Starting your kendo journey is easy: just get to the dojo regularly. Just as easy is the equipment you’ll need, because you really don’t need much. Here’s the equipment we suggest for new students.

  • Bokuto Set (wooden swords) – long and short – including tsuba (hilt guards)
  • Shinai (bamboo swords) x 2 – including tsuba
  • Kendogi (uniform top) and Hakama (uniform bottom)
  • Shinai bag (that can carry at least 3 shinai) to carry shinai and bokuto

Beginners don’t need bogu (armour) when they start. The transition to contact drills and sparring doesn’t have a set duration at our club: it depends on an individual student’s progress.

As for suppliers, there are MANY suppliers of kendo equipment online. We have purchased equipment from the following suppliers:

E-bogu has been my go-to supplier. It is the “supermarket” for kendo equipment. You’ll find almost everything you’ll ever need there.

Bogumaster and Kenshindo are smaller companies run by local kendo sensei. Bogumaster has a wider selection of equipment. Kenshindo offers really nice handmade bogu. Check them out, call or email them with questions. Their websites may not display everything they have available.

If several people want equipment at the same time, it can be worth putting in a bulk order to save on shipping etc, so let me know if you want things ordered and if there are enough people who want things we’ll put in a group order.

Any questions, please let me know 🙂