The above calligraphy by Yukimura Haruki (雪村 春樹) shows the bakushi (縛師) name Harumine (春嶺) he has bestowed on Osada Steve (長田スティーブ) — who is entering his fourth year of apprenticeship in unlocking the secrets of newaza (寝技) aka The Caressing Style.
“It is a great honor to have been accepted as a student by the undisputed King of Newaza. When I entered into this apprenticeship back in 2006, I thought this would be easy sailing as most of the Shibari is taking place on the floor. Well, I was in for a big surprise. On one hand the ties look amazingly simple, on the other hand they are very complex. Even though I am having the opportunity to apply what I am learning in the field — mostly during my regular Kinbaku Live events at Studio SIX — as a kind of “homework”, I am having a hard time catching up with what is being taught to me.
I have come to realize that the actual shibarikata (bondage patterns) only form a very small percentage of Yukimura-ryu. The essence of the Yukimura style of Kinbaku is “the way” the rope is applied — in a very calculated way, in a caressing manner to facilitate a deeply emotional connection between bakushi and model. This will not only open the opportunity for very satisfactory sessions, but will also result in those special (or shall I say unique?) facial expressions that Japanese women in rope are so famous for. All combined, at the end of the day, these are the secrets of shuuchinawa (羞恥縄) – and these techniques involve much, much more than just putting rope on a woman.
It is these concepts and techniques that are hard to teach — and consequently hard to learn. After several years of intensive study I am beginning to get a grasp of this. At the same time, I realize that I still have a lot to learn.”