The following is a translation of a note that was sent to every prefectural kendo association in Japan recently and published on the ZNKR website today. It makes for interesting reading, so I thought I’d share it with kenshi 24/7 readers. It starts of harmless enough, then meanders into the …. well, I’ll let you decide. Anyway, please read it and comment if you wish!
Kendo shiai / those involved in refereeing
The following matters should be brought to the attention of all people concerned with running shiai.
1. Shinai compliance.
Please ensure again that everyone involved with shiai is complying with the shinai rules correctly.
2. About the calligraphy style on name tags.
At various shiai recently people have been spotted wearing name tags that are hard to read. Please teach people to use name tags that are legible.
3. Correct vocalisations on a strike.
Some competitors have been making illegible noises when executing strikes. Please teach people to kiai correctly, using “men, kote, do, tsuki” on their attacks.
4. Use of the correct kendo terminology.
The ZNKR has published its uniform terminology in the ‘Kendo shidoyoryo’ manual. Please re-check with this manual and teach the correct terms.
Correct: shiai-jo; incorrect: court
Correct: nafuda; incorrect: zekken, tare-namu
Correct: nakayui; incorrect: nakajime
Correct: kendogi; incorrect: keikogi
Correct: kendogu; incorrect: bogu (the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology may use the term ‘bogu’)
5. During a shiai, what to do when the tsuru is not facing upwards
As a general rule, when someone is spotted using their shinai with the tsuru isn’t facing upwards and cautioned on it, the shushin (chief referee) should not touch the shinai when cautioning the competitor (inform the competitor of their error by pointing towards the area of their tsuba and using gestures; if the competitor is young then its permitted to touch the tsuba or tsuka in order to teach them what the correct position is).
The original Japanese is here.