What is Kendo?

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Kendo, or ‘Way of the Sword’, is a Japanese fencing based on samurai two-handed sword fighting styles. In the 18th century protective equipment and a bamboo sword (a shinai) were introduced to reduce injuries. Skill in either kendo or judo is required of all police officers in Japan; a lower-level officer cannot be promoted without showing skill in one of these practices. Unlike some other martial arts, kendo does not use a system of colored belts to signify the ranking of the practioners.

Poitras, Gilles. The Anime companion: What’s Japanese in Japanese animation?. Berkeley: Stone Bridge Press, 1999

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