzan Shugenshu (a school of Shugendo or Yamabushi practices from Kyoto) Black joba-hakama and uwagi with han-juban are worn for everyday practice. White uwagi in the warmer months. Kaiin are required to wear montsuki-hakama bearing the family crest of the Tachibana clan for formal events. The crest of intertwined Ginko Leaves shown below.

The Ryu has survived to this day with no rank or gradings. However, holding grades or rank in other forms of sword arts is beneficial if one wishes to become a member. There are certain fundamental elements that encompass all of these arts.


I was suggested that I join Nippon Kobudo Kyokai with The Kageryu. This would indeed give us national recognition. But the ryu has survived to this day despite efforts to stop it by authorities, not because of help. Like most Kobudo Ryu there is no hereditary succession. We will continue into the future handing on what we know from teacher to student with as little adaptation as possible from what we have been taught.

Yanagawa Kobudo Shinkokai is associated with the Nippon Todo Renmei, a batto jutsu organization.

Right, Nakazawa Rin. Deceased President of the Nippon Todo Renmei and Kyudai Sohke of the Taiko Konoha Ryu (Hideyoshi fallen leaf school of swordsmanship). Vice President is the famous Hayashi Kunishiro Sensei of Wakakoma Pro.




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