Our Musō Shinden Ryū teacher is Takada Gakudō (Shigeru) Sensei, who lives in Yokohama, Japan. He started kendo in 1951 (Showa 27) and iaido two years later when he was 15 years old.
Takada Sensei’s iaido teacher was the late Matsuo Kenpu Sensei (iaido 10th dan), whose dōjō “Dai Nippon Teigoku Shinkenkan Matsuo Dojo” Takada Sensei joined on 10 December 1953. After Takada Sensei had received menkyo kaiden in Musō Shinden Ryū Matsuo Sensei urged him to study other budo and bujutsu arts and iaido schools.
Takada Sensei was one of the youngest persons to be awarded 8th dan by Zen Nippon Iaidō Renmei. Eventually he joined Dai Nippon Iaidō Renmei for several reasons. He is also one of the founding members of Nippon Iaidō Kyōkai, a new iaido federation estabilished in September 2001. Takada Sensei currently holds the rank of hanshi 10th dan. He celebrated his kanreki or 60th birthday in the summer of 1999. He practices iaido every morning at home and teaches two or three times a week in the Yokohama area.
Takada Sensei visited Scandinavia for the first time in 1986 and taught his first seminar in Uppsala, Sweden. Two years later he taught iaido in Helsinki for the first time. After this seminar Takada Sensei has visited us at least once a year and taught in Helsinki or Uppsala and during the last few years also in Estonia. So his Scandinavian Musō Shinden ryū students have had the opportunity to benefit from his guidance in one, two or sometimes even three week seminars.
Takada Sensei’s budo career is formidable. Below are some of the arts and schools he has practiced and in parentheses his rank in the particular school or art.
Musō Shinden ryū iaidō (menkyo kaiden)
Ōno-ha Hōki ryū iaijutsu (menkyo kaiden)
Mugai ryū iaidō (menkyo kaiden)
Hōzōin ryū sōjutsu (8th dan, kyōshi)
Araki ryū nagamakijutsu (7th dan, kyōshi)
Kendō (7th dan, kyōshi)
Shindō Musō ryū jōjutsu (7th dan, kyōshi)
Jūkendō (6th dan, kyōshi)
Yagyū ryū kusarigamajutsu (6th dan, kyōshi)
Yagyū ryū tessenjutsu (6th dan, kyōshi)
Tankendō (5th dan)
Araki ryū chikirikijutsu
Jūjutsu of Kito and Yōshin ryū
Iaidō of Araki, Eishin and Keishi ryū
Kuroda ryū Shurikenjutsu