18 December 2015

Evolution of the Lightsaber Duel and Kendo

Image courtesy of dose.com

The blockbuster movie, Star Wars The Force Awakens, opened yesterday to over 1 million pre-sale tickets booked in the UK alone. A documentary was released prior to the movie's opening day, entitled "The Evolution of the Lightsaber Duel", showcasing Kendo, or rather Japanese swordsmanship, as the basis on which the imaginary Lightsaber was based. You can see the whole documentary here, or click on the video below to skip to part 2, which dives straight into the Kendo bits and features excerpts from this year's World Kendo Championship, held in Tokyo, in which our Singapore teams emerged top 8 & 16 in the world.

While there certainly are parallels (both the shinai used in Kendo and lightsabers are based on Japanese swords), it must be pointed out that lightsaber duels are movie cinematic fights choreographed to highlight the dramatic. Unlike movie, Kendo, like all martial arts, involves a certain amount of hard work and pain that one needs to be aware of. Christoper Yang sensei highlights the martial arts aspect of Kendo in the documentary, "there is a saying in Kendo - 'one thousand days training for one moment of reckoning'". 

That said, we do invite all aspiring young padawans in need of training to sign up for our next beginners course starting in January 2016 (and subsequently, in July). Find out more by clicking this link.

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