Kendo in Frankfurt is older than the club KATANA e.V. The roots of Kendo in Frankfurt most likely go back to the early 70s. Later, Kendo was conducted in one of Frankfurt’s Karate clubs.
In 1989, “KATANA – 1. Dojo for Kendo and Iaido in Frankfurt / Main eV” was was the first Frankfurt Kendo Club. Although Iaido initially belonged to training offers of the association, it became very soon apparent that Kendo would be the only actively performed sport.
The Kendo sport had a fast rise. At the day of club founding 16 members joined the club, while nowadays the club has about 200 members, which makes it one of the largest Kendo clubs in Germany.
The member structure also changed rapidly: At the beginning new members were mostly those who had specific interest in Japan and Kendo and aged mid-20s to mid-30s. Now the club has members across all societies and age groups: children from approximately 7 years to teens of 14-18 years, the adults aged up to about 40 years are the majority. Nevertheless, a significant group of kendoka (= Kendo athletes) are beyond their 50s. In all age groups is an ever growing percentage of female kendoka.
Kendo is one of the few sports where men and women train together and compete in some tournaments against each other.
Originally, only a single training group existed. Now four training groups exist (children/teen beginners, children/teen with armour and adult beginners and adults with armour) who spread among 5 training dates.
In addition, special training sessions, courses and tournaments are held. In particular, KATANA Frankfurt/Main holds the Tengu Cup in its 15th consecutive year (as of 2012) that attracts around 250 to 300 from all over Germany, as well as from other European countries. Even kendoka from Japan, America and other non-European countries took part in this tournament. The Tengu Cup is the biggest club tournament in Germany and based on our knowledge also in Europe.
Due to the continuous training of the club, we could also celebrate a lot of successes. Among the Frankfurter kendoka are European champions, German Champions and Hessen Champions. Our members Lissa Meinberg and Sabrina Kumpf reached with the women’s team even third place at the world championships in 2012.
We hope to continue this success thanks to our trainers (sensei) who rank up to 7th Dan.