Isao Machii, the Modern Samurai: Iaido Swordsman Master
We often hear people from overseas say that “There currently aren’t any samurai or ninja in Japan, it is very disappointing.” Indeed in modern Japan, there aren’t any samurais walking about with swords and chonmage-hairstyles like there were in the Edo Period. However, there is an individual who is referred to as the “Modern Samurai” or “Samurai of the Heisei Period” who has reached the levels of a master swordsman. He is an Iaido master and is able to cut a tennis ball that is flying at 820km per hour.
About Isao Machii
Isao Machii is an Iaijutsu master who has developed the martial art “Shūshinryū Iaijutsu hyōhō”. The Iaijutsu (or Battojyutsu, sword drawing) is a traditional Japanese samurai martial art. It involves the controlled movements of drawing the sword from its scabbard or saya and striking an opponent with one movement. The word Battojyutsu may remind you of Rurou ni Kenshin (Samurai X)’s nickname “Hitokiri Battosai (Sword-drawing Manslayer)”.
Isao Machii usually works as a sword dealer who sells Japanese swords and operates his own dojo. However, due to his extraordinary skills with the sword, he started appearing on television programs both in Japan and overseas. He has broken many Guinness World Records on those programs. The number of Guinness Records he holds has currently reached 5; and this indeed is the reason he is called the “Samurai Living in a Modern Era”.
The 5 Guinness World Records
- Guinness World Records: 36minutes 4 seconds; breaking the record by significantly shortening the time.
- Most martial arts sword cuts to one mat (Suegiri): 8
- Most sword cuts to straw mats in three minutes: 252 cuts
- Most fastest tennis ball cut: 820km/h
- Cutting 6mm BB Gun Pellet
Cutting a High Speed Fried Shrimp in Two With a Single Stroke of the Sword
Cutting a Baseball Flying at 160km in Two With a Single Stroke of the Sword
Industrial Robot vs Sword Master
The samurai of Japan’s past considered the Japanese sword as a mirror that reflected one’s soul. They practiced and trained not only to improve their swordsmanship but also to train the spirit. It is the spirit of Japanese martial arts similar to Karate. We assume one of Isao Machii’s goals is improving his personal swordsmanship but separately, we believe he also wants to disseminate the spirit of Japanese martial arts within Japan as well as outside of Japan; and at the same time he is continues his personal spiritual training.