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How should the Do fit?

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  • How should the Do fit?

    I just finally bought my own bogu. I was using a club set for a while which was all kinds of off... pretty much too large everywhere.

    I'm not sure if my new Do is too small or if it fits ok. I feel like my boobs start to poke out a little on either side of the Do mune. I can't remember if it was like this with the other one, but what I can remember is I'd have problems doing rei w/ the other one. I haven't tried in this one yet.

  • #2
    Everyone here will tell you that you should "ask your sensei" which is pretty true, but isn't there any other girls/women at the Dojo you could ask and get advice from?

    I think... if they are popping out at the side, it might be small, I believe the Do should cover the chest area, I believe the same concept should apply to women.

    Hopefully someone with experience in this area will post soon for you.

    I thought I should add, my Do is a little small for me as well, but I don't have the same parts, but my sensei has said it's still fine, does it hurt you?
    Last edited by IronWarrior; 7th November 2010, 02:08 AM.

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    • #3
      A sempai with decent amount of experience should be able to help you out as you're supposed to know how to wear gi, hakama and armor by the time you get to ikkyu (though generally some imperfection is allowed to slide until perhaps nidan or sandan).

      I don't know about dou to bosom relationship but for the overall width of the dou if you push the bottom to one side you should be able to fit one fist into the remaining space on the other side. If it's too wide one trick the women in my dojo do is to reshape the dou by tying it into a tighter shape between practices. It will eventually narrow down. This works on the lower end plastic/fiber dou but haven't seen it done on bamboo (I imagine it would work with those too but by the time you're ready for one you'll know more what to look for).

      Also the tsuki-tare on the men should not overlap the dou-mune. If it does, the dou should be worn lower or you need a smaller dou (which would be the case if the bottom edge isn't at least 1in from the tare flaps... assuming your tare is worn correctly).

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      • #4
        Originally posted by dillon View Post
        if you push the bottom to one side you should be able to fit one fist into the remaining space on the other side.
        That's a pretty big fit. The requirement is that the doh be able to move freely up and down over the tare. If it tends to catch on the top of the tare obi after riding up, ie it doesn't come back down, it's too small. If it's jammed on so tight that it doesn't move at all, it's really too small. It's too big if it interferes with the movement of the arms more than necessary. That's all about the width. For top to bottom, the top of the mune should about touch the tsuki-dare when standing properly.

        Women usually need a wider doh than men to accommodate their hips. Sometimes that means the doh ends up too tall. Women who are a little busty can have the problem that the OP described. Unfortunately it's not that easy to find doh that fit specifically for women. There's a thread about it here. And of course don't forget to check out the stickies at the top of this forum about female-friendly suppliers and doh for short torsos.
        Last edited by Neil Gendzwill; 7th November 2010, 07:52 AM.

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        • #5
          I will try again tomorrow looking for the measurements you all described to see if it's otherwise fitting right. I am not having a problem like the one described here thankfully.
          If it becomes a problem during practice my only other thought was to buy a really flattening sports bra.

          There are no women in my present dojo in bogu. Just 6 people in bogu that I've seen and 2 women not in bogu. It's very small. I suppose I can always just go to the sensei in the next class and ask "does this look like it fits properly".

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          • #6
            I'm kind of in the same boat. I have a large chest and, when I wear the do, you can definitely see boob-age on the side. There is one other woman in my dojo but she is an instructor and rarely wears bogu. She's also really tiny and has custom made bogu so the few times I've seen her in armor, I don't detect the same issue. I DID happen to notice that one of my seniors has detectable man boobs on the side of his do and seems to be doing just fine.

            My sensei checked the fit of everything when my bogu arrived and he didn't seem troubled by aforementioned boob-age. I was still kind of unsure and self-conscious about it but as time goes on I find it really isn't an issue. My feeling is this:

            1) If you have a large chest and the do entirely covers your boobs it is probably too big. (I can only imagine a do big enough to cover my chest would be freaking huge on the bottom.) Also, if it goes entirely around your chest it would obstruct your arm movement.

            2) If your sensei hasn't checked the fit of your bogu... s/he probably should. Plus, this allows you to ask for a general once-over and not boob-specific scrutiny.

            3) Definitely explore undergarment options. I wear TWO bras for all sport activities. (One underwire and a sports bra over it.) For kendo, I use a minimizer and the smallest sports bra I can fit into to keep the girls close to my body and completely immobile. I've seen chest protectors for other sports but they just kind of look like padding which would exacerbate the problem.

