Author: George

George is the founder and chief editor of For more information check out the About page.

Learning jodan through teaching it 教うるは学ぶの半ば

About 10 years ago a student of mine – a tall 15 year old girl who had only started kendo seven months earlier) – approached me in the dojo and suddenly said “please teach me jodan.” Not having thought too deeply about it before but knowing that I wanted to learn myself at some point I replied: “Um, ok. Let’s work something out.” The inspiration behind her sudden request had been the wining of the All Japan Championships (mens) by a young jodan-wielding policeman from Kanagawa prefecture a few days earlier (this was early Nov. 2008). It had been the …

Osaka Kangeiko 2019 寒稽古

Happy new year! As is the norm here in Japan, the year-end/year-start season is a busy kendo one. Amazingly I actually did end up having a handful of non-kendo days over the period (family time), but I managed to make up for the missed keiko days by cramming multiple sessions in a very short time – five in the last two days alone! This year, as normal, I attended both days of the Osaka kendo associations kangeiko (usually it is a three day event). On the first day I participated as a motodachi for pretty much all of it, but …

Decade 十年間

Another year is done. 100s of keiko sessions, thousands of kirikaeshi, countless suburi, and a couple of beers. Unlike most years, however, this one seemed to fly by. Probably because this it ushered in some rather significant changes/advances to both my personal and budo life. The main reason for starting kenshi 24/7 a decade ago was to share my kendo experiences here in Japan with an audience outside of it. Although the content nowadays tends to lie more on exploring, introducing, and explaining the cultural/historical side of budo, that original purpose has never quite disappeared. Today’s slightly more personal post …

Boxing day shiai 試合

As is the norm here in Japan, kendo doesn’t stop over the holiday period (what little holiday period we have anyway), still, I shouldn’t complain! Luckily, as kendo is part of my job, if there is a shiai on a normal workday then that shiai becomes a “business trip” for me. Such was the case yesterday (the 26th of December).

The end of one era, the start of another 明治・大正・昭和・平成の代表的な剣士とエベント

With the scheduled abdication of the current Japanese Emperor on April the 30th 2019, a new era will begin. Well, not a really a new world-changing epoch or anything so exciting, but a change in the Japanese calendar name that happens along with the succession of a new head to the imperial family. For people outside of Japan the name change has zero impact and, to tell you the truth, apart from filling in forms (which, admittedly, is a favourite pastime of people in this country!) the impact is almost non-existent in Japan as well.