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Kendo-Guide.Com Newsletter, Issue #035 - Detroit Kendo Seminar 2010
March 31, 2010

Kendo for LIFE

Kendo-Guide.Com Newsletter, Issue #035 - Detroit Kendo Seminar 2010


Thank you for reading the Kendo-Guide.Com Newsletter, Issue #035.

How was your March? Man, already April! My daughter will be one year old soon.

Cannot believe how fast time goes.

My daughter learns a new thing every day. Super amazing how fast babies can learn. I wish I could learn that fast. Probably I lose my brain cells as fast as she learns :)

Since I cannot learn as fast, I decided to learn one thing at a time.

Some of you may know that my left shoulder is in bad shape. I feel a pain in the shoulder all the time even when doing nothing.

So I am learning to be patient with not doing kendo. I try not to train. But when I do (when a visitor comes from a distance) , I try not to move my hands much.

Yes, I am learning to keep my hands right in front of me no matter what. Usually, I feel like blocking when my opponent comes in closer so my hands come up a bit to prepare to block.

This is a sign of fear. Even when you think you are not afraid of your opponent your body is very honest. If you are not afraid, your hands should not move, especially to block.

Since I cannot learn as fast as babies, Iíve been learning how to overcome my fear and be patient whenever I have a chance to train.

In this issue, you will be updated with new posts from our fellow kendoists from all over the world and you can read an article from Matt about Detroit Seminar 2010.

Thanks for his contribution, we all can learn what they learned from two well-known kendo 8th dan senseis.

Enjoy! Announcement

- Kendo Guide in Russian

- Some articles from Kendo-Guide.Com in Russian.

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Kendo For Life, LLC Products

- Kendo Beginners eBook: Kendo Guide for Beginners
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- Online Kendo Basics Video
11 kendo basics videos (139.8 min) are now available. You can watch them online or download to your computer. Get them all together with 32% discount.

- How to Learn Kendo Movements More Easily and Quickly
Are you having a hard time to get the kendo movements right? Try to find out methods that make easier and quicker for you to learn the movements.

- Kendo Online Basics 101
Now you can learn kendo basics online. Learn the moves and submit your kendo movement videos. I will check your movements and give you feedback.

Thank you!

Now enjoy the updates!

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What we have in this issue is shown below. Enjoy this Newsletter!

Table of Content

- Kendo Q & A -

- Kendo Work Shop -

- Kendo Reader Review -

- 2010 Detroit Kendo Seminar Summary -

- Comments or Questions -

There are links to change your email address for the newsletter or unsubscribe at the bottom of every newsletter. Thanks!

- Kendo Q & A -

- 1000 haya-suburi. What is the purpose?

- Difference and purpose betwen Each Type of Keiko

- What is the difference between katana and shinai cutting?

- Difference and purpose betwen Each Type of Keiko

- Questions About Jodan

- Kendo Work Shop -

- Weak inner muscles?

- Should kensen bounce up in suburi?

- Fall over when performing fumikomi

- My swing becomes angled

- Kendo Reader Review -

- Kendo Reader (now available in Spanish)

2010 Detroit Kendo Seminar Summary

by Matt

The seminar was taught by Funatsu Shinji Sensei, 8th Dan Kyoshi, professor of kendo at kinkikanku and former all Japan champion, and Migita Kojiro Sensei, 8th Dan Kyoshi, from Kumamoto Nanryo High School also former all Japan champion.

The group was divided into mudansha (kyu holder) and yudansha (dan holder) with Migita sensei taking the mudansha and Funatsu sensei teaching the yudansha.

The emphasis in the summary as well as any mistakes are entirely my own. Here is a brief summary of what was taught to the yudansha group.

The main focus of the seminar was suburi, sensei started with some comments about things he had observed after watching us. He said that we must ensure we are swinging up with our left hand and that he noticed most people are picking up the shinai with their right hand.

The shinai must be swung both up and down with the left hand. When you swing up it must be far enough so that you can see under your left hand. Sensei noticed many people were swinging up so their left hand is in front of their face.

Suburi must be done as if you have an opponent in front of you. You should not look up, down, left or right, but straight forward into your imaginary opponentís eyes.

For joge-suburi for shodan/nidan it is ok to use your butt as a center finder and swing all the way back, but as you advance you should move closer to the jodan position when doing this suburi.

Many people were cutting too shallow in their men suburi, only to the top of the head. Shomen should be done so as to cut between your imaginary opponents nose and chin.

You must make sure that each cut is completed and that you are not bouncing your shinai to the next cut. You should finish with your right hand at shoulder height and your left hand at chest height.

Good suburi comes from good footwork. If footwork is sloppy you will have tension in your upper body and will affect your suburi.

If your footwork is crisp it will improve your suburi and allow you to make it faster. You should never let your left heel touch the floor during suburi.

Put strength into your tanden or abdomen and make smaller steps if you have to.

For choyaku suburi, it should be the same suburi as basic men, incorporating all the points above, only your feet are moving faster.

Funatsu sensei started kendo in the fourth grade and is now 55 years old, he has been doing suburi every day since he started kendo. He said that you should practice suburi every chance you get. You can practice anywhere, in the shower, while watching TV etc, just swing with the feel of a shinai.

We next moved on to oikomi practice starting with doing okuriashi across the gym. Sensei emphasized again to keep looking into your imaginary opponents eyes, and to keep your body and shinai moving straight, it should not move like a wave.

We then did okuriashi halfway across the gym, one fumikomi and continued thru the other half, and then moved to 2 fumikomi, and then finally continuous (oi-komi) across the gym.

Doing oikomi is a requirement for dan holders, and sensei wanted to see that everyone in our group could do it. He said you must have a sense of rhythm and coordinate your foot and arm movements.

We finished the practice with kirikaeshi and men practice. For kirikaeshi there should be no bumping, and motodachi must work as hard as as the kakarite.

The kakarite should not retreat further than kojin (a distance your sword and your opponentís crossing a little closer than kensaki) and not break the en (connection in this case) with motodachi.

For quick men, you must make a hard seme step with right foot the same as for big men, sensei noticed that when we went from big, to small or quick men that our seme became small and quick as well, and that the seme should be the same for either big men or quick men.


- Comments or Questions -

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Thank you for reading the newsletter. See you in the next issue!

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