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  • North Carolina Kendo

    Kendo Definition and brief history

    Kendo is a combination of two Japanese words - ken meaning sword and do meaning road or "way". The result is "the way of the sword".

    The earliest written reference to Japanese swordsmanship dates from the 7th century. Fencing techniques developed dramatically as the art of sword making developed and the shape of swords changed. Development of the techniques of swordsmanship was driven by the demands of civil war in a turbulent age. Even non-members of the samurai class were forced to improve their fencing skills as a means of protection. By the end of the Age of War in 1573 many different schools of swordsmanship had formed based on tried and tested techniques developed over the centuries.

    In the more settled Edo period (1603 - 1867) the Tokugawa Shoguns, or military rulers encouraged the samurai to study martial arts to maintain peace. During this period the aims of martial arts at this time changed under the influence of Buddhism and Confucianism coming to emphasis the development of good character. The goal of study shifted from preparing the body for the battlefield to cultivating mental discipline. Practice methods also changed the basis of modern kendo, along with the shinai, or bamboo sword, and dogu or armor, were all developed during the mid - Edo period.

    The kendo that has gained social and international recognition is not the martial art of feudal Japan, but a new sport-like physical training system, which encompasses aspects of the national Japanese spiritual tradition. Although kendo is regarded today as a physical sport, the side that emphasizes mental development must still be considered an important aspect.


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Why practice kendo?
    You will encounter many people who ask you this question, but however simple it may seem it is often difficult to provide a short and definite answer. This is because all of us have different reasons for practicing. Many come for the physical aspect, others for the moral learning, and others for the spiritual aura attached to the martial art. However, it demonstrates knowledge and deep understanding to be aware of all these aspects, as they are indeed, all closely knitted together, and there cannot be advancement if all aspects are not considered and developed at the same time. It is this distinctive feature that makes kendo a particularly interesting art to practice.





    Physical development
    As in many other sports through constant exercise you can improve and maintain your body's fitness and health. In particular kendo focuses on the development of agility and speed. Muscle power, as in most martial arts is not particularly important, making kendo particularly suitable for women. Posture and poise are also developed which is really important. You will be amazed how differently your friends will perceive you, after only a few months of practice.

    Mental development
    Power of concentration is developed in kendo at its highest degree. The power to concentrate is useful especially for students, but kendo also develops the ability to focus on essentials while constantly maintaining a broad view of the whole matter, circumstances or events. The physical development of agility is always combined with the mental agility and speed. Make a decision and self-confidence is greatly enhanced, as is the ability to accept responsibility for your actions through the harness of the training.

    Etiquette
    Through constant exercise you will increase your ability and gain respect for elders, teachers and fellow students.

    Attitudes regarding safety

    Develops alertness
    Develops good reflexes (instant judgment in the face of danger)
    Develops good common sense
    Develops a sense of responsibility and respect for oneself and for others
    Does not harm anyone or anything
    In conclusion it is this physical, mental as well as spiritual training that makes kendo particularly suitable to form, temper and strengthen one's character. In its apparent simplicity is hidden the secret of self- development.

  • #2
    A nice post, but it leaves me wondering why the thread title is 'North Carolina Kendo'?

    Comment


    • #3
      I see the Kendo, waiting on the North Carolina part as well...

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      • #4
        maybe he has high opinion of kendo in n.c..

        pete

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        • #5
          Originally posted by bullet08
          maybe he has high opinion of kendo in n.c..

          pete

          Actually, I do have a very high regard for Kendo practitioners and dojos in the RDU area and I opened this thread to hear from them. In fact, I have emailed Sinsei Watson regarding attending beginner classes during the holidays. I am not sure if he got my email though. However, Sinsei Osamu Yamamura did and he provided me with dates available at the NCSU dojo. It seems that Kendo is really passion for them and fees are but secondary. I am impressed with this since in the area where I am in at the moment it is very difficult to get into a dojo. Moreover, it is very expensive for a struggling student like me. I am looking forward to train there since I will need all the training days I can fit in my schedule. Thanks.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Seibei Iguchi
            Actually, I do have a very high regard for Kendo practitioners and dojos in the RDU area and I opened this thread to hear from them. In fact, I have emailed Sinsei Watson regarding attending beginner classes during the holidays. I am not sure if he got my email though. However, Sinsei Osamu Yamamura did and he provided me with dates available at the NCSU dojo. It seems that Kendo is really passion for them and fees are but secondary. I am impressed with this since in the area where I am in at the moment it is very difficult to get into a dojo. Moreover, it is very expensive for a struggling student like me. I am looking forward to train there since I will need all the training days I can fit in my schedule. Thanks.
            if you are in RDU area, there is two kendo dojo. one is TKI, and other is North Raleigh. currently TKI is biggest. actually TKI is one of the biggest in south east US. we have dojo in duke, UNC, and NCSU. mike watson is the lead instructor at UNC. yamamura san is one of the sempai in NCSU.

