A training dojo to learn about the spirit of the samurai
Long ago, kembu was used by samurai before a battle for mental concentration and self-encouragement through performance with a katana or folding fan. The originator of the Seiga school of kembu, instructor Auga Magari, opened a school in 2014 for foreigners to actually experience the Japanese cultural art of kembu in his hometown of Otsu City. Currently, along with the Otsu dojo, a dojo has been constructed in the easily accessible district of Sanjo in Kyoto.
Lessons given in Japanese and English
Participants change into the uniform of a warrior and learn the techniques involved in such areas as how to give proper greetings, the basic ways to handle (draw, hold, strike with and return) a katana, and performance with a practice sword so that they will be able to experience the feeling of a samurai. But aside from foreign tourists, there is of course instruction in Japanese as well as a popular program aimed for kids. In the program for foreigners, all instruction is given in English with a package set including the lessons and a kembu show also being popular. In the kembu show, you can view performances with the katana and folding fan which are at times powerful and at other times elegant in tandem with poetry readings. There are light lessons of 1 hour in length while the full lessons take 2 hours for which students can use rental uniforms or not. There are several dozen kinds of uniform so that you can choose the one you like and have it fitted on you.
Genuine training as you like
For those foreigners who want more strict instruction, there is also the 3-day (15 hours in total) lesson. Along with observation lessons, there are also fixed weekly workshops for kembu and folding fan performances, and an annual promotion examination so that diplomas can also be issued.