Samurai Armor-Wearing & Tameshigiri (Test Cutting) Experience in Machida, Tokyo


On this beginner-friendly experience, learn the three techniques that make up kenjutsu (Japanese swordsmanship), and try tameshigiri (the art of test cutting) while wearing samurai armor.


  • A unique experience that's hard to find at other dojos: try tameshigiri test-cutting while wearing samurai armor
  • A beginner-friendly experience — we will instruct you with kindness and care, down to the smallest detail
  • Learn three types of kenjutsu (swordsmanship): iai, gekken, and battou
  • Take lots of photos of you in samurai armor to preserve the memory of this unforgettable experience

Key Information

Important Information

• Each person will be provided 4 tatami rolls (included in the price); additional rolls are available for 1,500 JPY for a set of 2 • As you will be handling a real sword, please do not drink alcohol shortly before the experience • Children below the age of 18 may also participate with written permission from their parents • Please note that Japanese armor and helmets were designed for the average Japanese physique, so this experience is not recommended for those 190cm or taller in height and weighing 90kg or more


We at Toyama Ryu Bizenkai are a dojo providing a variety of iai swordsmanship experiences: tameshigiri test cutting, wearing samurai armor, and more. For travelers looking for a samurai experience, look no further! Our samurai armor–and–tameshigiri experience is a rare opportunity to try the Japanese art of test cutting while wearing a suit of armor. While these activities are available separately elsewhere, our dojo uniquely offers both combined in one experience. First, you will change into yoroi-shita (an undergarment for samurai armor) and listen to a lecture on swordsmanship. You'll learn about the three techniques that make up kenjutsu (Japanese swordsmanship): iai, gekken (the precursor of modern-day kendo), and battou (cutting — the practice version of this is called "tameshigiri"). Of course, you'll get hands-on experience in all of these techniques, too. For iai, you'll learn how to handle and wield a sword, while for gekken, you'll learn how to keep your distance from a moving opponent, as well as the right timing for attacking and self-defense. Then, for battou, you'll learn how to cut with a blade. Afterward, you'll put on samurai armor and try tameshigiri test cutting while you're all fitted out. This is also a time for great photo opportunities — if you need any assistance, just let us know! The weight of the armor will add an extra challenge to the test-cutting experience, and you'll realize how difficult it must have been for the samurai of old to move around in armor. But once you've found out for yourself just how heavy Japanese swords and armor actually are, you'll surely gain a newfound respect and appreciation for samurai. As the experience ends, you'll receive a certificate to serve as a memory of this unforgettable moment.

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