            our current sensei (teacher) is yasuda-sensei. however, we still are in contact with sensei who just left this area, yoshida-sensei. current lead instructor is 3-san. his name is tokunaga-san, and he leads the practice at NCSU dojo.

            if you are looking for UNC, or duke practice, you can post the request here on this forum. mike or i can answer the question.

            if you are looking for NCSU practice, yamamura-san, or corey-san can provide the information. they meet at central YMCA on every friday night between 7pm till the time they close. suggest showing up about 15 min early.

            other area dojo include charlotte dojo in.. charlotte, and WCU dojo at WCU. i'm not aware of any other dojo, but i'm sure there are others.

            pete

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by bullet08
              if you are in RDU area, there is two kendo dojo. one is TKI, and other is North Raleigh. currently TKI is biggest. actually TKI is one of the biggest in south east US. we have dojo in duke, UNC, and NCSU. mike watson is the lead instructor at UNC. yamamura san is one of the sempai in NCSU.

              our current sensei (teacher) is yasuda-sensei. however, we still are in contact with sensei who just left this area, yoshida-sensei. current lead instructor is 3-san. his name is tokunaga-san, and he leads the practice at NCSU dojo.

              if you are looking for UNC, or duke practice, you can post the request here on this forum. mike or i can answer the question.

              if you are looking for NCSU practice, yamamura-san, or corey-san can provide the information. they meet at central YMCA on every friday night between 7pm till the time they close. suggest showing up about 15 min early.

              other area dojo include charlotte dojo in.. charlotte, and WCU dojo at WCU. i'm not aware of any other dojo, but i'm sure there are others.

              pete
              Thank you Sir Pete. I will be flying in RDU on Dec. 14. - Jan. 7 from the West Coast. I usually do during the holidays to visit family.

              I was wondering if you would know if I can avail of any instruction on Dec. 19, 26, and Jan. 2 at the Duke dojo? I understand as an out of state student I will need to be with a Duke student? If so, how is this complied with?

              I was also wondering if UNC is accepting trainees on Dec. 27. I would appreciate any info. Thanks.

              Happy Holidays!

              Comment


              • #8
                For the Duke dojo you just need to meet outside the gym and go in with them. It costs $3 for the gym use.

                The problem with your time frame is that the Universities will be on break and I don't know yet if the facilities will be open. I know that UNC will close Dec 21-31 from what I have been told. I am currently trying to check with the facility people to see if we will still have any access during that time or if we will also be locked out. Duke I imagine will be in a similar situation although I don't know exact hours at this time. The NC State practice will probably not be affected as it is off campus. ( The North Raleigh club, which is not part of TKI, will probably close part but not all of that time).

                Basically the Duke dojo meets every Tuesday night, UNC Wednesday nights and NC State every Friday night. In addition the North Raleigh club practices Wednesday night and Saturday morning. However I am still waiting to hear about the Holiday schedule as it can change times and availability of facilities.

                If you were coming at any time but the holidays you would in theory be able to practice 4 times a week between all the dojos.

                btw, is this Jericho who sent me an email this weekend?

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                • #9
                  Good job on the recent tournament. I did not participate this time, but you Triangle guys put a good one together.

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                  • #10
                    Thanks.. it was a lot of work but everyone I have talked to said it was pretty well done. Strawn sensei told me that we had more people signed up for the tournament than any other year (we had 137 participants pre-registered for the tournament, 59 in the promotion). I think next time we host one we will be able to do even better now that we have a little experience at this sort of thing under our obi.

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                    • #11
                      Did you get a chance to go against any Charlotte Kendoka? If so, I probably have some good footage of it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        No, unfortunately I didn't really have a chance to participate in the tournament myself. I was so busy that day it's just as well I didn't. I did have a chance to get a bit of jigeiko in after the promotion was over, but not a lot of that either as I was helping Strawn sensei with the menjo fees and stuff after the promotion was over. It was a long weekend for me. But everything went pretty well so it was worth it.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          North Carolina's TKI

                          Hi Mike,

                          I had a lesson under Mr. Yamamura and it was a good first time learning experience. I also had a chance to learn Iaido with Chad Weisbrodt was very helpful and informative. Dave gave me a good beginner's lesson while Brooke handled the regular classes. From what I have seen, these guys teach very well. I must say that you have awesome people out there in NC. People who really love the sport. It's almost infectious. I'm glad I came. I am sure to continue my Kendo and Iaido lessons when I go back West before Christmas. Maybe I'll be back next year.

                          Happy Holidays!

                          Seibei Iguchi

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                          • #14
                            I'm glad you had a good time. I am sorry that I did not get a chance to practice with you over your stay but look forward to the possibility if you return next year!

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