Kendo among other martial arts

by Olga

1) Today there are many budo clubs, groups and many different martial arts types taught. What important things does kendo have for people to choose kendo over other martial arts? Can we say that kendo is the main martial art since it uses sword and we know that Japanese culture is based on a sword culture?

2) Why did you start kendo? What was the most important thing in kendo that attracted you when you decided to start doing kendo?

3) Some people practice more than one martial art, sometimes 2, 3 or even more types of martial arts. Is it good and right?

4) If it is ok to practice something else together with kendo what would you recommend to practice?

Thank you.

Answer: Thank you for the interesting post. These questions are very important when we promote kendō to the public. So please do share your opinions here.

I will share mine here.

1.  Kendō is one of many ways to pursue the way of life. Some choose judō and others choose shodō (calligraphy). Kendō indeed uses a sword and carries important culture and customs of Japan. If only sword is the main reason for people to choose kendō, iaidō should be practiced.

Kendō has its advantages.

  1. Kendō carries traditional values of swordsmanship. On top of that, we can actually train together, which we cannot do by practicing only iaidō.   

  2. Unlike other martial arts, kendō does not really require physical strength.

  3. Kendō is safer compared to other martial because we do not really have physical contacts i.e. punching, kicking and throwing.

  4. In kendō, all the age groups can train together.

2.  Apparently I told my parents that I wanted to train kendō when I was 6 years old. I do not remember why.

3. In my opinion, it is a good thing. Japanese worriers practiced not only sword fighting but also all other martial arts. And I am sure they help each other. However, some people try to mix them all up. For example, you just cannot strike anywhere other than targets in kendō.

4.  Iaidō including koryū (classic style)

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