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One for all and all for one.

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  • One for all and all for one.

    Hi everybody!

    Just wondering if it is uncommon to have one student facing off against many opponents at once. I have heard that some kendoka strongly disagree with this practice whlie others see it as an exercise for maintaining zanshin.

    Any thoughts?


  • #2
    kendo melee

    I would say this is an uncommon occurrence.

    Regards, Ted


    • #3
      Thanks for the reply Ted.

      Yeah.. I agree with your opinion too. I just heard stories that very senior kendoka do this excercise often to increase mental awareness. Must be heresy I guess.

      Cheers, John.


      • #4
        multi-opponent keiko

        Hi John,

        On the other hand, I am sure this is done. I have done it myself. Though only against 2 opponents. It definately is a good Perceptual teacher, but could cause pain if your opponents are not very controlled, and you as well for that matter. Have you ever tried 2 on 1 before in keiko?


        • #5
          Hi Ted,
          Yes I have practiced this type of keiko before but only with fellow students of similar grade. I find it helps to develop that "eye" for an opening and keeps you on your toes. I also find it relaxing if you can believe that! Or rather, I try really hard to relax in a otherwise stressful situation. I remember watching "Kendo's Gruelling Challenge" in which a 7th Dan wrote down notes after everytime he failed his 8th Dan grading. He always noted that he would like to fight with a detached mind. I try to adopt that frame of mind into all types of my keiko trainings!! But yes, you do get some sore cuts sometimes!

          Do you find this type of training beneficial?


          • #6
            Mutiple opponents

            Hey John,

            Yes, I find that beneficial. It is certainly invigorating to have to percieve the dynamic situation of dealing with more than one opponent. Having a detached mind, so as to percieve all, and respond with correctness is a great way to explain the reasoning behind this.

            Do you use the tactics of causing your enemies to get in each others way as you do this?


            • #7
              Hey Ted
              Yes, I try to line up the opponents so that it does not seem so overwhelming when they otherwise "swarm" around you. Using this technique along with good metsuke makes me a lot less jumpy. But I find that my distance or- issoku-itto-no-maai is constantly pushed into chikai-maai in this type of keiko which I hate fighting from. But distance is so important when fighting more than one opponent. I often wonder why taller people prefer to fight from chikai-maai rather than toi-maai for example.

              Any thoughts?