Martial arts are the most fascinating thing for anyone who loves action. Yes, it is true that guns and mechas are great, but if one looks at the history of memorable anime fights, most of the iconic ones are filled with martial arts. And if the martial art in question is one that involves swords, then the crowd goes nuts.
Kenjutsu, or martial arts involving a sword, is the most famous form of fighting in Japan. Due to the illogical physics of the world of anime, it is filled with kenjutsu moves that might not make sense in the real world. They might be downright impossible to execute. But since we are talking about anime, there are uncountable moves that use the Samurai sword and even a regular old longsword to execute mind boggling moves. Here are the top 5 Kenjutsu moves in anime.
Many of you might argue that this move is not a Kenjutsu move. But you are a bit uninformed. The art of Kenjutsu takes the flow of natural elements into account and replicates those elemental moves with a sword. In the case of the quicksword, it mimics the movement of the wind.
Clair depicts the fast and precise movements of a stormy wind with her sword and subdues her enemies. Using this move can accelerate her sword attacks by a minimum of 50%. And if she uses Preemptive Sensing, the already blinding speed can easily be increased by 80%.
The move may seem simple, but every moment that Clair faced a life threatening crisis, it was this move that saved her life.
#4 Shigure Soen Ryu – Samidare
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Similar to how the last move depicted the movements of the wind, this move is a replication of the flow of water. In Kenjutsu, the moves associated with water are the slashing types. There are twelve forms of this sword style, and Samidare is the fifth one.
The name “Samidare” signifies the early summer rain. As this rain cuts at the deathlike nature left by autumn, this move is also the most powerful offensive move of the twelve forms. It is true to its name because, similar to the early summer rain, this move is a feint.
This move contains two different slashes. The first one is a simple slash with one hand. But this slash is not one that connects. Instead, just before executing the slash, the sword is released and the other hand grabs it. Once the sword is transferred, the real slash takes place and devastates the surprised opponent. Takeshi Yamamoto executed this form against Squalo, which decided the battle’s outcome.
#3 Water Breathing – Drop Ripple Thrust
Though the story of Demon Slayer is one filled with fantasy, the sword techniques they use are some of the most realistic ones in Animeverse. Yes they might be too flashy, but the core technique of the water breathing style is deeply related to the water style ken of Kenjutsu.
Among all the forms, the Seventh Form – Drop Ripple Thrust is the most deadly one. It might look like a simple stab, but it is a stab with enough power to penetrate anything. The stab is accelerated with three forward steps as opposed to a single step. This creates a forward momentum, which is further modified using a forward thrust.
The stab is precise and can even penetrate the thick defense of demons.
#2 Shishi Sonson
Among the most hyped anime swordsmen, Zoro is probably in the top 5 for most anime lovers. He is truly one of the best, not only because he uses three swords, but also because he has some of the best and most devastating Kenjutsu moves.
This move was first seen during the thriller Bark arc when Zoro used it against Kuma. The intensity of the move is so great that, till date, it is one of the most memorable Zoro moments. The move uses the flow of lightning as an example. It is a swift and devastating battojutsu strike.
Holding the sheath in one hand and then drawing the sword with the other. These are the primary movements of this technique. But while drawing the sword, the user moves forward at a blinding pace and uses the momentum of the sword draw to deliver a vertical slash. And as soon as the user reaches the other side, the sword is already within the sheath. If one is proficient enough, it can easily be executed with a Samurai sword.
#1 Hiten Mitsurugi Ryu – Amakakeru Ryu no Hirameki
For sword lovers, the name Rurouni Kenshin is one that is probably written in golden letters. It is the holy grail of Kenjutsu techniques. Among all the techniques, the one used by the protagonist Kenshin, Hiten Mitsurugi Ryu, is the most outstanding one.
This technique is a family of different Kenjutsu moves. Most of the moves utilize the slashing motion, but very few incorporate the drawing motion. Among all the moves, the most iconic one is the Flash of the Heavenly Flying Dragon, aka Amakakeru Ryu no Hirameki. This is mainly a drawing or battojutsu technique like Shishi Sonson’s.
But unlike the Shishi Sonson, it uses the drawing momentum to do a horizontal slash instead of a vertical one. The drawing actions are similar, but instead of a single step, there are two steps to accelerate the draw. While drawing and striking the katana, or Samurai sword, the user takes only a single step forward. But with Amakakeru Ryu no Hirameki, the user takes another forward step during mid draw. This dramatically accelerates the sword strike and results in a deadly blow.