Can we learn kendo alone? Or is it effective to learn kendo by ourselves? Or is it even possible?
A lot of you probably wonder how much you can improve your kendo technique without going to a dojo.
At the beginning, you must learn something, from how to stand to how to execute a cut. These are the basic of the basics and you can learn these without going to an actual dojo.
Once you are ready to put a set of armour (bogu) on, then you need a partner. But if you do not have a dojo near you, then you must keep learning the basics over and over on your own. Does it sound boring?
You will have a chance to go and practice kendo with others as long as you keep practicing. Until then, you keep training the basics.
If you do not acquire the basics correctly and thoroughly at the very beginning of your kendo life, you will find it very difficult to correct your bad habits afterwards.
Moreover, you will have to come back to the basics. It does not matter how good you have become.
Even my late 9th dan sensei, Tsurumaru sensei, once told us that he still worked on the basics. He also told us that the basics was the key in kendo.
I heard something very interesting when Dr. Bennett, aka.
Kendo-World Editor in Chief, was telling his fellow kendoists in New Zealand.
Fellow kendoist: I heard that kendo was expressed as a circle. You always go back to the basics.
Dr. Bennett: "It is not quite a circle. It is a spiral. You come back to the basics but at higher level."
It was true I think. I do not mean that the circle theory is not right. It is also true. The difference is one is two dimensional and another is 3 dimensional.
Whichever you think it is easier for you to grasp the meaning, that would be your theory to follow.
The basics is very important to learn at any level. If you get the basics right, you will be able to get better in kendo. That is for sure.
So keep training even though you are alone. After all, it is for you and it is for your future kendo.