3.3 Armour

Putting on the Tare

  1. Place your tare at waist height with the three large flaps facing outwards
  2. Pass the straps around the back,  cross them over and bring around to the front again
  3. Tie them in a very firm bow under the central flap just over the hara (lower abdomen)
  4. There should be continual pressure from the tare on your hara, therefore a very firm tying on of the tare will be required.

Putting on the Do

  1. Whilst sitting in seiza, place the bottom edge of the do level with the bottom edge of  the tare waistband
  2. Pass one of the long cords (Himo) diagonally across the back, over the opposite shoulder and tie in a bow at the loop on the top edge of the do (there are 2 or 3 different ways of tying this bow and you will need  to ask a higher grade to demonstrate the various ways to you)
  3. Repeat this procedure with the  other himo
  4. Lastly pass the two short himo to the back and tie a large bow in such a way as to ensure the bow lies horizontal to the floor ( a higher grade will show you how )
  5. The do should not fit the body too firmly – there should be movement from side to side of approximately 5-8cm

Putting on the Tenugui

  1. Keeping the tension on both ends of the tenegui, and with your head erect, slide the tenegui up over the front of your head, over the top and towards the back until the lower edge rests in the nape of your neck
  2. Cross  the sides firmly over each other at  forehead height
  3. Pull the flaps at the front over towards the Back and tuck  them neatly under themselves so that they do not hang out of the back of your men

Putting on the Men

Putting on the men is a relatively detailed procedure and rather difficult to describe on paper effectively. A higher grade will take you through the process personally, however there are a few key points to be observed:

  1. The men should be tied on very firmly for safety’s sake
  2. Keep your head erect when putting on the men
  3. The chin should sit comfortably but firmly in the chin rest
  4. The himo should be kept as flat as possible against the men
  5. The himo should run parallel and close to each other on the men
  6. The bow loops and all bows should be the same length and no longer for the back ones than 40cm
  7. Once the men is comfortably and firmly in place, you should find you are looking  naturally out between the “wider” opening in the grill if not, the men may need adjusting or it may be the wrong size for you

Putting on the Kote

  1. Always put the left kote on first then the right
  2. Ensure that the himo (cords) are not hanging out
  3. The cords should be tied neatly and evenly with no significant extra length dangling from the end of  the kote
  4. Once you have adjusted the cords to fit, you will not have to re-tie prior to each use
The modern Kendo armour and part names

The modern Kendo armour and part names


Traditional Samurai armour illustrated for comparison

Traditional Samurai armour illustrated for comparison

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