Iaijutsu was the premier martial art of the Samurai warriors of fuedal Japan. Unlike kenjutsu (kendo) it begins with the sword still in the scabbard. An inner and outer calm is developed which is tremendously intimidating to the opponent. Sword skills require a philosophical training which permeates the entire life outside the dojo, buiding compassion and self-discipline.Flashing Steel descibes and pictures forty-two kata which govern this system, with ten partner exercises applying iaido principles in realistic attack and defense situations. These kata are also widely practised by students of kendo, aikido and other martial arts which use swordsmanship.