St Albans railway worker selcted for GB in martial arts at European Championships

Shakir Rahman has been selected for Great Britain in the European Iaido Championships

Shakir Rahman has been selected for Great Britain in the European Iaido Championships - Credit: Archant

A railway worker has been selected to represent Great Britain – in a lesser-known Japanese martial-art.

Shakir Rahman, who works for Thameslink at St Albans City station, will take part in the European Iaido Championships in Berlin this weekend.

Iaido is the Japanese discipline of sword use, requiring precise drawing, cutting and re-sheathing and no unnecessary movements.

Tried and tested in ancient times, it is now practised all over the world as budo, which helps self-refinement, character building and creating a calm mind.

Rahman, who trains with the Eishinkan Dojo in Abbots Langley, has just come back from another European Championships, this time in jodo.

Jodo uses short staffs and competitors strike each other directly, unlike in iaido.

The team there managed to secure the bronze medal, with Rahman being awarded the ‘Fighting Spirit’ award, given to an individual whose prowess and conduct impresses the judges.

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He said: “It’s a great honour representing Team GB in both disciplines. Iaido and jodo test you mentally as well as physically, requiring you to be not only very precise and powerful but also graceful and in harmony with the sword or the short staff you wield.

“I was proud of what we achieved at the European Championships for jodo and I’m excited to represent Great Britain again in iaido this month.”

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