the way of the sword; training the mind, body, and character through one-one-one striking practice using the shinai while wearing bogu
ranking system for advanced levels (1=lowest, 8=highest); equivalent to black belt in other martial arts
ranking system for beginning levels (6=lowest, 1=highest); equivalent to a brown belt in other martial arts
kendoist with a rank of 1st dan (shodan) or higher
one with a high dan rank, typically 5th dan (godan) or higher
instructor, usually with rank 4th dan (yondan) or higher
the side of the dojo or hall farthest from the main entrance, the side having the highest place of honor
seated attention position
a shout or yell to show spirit
confidence, presence, bearing
counting (1,2,3, ... ,10)
ichi, ni, san, shi, go, roku, shichi, hachi, kyu, ju
B. Commands and Responses
"make a line"
"sit down (in seiza)"
"put on the men"
"take off the men"
"draw the sword (shinai)"
"return the sword (shinai)"
"Yes!" Used in place of "okay", or "I understand."
kendo clothing worn on the lower part of the body, a long divided skirt-like trousers
kendo clothing worn on the upper part of the body, a thick jacket-like shirt
kendo armor consisting of men, kote, do, and tare
kendo armor to protect the face, head, and shoulders
kendo armor used to proect the hand and forearm
kendo armor to protect the trunk and chest
kendo armor to protect the waist, groin, and upper legs
flap on the men which protects the throat
thin cotton towel worn on the head under the men
name tag worn on the center of the tare; also called "zekken"
bamboo sword used in kendo
the tip of the shinai
thin strip of leather tied around the shinai about one third down from the tip
circular guard on the shinai
the handle of the shinai
the very end (bottom) of the tsuka
the string which holds the shinai together
the region of the shinai most effective for striking, located between the tip and the nakayui
the part of the shinai with which one should strike the opponent. Refers to the jin-bu (side opposite the tsuru) around the region of the mono-uchi.
wooden sword, primarily used for kendo kata
same as bokken
III. Manners and Etiquette
A. Opening and Closing
meditation performed in the seiza position
command to stop mokuso
command given to bow to the shomen; done while in seiza
command given to bow to the sensei, done while in seiza
"I request the favor (of a practice)"; said at the beginning of practice during "sensei-ni-rei"
"Thank you very much"; said at the end of practice during "sensei-ni-rei"
matters of etiquette
doctrines of etiquette
the manner of wearing keikogi, hakama, and bogu
the posture taken when performing ritsu-rei, with the shinai held in the left hand with the arm hanging naturally at the side. The tsuru faces downward and the hand next to the tsuba.
ritsu-rei to the opponent. The angle is about 15 degrees, and eye contact is maintained.
IV. Practice and Instruction
literally after practice, usually a second practice session for advanced kenshi following a primary practice session which stresses kihon
striking and thrusting. A valid point is referred to as yuko datotsu.
the correct striking or thrusting zones of the kendo-gu (protective gear), refers to the men, kote, do, and tsuki areas
chance of strike
big movement swing of the shinai above one's head
cutting path of the sword (angle of cut)
fast suburi, one count per backward step plus foward strike
footwork used when the body is moving diagonally (front foot is same side as forward shoulder)
distance from which one can strike in one step
command to assume kamae
basic exercises, including uchi-kata and suburi
basic exercise in which the sides of the men are struck repeatedly, typically in sets of a straight men followed by 4 strikes forward and 5 strikes backward
distance between opponents
"basic men strike, 5 times"
"basic men strike, three count movements" (1=raise shinai, 2=strike, moving forward, 3=step back)
use of the eyes to see the opponent, see basic concepts
person being struck to provide instruction, for example in uchikomi-geiko, kakari-geiko, or kihon shiai
the most basic footwork used in kendo, where the feet start and end in the basic kamae position with the right foot in front and the toes of the left foot even with the line of the right heel
the right and left striking zones of the men
pressure applied to one's opponent
deep breathing exercise
natural standing position
a strike to the center of the men
footwork in which the feet do not lose contact with the floor
the usage of the hands to tighten/loosen the grip on the shinai or adjusting the balance between the hands when striking or responding
practice striking the basic points on the motodachi
technique, see advanced concepts
mental and physical presence of spirit, especially after completing an attack
basic stance; ready position
basic kamae, with the kensen pointed at the opponent's throat
kamae with the shinai above the head, with the left hand above the forehead about one fist away
holding the shinai at the left hip, ready to draw. The tsuka-gashira should be in front of the center of the body.
the crouching position in which begins and ends each bout
the position in which the opponents are close to each other with tsuba or fists together
C. Types of Practice
sword swinging techniques
full sword swing; an exercise used for relaxing and warming up the shoulders and upper back
basic exercise which simulates striking the men repeatedly, performed without an opponent
one-count suburi (alternate striking forward and backward on each count)
two-count suburi (raise the shinai on the odd count; strike on the even count, alternating the going forward and backward and each strike)
V. Tournaments and Matches
"men" (awarding of the men point in a match)
"kote" (awarding of the kote point in a match)
"do" (awarding of the do point in a match)
"tsuki" (awarding of the tsuki point)
match overtime period
a match win by default, due to the opponent's absence or forfeit
referee's conference during a match, held in the center of the court
match foul, results in one half-point against the offending player
hansoku nikai, ippon ari
"second hansoku, one point" (awarded to the opponent of the offending player)
referees' decision of the winner of a match
formal protest in a match, registered by a team manager
a match decided by one point, due to time running out in sanbon-shobu
one point match (first person to score wins)
stepping out of bounds (this is a hansoku)
a method of conducting matches in which the winner remains and keeps fighting until defeated
starting line in the court
tournament in which kihon is judged. Usually includes rei-ho, kiri-kaeshi, and basic uchikomi
red or white tag tied to the crossed do strings on the back, used to distinguish the players in a match
"Second point" (continues sanbon-shobu after one player has scored the first point of the match)
three point match (first person to score two points wins)
match time limit
losing control of the shinai (this is a hansoku)
"Match" (continues sanbon shobu after each player has one point)
"Match done" (announces the end of the match)
during shiai: "separate" (timer does not stop)
first player in a team match
second player in a team match
middle player in a team match
second to last player in a team match
last player in a team match (captain)
chief referee (makes the match pronouncements)
sub-referees in a match