            4) If you aren't in any kind of pain (either from discomfort of the do resting on your chest and/or taking boob shots)... then I'd say you're probably ok. I find when I'm in a position to take blows my arms block the unprotected part of my boobs so it is unlikely that they would be hit. The only time I feel kind of "out there" is when my arms are raised to allow somebody to strike do. It's never happened and I hope for my sake and that of my dojo mates it never does. God help the poor bastard that hits my boobs.

            If your do is resting *between* your boobs... that's a whole different issue and probably requires a new do.

            Never thought I'd use the word "boob" so many times on Kendo World...

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            • #7
              if you push the bottom to one side you should be able to fit one fist into the remaining space on the other side....
              That's a pretty big fit.
              Really? Oops! I've never had too much problem with my boobs (except, like someone said above, when my arms are raised above my head and the person practicing dou misses - ouch!), but perhaps this is because my dou is too large. I'd say I could easily fit a fist on each side at my waist. Is that really way too large?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by lcox View Post
                Really? Oops! I've never had too much problem with my boobs (except, like someone said above, when my arms are raised above my head and the person practicing dou misses - ouch!), but perhaps this is because my dou is too large. I'd say I could easily fit a fist on each side at my waist. Is that really way too large?
                How is the fit where it overlaps the tare? Usually women's doh have to be a little wider because their hips are wider than their waists, whereas men are straight or the other way around. I suggest you just consult with your sensei.

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                • #9
                  It flares out from my hips, not as much space as at my waist, but it definitely doesn't touch all the way around. I'll check with my sensei tonight. I think someone mentioned tying up the dou when not in use to narrow it - maybe that would help?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by dillon View Post
                    Also the tsuki-tare on the men should not overlap the dou-mune. If it does, the dou should be worn lower or you need a smaller dou (which would be the case if the bottom edge isn't at least 1in from the tare flaps... assuming your tare is worn correctly).

                    ok the tsuki-tare is definitely overlapping the do-mune, but very minimally, and I've not really got any room to move the do down w/o it hitting the tare flaps. There's a possibility that I'm wearing the tare too high but any lower and it feels uncomfortable.

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                    • #11
                      My Mune and my Tsukitare do definitely overlap. But I think this is because I have a very short upper body. So a one size smaller do would probably not fit. And my sensei commented once on how straight I was standing without having my chin to low. I told him that it was because mune and tsukitare won't allow me to hold my chin down.
                      He said this is still ok and that I'm protected against tsuki misses.

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                      • #12
                        The sensei said it looked ok. There was one guy that I noticed who had the tsuki-tare and do-mune overlapping too and he's one of the more senior students.

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                        • #13
                          Safer with no gap?

                          Originally posted by e_kendo View Post
                          ok the tsuki-tare is definitely overlapping the do-mune, but very minimally, and I've not really got any room to move the do down w/o it hitting the tare flaps. There's a possibility that I'm wearing the tare too high but any lower and it feels uncomfortable.
                          I always thought it was safer if the tsuki tare overlaps a little as you state. If you recieve a tsuki the bottom of throat plate pushes back on to the Do so the force of the thrust is spread out over a larger area. The effect is like recieving a push on your chest rather than the thrust being focused all on your neck (which has more potential for injury).
                          I also feel better if there is not a gap for the oppositions shinai to hit.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Mako View Post
                            I always thought it was safer if the tsuki tare overlaps a little as you state. If you recieve a tsuki the bottom of throat plate pushes back on to the Do so the force of the thrust is spread out over a larger area. The effect is like recieving a push on your chest rather than the thrust being focused all on your neck (which has more potential for injury).
                            I also feel better if there is not a gap for the oppositions shinai to hit.
                            I received an accidental tsuki the other day (beginning student going for men) and I barely felt a thing, so I guess that's a good consequence. But I can also barely bend my head forward.

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                            • #15
                              Head Movement

                              Originally posted by e_kendo View Post
                              I received an accidental tsuki the other day (beginning student going for men) and I barely felt a thing, so I guess that's a good consequence. But I can also barely bend my head forward.
                              As far as the head mobility goes, you dont need much for men or kote cuts.
                              For most kendo shiai strikes it seems to me that the torso, head and neck move as one anyway, especially if your hara is tensed and your back and head are nice and straight when the strike lands.
                              More atheletic kendoka might prefer a looser fit but for me tilting the head effects my peripheral vision, balance and zanshin after the cut so I try to avoid it.

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