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Best Kendo Books You Must Read

Below I’ll give you my selections for the best Kendo books by a few categories. I will cover these and other great books more in depth later.

1. Kendo: A Comprehensive Guide to Japanese Swordsmanship (2013)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadKendo or the “Way of the Sword” holds a special place within the martial arts as one of the few practices tracing back directly to Japan’s ancient samurai heritage. Modern students flock to kendo for physically—and mentally—challenging activity that combines traditional martial arts values with strenuous physical activity.Author Geoff Salmon has over 40 years of kendo experience gained in and outside of Japan. His goal in this kendo guide is to dispel many misconceptions about the sport and to make kendo training accessible and…
Author(s): Geoff Salmon

2. Kendo Guide for Beginners: A Kendo Instruction Book Written By A Japanese For Non-Japanese Speakers Who Are Enthusiastic to Learn Kendo (2011)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadKendo Guide for Beginners is a book written to guide kendo beginners. The book introduces – What equipment you need for,- The concept of kendo as budo, – How to behave at training, – Etiquette and manners and – All the basic movements that beginners should learn thoroughly. Along with many pictures of the kendo basics, the detailed explanations will help you understand what you should or should not do when learning the basics.When learning kendo movements it is always helpful if you actually see what you have to do or not to do. And it is important for you to the correct movements.With the pictures and detailed…
Author(s): Masahiro Imafuji

3. Kendo – Fundamentals and Waza to Win (2019)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadKendo – Fundamentals and Waza to Win By Hirakawa NobuoOriginally published in Japanese in 1993, Hirakawa-sensei’s book has been a consistent best seller and has been through several editions.The book starts with a brief history of kendo and its current state before focusing on the basics in Chapter 2. Hirakawa-sensei provides guidance on how to stand, move, swing the shinai (bamboo sword), put on bogu (protective armour), as well as basic strikes and defensive moves.Chapter 3 delves deeply into shikake-waza (off-the-mark techniques) and oji-waza (applied…
Author(s): Nobuo Hirakawa, Michael Ishimatsu-Prime

4. Kendo – Approaches for All Levels (2012)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadDr. Sotaro Honda (R7-dan), student of H8-dan Masatake Sumi-sensei, has been a longtime contributor to Kendo World, and has spent much of his kendo career helping international kenshi. His latest book is a must have for all practitioners and instructors, and explains various aspects of kendo training in a way that is both accessible and eye-opening. He covers the basics from footwork, to various keiko methods such as kakari-geiko and ji-geiko, and offers many useful hints for shiai strategy….
Author(s): Sotaro Honda

5. The Kendo Mind: A Guide to Grading Successfully (2016)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadThose who study kendo regard promotion examinations and matches as vehicles for cultivating self-discipline. Preparing to take a grading is especially motivating compared to regular training. It is, however, also a tremendous disappointment when you fail. There are those who manage to pass each examination without ever failing, and others who reach an impasse. So, what is the difference between these two groups? If you can figure this out, even just a little, you are one step closer to finding success. There are many things needed for success…
Author(s): Kimiaki Shigematsu

6. Practice Drills for Japanese Swordsmanship (2008)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadTo become an expert swordsman, one must pay close attention to detail, be highly self-critical, and practice diligently every day under the guidance of a good teacher. Unfortunately, contact time with a worthy mentor is limited for most. Practice Drills for Japanese Swordsmanship fills this obvious gap in the training of the modern swordsman by providing bokuto (wooden sword) drills to supplement the formal class activity of forms practice. Both single and two-person drills are presented, some common to iaido and kenjutsu, others extracted from iaido forms by the author and used to…
Author(s): Nicklaus Suino

7. Kendo World 8.4 (2019)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadEditorial By Alex Bennett “Erai shitsurei shimashita. That’s Kansai dialect for, “Begging your pardon folks…” It has been quite some time since the last issue of Kendo World. The blame rests solely on my shoulders. The past 18 months or so have been characterised by life sort of getting in the way. But KW is back, and we are on the verge of taking it to new heights.” Alex also discusses the recent iaido grading scandal and the WKC in Korea.Uncle Kotay’s Kendo Korner Kendo sage Uncle Kotay dishes out his inimitable brand of wisdom on the adage…
Author(s): Alexander Bennett

