★The name of country(Represantative or Reader, Contributor)
2017 was a good year for Toronto Niten Kai. We are a small group but have added new members bringing our total number of members to 17 people. In late October we invited Kajiya Soke to Toronto to visit and to teach a Niten Ichi Ryu seminar. During his visit we took him to do the most Canadian thing we could think of…ax throwing. I think Soke enjoyed this very much. During the Niten Ichi Ryu seminar he shared many of his insights regarding seiho and we practice these as best we can today.
★Chile（Patricio Pavez Lillo)
In 2017, there were 114 trainings total.
Throughout the year we continued cooperation with the Slovenian and Austrian clubs in joint training. Trainings were organized by Dani Vombek and were held in Žalec, Slovenia.
In August, We attended international Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu workshop in Žalec, Slovenia.
On the 1’st of October we held a demonstration at the dojo.
During the year some members visited dojo in Zagreb for some together Keiko.
★Croatia Zagreb(Vlatko Cerepinko)
A year has passed since the forming of our training group. Keeping our training schedule of 3 times a week, we have surely learned much, yet still only scratched the surface.
A few events have been organised to introduce people to our training, where over 60 people participated – leading to new members joining our group.
This year I had the luck to both travel to Japan and participate in our yearly seminar. My trip to and training in Japan was a beautiful experience I surely will never forget. I have been welcomed with such warmth as if it was my home. The guidance and training received has inspired me to practice even more zealously. For this, I am forever thankful.
Hyoho Niten Ichi ryu Finland
In Finland, we had our first training of the year in January. As tradition dictates, we started the year with a vigorous training session to get a good start for the year.
In January we also participated in Koryu 2017 embu in Helsinki, which is held every two years. The embu consisted of demonstrations from nine different koryu schools that are practiced in Finland. Hyoho Niten Ichi ryu was represented by Kimmo Pohjoisaho, Matias Kuosmanen and Raimo Nikkilä. This was the fifth time for the embu to be held and the Finnish practice group of HNIR is proud to have participated in this embu since the beginning.
Kimmo Pohjoisaho (left) and Matias Kuosmanen (right) in Koryu 2017 embu
Kimmo Pohjoisaho (left) and Matias Kuosmanen (right) in Koryu 2017 embu
We continued training throughout the spring in our usual practice place in an elementary school in Helsinki. For the summer, we moved outside to practice, because the school closed its doors for the summer break.
The Finnish weather is not always the most optimal for training outside, and especially this year we had quite rainy and cold summer. However, we are used to that in here, so we have never let a little bit of rain stop our training.
In the summer, in August, Kimmo Pohjoisaho attended the European Koryu Convention embu in Germany together with Roland Gericke from Germany and Scott Halls from UK.
Our practitioners Kimmo Pohjoisaho and Hemmo Viholainen attended HNIR summer seminar in Slovenia. There they had extremely good keiko with Kajiya-sensei and brought a lot of new teachings to be practiced and polished here at home.
Two members of our group also visited Japan in the fall and received teaching from Kajiya-sensei. Matias Kuosmanen travelled to Kitakyushu in September and Kimmo Pohjoisaho in November. Both of them received invaluable instructions and teaching from Kajiya-sensei, which have profoundly helped us improve our skills in HNIR. We give our deepest and most sincere gratitude to Kajiya-sensei for all his teaching this year.
As Autumn came, we moved training back inside. Although there hasn’t been much snow yet, we are not crazy enough to train outside in the autumn as well. The rest of the year continued with our normal training, which will last until the end of the year.
Our last training of the year will be very close to the end of the year in 29th of November.
We had few new members in the group as well and currently we have around 7 active practitioners.
★France (Nguyen Thannh Thien)
We are studying Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu as it was taught to us. We have great joy in gathering together at weekly classes and workshops. We concentrate on uniting seiho and spirit. After 15 years promoting our koryu with Iwami soke, we are now back to keiko and only keiko. It is time to put ourselves in humility under the rule of keiko only. We are most happy to witness the success of our koryu.
Nguyen Thanh Thien
The year 2017 is almost over, and looking back to it, it was one of our most successful years, regarding our Koryu in Germany so far.
Our activities besides the regular Keiko started in April with our yearly friendship-embu at the Torii-Cup, a Kendo-Tournament in Bielefeld.
After we’ve had a nice conversation at this event, I decided to try to arrange our first internal German seminar a few weeks later.
Because it was a first try, I’ve made it not for the public. It was for my students, and those who were interested, and told me that during the year.
So, our first German seminar was held from July the 1st to 2nd, and was a really great experience and also success, with 20 participants in total.
Everyone was happy and satisfied, so we decided to to this every year from now on.
The next „big thing“ for us this year was the participation at the European Koryu Convention in Hamburg from August 19th to 20th.
Together with Kimmo Pohjoisaho and Scott Halls, we did our best, and showed an Embu of our Ryu the best way we were able to.
We had very nice conversations this weekend, made new friendships, noticed a lot of interest in our Ryu.
Only one week later, we went to Slovenia for this years European Seminar with Kajiya Soke.
Due to personal things that happened this year in my life (Marriage in September, and the birth of our daughter in October ),
we were just able to attend two days this year, but it was very good to see Soke and talk with him. It was very nice to see all the other
members of our „family“ again, train hard for at least two days, and enjoy the short time we have together.
We were very happy that we’ve been allowed to arrange the European Seminar with Soke in 2019 in Germany!
The plans for 2018 have not been made yet, but we want to do a German seminar again, participate at the European seminar, and many other things.
