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  • Yesterday I had my first kendo training

    In the first place: Please excuse if my english is sometimes a bit "strange". I am from germany. ;-)

    After reading a lot of stuff about kendo in newsgroups and on this board, I searched a club in my town and asked for a training.

    Thanks to all the nice folks here who are always helpfull, answering noobie-questions. We need your advice. Really. ^_^

    So,what happened, that I picked up kendo, which is a not so common martial art!? I was learning karate for five years, but this is already ten years ago. Because of working reasons I didnt find enough time to train regularly and after a while I quited. But still, I was attracted by martial arts (tried Wing-Tsun for a few months, which did not suit me...) and I always felt that something in my life was missing.

    Around christmas I was bored and surfed the web, reading newsgroups (rec.martial-arts) and stumbled over a few articels concerning kendo. (Thanks to Mr. Neil Gendzwill. He pointed out some details about kendo and showed real politeness. His articles were very helpfull for a beginner hungry for information.) My interest grew the more I read about it. So I did some research on my own, browsed the web and found a lot of interesting kendo-sites.

    Ok, ok...I shorten this. :-)

    (Maybe I will start a new thread later and describe, what is so interesting in kendo for me.)

    So, yesterday I had my first "taste" of kendo:

    I went to the gym, where the training was about to take place. (I managed to be early...)

    Luckily I managed to pick up a guy who was just arriving and he went inside with me. So I didnt have to run around and search for the entrance...^_^

    When I entered the gym (No, I did not forget to bow, before I entered...*g*), a very nice guy gave me a welcome and handed me a shinai. There I stood, trying hard to make it look like a shinai was a very normal thing for me to pick up every day...*g*

    Then the sensei started training. (Warm up, running around, doing some stretching etc...)

    So far so good...after warmup we did some basic exercises, just hitting men and kote with the shinai (Is this called suburi?) Yippiiiieeeehhh....I was doing my first kendo exercises....and the best was, I still knew how to count on japanese...LOL

    Swinging the shinai looks so damn easy and is soooo hard to do...but nevermind. :-)

    Then we did some basic footwork (Suri-Ashi!?) just sliding with the right foot. And after the class has reached the other end of the hall I had managed to move about 3 meters...*g* We did this a few more times and this reminded me of my first karate lessons. I felt like I was disabled...*g* ("Wheres my wheelchair!!???")
    It was a lot of funny anyway. :-)

    The next exercise was to put the movement and swinging the shinai together...ooops...where is the exit...!!!???

    Our sensei was really kind and he even took the time to show me and another newbie how to split the motion up into two parts, which helped a lot. This excercise kept me busy until the end, the time was flying.

    At the end we formed to rows and suddenly i had someone in full armor in front of me ("Oh my gosh!!! They tricked on me!!! First they make me feel safe and now they will beat the shit out of me!!! Where is the exit??? He/She will kill me!!!") I was lucky to find out, that this was kind of an ending ceremony: we just kneeled down, the got up again and bowed...PHEW!!!! ^_^

    At last we formed a circle and did seiza.

    I noticed, that there is a lot of etiquette in kendo, much more then I remember from karate. But on the other hand, I found it much more relaxed.
    I also noticed, that in karate we always had the kyu-grades in one row and the sensei in front of them, showing techniques and giving commands or counting. In this kendo training we formed circles a few times and the sensei was not so "seperated" from the kyu-grades (I dont know how to describe it better) Is this common in kendo? Please do not get me wrong: I do not in any way want to compare kendo and karate, and after just one kendo traing session I am not at all able to even get an idea what kendo training is all about. Im just curious...:-)

    Oooops...its late. Time for bed. Tomorrow is my next kendo-date :-) I am already very exited. (Ordered my shinai today. Cant wait to start doing suburi workout at home.)

    Thanks for your patience

    meow ;-)

  • #2
    Glad I was of some help. I think you will find that the level of formality varies from one dojo to another, and forms part of the character of that place. Sounds like you've found a fairly relaxed place, and if that suits you then great. Enjoy your practice, and don't quit!

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Neil Gendzwill
      Glad I was of some help. I think you will find that the level of formality varies from one dojo to another, and forms part of the character of that place. Sounds like you've found a fairly relaxed place, and if that suits you then great. Enjoy your practice, and don't quit!
      I hope, I will not quit ;-)

      Yep, I like the people there. Good training and very gentle people.

