Contact: Robert W. Gordon, Esq.
EASTERN UNITED STATES KENDO FEDERATION
SCARSDALE KYUDOKAN DOJO
KENDO DEMONSTRATION FOR OHANAMI 2006
In celebration of Ohanami 2006, members of
the Scarsdale Kyudokan Kendo
Dojo demonstrated Kendo, the ancient art of Japanese fencing.
Kendo dates back
to the age of the samurai and was the method by which samurai honed
skills for combat and developed self-discipline. Kendo consists of
striking an opponent with a
bamboo sword (called
“shinai”) in one of eight pre-designated locations. To protect
participants wear heavy body armor (bogu) reminiscent of the ancient
The action is lightning fast and intense!
Kendo came to America from Japan as early as
1926 with the establishing
of a few kendo dojos in California. Kendo came to the Eastern
United States in
1958 with a dojo in New York City formed by Dick Olden and Daniel
1974, Mozart Haruhisa Ishizuka formed a kendo dojo in Mt. Kisco, N.Y.
and in 1977 a dojo in Hartsdale, N.Y. (the predecessor to the Scarsdale
Ishizuka (Renshi, 6th Dan) is the founder of the Scarsdale Kendo dojo
President of the Eastern United States Kendo Federation.
The Scarsdale dojo hosts about 40 members
ranging in age from 5 to 80.
Both men and women participate and come from all walks of life,
medical doctors, concert musicians, attorneys, business professionals,
students, and housewives.
Today's participants are: Tadaki Kawae (5th
Dan), Soo Chul Bang (3rd
Dan), Masato Nakamura (2nd Dan), Robert Gordon (1st Kyu), Takuya
Kyu), and Amy Iwazumi (unranked).
(“Dan” is the equivalent of a “Black Belt”,
the higher the number the
higher the rank. “Kyu” is just below black belt, however the
lower number is
the higher rank. Therefore 1st kyu is closest to a black belt).
To learn more about kendo or to see an actual
practice session visit:
Scarsdale Kyudokan Dojo,
Saturdays 3:00pm – 5:30pm
Elementary School, 100 Glendale Road, NY 10583
Shidogakuin Dojo (Shozo Kato, 7th
Dan, instructor), Saturdays 5:00pm –8:30pm
Learning Center, 65 Research Drive, Stamford, CT 06907.
Kendo Participant’s Bios
Tadaki Kawae (5th Dan), is Director and Chief Operating
Sumikin Bussan Textile Corp. in New York. Mr. Kawae has been
practicing kendo on and off for 35 years. Originally from Kyoto
Japan, Mr. Kawae
began studying kendo at the urging of his parents. Mr. Kawae is
married and has
Soo Chul Bang (3rd Dan), is a Project Executive and
Global BOE for IBM
Global Service and has been practicing kendo for 12 years. Mr.
Bang is from Korea where Kendo is also called “Kumdo”. Mr. Bang
is married and has 2 children; Christine recently graduating from
Wellesley college and Stephanie
currently studying at New York University. His Wife Yvonne also
IBM as a Financial Advisor.
Masato Nakamura (2nd Dan), is a senior vice president at
Trust and Banking Corporation working in their aviation corporate
finance group. Mr. Nakamura has been studying kendo on and off
was 7 years old in Japan. Mr. Nakamura is married to the former
Sasaki. Together they have one son, Shota, who is also studying
Kendo along with his
Robert W. Gordon (1st Kyu), is an attorney at the New
York City Law
Department and has been practicing kendo for about 3 years. A
native New Yorker, Mr. Gordon started practicing kendo while studying
law at New
York University. He is married with two children.
Takuya Sawaoka (1st Kyu), is a sophomore at
Hastings High School and has been studying kendo for almost 2
years. Mr. Sawaoka’s involvement in kendo
stems from his long-standing interest in the art of sword
fighting. Born in Nara, Japan, Mr. Sawaoka plans to continue his
study of kendo through college. He also has
a strong interest in art composition.
Amy Iwazumi (unranked), is a concert
violinist who was born in Texas, but moved to New York at a young
age. She has been practicing kendo for about half
a year. Miss Iwazumi received her BA and Masters degree from the
Juilliard School and has performed at such venues as Carnegie Hall,
Steinway Hall, and Lincoln Center. She has toured all over the
United States including trips to Japan and Korea.
Kendo rank testing up to 4th Dan is done by
the regional federations.
Testing for 5th Dan through 7th Dan is
conducted by the All United
States Kendo Federation at least twice a year (within USA). 8th
Dan and above are tested only in Japan by the All Japan Kendo
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