A complete guide to Kendo training: Thorough explanation from basics to applied techniques

Kakerigeiko in Kendo is an important practice method that is essential not only for improving technique, but also for spiritual growth.

In this article, we will provide a thorough explanation of Kendo’s Kakerigeiko, from its basic steps to applied techniques and mindset.

We will provide content that will serve as a guide for all Kendo swordsmen, from beginners to experts, to hone their techniques and improve their spirituality through practice.

So, let’s begin our journey to explore the depths of Kendo’s kake-keiko and deepen our practical knowledge of it.



Introduction: The basics of kendo kari training and its importance

Kari-geiko is an essential element in Kendo training, for acquiring techniques, improving physical strength, and training mental strength.

In this section, we will take a closer look at the basic purpose and effects of Kakerigeiko, as well as its historical background in Kendo.


Purpose and effects of Kakari Keiko

Kakari training is a practice method that allows you to repeat Kendo techniques and instill them into your body in a natural way.

Through this training, the swordsman learns how to strike accurately, move his feet, and use timing.

In addition, you can train your endurance and explosive power at the same time, and by practicing with people in a manner similar to actual combat, you will improve your reaction speed and decision-making ability in actual matches.

Furthermore, through continuous attacks and defenses, students develop their mental endurance and acquire the ability to act calmly under pressure.


Historical background of Kakerigeiko in Kendo

Kakerigeiko has developed along with the history of Kendo.

In ancient times, kendo had a strong aspect as combat training for samurai, and many of the techniques that form the basis of modern kendo were born here.

Samurai practiced in a manner that simulated actual combat, and this practice has been passed down to modern-day kari-keiko.

Today, the educational aspect of kendo is also valued, and it is positioned as an important training method alongside kata and kumite.

Kakari training is not only a means of improving technique, but also a place to learn the mindset and etiquette of a swordsman.



Basic format and procedure of Kakari Keiko

Kari training in Kendo is held for a wide range of purposes, from learning basic techniques to training mental strength.

This section provides a detailed explanation of the basic form of Kakerekeiko and the correct procedure for performing it.


Explanation of correct stance and basic movements

Before you begin kari practice, you need to have the correct stance.

The most common basic stance is the “chudan no stance.” From this stance, perform strikes to the men, kote, and torso.

When taking a stance, keep your back straight, your feet about shoulder width apart, and your left foot slightly behind you.

Also, in Kendo, the three elements of “Ki, Sword, and Body” are required to be in harmony, and the tip of the sword should point at the opponent’s throat.

Basic movements include hitting, sweeping, thrusting, and cutting, and each technique requires the correct use of the body and movement of the feet.


Sequence of Kakereikei

The sequence of Kakerigeiko usually involves a teacher or an experienced person acting as the receiver, and the trainee repeating the technique over and over again.

The rehearsal will proceed according to the following steps:

  1. Begin with a bow and end with a bow : Before the start and end of the practice, bow to each other to show respect.
  2. Repetition of basic techniques : The hitter repeats basic techniques while the receiver maintains a constant posture. This includes men-uchi, kote-uchi, doro-uchi, etc.
  3. Practicing applied techniques : After getting used to the basic techniques, you can move on to practicing applied techniques and continuous techniques. Here, the hitter performs techniques in a manner similar to actual combat, increasing the speed of reaction and accuracy of techniques.
  4. Reflection and guidance : At each stage of practice, the instructor provides feedback, and the performers can improve on the points pointed out in their next attempt.


Through these steps, kendo kari training not only refines the swordsman’s technique, but also his spirituality and tactical thinking.

Adhering to correct form and procedure is the key to effective kakereki.



How to hone basic techniques through kari-keiko

Kari practice is a great opportunity to hone your Kendo techniques.

In this section, we will explain in detail tips on how to hit men, kote, and torso, as well as effective foot techniques and body movements.


Tips on how to hit men, kote, and torso

Men-uchi : Men-uchi is the technique of hitting the opponent’s face accurately. The key to proper men-uchi is to swing the shinai and bring it down in a straight line, striking it forcefully but lightly. When hitting the ball, lower your hips and firmly press your front foot down at the moment you hit the ball.

