We had our first keiko of the year on a sunny Sunday morning on February 24th… and it was a good one! Jam-packed, we had nearly 30 kenshi in the dojo representing 11 countries, 8 prefectures, and almost every continent (Africa and Antarctica were absent). We had university students, a high school teacher, a science researcher, past-current-and-soon-to-be national team members, a director of international business of a large kendo equipment company, and a restaurant owner amongst other things.
The university students came from: Osaka City University, Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific university, and the International Budo University. The last one is a private university that specialises in turning out P.E. teachers, policemen and women, and professional sportspeople. The have a one-year budo course aimed at non-Japanese people. The students on this course choose either kendo or judo to specialise in. This current year has 8 people on the kendo course, 5 of which attended todays Eikenkai session.
Keiko consisted of the usual 45-30-45 format: 45 minutes of kihon, 30 minutes of waza practise, and about 45 minutes of jigeiko. By the end everyone was tired but happy!!
The term 交剣知愛 (kokenchiai) is commonly used in kendo circles; we, however, have our own word that describes what we do here at Eikenkai: 英剣知愛 (eikenchiai)!!
The next session will be help on Sunday April 28th 2013. The following day is a national holiday and the Todofuken-Taikai (All Japan prefectural teams championships) will be held in Osaka. If you are in town, please come for keiko!!