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Freedom kendo poll

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  • Here's an interesting quote I found on a site about Chanbarra here.
    Q: What is the difference between traditional kendo and chanbara?
    A: To put it in layman's terms, kendo is traditional ballet and chanbara is like jazz dance. Traditional kendo is all very rigid with no room for mistakes. With strict tradition, you are not even allowed to wear underwear with the Kendogi (uniform) and they do check to see if you are wearing something! This is a very linear offensive martial art, where the head, wrist, stomach and throat are attacked. The bamboo shinai (sword) or yotsuwari is about one meter in length and can easily break bones. The kendo armor is thick, heavy, and cumbersome and takes time to put on. There are strict rules to be followed and no smiling faces.

    Chanbara, on the other hand, has no rules. The same rules that apply on the battlefield or the street apply in the dojo. There is always the joke we say when people ask, “Who wins?” We say, whoever cries first looses. We also have many different weapons to choose from. Knives (tanto), kotachi (short sword), chogen (long sword), yari (spear), naginata (long spear), and the bo (staff). There are five basic points of contact: head, arms, legs, stomach and throat but all parts of the body are OK. In real battle, a thrust to the leg will stop most any adversary. Look at the great warrior Achilles and what a blow to his heal meant! Therefore, chanbara is very realistic.
    I'm not sure if stuff like this actually goes on in Japan though so I can't vouch for anything. I couldn't imagine putting on my kendo gear and having someone tell me to take off my underwear.

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    • I always smile during kendo! Comes from feeling free .

      Wouldn't that be funny though, "well you would have passed this hachidan exam, but unfortunately your underwear doesn't meet the strict prerequisites..."

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      • Originally posted by kartoffelngeist
        "well you would have passed this hachidan exam, but unfortunately your underwear doesn't meet the strict prerequisites..."
        At which point you look him in the eye, lower your voice, and ask "What underwear?"

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