Masahiro Miyazaki || International Budo Symposium Hosted by the NIFS-K

Cultivating and Transmitting the Spirit of Budo ~A Re-evaluation of Budo Decorum~

Masahiro Miyazaki

Mr. Miyazaki was born in Kanagawa prefecture in 1963. After entering the municipal Shitanoya primary school (Yokohama) in 1969, he began practicing kendo at the Genbukan Sakagami dojo (Yokohama, Tsurumi ward) during his first grade year. In 1975, he entered the municipal Kansei junior high school. Upon graduation from the Tokai University affiliated Sagami senior high school, known for having a powerful kendo club, in 1981, he entered into the service of the Kanagawa prefectural police, where he is still employed. In 2008, he assumed the position of kendo instructor for the Kanagawa prefectural police. He holds the rank of Kyoshi 7th Dan in kendo.

Awards

  • The 46th Kanagawa Sports Award, 1997 (Mr. Miyazaki is the second kendo practitioner in 37 years, since Nakamura Taro, to receive this award)
  • The 49th Japan Sports Award (Special Award), 1999 (Mr. Miyazaki is the first non-Olympian to receive this award)

Competitive Record

Mr. Miyazaki participated for 12 consecutive years at the All-Japan Kendo Championships (from 1990 until 2001), winning the tournament 6 times and coming in at second place 2 times (victories in two consecutive years twice and finalist during 5 consecutive years from 1996 until 2000). Furthermore, he has won the World Kendo Championships 4 times as a member of the Japanese national team and once as an individual. He has won the All-Japan Police Kendo Tournament twice. He was victorious at the All-Japan Police Kendo Championships 6 times, 1 second place and 3 third places (victories in 3 consecutive years once, victories in two consecutive years once). At the National Sports Festival (kendo) he was victorious in the team competition once and ended in 3rd place twice. At the All-Japan Kendo Championships for Selected Athletes in the 7th Dan Division Mr. Miyazaki was victorious 5 times and ended in second place 3 times. Because of these accomplishments, which are not only the highest for kendo during the period since WW II, but also for his ability to improve time and again upon his own newly established records, he is called by nicknames such as “Great Swordsman of the Heisei period”, “Superman of the Heisei period”, “Toughest Man of the Kendo Community”, “Genius Swordsman”.
At the time when Mr. Miyazaki made his first appearance and gained his first victory at the All-Japan Kendo Championships, he wasn’t able to participate in the tournament until he had obtained the 6th dan. This is because the rules of the championships were different from the present ones in that one had to have obtained a certain dan grade in order to participate. By winning the championship for the second time in the year following his first victory at the All-Japan Kendo Championships, Mr. Miyazaki has become famous for undoing the jinx that had continued until then, saying that “the All-Japan Kendo Championships cannot be won twice by the same person in consecutive years”. He is highly regarded for his persisting natural attitude.
During the Kanagawa prefectural preliminary tournament for the 2001 All-Japan Kendo Championships, his last year of participation as an active athlete in the AJKC, he served as both athlete and coach. After facing defeat in the third round (versus Yoneya Yuichi) of the All-Japan Police Kendo Championships in October 2003 Mr. Miyazaki retired as an active athlete, focusing since then on his role as coach. At present, he is accumulating numerous achievements as a kendo teacher.

Kendo teaching record

  • All-Japan Police Kendo Tournament
    • 1st place (2004, 2005)
    • 2nd place (2006, 2007)
  • All-Japan Police Kendo Championships
    • 1st place (2005: Takanabe Susumu)
    • 3rd place (2004: Takanabe Susumu/ 2007: Masayo Kenji, Hojo Tadaomi)
    • 5th place (2003: Masayo Kenji/ 2007: Takanabe Susumu)
  • All-Japan Kendo Championships
    • 2nd place (2007: Takanabe Susumu)
    • 3rd place (2005: Hojo Masaomi/ 2006: Takanabe Susumu)
    • MVA Award (2003: Takanabe Susumu/ 2007: Masayo Kenji)
  • All-Japan Youth Tournament (kendo)
    • (team) 2nd place (2007)
    • (individual) 1st place (2007: Kamei Hayato)

Articles

  • ‘The Carelessness of Being Used to Winning, 6 Time Japan’s Kendo Nr. 1; The day that Miyazaki Masahiro lost to his younger brother’ in “Researching the Causes of Defeat”, Edited by The Nikkei Sports Section, Nikkei Publishing, 1999
  • Monthly Magazine “Chichi”, January 2007, Nr. 1 (Special: Cultivating the Mind, Cultivating Life), Chichi Publishing.
  • ‘Flying Spirit’ in “Nikkei”, evening edition, 12 & 13 February 2008, Nikkei Publishing.