Category: Tozando

Bringing Sasaki Kojiro’s Sword to Life – Part 1

In the recent Movie “Musashi” by Mikami Yasuo, the famous jidaigeki actor Ken Matsudaira plays Sasaki Kojiro – Musashi’s infamous final nemesis. In this article Takahiko Kimura, Tozando’s chairman, discusses with Matsudaira about his role and the development of his signature weapon – the “Monohoshizao” (known affectionately as the laundry Read More

Thus Spoke Hayashi – Vol. 3

We have another interview with Hayashi-san, Tozando’s most senior kendoka. This time we explore his connection with Kendo and how it has changed the course of his life. So, what actually made you take up kendo? It was the summer of my first year in junior high. At that time Read More

An image of Tozando Kendo craftsman assembling Men mask

10 Things to Check When Buying Bogu

Buying bogu is often a daunting task, not only is it a significant investment, but information about it can be difficult to track down. This is the same for beginners and veterans alike. In this article we take a look at ten key things for you to check; either before Read More

Reflections from Tozando’s 2018 Renseikai

Members from the Japanese National Kendo Team including All-Japan Championship winners Nishimura hidehisa and kiwada Daiki cross shinai with participants from all over Japan and the world at Tozando’s annual Renseikai. The visiting teachers all impart importants lesson that can be applied in shiai and everyday keiko. Tozando’s Annual Renseikai Read More

Tozando 2017 Essay Contest Winning Article

Death in Samurai Literature from Practical to Idiolization

by Edward N. Smith Death comes to us all at the end of our life’s journey, regardless of the path we walk. Inescapably, it pursues us; hiding in the shadows, it waits patiently for our time when our road runs out. Across human societies, culture and class mark subtle differences Read More

Tozando 2017 Essay Contest Winning Article

Recovering from the 2011 Sendai Earthquake

A winning article for 2017 Tozando Essay Contest Photos and text by Rachelle D. Lawrence In his 17th century treatise on the Japanese sword, Zen, and politics, Yagyu Munemori wrote about the “killing” sword and the “life-giving” sword. The sword that protects a life also takes a life, whether in Read More

A very nice end of the year 2017

One day before the Swiss Kendo Championship, I received the email from Tozando that I have won the Trip to Japan. I couldn’t believe it and needed a weekend to realise what happened and that I should give my conformation for the trip. During the whole Kendo weekend, I thought Read More

Japanese Language and Samurai Aesthetics

We have written a number of entries about how the katana appears in many Japanese idioms, these gained gained a great response from our readers. Therefore, we decided to take things a little broader, focusing not only on the sword but on the “samurai” as we explore more idiomatic expressions. Read More

Suzaku – The never ending challenge, moving the sword craft into the future

Many roads passed through the ancient capital of Kyoto, for example the Tokaido, Sanyodo and Hokurikudo roads. The most important 7 main roads on which you could enter and leave Kyoto, in other words check points, were called Kyo no Nanakuchi(the seven entrances of Kyoto). Even to this day there Read More

Tokuren Z: A Kendo Bogu made for winners

The Jutsuka Tokubetsu Kunren (術科特別訓練; Special Technique Training Department) or for short, the “Tokuren”, is a special Japanese police squad whose purpose is to promote and reinforce technical training within subjects such as Judo, Kendo, Taihojutsu, marksmanship, etc. to raise the overall level of physical and mental health among police officers. Read More