Sunday, March 14, 2010


Erica here!

Last weekend, Louise and I attended the 22nd International Budo Culture Seminar in Katsuura, Chiba. This is an annual event for foreigners who reside in Japan and study a budo art. The 9 modern budo arts are kendo, judo, karatedo, sumo, aikido, shorinji kempo, kyudo, jukendo and naginata.

At this 4 day seminar, we attended lectures at the International Budo University (where Arakawa Sensei attended) on different aspects of budo during the day and trained in our own style as well as trying a new budo art in the afternoon and evenings. Over the course of these 4 days, we were given the opportunity to try 3 different budo arts. I tried judo, kyudo and shorinji kempo and Louise tried naginata, kyudo and shorinji kempo. Each art is different but there are similarities as well.

I would definitely recommend this event for any foreigner who will be in Japan for the seminar next year. Not only do you get the chance to train with top instructors in each respective style but it is also a very good place to meet new friends. There were 102 participants representing 33 different countries. Out of the 102 participants, only 18 were women. Interestingly enough, there was a lecture on "Women in Budo". Louise will be writing a post on that lecture.

The 4 days at the seminar was like being at University again. I never lived in dormitories so it was very fun for me to have roommates, share 3 meals a day in the cafeteria with everyone, relax and get to know people at the end of the day. This has most definitely been a highlight of my time here =)

Group picture!

Maeda Sensei (Director of JKF) and I after a hard hour of karate

Some of the few girls and I fooling around after training =p

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