Queen Mary Kendo Club

New BKA Grading Questions as of 6/11/2013

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Shame I couldn’t make it in the end (I was absolutely shattered after a full day of programming workshops), but it sounds like everybody who went to the social had fun yesterday.

As there’s nothing to report on the training side of things, I thought I’d give you all a heads up on the new grading questions that have been set by the British Kendo Association.

For the past how ever many years, the grading question for all grades had been “List and explain the elements of yuko datotsu.” And if you hadn’t noticed yet, we have actually prepared a basic model answer on this website. Of course, the higher the grade you were going for, the more sophisticated your answer was expected to be.

As of 6/11/2013, however, you will now choose two questions out of the list for your relevant grade. How confident are you with answering the following?

Ikkyu (1st Kyu)

  1. Name the parts of a shinai.
  2. Explain the importance of reigi in kendo.
  3. Name the three forms of ashi-sabaki and explain how and when they are used?

Shodan (1st Dan)

  1. Explain ki-ken-tai-ichi.
  2. You have now practised for a year or more; how would you explain kendo to a person who is interested in starting?
  3. In kendo no kata explain the role of uchidachi?

Nidan (2nd Dan)

  1. Give two examples of nidan waza and explain the key points in their execution?
  2. Explain the role of motodachi and how it can improve your kendo if practised correctly?
  3. What in your view are the most important points to observe when practicing kendo no kata?

Sandan (3rd Dan)

  1. Give 3 examples of shikake waza and explain the key elements of performing them correctly.
  2. Explain the concept of seme.
  3. Explain the difference between kakari-geiko and hikitate-geiko.

Yondan (4th Dan)

  1. How do you feel a good sempai should act in the dojo and what is their role?
  2. Discuss tame and its relationship with seme.
  3. Explain the concept of shikai (the four kendo sicknesses).

Godan (5th Dan)

  1. You have practised now for ten years or more; please explain what you feel will motivate you for the next ten years of practice?
  2. Explain the sansatsuho.
  3. Explain your understanding of kokoro-gamae within your practice and how you can express this in the development of your sho-dachi?



Author: Sybil Wong

PhD student in Molecular Oncology at Barts Cancer Institute, QMUL

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