Kyudo, the Japanese martial art of archery, is a highly ritualized activity and as such gives plenty of opportunity for anthropological interpretation. Kyudo is practiced in many different schools, some of which descend from military shooting and others descend from ceremonial or contemplative practice. Therefore, the emphasis is different: some emphasize aesthetics and others efficiency, more contemplative schools teach the form as a meditation in action, in certain schools to shoot correctly will result in hitting the desired target.
The whole complex is based on the cardinal directions such that in the SOUTH there is the azuchi 深 (target area). In the EAST there is the mukiwara 卷藁(straw target), for shooting at from a short distance and the yatori roka ⽮矢取廊下(path for collecting arrows), along which people move south to the target area to collect arrows that have been shot. In the NORTH there are the waiting/resting area and the social rooms, which are always placed in this direction either directly north or else northwest or northeast. In the WEST there is the kamiduna 神棚(altar), the shinpan seki 審判 席 (judges’ seat), and the entrance.