Tuesday, January 23, 2007


We have our 1st grading opportunity of the year in a couple of weeks.

I remember my 1st grading experience. I had played 5-6 year of kendo ungraded and was finally going for my 6th kyu. I thought it would be easy. I skipped one grade to get to 5th kyu...but to my horror other people (with less experience) were skipped up to 4th kyu! I couldn't believe it. Then I realised that I still had a lot ot learn and that gradings are fantastic opportunity to show your peers what you have learnt...just like anyother test really. And instead of failing to reach a grade, its an opportunity to discover what you have not yet learnt...which in the end is going to make you a better kendo player.

Good luck everyone who is grading in Picton.

Monday, January 15, 2007

I'm Back!

Hello everyone,

Yes, I am back at last! I had my first training session last wednesday night and I it was pretty hard to wipe the smile off my face all night. Honestly, to miss 4 months of kendo is an experience I don't wish on any of you. It's amazing how important the role kendo has played in not only my physical health but also my mental health and general wellbeing. It is such a wonderful stress release to swing that bamboo stick and the social aspect too has a very calming role. I truly missed everyone as much as I missed playing kendo.

My shoulder is still pretty buggered - basically the 'impingement' is gone but the muscles have tightened up so much that I had to get a hand tying my hakama at the back and struggled to tie up my men due to the restricted movement. Nevertheless, I was finally back on the boards swinging that shinai and happy as Larry! I managed to last the entire session but had to drop out of the jigeiko part.

It's going to take a year to get back to full mobility according to the Physio and it means I'll have to give the Picton grading a miss, but you know what? Just the fact that I can play any kendo is wonderful to me now. It's the classic cliche but 'ya don't know what ya got til it's gone!'

I hope to see all the old familiar faces over the coming weeks and you'll recognise me by the big grin (and the expanded belly - another by-product of no kendo!).

I look forward to seeing you all real soon,