The Search for the Mysterious Sword “Kotetsu” By now, many are aware of Kondo Isami. The broad faced bull of a man with a sharp, piercing stare. He was the head of the Shinsengumi, a secret police force appointed by the Shogunate to subdue unrest in Kyoto and bring unruly Read More
“I want to become No. 1 in Japan” Uchimura Ryohei attributes his first All Japan Kendo Championship title to all the hard work and unending effort that he put in everyday. Appearing in the All Japan Championship for the first time in 2005, Uchimura lost to Harada Satoru in the Read More
Just like the katana, the naginata conjures up many images of feudal Japan: the dedicated footsoldier, the heroic onna-bushi and also the devout warrior-monk to name, but a few. Whilst grounded in truth, these perceptions have warped our image of the naginata and its use perhaps more so than any other traditional Japanese weapon. To many the naginata and its accompanying ryu-ha are “feminine” or the sole domain of the warrior-monks. This is far from the case!
Kyushu – the Land of Kendo Powerhouses Kendo is a martial art that has been practiced all over Japan and more and more all over the world. People who have some knowledge of kendo will likely know that Kyushu, out of all regions in Japan, is particularly renowned for producing Read More
Kendo was born in the mid Edo period as a martial art using the shinai and protective equipment, and continues to this day earning as much popularity as to host international competitions. There is another martial art involving the sword called iaido, and in thi edition I would like to Read More
The history of kendo stretched back to the Heian period when the samurai developed many skills (kenpo, kenjutsu) to protect themselves during battle. As the samurai began ruling Japan and Japan plunged into the sengoku period (civil war), the samurai begain training hard in their sword skills because winning in Read More
A ‘Shinai’ is commonly known as a practice tool replacing a live blade in Kendo and Kenjutsu. And yet, it goes beyond being simply a tool in that it’s treated with reverence. More than just being a bamboo sword used during practice or competitions, by standing in for a real Read More