What if motodachi failes during grading exam?

by Russian kendoguide user

Recently I saw kyu grading exam performance where motodachi didn't manage to play his role well.

 He opened do instead of men (as a result kakarite had to strike not clear men but lifted motodachi's shinai), in nidan waza he stepped aside instead of backwards, during uchikomi he looked frozen and didn't move right, etc.

As a result kakarite didn't pass and he was told that it is because he could not cooperate with such motodachi. (Motodachi didn't pass either.)

Do you think it is a right decision of committee? And what can we do if our motodachi is not able to behave correctly?

Answer: Thank you for your question and probably many others wonder the same thing.

I must say it is all up to the federation you belong to.

I understand why both failed and the reasoning behind such judgment, because kakarite should strike openings not unopened targets.  I also think it is motodachi's fault and kakarite should not be penalized for motodachi's mistakes.

You have to understand what your federation is after in promotion exams. Unfortunately it varies from federation to federation.

In dan exams, our opponents play great rules. If one is not as good as the other, the better guy may fail. That happens all the time. The reason is that we should not change or be controlled by our opponent's kendō style. We must do a good solid kendō against whoever we are fighting.

So you should ask your federation. My opinion is not necessarily correct in your federation.

Hope this helps.

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