      Comment


      • #4
        keep the passion burning pal...

        i also started kendo not long ago... i am a slow learner... so i am rather poor for few weeks... then i pick up the trick for the cuts
        However, there is one i havent learn the trick.. that is u have to stomp ur feet and cut thru... i don have ki-ken-dai-ichi T_T
        i will have to work on that

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by niji
          However, there is one i havent learn the trick.. that is u have to stomp ur feet and cut thru... i don have ki-ken-dai-ichi T_T
          i will have to work on that
          itz ki-ken-tai-icchi.......

          diss iz sometingz dat youz cantz juzt pick upz afta a few weakz...

          Comment


          • #6
            My sensei offered a great explanation (okay maybe not an explantion but a comfort to those who got frustrated at not getting it but he was quite serious) on that and it went something like "this is something that you just all of a sudden get, theres no progress at it. some people will get it the first time they do it and some will take months but the important part is to not give up at it..."

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by meow
              I hope, I will not quit ;-)
              Don't say that because when you're in there ain't no way of getting out, just kidding but have a more positive mindset, patience and perseverance will take you a long way. Congrats on your first kendo training.

              Comment


              • #8
                when you're first starting kendo, it can be intimidating. as long as you enjoy it, there will be nothing to worry about.

                and like hisham said, if you even try to leave, you will have to fight everyone in armour even though you're not in armour.
                (a joke)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hehe Intimidating is definately the right word... I'm just afraid being one of the last people to get back to the start of the across the room bit. My first lesson should be in a lil over a week :P

                  I can't wait! Yet at the same time I'm nervous and afraid. :P I just need to remember, everyone is a newbie at one point. x_x

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                  • #10
                    alot of people in our dojo say: if you get there first, you've already lost. i am always the last one to finish and i have no problem with that because i take my time to get everything perfect instead of rushing through it.

                    being nervous and afraid is normal for beginners. dont worry about messing up or anything like that. if you do make a mistake, ask the sensei how to correct it.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Just be diligent in your practice. My prioirites at one point dictated that school came first. Then job then kendo. But kendo was still there as something I wanted to do.

                      My sensei says that you can take a break.. Well people don't have kendo as a #1 priority as your job might dictate your funds and therefore your ability to practice (pay dues and/or taikai fees) or to purchase the bare minimum of equipment. But the point he was trying to make was that to just remember that you always have kendo as part of your life and to come back eventually.

                      Tim

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                      • #12
                        hey and dont forget about the blister, Ive been doing it for 2.5 months and my blister has yet to become a caliss, but its better that the gym, now adays all you work out is your eyes

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I have been doing kendo since februari now and it has really gotten a part of my life.

                          Doing the daily suburi, taking care of equipment, the inner rest i have from it.

                          I had 10 days without keiko and I felt restless a feeling that was all gone after next keiko.

                          I have alot of problems with ki-ken-tai-icchi myself it seems that my foot is too fast compaired to the cut but I just keep trying and enjoying my kendo.

                          I hope you'll get as much out of kendo as I have been getting meow

                          Good luck

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by LarsCW
                            I hope you'll get as much out of kendo as I have been getting meow

                            Good luck
                            Thanks a lot :-)

                            Ive been doing kendo for one and a half years now and its great. We have wonderful teachers and all the people in our club are very nice and motivated. Right now we have a break during summer, so there is kendo only twice a week (once a week in another club and once a week we practice in a park).

                            I dont know what to do on those Tuesdays when there is no practice...

                            I hope you stick with kendo and enjoy it as much as I do.

                            Kind regards

                            meow

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by meow
                              Thanks a lot :-)

                              Ive been doing kendo for one and a half years now and its great. We have wonderful teachers and all the people in our club are very nice and motivated. Right now we have a break during summer, so there is kendo only twice a week (once a week in another club and once a week we practice in a park).

                              I dont know what to do on those Tuesdays when there is no practice...

                              I hope you stick with kendo and enjoy it as much as I do.

                              Kind regards

                              meow
                              Practice in a park? That must be pretty nice. But as everyone tells you here, Kendo isn't so much as being the "naturally talented" one we hear about so many friggin times here. Stick with it and it'll become like 2nd nature. Best of luck with training in the future.

                              Comment

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