It’s not every day you get to see moves like this outside of anime and video games.

Samurai swords were originally built to maim, with different sizes and styles being used for different combat situations. Today, there’s not so much maiming going on, but the art of how to draw and use these weapons remains, and professional ninja and sword-fight instructor @ninjaryugo is here to show us how to handle one of the longest swords — the oodachi.

To be classified as an oodachi, swords need to have a blade length of at least three shaku (90.9 centimetres [35.8 inches]). The blade length of the sword @ninjaryugo uses is 151 centimetres, and the entire sword itself is 206 centimetres (81 inches) long, making it much taller than himself. In addition, the blade is made of aluminium and weighs about two kilograms (4.4 pounds).

▼ Take a look at the moves required to sheathe and unsheathe such a massive sword.

Working with a sword as long as this one requires some precise movements, and @ninjaryugo’s video demonstrates the intricacies of the technique used.

First, the sword is placed behind the head and unsheathed as the tip of the scabbard comes down to touch the floor.

Then, the blade is completely removed from the scabbard and brought around to the front, where it sits on the shoulder .

The blade is then brought down past the right-hand side of the face (watch out for that ear!) and positioned behind the head once more, where it’s inserted back into the scabbard.

▼ Then, the blade and scabbard are brought together to completely cover the blade.

▼ The back view of the entire process is equally impressive.

The above video went viral when it was shared on Twitter, receiving over 1.4 million views and tens of thousands of likes and retweets. It didn’t take long for people from around the world to heap words of praise on the swordsman, with many likening the long blade in the video to the one used by Sephiroth, the evil one-winged angel from Final Fantasy VII.

▼ Adding “One Winged Angel”, Sephiroth’s character music from Final Fantasy VII, adds another layer of intrigue to the video.

▼ Other viewers drew similarities between @ninjaryugo’s moves and anime like Touken Ranbu and Gurren Lagann.

It’s not every day we get to see a long sword being unsheathed outside of the world of anime and video games, especially now that oodachi in the real world are usually exclusively used as an offering for gods at Shinto shrines.

The oodachi is just one of the swords featured on @ninjaryugo’s Twitter account, which also includes details of ninja performances and lessons available via his website. It’s nice to see the way of the sword live on peacefully in these post-samurai times, and to find out more about what makes swords so special, you can always revisit our interview with master katana maker Norihiro Miyairi.

Source: Twitter/@ninjaryugo via Net Lab
Images: Twitter/@ninjaryugo
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