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Furuyama Sensei and a Breath

I remember that Sensei Chiuchi Furuyama (Kendo and Iaido) had to go to the hospital for some sort of medical test. At that time, I was training with him at the Chozen-ji Temple in upper Kalihi.

Furuyama Sensei told me that his physician asked him to take a deep breath. He proceeded to inhale for over a minute! I am sure that he could have stretched out his breath much longer.

During Iaido, we were not supposed to breathe once the kata began. Only at the end of the kata would we exhale. No matter how long the kata was, we were not supposed to breathe. I say "supposed" because I breathed a lot! If I used only one breath, I would become light headed.

But Furuyama Sensei had great breath control.

The reason that we did not breathe during Iaido kata was that the tip of the sword would rise and fall with the breath.


Charles C. Goodin