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Kendo-Guide.Com Newsletter, Issue #028 - A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step
November 20, 2009

Kendo for LIFE

Kendo-Guide.Com Newsletter, Issue #028 - A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step

Thank you for reading the Kendo-Guide.Com Newsletter, Issue #028.

It is getting really colder every day in Indiana. How's where you live? In this issue, I want to talk about a trap almost all of us fell (or will fall) into. It is not your fault if you fall into the trap because it is, I think, very normal.

But the scary thing of this trap is that we don't know we are in the trap even when we are already in the trap. So I would like to share it with you, and by doing so I won't fall into that trap again (hopefully never again).

Hope you enjoy this issue!


- 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
This ebook is given to you as a thank-you for a donation of US$7.00. This includes all the basics introduced on the website and newly added information for beginners.

- 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.

- 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 -

- Benefits of Kendo -

- Kendo Lesson: Review -

- A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step -

- 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 -

- Seiza

- sempai kohai relationships

- Aggression in shiai

- Dojo plan

- Feet position in seiza

- What about Tameshigiri?

- How can you tell about good instructor or not?

- Kyu exam

- Performing kendo kata during exam

- Kizeme

- When is enough Zanshin for Jodan

- Bowing ettiquette

- Kendo Work Shop -

- Kendo with Shoto only

- Benefits of Kendo -

- Why apreciate Life?

- Kendo Beginners Guide: Review -

- A student of Kendo

- Kendo Lesson: Review -

- Great!

- A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step -

Kendo is a long journey. Sometimes we get lost (probably most of the time we are lost) and sometimes we can figure out the right path to the next step.

Kendo looks simple because we only have 4 targets (men, kote, do and tsuki). However, as we all know, the more we improve, the more complex it gets.

Since it is so simple and we repeat these simple movements over and over at each training session, many falls into a trap.

I've already know this

This is a small trap but once we fall into this trap, we will stop improving.

Many beginners start getting used to kendo movements and terms. They used to be all ears and eager to learn. But after about 3 months or 4 months, they start feeling like they know what they are doing and feeling good about what they do.

That is a good thing but because they have improved, they stop paying attention to the simple basic movements such as jōge-buri and so on. Through my experiences, I can tell you this.

Once you think that you know something, i.e. how to perform jōge-buri, your brain stops paying attention to your jōge-buri.

Your brain thinks that because you KNOW you do not have to learn it anymore.

When this happens, your basics start falling apart again. What that means? You stop your journey. You stop walking. As a result, your kendo will not improve.

Small steps are fine. But keep going

To avoid such trap, try to improve little by little. You cannot possibly execute a perfect cut every single time you try. So try to change a little thing at a time to improve your kendo .

For example, you can make your kiai louder. In each strike, try to be louder. At the end of training, your abs will be sore. But that is a sign of improvement. You will have a strong kiai in the future. You cannot tell the improvement right away but this small step can make a huge difference in your lifetime journey.

If you think you are stiff, try to complete 1000 suburi without stopping.  You will not be stiff anymore and you will be able to know what “relax” really means.

There is no one way to improve ourselves. There should be tons of different ways to improve ourselves. Always think about how you can improve your kendo, even jōge-buri.

Don't run too often.

In your journey of kendo, sometimes you can run. But many try to run to the next step. I think it is OK to run sometimes because you may want to know how strong you have become.

But if you try to run too often, you will get tired. And also you might skip important steps. Learning techniques without the solid basics is one example of skipping important steps.

We sometimes devote ourselves into hard training without thinking what we are doing. This is the power of repetition. But if you do that without the solid basics, there is a possibility that you don't improve at all by such training method.

Run sometime in your journey, so you know if you are ready or not. Ask your teacher if you are ready or not. Ask your kendo mates how you are doing. They are your companies on the journey. They are maybe at different places in the journey. But we are all walking on the same path, the way of the sword.

The most important thing is that we keep training ourselves through kendo. That is the main thing. As long as we remember that, we probably won't fall into a trap easily.

- Comments or Questions -

If you have a kendo related question, please go to Kendo Q&A and use a special form for that.

If you want to contact me personally, please use a contact form.

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

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