What Is Kendo

What is Kendo

Kendo (剣道) literally means “The Way of the Sword”. Kendo is one of Japan’s oldest martial arts, and one closely associated with the samurai.

The concept of kendo is to discipline the human character
through the principles of the katana.

– All Japan Kendo Federation

"W. Nash at 2008 WA Kendo Championships

The practitioners (kendoka or kenshi) wear a uniform consisting of the jacket (keiko-gi) and trousers (hakama) under the padded armour (bogu). The bamboo sword (shinai) represents the katana.

Shinai Diagram

With these we learn to strike the opponent’s weak points, which are men (head), kote (forearm), do (torso), and tsuki (throat).

Valid Targets

Kendo is not a martial art that teaches any self-defense techniques for street fighting. We only strike the areas that are well protected by the armour. For more information, please see the Concept of Kendo.