Request for Discontinuation of Interpersonal Keiko ( Taijin-teki-Keiko ) – For the Prevention of Outbreaks of COVID-19 All Japan Kendo Federation

(The following statement was issued by the All Japan Kendo Federation. Please ensure your kendo practice is in line with the New Zealand government guidelines and Covid-19 alert level https://covid19.govt.nz)

The number of COVID-19 infections is increasing rapidly worldwide, and Japan is no exception. There could be an explosive increase in the number of cases and even the collapse of the medical care system. The disease has been shown to spread rapidly by forming clusters around the infected person. Therefore, it is important for kendo practitioners to prevent the occurrence of such infection clusters as well as to prevent infection of themselves.

The following is a request from the All Japan Kendo Federation to prevent the spread of an outbreak of COVID-19 infections. Especially in the prefectures where there are more than 10 people infected at the moment, please be sure to follow the instructions below. Please keep in mind, however, that circumstances are extremely fluid, and hence, these instructions are subject to change, depending on the circumstances.

1. Please stop the interpersonal practice (taijin-teki-keiko) for the time being. The Prime Minister of Japan and His Cabinet and the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare have already indicated that the following three conditions should be avoided.

  • Avoid closed spaces with poor ventilation.
  • Avoid crowded places with many people nearby.
  • Avoid close-contact settings such as close-range conversations.

When these three conditions (three C’s) are met, the risk of infection cluster formation becomes very high. Unfortunately, the interpersonal keiko of kendo includes all three of these conditions. In fact, outbreaks of infection clusters have already occurred following the interpersonal kendo practice in some areas. Therefore, please stop the interpersonal keiko until the pandemic subsides.

2. When training indoors or outdoors, please be sure to observe the followings.

  • When training with multiple people, whether indoors or outdoors, please keep a distance of 1.5 to 2 meters from each other.
  • Proper ventilation is essential. Leave the doors and windows of the facility open, and use ventilation equipment such as a blower to actively let in the outside air.
  • Ventilation may not be a problem outdoors, but be sure to keep the above distance from people. Also, if you train in a large group, you may make the people around you nervous, so a group of five or less would be preferable.

3. Wash your hands frequently

  • Please wash your hands before and after practice. It is important to wash your hands with soap and water.
  • Please place rubbing alcohol at the entrance of the dojo, etc, and be sure to disinfect your hands before and after you train.

4. People who are suspected to be ill should not train. ·

  • Those who have a fever of 37.5°C or more.
  • People who have cough, sputum, strong feeling of tiredness, shortness of breath, etc.
  • People who are taking antipyretics. If you have any other symptoms that suggest illness, please stop training.

5. Those who have diabetes, cardiac failure, respiratory disease, those who undergo hemodialysis, those under the medication of immunosuppressive drugs, anti-cancer drugs, etc or those who are elderly (over 65 years old) are advised to consult with your doctor to seek medical advice, since you have higher risks of severe symptoms of COVID-19 infections.

6. Please maintain your health. To do this, it is important not to reduce immunity. To this end, it is essential to lead a regular life. · For example, wake up early in the morning and take a walk under the sun. Your biological clock will then start ticking properly. This will increase your appetite and make it easier for you to sleep at night. · Moderate exercise will help to keep your biological clock on track, which in turn helps to boost your immune system. · Since stress (mental and physical) weakens your immune system, you should avoid and reduce stress as much as possible.

Please note that this request may change depending on the situation, and is hence provisional. We can stop the COVID-19 outbreak only when kendo people are mindful of the “behavior change” described above. Now is the time to be patient. Please adhere to the above instructions.

Nobuyuki Miyasaka (Medical Science Committee Chair) Masayuki Miyasaka (Anti-Doping Committee Chair)