Germany wishes the very best for all our friends for 2018! We hope to see you all soon again!
See attached photos from our German Seminar, and the EKC.
2017 was a difficult year for Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu in Ireland but we proudly fight on! Sadly as we left 2016 country leader O’Brien was involved in a serious road traffic accident when his car was hit from behind. He suffered a severe neck injury, from which he is still recovering.
Sadly this meant that he was unable to attend the European seminar this year. Thankfully John Kennedy was able to attend and represent Ireland.
Despite the serious setback of the injury, O’Brein and Kennedy were still able to provide a demonstration of Hyoho Niten Ichi ryu at Ireland’s largest Japanese Cultural Event, “Experience Japan”, attended by over 8,000 people. O’Brien was then asked to speak to Ireland’s current Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Leo Varadkar about his study of Budo.
O’Brien was later asked to present a lecture in University College Dublin on the history of the Samurai, in which he spoke at length about Musashi Sensei and demonstrated some of the techniques of Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu for the UCD faculty and students and the Japanese embassy students in attendance.
Though limited by injury we are happy to report that we continue to share Musashi Sensei and Soke’s teachings and are working with several promising new students.
Further Ireland continues to hold close relationships with our fellow brothers and sisters in Budo, and we even had a first this year with a live streaming session with one of friends in Europe! We are also pleased to note that our resident Candaian, Keith, was also able to travel from Ireland back to Canada to train with Soke and we continue our training here in Irelnd togehter.
There has not yet been a week gone by this year when Ireland has not been in touch with our brothers and sisters in Hyoho Niten Ichi ryu around the world and we greatly treasure the continued support and guidance we receive from our Niten family.
Here is to a another wonderful year with all of you!
★Italy(Lorenzo Ricci,Alessio Repetto)
2017 has been an year really full of events and activities for Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu in Italy.
First of all there has been an increase in the number of students who partecipated in the various
seminars, as well as in the frequency with which those seminars were held.
This year the annual seminar was held in Slovenia towards the end of August: this time two people from
Italy attended it, Lorenzo Ricci, our national representative, and Alessandro Tarpani, one of his students.
As usual it has been an invaluable experience, allowing them to learn directly from Kajiya soke, studying
and perfecting a big part of the ryu's curriculum (Itto Seiho, Kodachi Seiho, Nito Seiho and part of Bo
Seiho). Talking about all of this, we cannot forget to thank first of all Kajiya soke, and also Dani Vombek
for his splendid organization of the event.
Alessio Repetto, another italian student and also responsible of a study group in the north of Italy,
instead went directly to Japan to receive soke's personal teachings. This allowed him to approach the
study of Itto, Kodachi and Nito Seiho on a higher level, all of that while also being able to visit places
like (to name just two of them) Ganryujima and Reigando. And if all of that was not enough already, he
was also granted the priviledge of taking part to the traditional Embu in the Itsukushima Shrine with
the others deshi of the ryu, making this already fantastic experience really special.
Talking about Embu, we have been quite busy in Italy as well: in september we took part to the Kobudo
Embu Taikai during the event Koryukai, in Brescia, which reunited a lot of different groups of various
ryuha, and in october also we did another embu, this time during the Orient Festival in Perugia, a big
exhibition dedicated to all aspects of oriental culture.
So, as already said, 2017 for us has been a really busy and satisfying year, and 2018 promises to be even
more busy, seeing that we will host the next International Seminar the next August, on which we are
★Netherlands/ Oranda(Chris de Jongh)
Dear Soke and fellow heihosha,
First, let me send you all a very Happy New Year’s greetings and my best wishes to you for 2018.
Sadly we missed this years European Gasshuku due to planning problems.
The Dutch group trains on a weekly basis and getters for a weekend training every third month. The group did grow a little bit and participated in server demonstrations.
We hope to meet you all at this years European Gasshuku with Soke.
Best wishes to all
Chris de Jongh
This year did not have anything spectacular. Twice a week we do two hours of training. I did not make any public demonstrations this year. I feel these demonstrations are like cheap shows and I wanted to avoid them. Beyond that, we tried to get more into the essence of practice! I’ll send some pictures below.
HYOHO NITEN ICHI RYU group Slovenia – ANNUAL REPORT
There is 11 people in HNIR group Slovenia, for now. I am very happy because 4 of my students are young people (7 years to 19 years), mothers of these students are from Japan.
★United Kingdom(Scott Halls,Eduardo Spadaccino Patrizio)
The Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu UK Shibu continues to be represented by five groups across the country. They are Heijoshin Dojo (Walsall), Ojika Dojo (Newcastle), Shiroi Bara (York), Nishimon Dojo (Kent) and Shinbōshin Dojo (Hampshire). Every two months throughout the year, we practised together at our national keiko. These were hosted by each respective Dojo under the guidance of the senior UK leaders. We practised Itto seiho, Kodachi seiho, Nito seiho and Bojutsu respectively. These were typically followed by after-keiko social drinks and dinners. This year, several UK practitioners travelled to Japan to train at Hombu under Kajiya Takanori soke and visited some of the historical sites related to Miyamoto Musashi sensei. This visit saw the largest ever group of attendees from the UK in Japan. During the visit, members from Heijoshin Dojo also appeared on NHK news, who were providing coverage of Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu with Kajiya soke.
Members from the UK attended the European keiko with Kajiya Takanori-soke in Slovenia. They also represented Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu during the European Koryu Convention in Germany where embu was performed by the UK, Germany and Finland national representatives.
We continue to see new members join our groups, ranging from complete beginners to those with some martial background.