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Grading structure?

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  • Grading structure?

    Hi There, Just a quick question regarding the grading structure in it more or less the same as in kendo? How long do students usually train before ikkyu and shodan? My fiance (who is very good kendoka) has pestered me to death for a naginata for christmas, and now she has one, she has bought me one so she has someone to train with(planned?mabye!) So my question is- what does a student have to display during ikkyu exam and shodan exam?- does naginata have Shogo grades as well?

  • #2
    - chion exercices : Hapo buri, the different kamaes and the different strikes

    - uchi kaechi in armor I think it looks like kiri kaechi in kendo
    succesion of Furiage men, aso men, aso men, aso sune, aso sune and furiage men again.

    - kakari geiko and gi geiko

    - and for kata i think it's up to fifth at least for both

    Under new rules that will be discussed at the next world championship, for these exams a renshi should be in the 3 examinators.

    If you need more details, please ask


    • #3
      Structure, etc.

      Basically, Nagi David has the requirements for Ikkyu/Shodan correct. Of the Happo-buri, only Jogeburi (overhead swing) is actually required, although the rest may be asked for. BTW, Yudansha and Shogo exams have a written exam as well as a practical (the physical part). (I believe that Shogo also requires a letter of recommendation for your national Naginata federation.)

      The "Kata" are the first five of eight Shikake-Oogi. Although they are forms (generic "kata"), they are not referred to as Kata in order to avoid confusing them with the seven Zen Nihon Naginata Kata, which are done with wooden Naginata (rather than Shiai Naginata), and are learned only after reaching Sandan.

      The spirit of Uchi Kaeshi is more like a form and less like a drill as in Kendo's Kiri Kaeshi, because the defense is as active as the offense - even more so because the defense tries to wait until the strike is committed to before receiving it. In first learning Uchi Kaeshi, the partners move together in a synchronous fashion; later the receiver learns to lag behind the attack, waiting until it is committed to before receiving it.

      How long one trains before one tests for Shodan depends on your situation. If one trains twice a week for 2 hours at a time with a qualified instructor, it is possible to attain Shodan in 15-18 months; it helps to be young, dedicated and have relatively little outside responsibilities (spouse, children, professional career, business travel, etc.), and falling into synch with the testing schedule. Training on my own without an instructor (attending two or three seminars a year), it took me three years. YMMV.

      The rank structure is:

      Dangai (Mudansha): 6-1 Kyu
      Yudansha: 1-5 Dan
      Shogo: Renshi, Kyushi, Hanshi

      which, I have read, is the old Kendo rank structure.

      In the US, we can test twice a year for Dangai grades in the regional federations, twice a year for 1-3 Dan at national events, 1-4 Dan at international events where ever they are (this year, it's the INF events in San Jose, CA). 5 Dan and Shogo examinations require one to go to Japan. I believe those exams are given annually in May; if you do not catch an international event for the 4 Dan exam, then that also requires a trip to Japan.

      There are a couple of places on the web where I have a short article, now a bit dated (I do have a new revision ready to be posted), titled "A Brief Introduction to Atarashii Naginata," which is an overview that looks at the Kendo-Naginata parallels that I wrote as a beginner.

      Last edited by R A Sosnowski; 31st January 2003, 11:34 PM.