Preparing for Practice
Hydrate! Due to the intensity and length of a Kendo practice, proper hydration is absolutely necessary; You will lose water and electrolytes.
Before practice: We recommend you drink a sports drink or juice as part of your hydration. Water may be enough for light and moderate activities, but not for Kendo. A good way to hydrate for practice is to drink constantly throughout the day. Drink between meals, not only during meals. You should drink a cup to two cups of liquid one to two hours before practice.
During practice: There is only one water break during practice. Make sure you drink about half a cup to a cup of liquid at this time.
Eat healthy. Make sure you eat. Make sure you eat enough before practice. We recommend you don't eat right before practice.
Warm up for practice. While we do warm up at the beginning practice, sometimes it is not enough. Come early enough you will have time to stretch your whole body, get your heart beating, and focus on what you want to achieve for that practice.
Working on breathing. Proper breathing is important in Kendo. It should be practiced outside of keiko and during keiko. Proper breathing consists of breathing with your diaphram, not your chest. Ask sensei about how to practice this.
Push yourself. Kendo pushes people mentally and physically. It is not easy.
If you don't feel well
Before practice: Ask yourself if you are well enough to practice - are you mildly unwell and think you can make it through a hard work out? If you are, consider resting before practice, eating something, or taking an ibuprofen. If you are too sick to practice, but able to show up, tell Sensei, sit out and watch (This is called Metsuke Kieko or Watching practice). If you are not well at all, tell someone to tell sensei and stay home and rest.
During practice: Ask yourself if you need to just rest for a moment. If you do, ask sensei to excuse yourself or rest while standing aside. If you are going to rest for a few moments and catch your breath, focus on your breathing. Slowly inhale and exhale. Do not focus on what others are doing. If you don't feel well at all, talk to sensei.