Yagyū Shinkage Ryū Heihō
“Shinkage Ryū Heihō” was created by the Founder, Kamiizumi Ise-no-Kami Hidetsuna (later Nobutsuna), in the later days of the Muromachi Period. Yagyū Sekishūsai Munetoshi, who studied under the Founder, developed the concept of mutō no kurai, and succeeded the Founder as the 2nd headmaster, laying the foundation of Yagyū family swordsmanship. His grandson, Hyōgonosuke Toshitoshi, underwent training by Sekishūsai’s hand, succeeding him as the 3rd headmaster, and founded the Owari Yagyū family when he became the swordsmanship instructor to Lord Tokugawa Yoshinao, first lord of Owari Domain (present day western Aichi Prefecture) in 1615.
Yagyū Shinkage Ryū has been passed down by fourteen heads of the Yagyū family and seven lords of the Owari Domain to the 22nd headmaster, Yagyū Kōichi Taira Toshinobu.
After many difficulties in the Meiji Period and afterward, the Yagyūkai was established in 1955 based on the desire of 20th headmaster, Yagyū Toshinaga, to everlastingly protect and pass down this venerable traditional martial way. Currently, four regional Yagyūkai in Japan, centered in Nagoya, and two regional Yagyūkai overseas are active under the instruction of the headmaster.
● Shinkage Ryū Heihō and Yagyū Shinkage Ryū Heihō
While Shinkage Ryū Heihō has historically been known by a number of names, as it has gained exposure in the mass media, it has become widely and popularly recognized as Yagyū Shinkage Ryū Heihō, leading also to various misunderstandings.
In consideration for these circumstances, we currently use the name Yagyū Shinkage Ryū Heihō in order to avoid such misunderstandings, and to make clear that the orthodox line of Shinkage Ryū Heihō has been passed down without interruption in the Yagyū family. We are registered with the Nihon Kobudo Association and the Japan Kobudo Promotion Society as Yagyū Shinkage Ryū Heihō, engaging in activities as the orthodox line of Shinkage Ryū Heihō.
This school, passed down in Owari through the generations by the headmasters and the leading disciples assisting them, currently holds physical instruction and lectures on its oral instruction collections to Yagyūkai members directly by the headmaster, protecting and passing down its history and traditions.