UPDATE (August 2021) We are still not operating and waiting for our gym property owners to open the facilities for public use. We anticipate opening again in the fall of 2021. Please check back with us then. Even when reopening, social distancing and PPE policies will still be in place; practices will be limited in […]
Due to concerns for COVID-19 and the health and safety of our community, St. Peter’s gym is closed for use and there will be no kendo or iaido practice until further notice. Thank you for your patience. We encourage you to stay well during this time and hope to see you soon.
Congratulations to all who put themselves forward in the last promotion examination for PNKF. Thank you to all the volunteers who made it a smooth experience. New Ranks for SKK: 4 Dan Matthew Price 1 Dan Yue Chen Nagato Orita Ffion Mabale 1 Kyu Aneurin Mabale 3 Kyu Drew Migita 5 Kyu Aidan Santon Saiichi […]
The dojo is located near Seattle's International District and practice is held in the St. Peter's gym on King Street. There is a small parking lot at the rear of the building, accessed from the alley on South Jackson Pl. Please park only on the South side of the alley facing the church in designated parking spots, otherwise please park on adjacent streets.
2nd & 4th Thursdays: 7-8:30PM
1st, 3rd, & 5th Thursdays: 7-8:30PM
2nd & 4th Thursdays: 6-7:00PM
Seattle Kendo Kai (SKK) is a non-profit martial arts organization dedicated to perpetuating and teaching traditional Japanese kendo and seitei iaido along the guidelines established by the All Japan Kendo Federation (AJKF) and the International Kendo Federation (FIK).
SKK was founded in the 1920s, with its first permanent dojo established around 1924. It is one of the oldest dojo in the Pacific Northwest and the only pre-war dojo to have resumed after WWII. Our head instructor is Doug Imanishi, holding a rank of Kyoshi, 7 Dan.
Our training emphasizes form and spirit, and beginners are provided with a strong foundation in kendo fundamentals such as footwork, posture, and kiai. Instruction is provided in both English and Japanese.
Seattle Kendo Kai is a member of the the Pacific Northwest Kendo Federation (PNKF) and the All United States Kendo Federation (AUSKF). The club operates with the support of a volunteer community of instructors, students, friends, and parents.
You can read a brief history of kendo in the Pacific Northwest in the University of Washington archives.
Visitors are always welcome. Whether you are new to kendo, visiting the Seattle area, or would just like to watch, we ask that you please contact us so that we can be prepared for your visit and also confirm that there are no special events or closures that day. There is a seating area available should you be accompanied by family or friends.
Visiting kenshi who are already in bogu and current members of AUSKF or FIK federation dojo are always welcome to join any regularly scheduled practice. If it is your first time practicing at Seattle Kendo Kai, we ask that you arrive at least 20 minutes early to provide ample time to get dressed, introduce yourself to sensei, and sign the visitor waiver forms.
If you have no kendo experience or are a beginner not yet in armor, new student intake is during the first two weeks of each calendar quarter (First two Sundays and Tuesdays of January, April, July, and October). Before joining, we recommend observing at least one practice and talking with us in person prior to joining to help you get an understanding of how we train. To start, you will only need comfortable exercise gear – a t-shirt and sweatpants will suffice. Don’t worry about purchasing equipment just yet! A shinai (bamboo sword) will be provided to all new beginners. Expect to spend at least your first quarter in plain clothes while you practice kendo fundamentals and conditioning. Sensei will determine when you are ready to begin wearing a uniform and bogu (armor).
Children can start training as early as eight years of age, but may start sooner or later depending on their maturity and ability to follow group instruction. However, it doesn’t matter how old you are when you start, but more so how you apply yourself during training and how often you train. Many start kendo as adults and continue to enjoy practice well into their senior years. You should be prepared to commit to attending practice at least once per week to make sure you keep a steady momentum and keep pace with your peers. Especially for beginners, there is much to absorb in your first few months and a steady attendance is important as we often build upon previous week's lessons.
Do you already have kendo experience? Maybe you are newly relocated to the Seattle area, or you would like to restart kendo after a long hiatus. People with previous experience in bogu are not restricted to waiting until the next quarter before joining the dojo, but we request that you consult with our head instructor, Imanishi sensei, and discuss your previous experience and rank. Also, if it has been some time since you were last active, we want to make sure you resume your kendo practice safely at an appropriate pace and intensity.
Visitors with a current yearly membership in AUSKF or FIK affiliated federation are qualified to join practices immediately as a visitor prior to committing to full membership. We recommend that you take the time to attend a few practices both at Seattle Kendo Kai as well as visit other PNKF clubs in the region to determine which works best with your schedule, goals, and personal fit. Should you decide to join SKK, it would be helpful to have a copy of your most recent menjo (rank certificate) for our records.
Dues & Application Forms
|Quarterly||Year in Full *||Yearly|
|Youth / Student||$60||$220||$55|
|Additional Family Members**|
|Youth / Student||$54||$198||$55|
SKK dues are required quarterly, and a discount is applied if paying for the year in full. Federation (PNKF) dues are required once per calendar year regardless of when you join. Your PNKF dues also includes the cost of AUSKF membership for the year. New members will receive a free starter-shinai with their paid dues.