Kote-uchi : Kote-uchi is a technique that aims at the opponent’s wrist. The important thing in this technique is to accurately hit the tip of the shinai with the opponent’s hand. The hitter should try to use the snap of the wrist to deliver a sharp blow when hitting.

Torso : Torso is a blow to the opponent’s torso. The key to success in hitting the body is accurate distance and timing. When delivering a blow, the key is to keep the Shinai horizontal, step in strongly, and strike the opponent’s torso all at once.


Effective foot techniques and body movements

In Kendo, foot techniques and body movement are extremely important. Being aware of the following points will lead to effective technical improvement:

  • Foot Speed ​​and Accuracy : Quick and accurate foot movements are essential for a hitter to maintain the ideal striking distance while delivering an attack. It maintains stable motion by stepping quickly with its front legs and strongly supporting itself with its hind legs.
  • Body Posture : Body posture during striking affects power transmission and maintenance of balance. By keeping your back straight and lowering your hips, you will be able to perform powerful strikes with a sense of stability.
  • Practice continuous techniques : By practicing continuous techniques, you can learn to smoothly coordinate foot techniques and body movements. When performing multiple blows in succession, it is important to maintain accuracy and fluidity in each technique.


By repeatedly practicing these techniques during practice, the basic techniques of Kendo will naturally become ingrained in your body, and your ability to respond in actual combat will improve.



Kakari practice techniques for advanced players

Kendo kari training is a training that should continue to evolve even for advanced players.

This section explores tips for improving your skills through applied techniques and strategies for advanced players, as well as advice from those with experience.


Introduction to applied technologies and strategies

Kakari practice for advanced players requires not only simple repetition of techniques, but also strategic movements according to the situation. The following applied techniques are effective:

  • Variation techniques : In addition to directly reacting to the opponent’s movements, he also anticipates and incorporates variation techniques. For example, there are kote-uchis from a fake mask, and changing direction in the middle of a series of techniques.
  • Using pressure : A method of gaining an advantage by applying pressure to your opponent without forcing them to use their techniques. By subtly changing the distance, you toy with the opponent and apply psychological pressure.
  • Surprise technique : Take the initiative by attacking at a time and in a way that the opponent does not expect. For example, a thrust from a very short distance, or a technique that uses small movements in situations where movements tend to be large.


Advice from experienced people and tips for improving your technique

Advice from those with many years of kendo experience is extremely valuable in improving your technique. Here are some tips:

  • Remain calm : Remain calm in any situation and respond without getting carried away by emotions. Especially for advanced players, calm judgment often determines victory or defeat.
  • Read the opponent’s intentions : Read the opponent’s intentions from their movements, read ahead, and take countermeasures. This requires a lot of match experience and observing with a sense of hostility.
  • Emphasis on the quality of training : quality over quantity. Pay attention to each movement and always think about how you can make it more effective. In addition, after practice, students self-reflect and identify areas to improve in the next practice.



By incorporating these applied techniques, strategies, and advice from experienced players into their practice, even advanced players can further improve and deepen their skills.

Kari Keiko is not just a place to build physical strength and learn basic techniques, but also serves as a place to train strategic thinking and spirituality in order to master Kendo.



Attitude and spiritual elements of Kakerekeiko

In Kendo, kari-keiko is not only used to hone one’s technique, but also greatly contributes to improving one’s spirituality.

In this section, we will delve into methods of psychological preparation and mental unity, as well as etiquette and precepts in practice.


Methods of psychological preparation and mental unity

Psychological preparation is extremely important when approaching Kendo kari training. A unified mind not only improves technical performance, but also promotes inner growth. Here are some methods:

  • Meditation and Breathing Techniques : Before you begin your practice, spend a few minutes in a quiet place meditating or taking deep breaths to calm your mind. This will help you get rid of your daily thoughts and prepare your mind to concentrate on Kendo.
  • Goal Setting : Setting specific goals for the day’s practice improves your mental focus. For example, it is effective to have a specific theme such as “Today I will focus on improving my foot skills.”
  • Positive self-suggestion : By saying positive words to yourself before practice, you can approach practice with confidence. Autosuggestion helps you to raise your spirits and approach your practice with a more positive attitude.


