- Registration for the January 2019 beginners’ batch is now closed! The next beginners acceptance period is on June 2019.
- Beginners can join us only twice a year during our acceptance periods every January and June.
- If you are an advanced/experienced kendoka, feel free to join any of our Advanced class schedules posted in our Classes page! Link up with us through the Contact Us page.
Questions on joining for the first time? Check out our beginner FAQs below!
How much will it cost to join?
- Regular club fees are posted in the Classes page.
- Manila Kendo Club is a non-profit organization and all fees are used to pay rent for practice at the dojo and other club expenses. All instructors/senseis are volunteers only, who dedicate their time and own expenses to teach and propagate the art of kendo in the Philippines.
- Club fees do not include cost of equipment purchase, tournament, and Dan exam fees – these are shouldered by individual members if interested.
- Borrowing the shinai (bamboo sword) and other equipment for beginner practice is free for all beginners.
- If you anticipate a prolonged break from practice, please inform us in advance so that you are not charged for missed months.
May I visit the dojo?
We strongly encourage you to visit our dojo first before applying for membership. Our class schedules and locations are posted here. Please contact us before arriving to confirm class schedules.
How old do I have to be to begin?
People take up kendo at various ages, regardless of the level of experience and gender. Our current members range from 5 years old to 60 years old! 🙂 If you are a parent and need clarification or would like to ask us to consider your child for membership, please go to the Contact Us page to find out how to reach us and we will be happy to help.
When/Where are Classes for beginners?
Beginners (and advanced students alike) practice every Saturday, 6:00 – 8:00 pm at the Gatorade Hoops Center. Please arrive by 5:30 pm as we always clean the dojo as a team as part of practice.
What equipment do I NEED right away?
The club will provide all the equipment you need as a beginner. It is recommended (but not mandatory) that you buy your own shinai (bamboo sword) so you can have one of appropriate type and size suited for your use, and so you can practice at home. The club does not sell equipment, but should you be interested in buying one, feel free to reach out to us so we could help guide you on the shinai type and size appropriate for your use, and where you can buy them.
You will not need a kendo uniform (keikogi and hakama) right away. Most people buy keikogi and hakama after several weeks/months of practice. The same goes with the bogu set (kendo armor). Normally, students from the beginners class are able to use it only after 4 – 12 months of practice. For beginners, you are only required to be in comfortable sports attire during practice.
No shoes necessary as you will be asked to remove your footwear upon entering the dojo. No jewellery or accessories to be worn during practice to avoid losses and accidents.
What about women or girls?
Ladies of all age and abilities, most certainly, can practice Kendo. It should be stressed that the Kendo practiced by women is exactly the same in every way as that practiced by men. Since the basis of Kendo is not physical strength but correct waza (technique) and proper mental attitude, it is equally suitable for both men and women.
How soon can I practice in armor (bogu)?
It depends on the time and effort you put into practice. Many among the beginners spend anywhere from 3-8 months working on the basics before progressing to bogu practice on weekdays. You can express your interest to your instructor, who will determine when it is appropriate for you to transition into bogu practice.
Why can’t I put the bogu on right away?
Kendo is truly a lifelong pursuit when done properly and just like any other disciplines one must first master the basics. The basics in this case include not only wearing the armor, but also learning to deliver and receive strikes safely , with a correct form, and appropriate force.
What else do I have to bring during practice?
Gatorade Hoops Center is not equipped with lockers or drinking fountains. Please bring a bottle of water to maintain hydration during practice. Two bathrooms are available for changing – one for male, one for female.
Also, we always clean/ mop/ polish the floor before training, so please bring a mop or rug. This is a significant part of Kendo training and is a shared responsibility of all the members. There is no standard size for the mop but it’s safe to bring a two foot-wide rug.
Do I need to speak Japanese to do Kendo?
Not at all. Many of the terms, equipment names, and commands used in Kendo are Japanese but being able to speak or understand Japanese as a complete language is not required. Basic repetition will familiarize the student with the words and phrases that are used, e.g. counting from one to ten.
I have more questions. May I contact somebody at the dojo?
Yes, of course. Please go to the Contact Us page and we will be happy to help.