Practicing at Home

by Alyson

Wrist Movement

Wrist Movement

Hi, my name is Alyson and I'm a big fan of this website! I'm a freshman in college and joined my school's kendo team at the beginning of the 2015 fall semester.

Since the first semester I've decided that I really want to become more dedicated to it, so I've started practicing basic swings at home.

However, when I next went into practice I realized I had sabotaged myself by doing that because I was accidentally using too much right hand, and without a sensei to check me, my body had gotten used to the movement and it was a struggle to adjust back.

Still, I want to keep practicing at home! I basically just have room in my dorm to sit in a chair or on the floor and do swings, or I can go in the basement and get carpet burn on my feet as the price of having a high enough ceiling to work with.

My questions are these: what are some basic things to look out for if I want to practice at home? Should I even bother since I'm still kind of a beginner, and wait until I'm under the watch of the sensei or an older student?

Also, in a completely different vein, when striking, do you use your wrists at all? Thanks!

Answer: Thank you for your kind words and questions! We, the kendo community, are so glad to have a beginner like you!

It is always a good idea to go over what you learned. It is the same as academic studies.

Two Things You Need To Pay Attention When Practising At Home

The harder you try to learn kendo, the more strength you will have in your arms, especially the right arm. So when you practise at home,

1. Learn how to relax

2. Slowly go over what you learned

It is very hard to learn how to relax. In the future, you will learn how to relax in a hard way but for now you should just relax your shoulders.

And do everything SLOWLY. Many think doing things slowly is easy to do, but it is very hard and FRUSTRATING.

Just relax. You are at the beginning of your kendo journey. Don’t need to run too fast now. Walk slowly and get used to the way of the sword.

Do you use your wrists at all?

Yes, we do! But it is just pointing at someone or something. Have your index finger up and flip it to point at something. (right or left) like in the image.

It is not exactly like that but it is very similar to that. This flicking motion gives an extra reach and sharpness to your swing. But don’t overdo it. You will destroy your basics.

Hope this helps!

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