Etiquette and lessons in practice

Kendo is a martial art that not only emphasizes the acquisition of techniques, but also respects etiquette. The following etiquette and precepts are especially important during Kakari Keiko:

  • Begin with a bow and end with a bow : Be sure to bow at the beginning and end of the practice. This is an act that shows respect for the other person and corrects one’s own mind.
  • Accepting teachings with humility : The path to growth is to accept instructions and advice from superiors and instructors, and apply them to your next actions. You will hone not only your skills, but also your mental attitude.
  • Respect your opponent : Kari-keiko requires you to be considerate so that your opponent can attack easily. This allows both you and your partner to hone your skills in a safe and constructive environment.



Incorporating these mindsets and spiritual elements into kari practice will contribute to character development both inside and outside of the kendo dojo, and will build the foundation for growing into a true swordsman.



Common problems and countermeasures during Kakari Keiko

Kari training is a part of Kendo practice that requires the most concentration and skill, but common mistakes can often be made.

This section details these common problems, how to fix them, and what to keep in mind when practicing safely.


Common mistakes and how to fix them

Common mistakes seen during Kakereki include:

  • Incorrect stance : An incorrect stance will reduce the accuracy and effectiveness of the technique. To correct your stance, it’s important to always keep your back straight and pay attention to foot position and weight distribution.
  • Adjusting the force of the blow : If you use too much force, the technique will become hard, and if you don’t use too much force, the blow will be too light. To learn how to apply force, it is effective to strike in a relaxed manner and try to use your entire body in a flowing motion.
  • Misunderstanding of distance : If you don’t maintain an appropriate striking distance, your technique may not reach you, or it may come dangerously close. It is important to always practice keeping an appropriate distance from your opponent and acquire a sense of distance that is appropriate for actual combat.


Points to note for safe practice

Safety is the top priority during Kendo kari training. It is recommended that you practice while paying attention to the following points:

  • Wear proper protective equipment : Always wear proper protective equipment and make sure it is fitted correctly. Armor is important equipment to protect a swordsman.
  • Control of techniques : Especially when practicing with beginners or unfamiliar opponents, it is important to control techniques and be careful not to apply excessive force. Executing techniques accurately and safely is important to prevent injury to both parties.
  • Physical condition management : It is important to warm up properly before practice and not to push yourself too hard if you are not feeling well. Also, staying hydrated frequently will help prevent fatigue and injury.



By paying attention to these common issues and taking appropriate precautions, you can make Kari-keiko more effective and safer.

By acquiring the correct techniques and mindset, kendo kari training becomes an important practice that greatly contributes to the growth of a swordsman.



Lasting effects of summary and kakereki

Kakerigeiko is a central practice method in Kendo, and its continuation not only improves the technique of individual swordsmen, but also deeply influences the tradition of Kendo itself.

In this section, we will explore the long-term benefits of continuing Kakerigeiko and its impact on overall Kendo and personal growth.


Long-term benefits of continuing to practice

The long-term benefits of continuing to practice Kari Keiko are wide-ranging.

On the technical side, through repeated practice, basic techniques will naturally become ingrained in your body, allowing you to step up to more advanced techniques.

It also improves your endurance and reflexes, increasing your ability to react in real matches.

Mentally, by continuing to train hard, you can develop mental strength and develop the ability to face any difficulties.


Impact on Kendo as a whole and personal growth

Continuing Kakeri practice also contributes to the passing on of Kendo techniques.

When each swordsman has a high level of skill and knowledge, the overall practice environment within the dojo improves, and the overall technical level of Kendo is raised.

In addition, by incorporating Kendo’s spirituality and philosophy into your daily life, you are expected to grow not only as a swordsman but also as a member of society.

The lessons learned through Kendo, such as politeness, respect, and tenacity, help shape character in many ways.


From these points, it can be said that kari-keiko has more value than mere technical practice, and is an essential element for maturation as a swordsman.

Through continuous practice, you will be able to gain a deep understanding of Kendo and realize your own inner growth.


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