Categories
kendo media shiai

March Madness

Whew, what a month. March has always been a busy month for me, both work-wise and kendo-wise, but this year has been… too much. Kendo-wise my club took part in four shiai (three university invitationals and a local competition) plus we hosted a five-school renshujiai. Work-wise, things started with the usual high-school entrance exam craziness, […]

Categories
history iaido kendo kyototaikai media

Embu

The window for applying for this years Kyoto Taikai has finished. I have been attending now for over 15 years, taking pictures and cataloguing my experiences here on kenshi 24/7. Unexpectedly, my first experience of actual participation was in the koryu section, not the kendo one… way back in 2009 I think it was.

Categories
kendo kenshi theory

Volume, quality, transcendence

The following is a short translation of part of a lecture by Ogawa Chutaro (hanshi, kyudan) in which he discusses the the shugyo process of one of his main teachers, Mochida Seiji (hanshi, judan).

Categories
equipment kendo

Kote review (Bushizo)

Updated: to read my opinion about how the kote performed six months after writing this article please see the updated comments after the gallery below. A couple of months ago, completely out of the blue, I was contacted by a representative of Bushizo, a relatively new online kendo equipment reseller based in Tokyo, and asked […]

Categories
kendo

Learning jodan through teaching it

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 […]

Categories
kendo

Osaka Kangeiko 2019

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 […]

Categories
updates

Decade

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 […]

Categories
media shiai

Boxing day shiai

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 […]

Categories
history kendo

The end of one era, the start of another

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 […]

Categories
books kendo theory

The knack of acquiring kendo in three charts

A couple of years ago I rolled in to the dojo on a Saturday morning only to have one of my sempai give me a stack of old kendo books. After lugging them all back home I sat down and went through them. Some were not so interesting, others were books I’d seen online but […]