Announcement

Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.

Parrying attacks

Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse
X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Parrying attacks

    As a complete beginner to Kendo (only 2 weeks) I was wondering if it was acceptable to parry an attack and then counter i.e. if someone begins an attack can I counter their shinai with mine quite agressively then attack myself.

    Sorry if it's a silly question but I'm trying to get to grips with Kendo but enjoying it very much.

  • #2
    Hello there.

    No its not a silly question. Normally the best answer to a strike/cut is another strike/cut. But if you dont have time you can try and lay off an attack then counter. A sense of timing takes a long time to develop. All your life!

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for the reply. I guess I'm still trying to get to grips with the differences between Kendo and more traditional western sword fighting which would involve a lot of attacking and blocking with the sword i.e. if someone made a "men" cut you would block it with your sword in a horizontal position which doesnt seem to be the way in Kendo

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi Bob,

        Parrying so you're in a position to counter-attack is good, but don't fall into the habit of just blocking because you don't want to get hit.

        Comment


        • #5
          There are a number of threads dealing with the concept of "blocking". This seemed like an obvious area of inquiry to me (when I started) and I am still not totally satisfied with the generally accepted response (although I am not suggesting that I am arrogant enough to believe I am right or have a better understanding than others).

          There is a philosophical bend that effects the character of Kendo that does not exist in European fencing. The mere fact that in European fencing, form is of no consequence and the only power that is required is a few grams to set off the electronic scoring. Moreover, in European fencing there is no consequence to stepping off the strip and there is zero bodily contact allowed. All of the above, and more, makes for a whole different approach to the concept of parrying or "blocking".

          Comment


          • #6
            As a beginner, we don't like to see you blocking as it tends to make for defensive kendo. You shouldn't be concerned with losing points, only the quality of your own attacks. Beginners are primarily directed towards attacks they initiate themselves, in kendo we call this group of techniques shikake-waza.

            As you progress, you will learn several ways to parry or counter. Usually the parry is part of the counterattack. We call this group of techniques oji-waza. We discourage outright blocking with no counterattack, although it happens.

            Comment


            • #7
              I am a newbie to martial arts in general, and have been doing MJER for about 9 months or so, so please excuse my ignorance.

              In Kendo are there blocking movements similar to ukenagashi, or do shinai not allow for this kind of parry/counter? I have never handled a shinai, so I don't really know how flexible/rigid they are. In fact I haven't really seen much kendo, bar a couple of clips from the Kendo World website.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by ZealUK
                In Kendo are there blocking movements similar to ukenagashi, or do shinai not allow for this kind of parry/counter?
                You can see that kind of parry in kendo kata #4, 8 and 9. However the movement is a little bit too big to be very effective in shiai, instead you'll see kaeshi-waza.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I guess you shouldnt revert to your natural instincts which are to defend yourself when someone is attacking you with a big "stick" and that's to stop him hitting you by parrying his blows with your "stick"

                  From what I can tell so far the ultimate aim in Kendo (certainly in the days of the samurai) would be to kill or incapacitate your opponent with one move or attack rather than having a long drawn out sword fight?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bob Millar
                    From what I can tell so far the ultimate aim in Kendo (certainly in the days of the samurai) would be to kill or incapacitate your opponent with one move or attack rather than having a long drawn out sword fight?
                    There's no such thing as a long drawn out sword fight. That's a misconception people have from decades of watching movie sword fights. If you watch any sort of sword-based sparring, whether it be kendo, olympic fencing, medieval recreationist like SCA or what have you, as soon as someone makes a move, it's over very quickly.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by ZealUK
                      In Kendo are there blocking movements similar to ukenagashi, or do shinai not allow for this kind of parry/counter? I have never handled a shinai, so I don't really know how flexible/rigid they are. In fact I haven't really seen much kendo, bar a couple of clips from the Kendo World website.
                      the closest waza in kendo i can think of to ukenagashi is probably kaeshi waza. for example, in kaeshi-do, when your opponent attacks your men, you parry and then immediately hit do in one continuous motion. the difference with ukenagashi is that you shouldn't be parrying with your kissaki pointing behind you. rather, you want to parry somewhere in front of you.

                      btw, since you don't do kendo, you probably don't do kendo-no-kata either. so fyi, in #8 and #9, the shidachi performs ukenagashi with a shoto. pretty tricky, but pretty to behold when done right.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        parrying vs. blocking

                        About 25 years ago at a kendo demonstration in Berkeley, CA. the late Nakahara sensei was asked "What do you see as the major difference between European fencing and kendo?" He replied, "I could never understand why you had to hit the other person's sword before you hit him." I was struck (no pun intended) by this answer and have remembered it since. Indeed, it has a lot to do with kendo.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          "I could never understand why you had to hit the other person's sword before you hit him."

                          You don't, and the comment indicates a lack of understanding of European Fencing. The "Right of Way Rule" (applicable to foil and saber) means one has to intiate the attack first and the "Right of Way" changes with a parry. The whole concept is to reinforce the idea that you must successfully attack first.

                          The big difference between the two arts is that European Fencing has very little interest in maintaining historical form and tradition (it has become a pure sport) and the basic mindset involves not getting hit; rather than concentrating on successfully attacking. I think this, in part, derives from the fact that the main reason for learning fencing was the possibility of a duel, rather than killing an enemy as part of some obligatory or political confrontation.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            riposte

                            Nakhara sensei did not literally mean that you _had_ to hit someone's sword before you hit him in European fencing. I understood it as a reference to "win then hit" and "one cut" directness in kendo. In European fencing - at least in my experience of it fencing epee in college - a strike without touching some part of the opponents weapon was rare, whereas this sort of directness is necessary to cut properly in kendo.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              "As a beginner, we don't like to see you blocking as it tends to make for defensive kendo..."

                              i'm sure everyone will immediately get the point of non-defensive kendo if you watch this video (xvid codec is required) from this year's european kendo championships: final battle (france vs. finland) - very aggressive

                              sorry, is a little bit off topic, but fun!
                              [thanks to midori who provided the link]

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X