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Kendo: A Journey Through the Samurai Sword Skills

Kendo: A Journey Through the Samurai Sword Skills


Kendo, a form of martial arts originating from Japan, has been gaining popularity worldwide in recent years. Kendo translates to “the way of the sword,” and it involves two fighters wearing protective gear and using bamboo swords to strike specific target areas. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the history of Kendo and the importance of Samurai sword skills.

The History of Kendo

Kendo has its roots in the Samurai warrior class during Japan’s feudal era. It was initially a way to practice samurai sword skills, as the katana sword was the primary weapon of the Samurai. Kendo later evolved into a common sport, and it became an essential part of Japanese culture. The Japan Kendo Federation was established in 1952 to manage and govern the sport.

The Importance of Samurai Sword Skills

Samurai sword skills are considered an art form in Japan, and the Samurai warriors were revered for their mastery of the katana sword. The Samurai believed in the philosophy of Bushido, which combines the virtues of loyalty, honor, and discipline. The mastery of Samurai sword skills was a way for the Samurai to embody these virtues.

The Benefits of Practicing Kendo

Kendo is not only an excellent way to learn Samurai sword skills, but it also has numerous physical and mental benefits. It promotes fitness and agility, as well as enhances concentration and focus. Kendo also teaches valuable life lessons, such as respect, discipline, and humility.

The Basic Techniques in Kendo

Kendo is a form of martial arts that involves the use of bamboo swords and protective gear. The goal is to hit specific target areas on the opponent’s body. The basic techniques in Kendo include strikes, thrusts, and footwork, as well as the use of strategy and tactics to outmaneuver the opponent.

The Different Levels of Kendo

Kendo has various levels of advancement, known as Dan levels. Beginners start at the 1st Dan, and they must pass an examination to progress to the next level. The highest level is the 10th Dan, which is the most significant achievement in Kendo. The advancement in Kendo is not only based on the person’s physical ability but also their character, as Kendo values the importance of personal growth and development.

How to Get Started in Kendo

Getting started in Kendo is relatively easy, and most clubs welcome beginners of any age or gender. Most clubs provide rental gear, and the first few lessons are usually free. To become a member of the Japan Kendo Federation, one must pass an examination, which includes both practical and written components.


Kendo is not only a form of martial arts but also a way to embody the philosophy of Bushido and the Samurai warrior class. It encourages personal growth and development, and it teaches valuable life lessons. Kendo is an excellent way to learn Samurai sword skills and to promote fitness, focus, and discipline.


What is the difference between Kendo and Kenjutsu?

Kendo is a sport that involves the use of bamboo swords and protective gear, while Kenjutsu is a traditional form of swordsmanship that uses live blades and focuses on techniques used in actual combat.

Is Kendo dangerous?

Kendo is a relatively safe sport, as the bamboo swords used are designed to break upon impact. However, like any martial art, there is always a risk of injury, which is why protective gear must be worn.

Can children practice Kendo?

Yes, Kendo is an excellent sport for children to practice, as it promotes physical fitness, discipline, and focus.

How long does it take to reach the 1st Dan level in Kendo?

The time it takes to reach the 1st Dan level in Kendo can vary, depending on the person’s dedication and practice time. Typically, it takes about three to five years of regular practice and preparation.

What gear is needed for Kendo?

The gear needed for Kendo includes a bamboo sword, protective helmet, gloves, chest protector, and shin guards.

Is there a competition in Kendo?

Yes, there are competitions in Kendo, both at the national and international levels. The pinnacle of competition in Kendo is the All-Japan Kendo Championship.

Is Kendo only for Japanese people?

No, Kendo is a sport practiced worldwide, and anyone can participate, regardless of their race or nationality.


  • “Kendo: A Comprehensive Guide to Japanese Swordsmanship” by Geoff Salmon
  • “The Essence of Kendo” by Hiroshi Ozawa
  • “Kendo: Elements, Rules, and Philosophy” by Jinichi Tokeshi

Disclaimer: This article contains general information only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice.



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