We ask all people new to Kendo to join us on a beginners course. The 8 week course and has been designed to teach everything you need to safely join in kendo sparring and train with the rest of the club. The club will provide all equipment needed. You will need to wear suitable clothing for sports (e.g. t-shirt and jogging bottoms) and bring water. The course includes:

  • Etiquette of the Dojo
  • Basic kamae (stances) and footwork
  • The target areas and basic strikes and attacks
  • How to practice kata (set forms)
  • How to create opportunity to attack
  • How to remain in control after an attack
  • The elements of a valid strike (yuko datotsu)
  • Free sparring in armour

On completion of the course you will able to join the main class and later begin to train in kendo armour.

The cost of the course is £20, which includes:

  • 3 months membership of Southamton Kendo Club
  • 3 months temporary membership (including insurance) of the British Kendo Association (BKA)

NB: You must be over 18 to join.

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What to Bring

During the beginners course you will just need to wear loose fitting clothing which is appropriate for exercise, e.g. a t-shirt and jogging bottoms. Kendo is normally trained barefoot (exceptions can be made for medical reasons - just let us know).

You will also need to bring some water.

All other equipment (armour and wooden swords) will be provided by the club as necessary.

What to Expect

After we have sorted out the admin, the session will start with a formal line up. Just follow as best you can (no one will expect you to know what to do). We will then have a guided warm up. The main class will then start their session as normal and one of the instructors will take you for the course. There will be an introduction to kendo, health and safety information, a brief history of kendo, weapons, armour and an overview of the course. You will then start working on how the hold the sword, how the stand and how to move and swing the sword. The first couple of weeks will be fairly gentle but the physical activity will start to ramp up, but you won’t be expected to do anything you physically can’t cope with. On completion of the course you will be able to join the main class and work towards wearing armour.

Please ensure that your course instructor is informed of any medical conditions that might affect you in the course of the session; this information should also be noted on your joining form.

The BKA’s website has lots of useful information on kendo in general, and you may also want to join our Facebook group. We use this mostly as a forum for general discussion and for club announcements. Don’t worry if you aren’t a Facebook type person as we make announcements at the session and do group emails as well.

BKA WebsiteFacebook Group

We look forward to seeing you on at our next beginners course. If you have any questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to contact us and we will do our best to help.

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Experienced Kendoka

If you currently train kendo, or have done kendo in the past, you are welcome to train with us. Please let us know in advance if possible.

All visitors must either be a current member of the BKA, or hold appropriate insurance to train. Anyone wanting to join the club will need to be a member of the BKA.

Members of University of Southampton Kendo Club may train with us for free!

Practice Times