Tankendo means the “Way of the Short Sword”. It is a budo allied to Jukendo that is based on traditional Japanese kodachi (short sword) techniques.
Tankendo is very similar to kendo, with only a few differences:
– practitioners use a 53cm short shinai (bamboo sword)
– practitioners also use the same armour as in kendo, but wear only the right kote (glove), and the urabuton under the right armpit
– targets in tankendo are the same as those in kendo, with the addition of a thrust to the torso (dō-tsuki) and a close quarter thrust to the torso after arm-locking the opponent (seitai-zuki)
Jukendo and tankendo matches include shiai, in which competitors wear protective armour and try to score two out of three valid points. Children also take part in matches in which the quality of fundamental techniques or kata proficiency are judged.
Jukendo and tankendo are practised in Japan by men and women alike, children and seniors.