8. Kendo Training (2013)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadA practical guide for establishing a Kendo club in an area where there is none available. Includes a menu for teaching beginners and a push to develop a full practice schedule, advice for entering competitions, and other subjects pertaining to the study of this martial art based on Japanese swordsmanship. The author has practiced Kendo for nearly forty years and has studied with many of the best instructors in America. Ken Strawn was born in Charlotte, North Carolina, and served in Viet Nam as a Marine Helicopter crew chief and door gunner. He attended Wake Forest University, then moved to California…
Author(s): Kenneth Strawn

9. Kendo Kata: Essence and Application (2012)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadThe heart of this work is the philosophy behind the creation of the All Japan Kendo Federation Kendo Kata. Inoue sensei looks at the history behind the formation of the kata using records taken at the time, and also examines the theoretical underpinnings of the kata. In addition, there is a full photo section covering all the kata from 1 to 10, and an analysis of the changes to the 2001 Kendo Seminar Guidelines for teaching the kata. A valuable resource for all beginner and experienced kendoka alike….
Author(s): Inoue Yoshihiko, Dr. Alex Bennet, et al.

10. Martial Arts Education: 220 Sword Techniques That Will Assure Victory (2019)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadThis is a translation of an early Kendo (Japanese sword fighting) instruction manual from 1904, 36 years after the Meiji Restoration and the end of the Samurai class. The author, Kaneko Aizo, traces his family history back to the Samurai of the Heian Era in the 12th century. His book introduces 220 sword techniques half of which are Sen no Sen, striking first, and the other half are Go no Sen, or attacking after the enemy has launched a strike. He focuses on the importance of training with bamboo swords as if they were real swords. Illustrations cover key points and show proper form. The volume is…
Author(s): Kaneko Aizo, eric shahan

11. The Spirit of the Sword: Iaido, Kendo, and Test Cutting with the Japanese Sword (2013)

 Best Kendo Books You Must ReadNakamura Taisaburo’s landmark book on the art of the sword includes technical information, thoughtful analysis, and fascinating recollections of his own training and teaching. One of the most famous Japanese swordsmen of the twentieth century, Nakamura sensei is widely acknowledged as the preeminent reinvigorator of the practice of tameshigiri (test cutting) as a test of technical and spiritual mastery. The Spirit of the Sword–first published in Japanese in 1980, now translated into English for the first time–is regarded by many as the most complete of Nakamura’s…
Author(s): Nakamura Taisaburo, Gavin J. Poffley, et al.

Best Kendo Books You Must Read

We highly recommend you to buy all paper or e-books in a legal way, for example, on Amazon. But sometimes it might be a need to dig deeper beyond the shiny book cover. Before making a purchase, you can visit resources like Genesis and download some kendo books mentioned below at your own risk. Once again, we do not host any illegal or copyrighted files, but simply give our visitors a choice and hope they will make a wise decision.

From Astrophysics to Unconventional Computation: Essays Presented to Susan Stepney on the Occasion of her 60th Birthday

Author(s): Andrew Adamatzky, Vivien Kendon
ID: 2407831, Publisher: Springer International Publishing, Year: 2020, Size: 12 Mb, Format: pdf

A Guide to the Vascular System

Author(s): Rachell Kendoll
ID: 2474977, Publisher: , Year: 2018, Size: 12 Mb, Format: pdf

Periprosthetic Joint Infections: Changing Paradigms

Author(s): Daniel Kendoff, Rhidian Morgan-Jones, Fares S. Haddad (eds.)
ID: 1533128, Publisher: Springer International Publishing, Year: 2016, Size: 13 Mb, Format: pdf

Please note that this booklist is not absolute. Some books are absolutely record-breakers according to The New York Times, others are drafted by unknown authors. On top of that, you can always find additional tutorials and courses on Coursera, Udemy or edX, for example. Are there any other relevant resources you could recommend? Leave a comment if you have any feedback on the list.

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