Kendo has advanced greatly since its inception during the Shotoku Era. The modern version of the sport features specific rules and practices that need to be followed.
It is fair to say that kendo is one of the more popular martial arts. Fighters are encouraged to shout so that they can express their spirit. During strikes, the front foot is also stomped. Kendo is practiced barefoot in a venue with wooden flooring.
Most kendo techniques comprise a series of thrusts and strikes. Thrusts tend to be restricted only to very experienced masters. This is because they can cause injury if done in the wrong part of the body. Strikes can only hit certain target areas. These include the head, body, and wrists.
There is an impressive range of possible techniques. Some are intense and short attacks aimed at teaching students to be constantly alert. Others are more focused on building stamina by deflecting continuous strikes for an extended period of time. Practice sessions may be held against two fighters of the same skill level or a junior and master.
Points are scored by striking or thrusting an opponent on an armored part of their body. Contact needs to be made using the shinai. Judges may also take the posture and fighting spirit of competitors into consideration.
Three referees are often in attendance at competitions. At least two of them have to agree for a point to be awarded. When this occurs, there may be a pause during play. A player can win either by attaining two points or having only one when the time limit has been reached.