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Thread: Back Mounted Katana

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2011

    Back Mounted Katana

    In a variety of movies and tv shows, the most recent being The Walking Dead. Characters are seen wearing Katanas on their backs. Is there any historical precedence for the use of a katana in such a way? Also is there any tactical advantage/disadvantages for wearing a katana in such away?

  2. #2
    I'm remembering this from years ago but I remember one of my instructors learning an esoteric version of iaido that had back scabbard drawing techniques. He was a hard core traditionalist so I'm sure it wasn't complete bs but I could not tell you what it was called. I've since studied iaido in greater depth and I've never come across anything like it.
    boyhood lives in daydreams that manhood does not forget

    Graham Tuloch

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    I don't know enough about sword fighting to know if it would be better or worse from a tactical point of view, but I suppose it might be slightly easier to travel that way. Most importantly of course, it looks cool.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Metro D.C.
    The only historical depiction of this I have seen is for the types of larger longer battle swords, seoidachi, if you wish to call them that... Odachi, nagamaki etc...
    The whole point being that they are too large to be carried in the normal manner and unsheathed prior to battle. I really don't think you could unsheath an odachi while it was mounted on your back.

    here is a woodcut of a fellow going to battle in yoroi with an odachi on his back.

    An ukiyo-e of Hiyoshimaru who meets Hachisuka Koroku on Yahabi bridge
    Last edited by Christopher Treichel; 02-28-2013 at 07:06 AM.
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