Dear Kendo Bu Members

I hope you are keeping safe and well and making an enthusiastic, if cautious, return to training…

With regret, we have taken the decision to postpone this year’s summer seminar, preferring to use the deposit to secure the venue for next year (2022). This was a difficult decision and the result of a split vote.

As per the changes on 17th May:

  • People are allowed to decide on the appropriate level of risk for their individual circumstances and most legal restrictions on meeting others outdoors have been lifted on groups of less than 30 people.
  • Indoor adult group sports and exercise classes have resumed and for kendo these can include paired and contact training with careful management of distance and use of the voice. Indoor classes must be less than 30 in total and subdivided into non-mixing groups of 6 or less.
  • Restrictions have been removed for children, but only for activity between children, not with an adult.
  • Some larger performances and sporting events in indoor venues are being allowed, but these are confined to elite and professional sports activity and some entertainment venues.

The changes on the 21st June did not of course manifest themselves.

On the 19th of July, the government hopes to be able to remove all legal limits on social contact in England, but we must still wait to see how the DCMS interprets this regarding our return to full training and competitive activity.


We advise that members need to avoid energetic competitive kendo (e.g., Shia-geiko and ji-geiko), direct close distance contact (Tsubazeriai) and excessive kiai (Shouting), however most other practice formats such as warming up, suburi, kihon, kata, and paired bogu technical training are acceptable when well-planned and carefully managed.

It is the role of coaches/leaders to design the pace and format of the practice to ensure that excessively energetic competitive kendo that might result in unsafe contact and kiai does not develop. Please refer to previous documents for clarification of suitable activities or contact the Bu team for further guidance.

To be clear: Kendo is a combat/contact sport and not exercise. We cannot know at this time how the DCMS (our regulating body) will respond to the final step of the government’s roadmap

The Bu team therefore recommends that until further notice, contact between training bubbles (Clubs/dojos) and full contact combative training must not be engaged in (unless between those from the same household).

As soon as we have more detail regarding the next steps in our return to training, we will communicate this to you. Be aware that there are notes including the DCMS documentation and an FAQ section on COVID 19 related restrictions in the Members’ Document Library. This includes detailed guidelines and advice to explain the specific rules and limitations in all 4 nations of the UK at the current time.

The Kendo Bu asks that all groups and members continue to comply with national and local government regulations and guidelines so as not to break the law or violate our insurance policy commitments.

Gary O’Donnell Kyoshi Nanadan – BUCHO, Young Park Sensei – GRADING, Ben Emberley – EVENTS, Malcolm Smalley KENDO DRC, Stephen Martin – Bu Communication