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  • nervous

    Hi everyone.
    I'm interested in joining my local club but am quite nervous as i dont want to be the only female there. has anyone got any advice???
    thanx.

  • #2
    Never worry to much...toughest thing about Kendo is just walking through the front door. We only have two girls training with us at this point and gender really is never bought up, we all train the same, and women are treated as equals....as they should be. Just head on in and good luck! Hope you enjoy your experience with Kendo. Its a long journey but can be very interesting.

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    • #3
      Go and have fun, hitting people with a stick. Most kendoka I know are very polite to ladies , giving up seats opening doors buying drinks etc. at every available oppertunity, out of the dojo. Inside all are equal,just some are more equal than others.
      Wear sensible clothing (people trying kendo in jeans are sore after the first hour)

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      • #4
        maybe you could convince a friend to go with you for moral support. Even if she doesn't want to join in, she could watch your first training, then once you get to know the people I don't think you will have a problem.

        To be sure, gender doesnt matter in kendo, but it is intimidating to turn up as the only girl in a roomful of guys, as I'm sure it would be the other way around too (I guess there may be some stupid jokes for that).

        Good Luck

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        • #5
          Unless it's a small club, you probably wont be the only girl anyway.

          Most British clubs I know of are mixed but either way I guarantee you'll be welcomed!

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          • #6
            I'm the only girl at my club-- well, at least at my location. There's a female who teaches, but I'm loathe to call her Sensei because she's absolutely ATROCIOUS at it. I never learn anything from her. I find it extremely frustrating.
            But anyways. I've always been a bit of a tomboy, always have had more guy friends than girls, so maybe I'm not the best one to ask... but it's true what they've said, the only measure in kendo is of skill-- male or female, everyone is treated the same in that regard.
            Don't be scared: They give you a weapon in Kendo! *chuckles*

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            • #7
              As the posters above have said gender really isnt an issue in Kendo there are many very high graded females from many parts of the world they all had to start somewhere
              As has been said the hardest part is the first time you walk through the door
              One of my senseis is a women and very good she is too, handing my overenthusiastic male arse to me on a plate on many occasions
              of all my senseis she is the one i try to emulate, the others are to far out of my league.

              Kendo can be soul destroying, very bad for the male Ego, frustrating and unbelievably rewarding
              pls give it a go

              look on the BKA website for a list of local clubs (if you do not already know of one) http://www.kendo.org.uk/pmwiki.php the geographical area are on the left

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              • #8
                By the way:
                One of my two sensei (and the one who is mostly doing the teaching) is female. There are many awesome female kendoka. And as far as I know female kendoka usually have an advantage in technique because they don't rely on their strength as many male kendoka do.

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                • #9
                  As many said already, it's not male only sport so you have nothing to be afraid of. Only one advice.. In case you are the only female ( No other female sensei or student ) don't be afraid to speak up. The guys may not know exactly how to behave or tend to your needs ( separate changing room or tolilet etc.. ) that does not mean they don't care. They are mostly not aware of your needs. Also, if someone hits you too hard ( when you are in bogu ), speak to your sensei before thinking about quitting. They are not supposed to hit that hard anyway.. Good Luck. It's a wonderful sport one can do for a lifetime.

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                  • #10
                    As any one will tell you hitting hard is not playing the game, esp with beginners and also denotes a basic lack of control, lack of tenouchi (sp)

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                    • #11
                      You guys are so kind - thank you for the sound advice. It has made me feel more confident about joining. I'm gonna go for it - its something i really wanna do!!!! i'll keep you up to date.
                      thanks again and happy new year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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                      • #12
                        plenty of good clubs in your area ...........................have fun and keep us updated pls

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                        • #13
                          I'm glad to hear that you're gonna pick it up. I am relatively new and I'm just nuts over it. Remember, once you pick up the bokken and start practicing your footwork, you're not the new kid or that scared little girl anymore; you're a kendoka, just like everyone else in the room-- even the sensei: yes they are your teachers and deserve your respect, but they're always studying and learning new things too. You're all there for the same purpose, (which the AJKF in 1975 defined as the 'Concept' of their "Concept and Purpose of Kendo") to 'discipline the human character through the application of the principle of the katana.' And have a LOT of fun doing it.

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                          • #14
                            chat

                            Originally posted by POPPY83 View Post
                            Hi everyone.
                            I'm interested in joining my local club but am quite nervous as i dont want to be the only female there. has anyone got any advice???
                            thanx.
                            after u have spent the first session on the bench watching 'em, have a chat with the sensei bout concepts and the philosophy behind kendo...that will make u feel more comfortable. u cud also judge the depth of his/her kendo by the matter of the talk...that is if u have read some kendo stuff on the net or books bout it.

                            u will love it if u are the only female there....that means more attention from the sensei and kendokas also easy invitations to fight for the club and free drives to training sessions in other dojos!!

                            have a great time ahead

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                            • #15
                              You must at least give it a go, why have a life and not live it?

                              the hardest thing is getting in through the door. But once you have done that you'll feel a bit better. It is possible they may not be overly friendly to start with (although of course they may well be), and if this is the case, it may well be that they get lots of new people who never stay. Even if this happens I am certain that if you stick with it you will find that you will become part of the group fairly quickly.

                              And the good thing about kendo for women is that you get to hit someone on the head with a stick and shout "MEN"! at the same time. How therapeutic is that?

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