How to improve Men Strike in Jigeiko or in shiai ?

by Min Chih Wang
(Costa Rica)

Dear Hiro Sensei,

I have some difficulties when I am doing Keiko. I think I can strike with confident and fairly good Yuko Datotsu in Men strike when I am dong Waza Geiko or Uchikomi Geiko.

But once I do Jigeiko or Shiai-geiko, I don´t do it properly, specially in posture and the power of the strike.

Do you have some recommendations such as some particular keiko to improve the Men strike in Jigeiko?

My other question is, what is more recommendable, striking big or small Men in Ji-geiko?


Answer: Thank you for your question and sorry for the delay of my reply. As you know I haven’t been able to sit and work at desk due to my back issue.

You should work on your mind. To be more specific, don’t be afraid of getting hit or missing. Whatever the fear you are facing, you should overcome that. Or you might be focusing too much on “hitting a target”.

Kendo wisdom: People who are good at getting hit NICELY will improve faster.

If you get hit nicely, that means because your kendo is not distorted. If your body is crooked because you don’t want to get hit, then you won’t get hit.

Big or small

Whichever you feel comfortable. You can strike big or small or medium. There is no “correct” size of your strikes. It is the process and the state of your mind.

It doesn’t matter how beautiful your kendo is, when you cannot set your opponent up for you to strike. If you cannot put pressure on your opponent, they will get you or you will miss them.

Be brave and don’t think too much. Try to put pressure using San Sappō. Mixing big, medium and small strikes will also confuse your opponent too (one of Shikai).

This is very hard to do so let me know if you have more questions. Specific questions will help me to answer in detail too!

Good luck!

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