Kendo Clubs AUSKF/EUSKF resources Equipments club photo

Iaido Equipments

Obi for Iai Black or White from (Black Color recommended)  length should be long enough to wrap around your waist 3 times (Size 2 for waist 23 - 26", Size 2 for waist 27 - 31", Size 3 for 32 - 40")    AND

Knee Protector from AND

Bokuto/Bokken (For beginner)       OR 
Iaito (age 14 and older ONLY)    It is recommended that the length of Iaito for an average adult 5'7" ~ 6' to be
at least 2.4 - 2.45 Shaku (72.7cm - 74.2cm).

** We do not endorse any of the above vendors. If  you are going to purchase equipment you should talk with your Sensei and Sempai before purchasing.  

Kendo Equipments

To avoid injuries, the kendokas use protecting armor (bogu). The different parts of the bogu are:
(Beginner expected to purchase their own bugu after 6 months of continues training)


Men - a fencing mask combined with shoulder flaps for protection of the head, face, throat and shoulders

Do - a breastplate, covering the torso and stomach

Kote - a pair of padded gloves for the hands and the wrists

Tare - an apron which is worn around the hips to protect the thighs and the groin

The bogu is worn over clothing which consists of a heavy cotton jacket (kendogi) and a pair of wide, skirt-like trousers (hakama). A soft cloth (tenugui) - often decorated with Japanese calligraphy and powerful symbols - is worn under the Men to absorb the sweat and minimize chafing from the mask.

Hakama have seven deep pleats, two on the back and five on the front. The pleats represent the virtues considered essential by the samurai. 

Jin -Mercy
Gi -Righteousness
Rei -Etiquette
Chi -Intelligence
Shin -Trust
* Makoto = Chu-Kou Loyalty/Allegiance

The cost for all this equipment is highly dependent of the quality of the gear - hand-crafted, exquisite Japanese bogus with artistic stitching and Titanium face visors naturally being the most expensive.

Bougu Sets are available in two definitive styles, Machine Stitched Bougu and Hand Stitched Bougu.

Machine Stitched Bougu
The major factor which determines the quality of a machine stitched Bougu set is the distance between the lines of stitching. A 2mm Bougu set will generally, if used at the same frequency, last considerably longer than a 5 or 6mm Bougu set. This is because of the durability that the stitches lend to the material, which make it more resistant to the damage consistent with a strike from a Shinai. The more distance between the rows of stitches, the more likely the fabric itself is to take structural damage, hence providing less protection and resulting in a shorter life span.
Price range: $290 - $700

Deluxe Bougu sets
These are machine stitched Bougu sets which are manufactured with better materials and to a higher degree of quality. These sets are made using the highest quality components including titanium Men Gane, indigo dyed deer leather and a 50 piece corrugated Do. Edges are hand finished and the sets use only the finest quality indigo dye.
Price range: $700 - $2500

Hand Stitched Bougu
Hand Stitched Bougu is manufactured in a totally different manner to machine stitched Bougu. Stitches are arranged in squares as opposed to lines so that overall there is a much larger area of material supported by stitches. This arrangement also means that the Bougu will retain flexibility in addition to this increased durability. Hand Stitched Bougu is made using only the finest materials and are the epitome of quality in a Bougu set. Hand stitched Bougu is suitable for the committed long term kendoka as they offer unrivalled protection and longevity.
Price range: $2500 - $7000+

The practitioner is armed with a shinai, a bamboo practice sword that consists of four bamboo slats, a leather handgrip called the tsuka-gawa covering the tsuka (the hilt), a leather cup called the sakigawa on the tip (or kissaki), and a tsuba (the hilt, made of resin or leather) held in place by the tsuba-dome (a rubber disk). The whole is kept together under tension by a string (the tsuru) connecting the leather parts at each end, and by a leather binding around the shinai (the nakayui) marking out the datotsu-bu or mono uchi (the top part of the blade towards the tip) which is the kendo cutting area.

The shinai allows full strength cuts to be made, without the risk of killing or maiming your training partner the way that a live blade or a solid wooden dummy sword would. In Kendo the solid wooden sword, or boken, is still used in the Kendo kata and more rarely in waza (technique) practice in order to gain a better understanding of how the technique works with a sword, however it is not for free-sparing. The steel Katana, or alloy iaito are used by high grades in Kata demonstrations and are the standard weapon used in Iaido.
Katana: $300 - $5000+
Bokuto/Bokken: $15 - $ 300
Kotachi/Shoto: $10 - $250
Shinai: $24 - $350

A bamboo shinai requires constant maintenance, the slats must be checked for splintering the string joining the leather handgrip to the tip must be taut and the leather must be in good condition. In dry climates especially, the slats must be regularly oiled to keep them from splintering.

In addition to bamboo shinai there are now plastic/resin shinais available, which while more expensive are much longer lasting and require less maintenance. Failure to maintain the shinai, quite apart from showing disrespect for the symbolism regarding the sword that the shinai embodies, is a very dangerous thing, as a faulty shinai may break up and injure your fellow practitioner.

The minimum weight and maximum length of the shinai are regulated, varying depending on the age and sex of the kendoka, and on whether the kendoka is using one shinai or is using a normal length shinai in the left hand and a short shinai in the right (fighting in nito).




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