About this blog..

This is a blog that I started in April 2006, just after I first put on my bogu (kendo armour). It collects the advices given by more experienced kendo practitioners as well as those from my own experiences. Both technical and the mental aspects of kendo are written in the blog. I hope someone will find them useful or interesting at least!

Monday, May 31, 2010

30th Anniversary Taikai

The 30th Anniversary celebration finished successfully. About 10 teams participated in the competition including 4 teams from Taipei Kendokan, 1 team (all japanese senseis) from Shang-Hai, 1 team from Renpeikan (Japan), 1 from the police, 1 from Yi-lan County, 1 from I-Shin Kendokan, and 1 from Hsin-Chu City. The winner was the Renpeikan team and the second was one of the Taipei Kendokan team. The joint third were Shang-Hai and Hsin-Chu.

My team lost to I-Shin Kendokan, though I won my match 1-0 as the jiho. I scored a debana-kote, however wasn't able to score a further point despite some attempts to strike men. I guess that they were too slow, and my opponent just saw them coming and blocked. And I almost didn't use any kote-men, fearing that it might be too slow. More practices required!

All in all it was a good atmosphere. I was stunned by the performance from our most experienced team (members consisting 4~5 dan) and the Japanese team (many are 7th Dan). The matches were really top-notch, which further encouraged me that there are so much room for me to improve and perhaps that, if I work hard enough one day I will be like that!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

30th Anniversary coming up

This weekend will be one of the biggest event held by Taipei Kendokan so far - the 30th Anniversary - on this Saturday. There will be over 100 invited guests from other dojos in Taiwan and Japan, doing jigeiko and some team shiai. There will be 4 teams from us, 1 women and 3 men teams, and I will be fighting as Senpo in one of them.

Last night's training I didn't make my left foot follow up quickly enough after the strike so that my body tend to lean to the right. Sigh.... the annoying mistake popped up back again. When can I get rid of it completely?

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Strike at once

Yesterday I took the train up to Taipei to practise, because I felt the lack of practise and disipline led to my kendo basics becoming loose. Especially after watching my old Dresden kendo friends great performance at the 19th Leipzig Championship, and how much they have improved, it really stimulated me and gave me a positive motivation to train harder.

Recently I focused on improving kote-men, and trying to put pressure on the opponent making him strike first so that I can use oji-waza.

Ho Sensei gave some tips during the class:
  • kote-men should be as fast as possible, and it is important to bring the shini smoothly forwards right after striking the kote. To strike fast, the left foot stays sometimes at the same spot while the right foot stomps twice for the kote and men-strike.
  • when seme to strike kote, one can lower the kensen while moving in a little. This makes the opponent feel pressured and at the same time thinking that there is an opening for a men-strike. When he intends to strike men, execute a debana-kote.
  • when striking men-kaeshi-do, make sure to extend the arms up and forwards to block the men-strike, instead of blocking from the side. This is faster and safer since the opponent's shinai wouldn't get so close.
After my jigeiko with him, he gave the folloing advices:
  • Do not let the striking opportunities pass. When I see an opportunity, strike at once without thinking. I tend to make a pause before I strike, so that Ho Sensei and make a oji-waza on me.

The weather is getting warmer making it difficult to train...

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Congratulation to Ozawa Sensei!!!!

It was exhilurating to hear from a friend that Ozawa Sensei had just passed, what is said, the most difficult examination in Japan, the 8th Dan kendo test. I asked another friend to check the internet to see if it was indeed real, when he confirmed it. I was so excited! Finally!! There were 1530 total examinees over the two days and only 21 people passed.

I called Ozawa Sensei to congratulate him, and he sounded very happy, but "tiring" he said. I bet! The next thing that entered my mind was, I need to practise harder and not disappoint Ozawa Sensei nor Ho Sensei or anyone whom I look up to.