Earthquake disaster reconstruction support 5th All Japan Invitational Kendo Seventh Dan Championship (Yokohama 7th Dan tournament) brought back to life.
What is Yokohama 7th Dan tournament?
The Yokohama 7th Dan tournament, also known as the All Japan Invitational Kendo 7th Dan Championship, is a tournament of 7th Dan teachers who have been active in national and international competitions, including the All Japan Kendo Championships and the World Kendo Championships. Most of them are teaching younger people as coaches, but they are also continuing their own training.
This tournament is not only a place to test out the achievements of their training and their current skill but also one of the steps towards Japan’s highest 8th Dan.
It is not an exaggeration to say that this is the tournament where the stars of successive generations have been gathered. There is no other tournament like this where you can see them compete in shiai.
The All Japan Invitational Kendo 7th Dan Championship which was suspended in 2006 was the predecessor of this competition, and the Japanese Kendo magazine Kendo Jidai organised the crowdfunding to restart it.
The concept is “From the first match to the finals”. These bright kenshi who represent the Japanese kendo world quietly sharpen their edges. It is certain that any of these matches are between renowned kenshi and they catch your eye until the end.
I have been coach for team Sweden for 15 years, I decided to retire as coach after European Championships last year.
It was a completely unsettled situation to compete for the WKC for me. After a long story I decided to compete for this time. But, it was a big challenge and hard work for a 40 year old woman. I know the situation was very different.
I really enjoyed WKC. I’ve always been sitting by Shiaijo and watching others’ matches as coach. But, this time I was inside of Shiaijo and competed. It was such a wonderful feeling!
Also, it was my greatest honor that I got the Fighting spirit prize.
I am so grateful that I got the chance to join WKC, and I want to thank all the people who supported me and made it possible, especially my familly.
This is the second time I have participated in the World Kendo Championships and it has been a very fruitful and wonderful experience in many ways!
Personally I had some tough pool matches. Although I was unable to advance they had got me to re-evaluate my shiai style and the way I need to approach my first match of the day being a slow starter.
Nonetheless, I was happy to see both our ladies and men’s team maturing in understanding each position’s strategic role, hence being able to work together and deliver results according to our plan in the team matches. There is, however, still a tremendous amount of work to be done.
It was inspiring and motivating to see how other European teams have advanced and improved since the last WKC. It was also wonderful to experience high-level kendo by the Japanese and Korean team in close proximity.
It was a great championship, we had a great time and gained some very useful experience.