Frequently Asked Questions

General club questions

What are the club fees?
The Tateyama Kendo and Iaido Club dues are $40 per month (cash or cheque). These dues are the same regardless of the number of practices attended per month. The dues are the same for Iaido or Kendo or even both. In fact you can attend up to 16 practices per month if you are learning both Iaido and Kendo.

The only other mandatory dues which a Tateyama member must pay are to the Canadian Kendo Federation. At this time, these CKF dues are $20 per year and the club will collect them and send them in on your behalf.

How do I apply to become a member?
Any person interested in becoming a member of Tateyama must first contact a dojo representative and express their intention to begin the application process. Once this is done, arrangements will be made with the dojo representative, to begin the following process:

  1. Observe an entire regular practice. This will give you an idea of what typical training entails and the physical demands required.
  2. Attend 3 trial practices free of any charge. During these practices you will be introduced to the basic concepts and fundamental techniques of the discipline and will allow you the chance to experience the budo first-hand. These practices take place on Sunday (3:00 pm-4:00 p.m.)
  3. If you are still interested you can apply to become a member.

When I become a member do I have to agree to a contract of any kind?
No. We do not have contracts. Initially you must pay 3 months membership, after you can pay your membership fee on a monthly basis. As long as you pay your membership each month your membership is retained. If you do not pay your membership then your membership within the club is forfeit.

Is instruction in French available?
While the majority of practices are conducted in English, there are a number of Francophone members within the club who can help clarify and explain further any aspect of practice.

Does the club attend gradings, training seminars and competitive tournaments?
Yes, our dojo is a member of the Canadian Kendo Federation and thus able to take part in the annual grading held in Toronto. We also regularly send a delegation to various yearly tournaments and seminars held in Ontario, Quebec and the Untied States.

Kendo questions

Once I am accepted as a member what happens next?
If your application to become a member is accepted then the following is required:

  1. You must begin paying your $40 monthly membership fee. Initially you are required to pay for 3 months membership ($40 x 3 = $120). After the initial 3 months you can begin paying monthly. Membership fees are due at the BEGINNING of each month.
  2. You must purchase your own shinai (bamboo practice sword) to use during practice. This can either be purchased from the club (typical price $40) or various Internet suppliers.
  3. You are required to read, understand and sign the club waiver form.
  4. You are required to read, understand and agree to follow without exception, the dojo rules.
  5. Pay an annual membership fee of $20 to the Canadian Kendo Federation.
You will continue to practice exclusively on Sundays (3:00-4:00 p.m.) until you have achieved an adequate level in the basic techniques at which time you will be allowed to attend the regular practice on Sundays (4:00-5:30 p.m.) and Thursdays (7:30 to 9:30pm). This typically takes 2 months depending on the individual.

Initial equipment cost?
As a beginner the only essential item you are required to have in order to practice is a shinai (bamboo practice sword). These typically cost $40. This is the only piece of equipment you will need for the first year of practice.

There are other items you may wish to purchase (i.e. shinai carrying bag, keiko-gi, hakama, bokuto), but these are strictly optional and entirely up to you as to whether you wish to purchase them or not.

Does the club have equipment available for me to rent?
No. Each member is responsible for supplying and maintaining their own equipment.

Where can I purchase equipment?
The club typically keeps a supply of shinai (bamboo practice swords) on hand to be purchased by members (generally priced around $40). Other equipment can be purchased from Internet suppliers such as:

Is there a difference between the Thursday practices and the Sunday practices?
The 3:00 to 4:00pm practice on Sunday will focus on the basic and fundamental aspect of Kendo. More time is taken to offer instruction and explanation.

Practices on Sunday after 4pm and on Thursdays are faster paced, emphasizing more intermediate and advanced practice methods, techniques and understanding. Less time is taken for instruction and explanation. Practitioners must rely more on what they've learned previously in order to improve.

How long will it take for me to be able to wear Kendo bogu (protective armour)?
This depends entirely on one's ability. In general a practitioner will not begin practicing in bogu for at least 1 year. Regardless of ability to learn fast, or athletic prowess. The factor which enables one to begin practice in bogu depends strictly on their ability to exhibit a sound understanding and application of fundamental Kendo techniques.

Beginners should not expect to wear bogu during their first year of practice.

Is there a weekly practice specifically for children?
No. Children are welcomed as members of the club, but they must be prepared to practice with all other members in the regular practice regime