Langara Kendo Club up and running on campus

UBC students participate in a sparring session during a club practice in the UBC gymnasium. Photo: Jeremy Sally

The Kendo Club has arrived: $30 membership fee and one bamboo sword required to participate.

Getting the club started

Students Sei Kaneko, Aaron Lev and instructor Raymond Chow began organizing the Langara Kendo Club in August, but everything from school approval to gym time is now being settled.

Kendo is more than a martial art, said Kaneko. Its style and structure, rooted in Japanese tradition instills, character and respect and fosters a sense of community.

Kaneko, an international student, helped start the kendo club at Langara to meet new people while doing something she loved to do in Japan.

Lev said he helped create the club to introduce others to the sport.

“For me, kendo was a way to incorporate change and discipline in my life,” said Lev.

“Perhaps it can do the same for others,” he added.

Kaneko and Lev also said Chow’s role in the club’s inception was invaluable, saying it was his urging that sparked the catalyst.

Affiliate clubs

The club has also affiliated itself with the Steveston Kendo Club and the UBC Kendo Club, so members will benefit from seeing a series of different coaches.

Langara members will receive coaching by Ray Murao, Steveston Kendo Club head coach and seven-time national team member.

Risks and injuries

David Harding, head instructor for the UBC Kendo Club, said the sport is physical but severe injury is rare.

“The most common injuries are blisters on the foot because you have to practice in bare feet,” said Harding.

Getting involved

Langara organizers will be scheduling another information session. If interested, check the Langara Kendo Club Facebook page for further announcements or contact them at langarakendoclub[at]

Practices will be held on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 8 – 10 p.m., in the Langara gymnasium. Specific dates are yet to be set.

Video demonstration

Below is a video of club member Sei Kaneko performing a Kendo demonstration during Langara Clubs day.

Reported by Brandon Kostinuk

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  1. Bev says

    Yeah Aaron!

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